The Book of Sirach or Ecclesiasticus is a Jewish work, originally in Hebrew, of ethical teachings, from approximately 200 to 175 BCE, written by the Judahite scribe Ben Sira of Jerusalem, on the inspiration of his father Joshua son of Sirach, sometimes called Jesus son of Sirach or Yeshua ben Eliezer ben Sira”. (Wikipedia)
One more time back to the Apocrypha, this time Sirach, The Wisdom Book. Two centuries before Christ the son of Sirach wrote this book. Simply put it is about the traditions and teachings of the sages, sort of a synthesis, that forms a combination of ideas to form a theory. He was well established and respected, a head of an important household with servants. He maintained that it was the writings of the sacred books that had taught him the secret of success. It was his intent to share what he had learned in the sacred books which he believed were the reasons for his success. At that time many Jews were attracted by the Greek culture, believing their religion was antiquated, or in today’s world…old…outdated. This man’s belief was that no other nation had a God or faith such as Israel. It was his task to present a God that inspired such faith, the faith of Israel to the world. There was no other nation with anything of wisdom superior to that of God’s people. God’s wisdom dwelled among their nation because of divine decree. The book shows us how the Law of God leads people to a much kinder way, more intelligent, and more responsible personal and social life. In some ways there are maxims that mirror scripture. Many sources believe it to have two main parts. The first being Chapters 1-42, with seven series of maxims in praise of wisdom. Chapters 43-51, praising God for the order of the universe and the wise use of God’s wisdom through the great people of the Old Testament and yes, consider these things as you read this blog.
Taken from got questions.org :
“The book of Sirach is part of what is considered the Apocrypha/Deuterocanonical scripture and appears in the Old Testament of Catholic Bible. It is considered one of the Wisdom books. Except for some Episcopal or Lutheran Bibles, Sirach and other books of the Apocrypha do not appear in Protestant Bibles. Sirach, also known as “Ecclesiasticus” or the Wisdom of Sirach is one of 12–15 books generally recognized as comprising the Apocrypha.”
One point to consider would be that many biblical scholars point out that Jesus never quoted any verses from the Apocrypha while it is known that He quoted often from the Old Testament books. It must be noted that Jewish Scripture never included any of these documents as sacred writings. Do not be misled, The Pews intent here is to simply widen our readers knowledge and understanding of the existence of other period writings. Please note… “It does possess a wealth of varied expressions of wise and foolish behavior reminiscent of the book of Proverbs.” (gotquestions.org)
It is necessary that we note that there can be found some sound biblical doctrine within this book but there is still much more that conflicts significantly with good Christian beliefs. This book is not part of the recognized canon of Scripture due to the fact that it is not the inspired Word of God. Many turn to this scripture to explain the view of most scholars.
2 Timothy 3:16 (ESV)
16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness…
The book makes for good reading is useful to expand our knowledge of times before Jesus came. We must not set aside the fact that the Jewish faith is interwoven with our own road to the cross and our adoption into the “The Family of God”.
Life is Good