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智慧篇 Wisdom
1至於你,我們的天主,你是良善的,忠實的,寬容的,以慈愛治理萬有。1But you, our God, are kind and true; you bear evil patiently and order everything with mercy.
2我們即使犯了罪,仍是你的,因為我們承認你的主權;我們既承認我們原屬於你,我們就不再犯罪了。2Even when we sin we belong to you and acknowledge your power, but aware that we belong to you, we shall not sin.
3實在,認識你就是完美的正義;承認你的主權,就是不死不滅的根源。3To know you is perfect righteousness and to acknowledge your power is the root of immortality.
4為此,人邪惡的創作,畫家無益的作品,各式各色的畫圖,都沒有使我們誤入迷途;4So we have not been led astray by a deceptive invention of men - the sterile labor of painters - these idols daubed with colors,
5不過,愚人一見這些畫像,就大動情慾,貪戀這些無靈的死像。5the sight of which stirs yearning in fools attached to the lifeless face of a dead image.
6凡製造、愛慕、恭敬偶像的,實是邪惡的情人,只堪將希望寄於無靈之物。6Really, idol-makers and those who serve and worship them are looking for disgrace and deserve to have false hope.
7有個陶人用力摶軟泥,製成各種器皿,以供我們使用;但是,他可用同樣的泥土,做成為潔淨事用的器皿,同樣,也可做成為卑污事用的器皿;至於,每件作何用途,皆由陶人斷定。7The potter, laboriously working the soft clay, fashions each object for our use, and from the same clay he shapes vessels, some for food, and others for what is thrown away. The potter makes vessels for both clean and unclean uses and decides to what purpose each one is shaped.
8後來,他竟枉費心機,將同樣的泥土,揑成一個虛無的神像,不想自己不久以前,原是由土造成的;不久以後,天主向他索還靈魂時,還要歸於土。8The same way and from the same clay he fashions a helpless god; cursed labor of a man recently formed from clay, who will shortly return to clay when he is called to give up his soul.
9他並不想死亡將至,生命短促,只圖與金匠銀匠競爭,仿效銅匠,以製造虛偽之物為榮。9He has no thought of dying soon, no thought of the short duration of life. None at all. He competes with those who work on silver and gold and, like the smith, he feels proud to make a counterfeit of God.
10他的心已如死灰,他的希望比塵埃還卑微,他的生命比泥土更卑賤。10Ashes, that is what his heart is; his hope cheaper than dust;
11因為,他竟不知是誰創造了他,是誰賦給了他一個行動的靈魂,是誰向他吹了生命的氣息。11his life worth as much as clay, for he has not acknowledged his Maker, who has breathed into him an active soul, a living spirit.
12他反將我們的生命視為兒戲,將此生看作惟利是圖的市場,說:「人必須用各樣的方法,甚至利用不義的手段,獲得利潤。」12He looks on life as a game and its duration a market full of bargains, for as he says, "a man must make the most of life whether by fair means or foul."
13凡用泥料製造易破的器皿和偶像的,應比其他一切人更清楚知道自己犯了罪。13This man, more than others, knows that he sins in fashioning with the same clay, vessels and sculptured gods.
14但是,最愚蠢,比嬰兒還可憐的,還是那些仇視並虐待你百姓的人。14But utterly foolish and more pitiable than the soul of a newborn infant were the enemies that oppressed your people.
15他們將異邦人所有的偶像都看作神明;這些神明有眼不能看,有鼻不能喘氣,有耳不能聽,有手不能摸,有腳不能行,15They received as gods all the idols of the nations - idols that have no eyes to see, no nostrils to breathe the air, no ears to hear, no fingers to feel with, or feet that are able to walk. For these gods are the work of a man, a creature of borrowed breath made them.
16因為都是人的作品,是那由天主借得氣息的人所捏造的,實在沒有一人能造出一個與自己相似的神;16Man cannot even make a god that resembles himself;
17有死的人,只能用邪惡的手造出死像,他本人原勝過他所崇拜的東西,因為他尚有生命,這些東西卻從來沒有。17a mortal's unholy hands produce a dead god. He is, in fact, superior to what he worships, since he at least lives, but they will never live.
18此外,他們竟然還敬拜那些最可憎惡的動物,因為,這些動物與其他動物相比,更為愚笨。18People worship the most repulsive animals, the most stupid of all who, unlike other animals, are devoid of beauty;
19再就其為動物而言,也並不美麗,或值得人愛,只是些不得天主讚賞和祝福的東西。19these are unattractive creatures who have missed the blessing of God and are not fit to give him praise.
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