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Lecture Forty-Eighth.

We began in the last lecture to treat that passage where God pronounces that the Jews surpassed in all kinds of wickedness both the Sodomites and the ten tribes of Israel. When he wished to prove this he said that the iniquity of Sodom was pride, fullness of bread, and then ease, with sloth and cruelty: afterwards he put another kind of pride, since the people were intoxicated with confidence, and indulged in unbridled and brutal license, as he afterwards says. For he adds, that the cities were overthrown and destroyed since they had perpetrated foul abominations. With regard to excess, we said that good living simply is not here condemned when any one uses the affluence granted to him for God’s glory; but luxury and intemperance. For the rich boast as much as possible, and are not only eager for delicacies, and stuff themselves to the full, but they triumph and luxuriate in what is sure to destroy them. The Prophet then blames this in the Sodomites. We said also of quiet and rest, that it denoted that sloth by which the profane madden themselves; but that is more clearly expressed shortly by vain-boasting. The Prophet now adds, that they had not seized the hand of the poor and needy. We must notice this, since pride is almost always cruel; and truly no one heartily succors his poor brethren who is not affected by their necessities. But those who are intoxicated by false confidence, and claim everything for themselves, despise their brethren, and thus carelessly permit them to be utterly oppressed by poverty and want. The Prophet here pronounces nothing concerning Sodom but what we too often perceive by daily experience. He now adds —

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