Thursday, June 15, 2017

Wisdom Principles: Ill Gotten Gains Do Not Last

Do you not know, that since time began and human beings were set on the earth, 5the triumph of the wicked has always been brief, and the sinner's gladness has never lasted long?6Towering to the sky he may have been, his head touching the clouds; 7but he vanishes, like a phantom, once for all, while those who used to see him, ask, 'Where is he?' 8Like a dream that leaves no trace he takes his flight, like a vision in the night he flies away. 9The eye accustomed to see him sees him no more, his home will never set eyes on him again. 10His sons will have to reimburse the poor and his children pay back his riches.11His bones used to be full of youthful vigor: and there it lies, in the dust with him, now!

Evil was sweet to his mouth, he would shelter it under his tongue; 13cultivating it carefully, he would let it linger on his palate.14Such food goes bad in his belly, working inside him like the poison of a viper. 15Now he has to vomit up the wealth that he has swallowed, God makes him disgorge it.

 Though he amass silver like dust and gather fine clothes like clay, 17 let him gather!-some good man will wear them, while his silver is shared among the upright.
18 All he has built himself is a spider's web, made himself a watchman's shack.
19 He goes to bed rich, but never again: he wakes to find it has all gone
20 Terror assails him in broad daylight, and at night a whirlwind sweeps him off.
21 An east wind picks him up and drags him away, snatching him up from his homestead.
22 Pitilessly he is turned into a target, and forced to flee from the hands that menace him.

23 His downfall is greeted with applause, he is hissed wherever he goes.

Do not get heated about the wicked or envy those who do wrong. 2Quick as the grass they wither, fading like the green of the fields.
A little while and the wicked will be no more, however well you search for the place, the wicked will not be there;

I have seen the wicked exultant, towering like a cedar of Lebanon.36When next I passed he was gone, I searched for him and he was nowhere to be found.
Why take pride in being wicked, you champion in villainy, all day long 2plotting crime? Your tongue is razor-sharp, you artist in perfidy. 3You prefer evil to good, lying to uprightness. 4You revel in destructive talk, treacherous tongue! 5That is why God will crush you, destroy you once and for all, snatch you from your tent, uproot you from the land of the living.

6The upright will be awestruck as they see it, they will mock him,7'So much for someone who would not place his reliance in God, but relied on his own great wealth, and made himself strong by crime.'

The wicked may sprout like weeds, and every evil-doer flourish, but only to be eternally destroyed

My child, if sinners try to seduce you, do not go with them. 11If they say, 'Come with us: let us lie in ambush to shed blood; if we plan an ambush for the innocent without provocation,12we can swallow them alive, like Sheol, and whole, like those who sink into oblivion. 13We shall find treasures of every sort, we shall fill our houses with plunder; 14throw in your lot with us: one purse between us all.' My child, do not follow them in their way, keep your steps out of their path 16for their feet hasten to evil, they are quick to shed blood; 17for the net is spread in vain if any winged creature can see it. 18It is for their own blood such people lie in wait, their ambush is against their own selves! 19 Such are the paths of all who seek dishonest gain: which robs of their lives all who take it for their own.

Proverbs 9:16-18
To the fool she says,17'Stolen waters are sweet, and bread tastes better when eaten in secret.'18But the fool does not know that this is where the Shades are and that her guests are already in the vales of Sheol.

Proverbs 13:22
The wealth of the sinner is stored away for the upright.
Proverbs 15:27
Craving for dishonest gain brings trouble on a house

Proverbs 20:17
Bread is sweet when it is got by fraud, but later the mouth is full of grit.

To make a fortune with the help of a lying tongue: such is the idle fantasy of those who look for death.

Proverbs 22:8
Whoever sows injustice reaps disaster.

Proverbs 22:8
Whoever sows injustice reaps disaster.

Do not be indignant about the wicked, do not be envious of the evil, 20for there is no future for the evil, the lamp of the wicked will go out.

Whoever increases wealth by usury and interest amasses it for someone else who will bestow it on the poor.

Your princes are rebels, accomplices of brigands. All of them greedy for presents and eager for bribes, they show no justice to the orphan, and the widow's cause never reaches them. 24 Hence, the Lord Yahweh Sabaoth, the Mighty One of Israel, says this, 'Disaster, I shall get the better of my enemies, I shall avenge myself on my foes. 25 'I shall turn my hand against you, I shall purge your dross as though with potash, I shall remove all your alloy.

Woe to those … 23who acquit the guilty for a bribe and deny justice to the upright.

So I shall give their wives to other men, their fields to new masters, for, from the least to greatest, they are all greedy for gain; prophet no less than priest, all of them practice fraud.11Without concern they dress the wound of the daughter of my people, saying, 'Peace! Peace!' whereas there is no peace.12They should be ashamed of their loathsome deeds. Not they! They feel no shame, they do not even know how to blush. And so as others fall, they too will fall, will be thrown down when the time for punishing them comes, Yahweh says.

The partridge will hatch eggs it has not laid. No different is the person who gets riches unjustly: his days half done, they will desert him and he prove a fool after all.

'Disaster for the man who builds his house without uprightness, his upstairs rooms without fair judgement, who makes his fellow-man work for nothing, without paying him his wages, 14who says, "I shall build myself a spacious palace with airy upstairs rooms," who makes windows in it, panels it with cedar, and paints it vermilion.
17You on the other hand have eyes and heart for nothing but your own interests, for shedding innocent blood and perpetrating violence and oppression.'18That is why Yahweh says this about Jehoiakim son of Josiah, king of Judah: 'No lamenting for him, "My poor brother! My poor sister!" No lamenting for him, "His poor lordship! His poor majesty!" 19He will have a donkey's funeral -- dragged away and thrown out of the gates of Jerusalem.'

[He] who oppresses the poor and needy, robs, fails to return pledges, raises his eyes to foul idols, engages in loathsome practices,13lends for profit, or charges interest, such a person will by no means live; having committed all these appalling crimes he will die, and his blood be on his own head.

In you people take bribes for shedding blood; you lend for profit and charge interest, you profit from your fellow by extortion and have forgotten about me -- declares the Lord Yahweh. 13"Now I shall clap my hands at your acts of banditry and the blood that flows in you. 14Will your heart be able to resist, will your hands be steady, the day when I call you to account? I, Yahweh, have spoken and shall act. 15I shall scatter you among the nations and disperse you in foreign countries, and so put an end to the filthiness now inside you; 16through your own fault, you will be profaned in the eyes of the nations, and you will know that I am Yahweh!" 

Merchants use fraudulent scales. To defraud is his delight.9'How rich I have become!' says Ephraim, 'I have made a fortune.' But of all his gains he will keep nothing because of the sin of which he is guilty.

Listen to this saying, you cows of Bashan living on the hill of Samaria, exploiting the weak and ill-treating the poor, saying to your husbands, 'Bring us something to drink!  2The Lord God has sworn by his holiness: Look, the days will soon be on you when he will use hooks to drag you away and fish-hooks for the very last of you

For trampling on the poor man and for extorting levies on his wheat: although you have built houses of dressed stone, you will not live in them; although you have planted pleasant vineyards, you will not drink wine from them:

Listen to this, you who crush the needy and reduce the oppressed to nothing, 5you who say, 'When will New Moon be over so that we can sell our corn, and Sabbath, so that we can market our wheat? Then, we can make the bushel-measure smaller and the shekel-weight bigger, by fraudulently tampering with the scales. 6We can buy up the weak for silver and the poor for a pair of sandals, and even get a price for the sweepings of the wheat.' 7Yahweh has sworn by the pride of Jacob, 'Never will I forget anything they have done.'

Disaster for those who plot evil, who lie in bed planning mischief! No sooner is it dawn than they do it, since they have the power to do so. 2Seizing the fields that they covet, they take over houses as well, owner and house they seize alike, the man himself as well as his inheritance. 3So Yahweh says this: Look, I am now plotting a disaster for this breed from which you will not extricate your necks; you will not hold your heads up then, for the times will be disastrous indeed. 4That day they will make a satire on you, they will strike up a dirge and say, 'We have been stripped of everything; my people's land has been divided up, no one else can restore it to them, our fields have been awarded to our despoiler.'

Kindly listen to this, you leaders of the House of Jacob, you princes of the House of Israel, who detest justice, wresting it from its honest course, 10who build Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity! 11Her leaders give verdicts for presents, her priests take a fee for their rulings, her prophets divine for money and yet they rely on Yahweh! 'Isn't Yahweh among us?' they say, 'No disaster is going to overtake us.'12That is why, thanks to you, Zion will become plough land, Jerusalem a heap of rubble and the Temple Mount a wooded height.

Can I forget the treasures of wickedness in the house of the wicked, and the scant measure that is accursed? 11Shall I acquit the man with wicked scales and with a bag of deceitful weights?

Yahweh's voice! He thunders to the city, 'Listen, tribe of assembled citizens! 10Can I overlook the false measure, that abomination, the short bushel? 11Can I connive at rigged scales and at the bag of fraudulent weights? 12For the rich there are steeped in violence, and the citizens there are habitual liars. 13'I myself have therefore begun to strike you down, to bring you to ruin for your sins. 14You will eat but not be satisfied; you will store up but never keep safe; what you do keep safe I shall hand over to the sword; 15 you will sow but will not reap, press the olive but will not rub yourself with oil, tread the grape but will not drink the wine.
Disaster to anyone who amasses goods not his (for how long?) and to anyone who weighs himself down with goods taken in pledge! 7Will not your creditors suddenly stand up, will not those who make you shiver wake up, and you will fall a prey to them? 8Since you have plundered many nations, all the nations that remain will plunder you, because of the bloodshed and violence done to the country, to the city and to all who live in it.

9Disaster to anyone who amasses ill-gotten gains for his house, so as to fix his nest on high and so evade the reach of misfortune! 10You have conspired to bring shame on your house: by overthrowing many peoples you have worked your own ruin.11For the very stone will protest from the wall, and the beam will respond from the framework.

12Disaster to anyone who builds a town with bloodshed and founds a city on wrong-doing! 13Is it not thanks to Yahweh Sabaoth that the peoples' toil is fuel for the fire, and the nations' labor came to nothing?14But the earth will be full of the knowledge of the glory of Yahweh as the waters cover the depths of the sea.