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vail against him, as a king ready to the battle. For he stretcheth out his hand against God, and strengtheneth himself against the Almighty. His roots shall be dried up beneath, and above shall his branch be cut off. His remembrance shall perish from the earth, and he shall have no name in the street. Though he heap up silver as the dust, and prepare raiment as the clay; he may prepare it, but the just shall put it on, and the innocent shall divide the silver. How oft is the candle of the wicked put out, and how oft cometh their destruction upon them. God distributeth sorrows in his anger. He knoweth their works, and he overturneth them in the night, so that they are destroyed. He striketh- them as wicked men in the open sight of others; because they turned back from him, and would not consider any of his
ways : : so that they cause the cry of the poor to come unto him, and he heareth the cry
of the amicted.
From the same.
Touching the Almighty, we cannot find him out : he is excellent in power, and in judge ment, and in plenty of justice, he will not afflict. Which doeth great things and unsearchable ; marvellous things withoué number: who giveth rain upon the earth, and sendeth waters upon the fields: to set up on high those that be low; that those which mourn may be exalted to safety. He disappointeth the devices of the crafty, so that their hands cannot perform their enterprise. He taketh the wise in their own craftiness : aud the counsel of the froward is carried headlong. But he saveth the poor from the sword, from their mouth, and from the hand of the mighty. So the poor hath hope, and iniquity stoppeth her mouth. Let not him that is deceived trust in vanity: for vanity shall be his recompence. It shall be accomplished before his time, and his branch shall not be green. He shall shake off his unripe grape as the vine, and shall cast off his flower as the olive. His hope shall be cut off, and his trust shall be a spider's web. He shall lean upon his house, but it shall not stand: he shall hold it fast, but it shall not endure. They that come after him shall be astonished at his day, as they that went before were affrighted. Can the rush grow up without mire? can the flag grow without water? Whilst it is yet in his greenness, and not cut down, it withereth before any other herb. So are the paths of all that forget God: and the hypocrite's hope shall perish : for what is the hope of the hypocrite, though he hath gained, when God taketh away his soul ?
In the way of righteousness is life: and in the pathway thereof there is no death. Righteousness exalteth a nation : but sin is a reproach to any people. Righteousness keepeth him that is upright in the way : but wickedness overthroweth the sinner. He that walketh uprightly walketh surely; but he that perverteth his ways shall be known. There shall no evil happen to the just: but the wicked shall be filled with mischief. The wicked is driven away in his wickedness: but the righteous hath hope in his death.
The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come. He shall enter into peace : they shall rest in their beds, each one walking in his uprightness. But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt. There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.
Ye have said, It is vain to serve God; and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinance; and that we have walked mournfully before the Lord of Hosts? And now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered. Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another; and the Lord hearkened, and heard it: and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon
And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of Hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels ; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked ; between him that serveth God, and him that serveth him not.
On Wisdom *.
Ucar, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding. For I give you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law. For I was my father's son, tender and only beloved in the sight of my mother. He taught me also, and said unto me, let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live. Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth. How much better is it to get wisdom than gold ? and to get understanding rather to be chosen than
* True religion, or godliness, is often in scripture represented under the name and character of Wisdom i because it is the highest improvement of human nature, and the best and surest guide of human life. It is thus defined in Job, xxviii, 28, “ Behold the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to depart from evil is understanding;” in Psalm cxi. 10, “ The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; a good understanding have all they that do his commandments;" and in Proverbs ix, 10, “ The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy is understanding." Truc Christians are, without doubt, the truly wise men.