Ecclesiasticus, 38

1. Treat the doctor with the honour that is his due, in consideration of his services; for he too has been created by the Lord.2. Healing itself comes from the Most High, like a gift received from a king.3. The doctor’s learning keeps his head high, and the great regard him with awe.4. The Lord has brought forth medicinal herbs from the ground, and no one sensible will despise them.5. Did not a piece of wood once sweeten the water, thus giving proof of its power?

6. He has also given some people knowledge, so that they may draw credit from his mighty works.

7. He uses these for healing and relieving pain; the druggist makes up a mixture from them.

8. Thus, there is no end to his activities; thanks to him, well-being exists throughout the world.

9. My child, when you are ill, do not rebel, but pray to the Lord and he will heal you.

10. Renounce your faults, keep your hands unsoiled, and cleanse your heart from all sin.

11. Offer incense and a memorial of fine flour, make as rich an offering as you can afford.

12. Then let the doctor take over — the Lord created him too — do not let him leave you, for you need him.

13. There are times when good health depends on doctors.


14. For they, in their turn, will pray the Lord to grant them the grace to relieve and to heal, and so prolong your life.

15. Whoever sins in the eyes of his Maker, let such a one come under the care of the doctor!

16. My child, shed tears over the dead, lament for the dead to show your sorrow, then bury the body with due ceremony and do not fail to honour the grave.

17. Weep bitterly, beat your breast, observe the mourning the dead deserves for a day or two, to avoid censorious comment, and then be comforted in your sorrow;

18. for grief can lead to death, a grief-stricken heart loses all energy.

19. In affliction sorrow persists, a life of grief is hard to bear.

20. Do not abandon your heart to grief, drive it away, bear your own end in mind.

21. Do not forget, there is no coming back; you cannot help the dead, and you will harm yourself.

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