The book of Sirach praises the study of the law, the wisdom of the men of old and their prophecies. Its author is well-read and rearticulates traditional Jewish wisdom for his generation, centering it on fear of the Lord, and clearly asserting that wisdom is a gift from God. He encourages his audience to remain steadfast in following the law of Moses rather than following the ways of the dominant pagan Greek culture.
Jeremy Corley is a Catholic priest of the Diocese of Portsmouth, UK. Following several years of parish ministry, he completed a doctorate in biblical studies at the Catholic University of America. He has published books and articles on biblical topics, especially the book of Sirach, and now teaches Scripture at St. Patrick’s College, Maynooth, Ireland.