Chapter 5

1Now call; will anyone answer you? To which of the holy ones will you turn?   אקְֽרָא־נָ֖א הֲיֵ֣שׁ עוֹנֶ֑ךָּ וְאֶל־מִ֖י מִקְּדֹשִׁ֣ים תִּפְנֶֽה:
Now call: Up to here are words of prophecy. From here on, he returns to his rebuke: Cry out to your utmost, who will answer you?  
To which of the holy ones [i.e., of the angels]: who decrees this upon you will you turn, to strive with him?  
2For anger will kill a fool, and wrath will kill a naive person.   בכִּ֣י לֶ֖אֱוִיל יַֽהֲרָג־כָּ֑עַשׂ וּ֜פֹתֶ֗ה תָּמִ֥ית קִנְאָֽה:
a fool: like you, anger will kill him, for had you remained silent, perhaps the Divine standard of clemency would return upon you.  
wrath: That is anger and fury, as in (Deut. 32:21), “They have provoked Me (קנאוני) to wrath.”  
3I have seen a fool taking root, and suddenly I cursed his dwelling.   גאֲנִי־רָ֖אִיתִי אֱוִ֣יל מַשְׁרִ֑ישׁ וָֽאֶקּ֖וֹב נָוֵ֣הוּ פִתְאֹֽם:
4May his sons distance themselves from salvation, and may they be crushed in the gate without a rescuer.   דיִרְחֲק֣וּ בָנָ֣יו מִיֶּ֑שַׁע וְיִדַּכְּא֥וּ בַ֜שַּׁ֗עַר וְאֵ֣ין מַצִּֽיל:
May his sons distance themselves from salvation: This is the curse with which I cursed him.  
and may they be crushed: It is punctuated with a dagesh: וְיִדַּכְּאוּ, and may they be crushed, but if it was punctuated without a dagesh (וִידַכְּאוּ) , it would mean that they should crush others.  
5The hungry shall eat his harvest, and he will take it for the one saved from his weapons, and one of the thirsty shall swallow their riches.   האֲשֶׁ֚ר קְצִיר֨וֹ | רָ֘עֵ֚ב יֹאכֵ֗ל וְאֶל־מִצִּנִּ֥ים יִקָּחֵ֑הוּ וְשָׁאַ֖ף צַמִּ֣ים חֵילָֽם:
his harvest: of the wicked man.  
The hungry shall eat: When the wicked man dies, the hungry whom he cut off during his lifetime shall come and take payment from his property.  
and he will take it for the one saved from his weapons: Like (Exod. 27:20), “and they shall take to you”; for the benefit of the poor man who was saved from the weapons of this wicked man, the judge who is appointed for that purpose shall take it [the estate of the wicked man].  
shall swallow: One of the thirsty ones whom he robbed during his lifetime shall swallow.  
their riches: Their money that this one stole during his lifetime.  
6For not from the dust does ruin emerge, and not from the soil does trouble spring,   וכִּ֚י | לֹא־יֵצֵ֣א מֵֽעָפָ֣ר אָ֑וֶן וּמֵֽ֜אֲדָמָ֗ה לֹֽא־יִצְמַ֥ח עָמָֽל:
For not from the dust does ruin emerge: A plague that comes upon a person is not for nothing, nor does it spring from the ground.  
ruin: Heb. און. It is an expression of ruin.  
7because man is born for trouble, but flying creatures fly upward.   זכִּֽי־אָ֖דָם לְעָמָ֣ל יוּלָּ֑ד וּבְנֵי־רֶ֜שֶׁ֗ף יַגְבִּ֥יהוּ עֽוּף:
Because man is born for trouble: For it is impossible that he should not sin and receive trouble as punishment for sin. He is not like the flying creatures-the angels and spirits-who fly upward, and are not of the earthly creatures (other editions read: fly upward so as not to be among the earthly creatures), over whom the Adversary and temptation rule.  
flying: Heb. רשף, as in (Ps. 76:4), “arrows of (רשפי) a bow.” When the arrow flies, it is called רשפי, an expression of flying. This is what I heard.  
8But I would seek of God, and to God I would commit my cause,   חאוּלָ֗ם אֲ֖נִי אֶדְרֹ֣שׁ אֶל־אֵ֑ל וְאֶל־אֱ֜לֹהִ֗ים אָשִׂ֥ים דִּבְרָתִֽי:
But I would seek of God: If these pains came over me, I would appeal to the Holy One, blessed be He, with prayer and supplication, and if I would commit my cause to a request.  
9Who does things great and unsearchable, wonders without number,   טעֹשֶׂ֣ה גְ֖דֹלוֹת וְאֵ֣ין חֵ֑קֶר נִ֜פְלָא֗וֹת עַד־אֵ֥ין מִסְפָּֽר:
10Who gives rain upon the face of the land and sends water upon the face of outside places,   יהַנֹּתֵ֣ן מָ֖טָר עַל־פְּנֵי־אָ֑רֶץ וְשֹׁ֥לֵֽחַ מַ֜יִם עַל־פְּנֵ֥י חוּצֽוֹת:
Who gives rain upon the face of the land: The land of Israel.  
and sends water upon the face of outside places: through a messenger to other countries.  
11to place the humble on high, and those blackened are exalted by salvation.   יאלָשׂ֣וּם שְׁפָלִ֣ים לְמָר֑וֹם וְ֜קֹֽדְרִ֗ים שָׂ֣גְבוּ יֶֽשַׁע:
to place the humble on high: He gives the rain, and He frustrates the plans of the crafty, who intend to raise the prices and buy the fields of the poor for little grain.  
and those blackened: whose fares are shriveled from hunger.  
12He frustrates the plans of the crafty, so that their hands do not carry out their plans.   יבמֵפֵר מַחְשְׁב֣וֹת עֲרוּמִ֑ים וְֽלֹא־תַֽעֲשֶׂ֥נָה יְ֜דֵיהֶ֗ם תֻּשִׁיָּֽה:
so that their hands do not carry out their plans: The counsel that they planned to perform.  
13He takes the wise in their own craftiness, and the counsel of the crooked is hasty.   יגלֹכֵ֣ד חֲכָמִ֣ים בְּעָרְמָ֑ם וַֽעֲצַ֖ת נִפְתָּלִ֣ים נִמְהָֽרָה:
is hasty: Any counsel that is planned hastily is foolishness.  
14By day, they meet darkness, and they grope at noon as at night.   ידיוֹמָ֥ם יְפַגְּשׁוּ־חֹ֑שֶׁךְ וְ֜כַלַּ֗יְלָה יְֽמַשְׁשׁ֥וּ בַצָּֽהֳרָֽיִם:
By day, they meet darkness: For their counsel is not executed nor accomplished, and the light of their wisdom is converted to darkness.  
15And He saved [them] from the sword of their mouth, and the needy from the hand of the mighty.   טווַיּ֣שַׁע מֵ֖חֶרֶב מִפִּיהֶ֑ם וּמִיַּ֖ד חָזָ֣ק אֶבְיֽוֹן:
And He saved: the stumblers from the sword. From what sword? From their mouth, for they thought to swallow them and longed to destroy them.  
and… from the hand of the mighty: He saves the needy.  
16So it was hope for the poor, and libel shut its mouth.   טזוַתְּהִ֣י לַדַּ֣ל תִּקְוָ֑ה וְ֜עֹלָ֗תָה קָ֣פְצָה פִּֽיהָ:
and libel: Heb. ועלתה. The libel (עלילה) and the wickedness, as (Ps. 64:7), “They search for false charges,” equivalent to עלילות, libels.  
shut: Heb. קפצה, shut, as (Deut. 15:7), “nor shut (תקפץ).”  
17Behold, fortunate is the man whom God reproves; so do not despise the chastening of the Almighty.   יזהִנֵּ֚ה אַשְׁרֵ֣י אֱ֖נוֹשׁ יֽוֹכִיחֶ֣נּוּ אֱל֑וֹהַּ וּמוּסַ֥ר שַׁ֜דַּ֗י אַל־תִּמְאָֽס:
Behold, fortunate is the man etc.: with pains, and just as He heals the pain of these [people], so would I [myself] appeal to Him about these pains that would come upon me. So should you accept them and not despise them.  
18For He brings pain and binds it; He wounds, and His hands heal.   יחכִּ֚י ה֣וּא יַכְאִ֣יב וְיֶחְבָּ֑שׁ יִ֜מְחַ֗ץ וְיָדָ֥יו (כתיב וְיָדָ֥ו) תִּרְפֶּֽינָה:
19In six troubles He will save you, and in the seventh no harm will touch you.   יטבְּשֵׁ֣שׁ צָ֖רוֹת יַצִּילֶ֑ךָּ וּבְשֶׁ֓בַע | לֹֽא־יִגַּ֖ע בְּךָ֣ רָֽע:
In six troubles: When they come to the world, he will save you through the pains with which you were tormented, and also with the seventh one, which when it comes will not touch you.  
20In famine, He redeemed you from death, and in war, from the power of the sword.   כבְּרָעָב פָּֽדְךָ֣ מִמָּ֑וֶת וּבְ֜מִלְחָמָ֗ה מִ֣ידֵי חָֽרֶב:
21You shall be hidden from the scourging tongue, and you shall not fear plunder when it comes.   כאבְּשׁ֣וֹט לָ֖שׁוֹן תֵּֽחָבֵ֑א וְלֹֽא־תִירָ֥א מִ֜שֹּׁ֗ד כִּ֣י יָבֽוֹא:
from the scourging tongue: of the Adversary you shall be hidden. These are the seven troubles: 1 famine, 2) the sword, 3) the tongue, 4) plunder etc., and 5) the beasts of the land, which are brigands.  
22You shall mock plunder and hoarding, and you shall not fear the beasts of the land.   כבלְשֹׁ֣ד וּלְכָפָ֣ן תִּשְׂחָ֑ק וּמֵֽחַיַּ֥ת הָ֜אָ֗רֶץ אַל־תִּירָֽא:
23But you have a treaty with the stones of the field, and the beasts of the field made peace with you.   כגכִּ֚י עִם־אַבְנֵ֣י הַשָּׂדֶ֣ה בְרִיתֶ֑ךָ וְחַיַּ֥ת הַ֜שָּׂדֶ֗ה הָשְׁלְמָה־לָֽךְ:
the stones of the field: They are: 6) a type of man.  
and the beasts of the field: That is what is known as grouse(?) in Old French, and this is actually a beast of the field. In the language of the Mishnah in Torath Kohanim, they are called “adnei hasadeh.”  
made peace with you: will have peace with you.  
24Then you shall know that there is peace in your tent, and you shall visit your habitation and miss nothing.   כדוְיָֽדַעְתָּ כִּי־שָׁל֣וֹם אָֽהֳלֶ֑ךָ וּֽפָקַדְתָּ֥ נָֽ֜וְךָ וְלֹ֣א תֶֽחֱטָֽא:
Then you shall know that there is peace in your tent: Then, wherever you are, you will be confident that all is well in your tent.  
and you shall visit your habitation and miss nothing: Heb. תחטא, like (Jud. 20:16), “at a hairbreadth and not miss (יחטא).” This is the seventh [trouble] that we counted above.  
25And you shall know that your seed shall be many, and your offspring [as numerous] as the grass of the earth.   כהוְיָֽדַעְתָּ כִּי־רַ֣ב זַרְעֶ֑ךָ וְ֜צֶֽאֱצָאֶ֗יךָ כְּעֵ֣שֶׂב הָאָֽרֶץ:
26You shall come to the grave at a ripe old age, as the grain stack is taken away in its time.   כותָּב֣וֹא בְכֶ֣לַח אֱלֵי־קָ֑בֶר כַּֽעֲל֖וֹת גָּדִ֣ישׁ בְּעִתּֽוֹ:
You shall come to the grave at a ripe old age: Heb. בְכֶלַח. [In other words,] you will be saved from pestilence. As for the word בְכֶלַח : there is no Biblical support to understand its meaning, but according to the context, it can be interpreted as an expression of the completion of the ripening of the grain, when it is completely ripe. Our Rabbis, however, interpret בְכֶלַח as “sixty years,” according to its numerical value.  
as the grain stock is taken away: As the grain stack is taken off the ground in its time.  
27Behold this; we have inquired into it, so it is. Listen to it, and you-know for yourself. "   כזהִנֵּה־זֹ֖את חֲקַרְנ֥וּהָ כֶּן־הִ֑יא שְׁ֜מָעֶ֗נָּה וְאַתָּ֥ה דַע־לָֽךְ: