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and objecteth to our infamy the transgressions of our education. He professeth to have the knowledge of God: and he calleth himself the child of the Lord. He was made to reprove our thoughts. He is grievous unto us even to behold for his life is not like other men's, his ways are of another fashion. We are esteemed of him as counterfeits; he abstaineth from our ways as from filthiness: he pronounceth the endof the just to be blessed, and maketh his boast that God is his father. Let us see if his words be true and let us prove what shall happen in the end of him. For if the just man be the son of God, he will help him, and deliver him from the hand of his enemies. Let us examine him with despitefulness and torture, that we may know his meekness, and prove his patience. Let us condemn him with a shameful death: for by his own saying he shall be respected. Such things they did imagine, and were deceived: for their own wickedness hath blinded them. As for the mysteries of God, they knew them not: neither hoped they for the wages of righteousness: nor discerned a reward for blameless souls. For God created man to be immortal, and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Ne. vertheless through envy of the devil came death into the world and they that do hold of his
side do find it. Then shall the righteous man stand in great boldness before the face of such as have afflicted him, and made no account of his labours. When they see it, they shall be troubled with terrible fear, and shall be amazed at the strangeness of his salvation, so far beyond all that they looked for. And they repenting and groaning for anguish of spirit shall say within themselves, This was he whom we had sometimes in derision, and a proverb of reproach. We fools accounted his life madness; and his end to be without honour. How is he numbered among the children of God, and his lot is among the saints! Therefore have we erred from the way of truth, and the light of righteousness hath not shined unto us, and the sun of righteousness We wearied ourselves in the
rose not upon us.
way of wickedness and destruction: yea, we have gone through deserts, where there lay no way but as for the way of the Lord, we have not known it. What hath pride profited us? or what good hath riches with our vaunting brought us? All those things are passed away like a shadow, and as a post that hasteth by; and as a ship that passeth over the waves of the water, which when it is gone by, the trace thereot cannot be found, neither the pathway of the keel in the waves; or as when a bird hath flown through
the air, there is no token of her way to be found, but the light air being beaten with the stroke of her wings, and parted with the violent noise and motion of them, is passed through, and therein afterwards no sign where she went is to be found or like as when an arrow is shot at a mark, it parteth the air, which immediately cometh together again, so that a man cannot know where it went through. Even so we, in Hike manner, as soon as we were born, began to draw to our end, and had no sign of virtue to shew; but were consumed in our own wickedness. For the hope of the ungodly is like dust that is blown away with the wind; like a thin froth that is driven away with the storm; like as the smoke which is dispersed here and there with a tempest, and passeth away as the remembrance of a guest that tarrieth but a day. But the righteous live for evermore; their reward also is with the Lord, and the care of them is with the Most High. Therefore shall they receive a glorious kingdom, and a beautiful crown from the Lord's hand: for with his right hand shall he cover them, and with his arm shall he protect them.
Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways. The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just. The Lord isʼ far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous. The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. The way of the wicked is as darkness: they know not at what they stumble. The righteousness of the perfect shall direct his way, but the wicked shall fall by his own wickedness. Though hand join in hand, the wicked shall not be unpunished but the seed of the righteous shall be delivered. Treasures of wickedness profit nothing but righteousness delivereth from death. The Lord will not suffer the soul of the righteous to famish: but he casteth away the substance of the wicked.
From the same.
Be not thou envious against evil men, neither desire to be with them: for their heart studieth destruction, and their lips talk of mischief. Fret not thyself because of evil men, neither be
thou envious at the wicked: for there shall be no reward to the evil man; the candle of the wicked shall be put out. Let not thine heart envy sinners: but be thou in the fear of the Lord all the day long. For surely there is an end, and thine expectation shall not be cut off. The hope of the righteous shall be gladness, but the expectation of the wicked shall perish. Blessings are upon the head of the just: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked. The memory of the just is blessed : but the name of the wicked shall rot. The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked is little worth. The lips of the righteous feed many: but fools die for want of wisdom. The blessing of the Lord it maketh rich, and he addeth no sorrow with it. The wicked flee when no man pursueth; but the righteous are bold as a lion. The fear of the wicked it shall come upon him: but the desire of the righteous shall be granted. As the whirlwind passeth, is the wicked no ༢༠ more but the righteous is an everlasting foundation. Lay not wait, O wicked man, against the dwelling of the righteous, spoil not his resting place for a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again; but the wicked shall fall into mischief.