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resources could be overwhelming (8:2).

A rich man does wrong, and he even adds reproaches; a poor man suffers wrong, and he must add apologies. Sirach 13:3

A rich man who is a liar is, of course, hated (25:2). It is conceivable (barely) that a rich man might be blameless, but who is he? (31:8-9). In the idealized past of Israel's sacred history there were "rich men furnished with resources, living peaceably in their habitations" (44:6), but in the empirical present peace between rich and poor is unnatural (13:18)234—unless they share a common glory in the fear of the Lord (10:22).

Groups of people are occasionally threatening in Sirach, but when they are, they are usually characterized more pre- cisely as groups of traditionally negative types.235 Of course, groups may also be mentioned in ways which have little or no bearing on the problem of enmity.236 In Sirach 26:5, however, a group, or a formation of a group (ekklhsian

oxlou), is ranked along with the slander of the city and

234 235 Cf. 13:19-23. Plhqei amartwlwn in 7:16; teknwn sunagwgh axrhstwn, in 16:l (cf. v. 3); sunagwgh amartwloun in 32(35):21; and sunagwgh kore in 45:18.

236 Oxloj at 7:7; plhqoj at 5:6; 6:34; 7:7, 9, 14; 31(34):19; 36(33):11; 42:11; 44:19; 51:3; sunagwgh at 1:30; 4:7; 24:23; 34(31):3; 41:18; 43:20; 46:14; and ekklhsia at 15:5; 21:17; 23:24; 24:2; 30:27(33:18); 34(31):11; 38:33; 39:10; 44:15; 50:13, 20.

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