FIRST READING: Wisdom 2: 23 -- 3: 9
23 For God created man incorruptible, and to the image of his own likeness he made him.
24 But by the envy of the devil, death came into the world:
25 And they follow him that are of his side.
1 But the souls of the just are in the hand of God, and the torment of death shall not touch them.
2 In the sight of the unwise they seemed to die: and their departure was taken for misery:
3 And their going away from us, for utter destruction: but they are in peace.
4 And though in the sight of men they suffered torments, their hope is full of immortality.
5 Afflicted in few things, in many they shall be well rewarded: because God hath tried them, and found them worthy of himself.
6 As gold in the furnace he hath proved them, and as a victim of a holocaust he hath received them, and in time there shall be respect had to them.
7 The just shall shine, and shall run to and fro like sparks among the reeds.
8 They shall judge nations, and rule over people, and their Lord shall reign for ever.
9 They that trust in him, shall understand the truth: and they that are faithful in love shall rest in him: for grace and peace is to his elect.
2 I will bless the Lord at all times, his praise shall be always in my mouth.
3 In the Lord shall my soul be praised: let the meek hear and rejoice.
16 The eyes of the Lord are upon the just: and his ears unto their prayers.
17 But the countenance of the Lord is against them that do evil things: to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
18 The just cried, and the Lord heard them: and delivered them out of all their troubles.
19 The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a contrite heart: and he will save the humble of spirit.
7 But which of you having a servant ploughing, or feeding cattle, will say to him, when he is come from the field: Immediately go, sit down to meat:
8 And will not rather say to him: Make ready my supper, and gird thyself, and serve me, whilst I eat and drink, and afterwards thou shalt eat and drink?
9 Doth he thank that servant, for doing the things which he commanded him?
10 I think not. So you also, when you shall have done all these things that are commanded you, say: We are unprofitable servants; we have done that which we ought to do.