The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Book of Tobias
And now Tobias took his son aside and asked him, What payment shall we make to this heaven-sent companion of thine?
Payment? answered he; why, what reward can ever suffice for all the services he did me?
He it was that escorted me safely, going and coming; recovered the debt from Gabelus; won me my bride; rid her of the fiend’s attack; engaged the gratitude of her parents; rescued me from the fish’s onslaught; and to thee restored the light of day. Through him, we have been loaded with benefits; is it possible to make any return for all these?
Do this, father, at least; ask him to accept half of all the wealth that has come to us.
So both of them, father and son, beckoned him aside, and would have prevailed on him to accept half of their new-found wealth.
But he, with a finger on his lip,✻ bade them give their thanks to the God of heaven. To him, he said, offer your praises for all men to hear; he it is that has shewn mercy to you.
Kings have their counsel that must be kept secret; God’s ways are open, and he honours them best who proclaims them openly.
Prayer, fasting, and alms, said he, here is better treasure to lay up than any store of gold.
Almsgiving is death’s avoiding, is guilt’s atoning, is the winning of mercy and of life eternal;
the sinners, the wrong-doers, are enemies to their own souls.
Come, let me tell you the whole truth of the matter, bring the hidden purpose of it to light.
When thou, Tobias, wert praying, and with tears, when thou wert burying the dead, leaving thy dinner untasted, so as to hide them all day in thy house, and at night give them funeral, I, all the while, was offering that prayer of thine to the Lord.
Then, because thou hadst won his favour, needs must that trials should come, and test thy worth.
And now, for thy healing, for the deliverance of thy son’s wife Sara from the fiend’s attack, he has chosen me for his messenger.
Who am I? I am the angel Raphael, and my place is among those seven who stand in the presence of the Lord.
Upon hearing this, they were both mazed with terror, and fell down trembling, face to earth.
Peace be with you, the angel said; do not be afraid.
It was God’s will, not mine, brought me to your side; to him pay the thanks and praise you owe.
I was at your side, eating and drinking, but only in outward show; the food, the drink I live by, man’s eyes cannot see.
And now the time has come when I must go back to him who sent me; give thanks to God, and tell the story of his great deeds.
With that, he was caught away from their eyes, and no more might they see of him.✻
For three hours together, face to earth, they gave thanks to God; and when they rose up, it was to tell the story of all these marvels.
The Holy Bible