智慧篇:Chapter 13

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智慧篇 Wisdom
1凡不认识天主的人,都是真正的愚人,因为,他们未能从看得见的美物,去发现那自有者;注意了工程,却不认识工程师; 1The natural helplessness of men is seen in their ignorance of God. The experience of good things did not lead them to the knowledge of Him who is. They were interested in his works, but they did not recognize the author of them.
2反而认火、风、流动的空气、运转的星辰、洪流的巨涛、天上的光体,为统治世界的神。 2Fire, wind, air, the sphere of the stars, rushing water and the lights in the sky were held as the rulers of the world.
3如果有人因这些东西的美丽而着迷,奉之为神;那么,他们就应知道:这些美物的主宰更是美丽,因为,全是美丽的唯一根源所创造的。 3If, charmed by such beauty, they took them for gods, let them know how far superior is their sovereign.
4如果有人惊奇这些东西的力量和效能,就应明白:创造这些东西的更有能力; 4And if they were impressed by their power and activity, let them understand from this how much mightier is he who formed them.
5因为,从受造物的伟大和美丽,人可以推想到这些东西的创造者。 5For the grandeur and beauty of creatures lead us to ponder on their Author, greater and more magnificent.
6不过,这种人的罪尚较轻微,因为,他们寻找天主,也有意找到,却一时误入了迷途; 6No doubt these men are not to be blamed severely, for possibly they strayed though they searched for God and desired to find him.
7这或许是由于他们所见的世物实在美丽,因此在专务研究他的工程时,只追求外表; 7They pondered over the created things that surrounded them and were captivated by the sight of such beauty.
8但他们仍然不能推辞无过; 8Even so they are not to be excused,
9因为他们既然能知道的如此渊博,甚至能探究宇宙,为什么不能及早发现这些东西的主宰? 9for if they were able to explore the world, why did they not discover first the world's Sovereign?
10有些人真是可怜!他们竟将希望寄于死东西上,竟称人的手工、金银和艺术的创作、动物的肖像、或古人雕刻的无用石的为神。 10But unhappy, indeed, are those people who give to man-made artifacts the title of gods! Cursed is their hope in dead things, objects worked in gold and silver, likenesses of animals, and even useless stones carved long ago!
11设想:有个木匠,锯来一棵适用的树木,精巧地剥净树皮,熟练地施展技巧,制成一件日常生活的用具; 11Take a woodcutter - he fells a tree that is easy to move, expertly strips off all the bark and with the wood makes a utensil needed in daily life;
12以后用工作剩余的碎木,煮饭充饥; 12he uses the bits left over as fuel for cooking his food and he has a good meal.
13后来由那些剩下一无所用的废木中,取出一块弯曲多疤的木头,在闲暇无事时,辛勤地加以雕刻,本着自己熟悉的手艺,按图样将它刻成一个人像, 13Then he picks up an utterly useless left-over piece, all gnarled and knotted, and carves it in his leisure time, using his professional skill to give it the shape of a man or
14或做成一个卑贱的兽像,涂上丹砂,将外皮漆成红色,遮住一切疤痕; 14maybe of a worthless animal. He covers it with ochre and paints the surface red, covering all its blemishes.
15随后,为它做一个适宜的居所,把它嵌在墙上,用钉子钉住, 15He then makes a suitable niche for it in the wall and fastens it in place with iron nails.
16预先加以照顾,免得它掉下来,因为他知道:这件东西是不能自助的,不过只是偶像,需要人来扶助。 16The craftsman is careful to keep it from falling, knowing that it is unable to help itself. It needs help because it is no more than an image.
17但是,他反不感羞耻地向这无灵之物祷告,祈赐财富、妻室和子嗣; 17Even so, when it is a matter of his marriage, his children and his household, the man is not ashamed to pray to this lifeless object. He prays for his health to something without strength;
18向这虚弱的东西,要求健康;向这死物,要求生命;向这无能的东西,要求援助; 18for life he prays to what is dead, for help he implores something insensitive, for a successful journey he has recourse to what cannot walk,
19向这有脚不能行的东西,要求旅行;向这有手而毫无动作的东西,要求发财、工作、事业成功的力量。 19for his profit, his concerns and success in his craft he asks help of something that has no skill whatever in its hands.
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