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Chapter XLV.—It is the Part of the Wicked to Vex the Righteous.

Ye are fond of contention, brethren, and full of zeal about things which do not pertain to salvation.  Look carefully into the Scriptures, which are the true utterances of the Holy Spirit.  Observe42374237    Or, “Ye perceive.” that nothing of an unjust or counterfeit character is written in them.  There42384238    Or, “For.” you will not find that the righteous were cast off by men who themselves were holy.  The righteous were indeed persecuted, but only by the wicked.  They were cast into prison, but only by the unholy; they were stoned, but only by transgressors; they were slain, but only by the accursed, and such as had conceived an unrighteous envy against them.  Exposed to such sufferings, they endured them gloriously.  For what shall we say, brethren?  Was Daniel42394239    Dan. vi. 16. cast into the den of lions by such as 243feared God?  Were Ananias, and Azarias, and Michael shut up in a furnace42404240    Dan. iii. 20. of fire by those who observed42414241    Literally, “worshipped.” the great and glorious worship of the Most High?  Far from us be such a thought!  Who, then, were they that did such things?  The hateful, and those full of all wickedness, were roused to such a pitch of fury, that they inflicted torture on those who served God with a holy and blameless purpose [of heart], not knowing that the Most High is the Defender and Protector of all such as with a pure conscience venerate42424242    Literally, “serve.” His all-excellent name; to whom be glory for ever and ever.  Amen.  But they who with confidence endured [these things] are now heirs of glory and honour, and have been exalted and made illustrious42434243    Or, “lifted up.”  I. ἔγγραφοι (inscribed). by God in their memorial for ever and ever.  Amen.


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