1 But the souls of the righteous are in the hand of God,
and no torment will touch them.
2 In the eyes of the foolish they seemed to have died.
Their departure was considered a disaster,
3 and their travel away from us ruin,
but they are in peace.
4 For even if in the sight of men they are punished,
their hope is full of immortality.
5 Having borne a little chastening, they will receive great good;
because God tested them, and found them worthy of himself.
6 He tested them like gold in the furnace,
and he accepted them as a whole burnt offering.
7 In the time of their visitation they will shine.
They will run back and forth like sparks among stubble.
8 They will judge nations and have dominion over peoples.
The Lord will reign over them forever.
9 Those who trust him will understand truth.
The faithful will live with him in love,
because grace and mercy are with his chosen ones.
10 But the ungodly will be punished even as their reasoning deserves,
those who neglected righteousness and revolted from the Lord;
11 for he who despises wisdom and discipline is miserable.
Their hope is void and their toils unprofitable.
Their works are useless.
12 Their wives are foolish and their children are wicked.
13 Their descendants are cursed.
For the barren woman who is undefiled is happy,
she who has not conceived in transgression.
She will have fruit when God examines souls.
14 So is the eunuch which has done no lawless deed with his hands,
nor imagined wicked things against the Lord;
for a precious gift will be given to him for his faithfulness,
and a delightful inheritance in the Lord’s sanctuary.
15 For good labors have fruit of great renown.
The root of understanding can’t fail.
16 But children of adulterers will not come to maturity.
The seed of an unlawful union will vanish away.
17 For if they live long, they will not be esteemed,
and in the end, their old age will be without honor.
18 If they die young, they will have no hope,
nor consolation in the day of judgment.
19 For the end of an unrighteous generation is always grievous.