1To keep the law is a great oblation, s 1ff: 1 Sm 15, 22; Ps 51, 18f; Is 1, 11–18; Hos 6, 6; Am 5, 21–24 . and he who observes the commandments sacrifices a peace offering. 2In works of charity one offers fine flour,* and when he gives alms he presents his sacrifice of praise. 3To refrain from evil pleases the LORD, and to avoid injustice is an atonement. 4Appear not before the LORD empty-handed, for all that you offer is in fulfillment of the precepts. t Ex 23, 15; 34, 20; Dt 16, 16 . 5The just man’s offering enriches the altar and rises as a sweet odor before the Most High. 6The just man’s sacrifice is most pleasing, nor will it ever be forgotten. 7In generous spirit pay homage to the LORD, be not sparing of freewill gifts. u Sir 7, 31 . 8With each contribution show a cheerful countenance, and pay your tithes in a spirit of joy. v 2 Cor 9, 7 . 9Give to the Most High as he has given to you, generously, according to your means.
10For the LORD is one who always repays, and he will give back to you sevenfold. w Prv 19, 17 . 11But offer no bribes, these he does not accept! Trust not in sacrifice of the fruits of extortion, x Sir 34, 18f; Prv 21, 27 . 12For he is a God of justice, who knows no favorites. y Dt 10, 17; 2 Chr 19, 7; Jb 34, 19; Wis 6, 7; Acts 10, 34; Rom 2, 11; Gal 2, 6; 1 Pt 1, 17 . 13Though not unduly partial toward the weak, yet he hears the cry of the oppressed.* 14He is not deaf to the wail of the orphan, z 14f: Ex 22, 22 . nor to the widow when she pours out her complaint;
15Do not the tears that stream down her cheek cry out against him that causes them to fall? 16He who serves God willingly is heard; his petition reaches the heavens. 17The prayer of the lowly pierces the clouds; it does not rest till it reaches its goal, 18Nor will it withdraw till the Most High responds, judges justly and affirms the right.
19God indeed will not delay, and like a warrior, will not be still a Is 42, 13ff; 2 Pt 3, 9 . 20Till he breaks the backs of the merciless and wreaks vengeance upon the proud; 21Till he destroys the haughty root and branch, and smashes the scepter of the wicked; 22Till he requites mankind according to its deeds, and repays men according to their thoughts; 23Till he defends the cause of his people, and gladdens them by his mercy. 24Welcome is his mercy in time of distress as rain clouds in time of drought.