1 O Lord Almighty, you God of Israel, the soul in anguish, the troubled spirit, cries to you.2 Hear, O Lord, and have mercy; for you are a merciful God: yes, have mercy upon us, because we have sinned before you. 3 For you sit as king forever, and we perish evermore. 4 O Lord Almighty, you God of Israel, hear now the prayer of* the dead Israelites, and of the children of them which were sinners before you, that didn’t listen to the voice of you their God: for the which cause these plagues clave to us. 5 Remember not the iniquities of our fathers: but remember your power and your name now at this time. 6 For you are the Lord our God, and you, O Lord, will we praise. 7 For for this cause you have put your fear in our hearts,† to the intent that we should call upon your name: and we will praise you in our captivity, for we have‡ called to mind all the iniquity of our fathers, that sinned before you.8 Behold, we are yet this day in our captivity, where you have scattered us, for a reproach and a curse, and to be subject to penalty, according to all the iniquities of our fathers, which departed from the Lord our God.
9 Hear, O Israel, the commandments of life: give ear to understand wisdom. 10 How is it, O Israel, that you are in your enemies’ land, that you have become old in a strange country, that you are defiled with the dead, 11 that you are counted with those who go down into§ the grave? 12 You have forsaken the fountain of wisdom. 13 For if you had walked in the way of God, you should have dwelled in peace forever.14 Learn where is* wisdom, where is strength, where is understanding; that you may know also where is length of days, and life, where is the light of the eyes, and peace. 15 Who has found out her place? and who has come into her treasuries?16 Where are the princes of the heathen, and such as ruled the beasts that are upon the earth;17 those who had their pastime with the fowls of the air, and those who hoarded up silver and gold, wherein men trust; and of whose getting there is no end? 18 For those who† made in silver, and were so careful, and whose works are past finding out, 19 they are vanished and gone down to‡ the grave, and others are come up in their steads. 20 Younger men have seen the light, and lived upon the earth: but the way of knowledge have they not known, 21 neither understood they the paths thereof: neither have their children embraced it: they are far off from§ their way. 22 It has not been heard of in Canaan, neither has it been seen in Teman. 23 The sons also of Agar that seek understanding, which are in the land, the merchants of Merran and Teman, and the authors of fables, and the searchers out of understanding; none of these have known the way of wisdom, or remembered her paths. 24 O Israel, how great is the house of God! and how large is the place of his possession! 25 great, and has none end; high, and unmeasurable. 26 There were the giants born that were famous of old, great of stature, and expert in war. 27 God didn’t choose these, nor did he give the way of knowledge to them; 28 so they perished, because they had no* wisdom, they perished through their own foolishness. 29 Who has gone up into heaven, and taken her, and brought her down from the clouds? 30 Who has gone over the sea, and found her, and will bring her for choice gold?31 There is none that knows her way, nor any that comprehends her path. 32 But he that knows all things knows her, he found her out with his understanding: he that prepared the earth for evermore has filled it with four-footed beasts:33 he that sends forth the light, and it goes; he called it, and it obeyed him with fear: 34 and the stars shone in their watches, and were glad: when he called them, they said, “Here we are.” They shone with gladness to him that made them. 35 This is our God, and there shall none other be accounted of in comparison of him. 36 He has found out all the way of knowledge, and has given it to Jacob his servant, and to Israel that is beloved of him. 37 Afterward did she appear upon earth, and was conversant with men.