Faithfulness to God
1My child, if you are going to serve the Lord, be prepared for times when you will be put to the test. 2Be sincere and determined. Keep calm when trouble comes. 3Stay with the Lord; never abandon him, and you will be prosperous at the end of your days. 4Accept whatever happens to you. Even if you suffer humiliation, be patient. 5#Wis 3.5–6; 1 Pet 1.7#Wis 6.18; Jn 14.15, 21, 23Gold is tested by fire, and human character is tested in the furnace of humiliation. 6Trust the Lord, and he will help you. Walk straight in his ways, and put your hope in him.
7All you that fear the Lord, wait for him to show you his mercy. Do not turn away from him, or you will fall. 8All you that fear the Lord, trust him, and you will certainly be rewarded. 9All you that fear the Lord, look forward to his blessings of mercy and eternal happiness.
10Think back to the ancient generations and consider this: has the Lord ever disappointed anyone who put his hope in him? Has the Lord ever abandoned anyone who held him in constant reverence? Has the Lord ever ignored anyone who prayed to him? 11The Lord is kind and merciful; he forgives our sins and keeps us safe in time of trouble. 12But those who lose their nerve are doomed — all those sinners who try to have it both ways! 13Doom is sure to come for those who lose their courage; they have no faith, and so they will have no protection. 14Doom is sure to come for those who lose their hope. What will they do when the Lord comes to judge them?
15Those who fear the Lord do not disobey his commands; those who love him will live as he wants them to live. 16Those who fear and love the Lord will try to please him and devote themselves to the Law. 17Those who fear the Lord are always ready to serve him. They humble themselves before him, and say, 18“We place our destiny in the hands of the Lord, not in human hands, because his mercy is as great as his majesty.”