Wisdom of Solomon 17

Geneva(i) 1 For thy iudgements are great, and can not be expressed: therefore men doe erre, that will not be reformed. 2 For when the vnrighteous thought to haue thine holy people in subiection, they were bounde with the bandes of darkenesse, and long night, and being shut vp vnder the roofe, did lie there to escape the euerlasting prouidence. 3 And while they thought to bee hid in their darke sinnes, they were scattered abroade in the darke couering of forgetfulnesse, fearing horribly and troubled with visions. 4 For the denne that hid them, kept them not from feare: but the soundes that were about them, troubled them, and terrible visions and sorowfull sightes did appeare. 5 No power of the fire might giue light, neither might the cleare flames of the starres lighten the horrible night. 6 For there appeared vnto them only a sudden fire, very dreadfull: so that being afraide of this vision, which they coulde not see, they thought the things, which they sawe, to be worse. 7 And the illusions of the magical artes were brought downe, & it was a most shamefull reproch for the boasting of their knowledge. 8 For they that promised to driue away feare and trouble from the sicke person, were sicke for feare, and worthy to be laughed at. 9 And though no fearful thing did feare them, yet were they afraide at the beasts which passed by them, and at the hissing of the serpents: so that they died for feare, and sayd they saw not the aire, which by no meanes can be auoided. 10 For it is a feareful thing, when malice is condemned by her owne testimonie: and a conscience that is touched, doeth euer forecast cruell things. 11 For feare is nothing els, but a betraying of the succours, which reason offreth. 12 And the lesse that the hope is within, the more doeth he esteeme the ignorance of the thing, that tormenteth him, great. 13 But they that did endure the night that was intolerable, and that came out of the dungeon of hell, which is insupportable, slept the same sleepe, 14 And sometimes were troubled with monstruous visions, and sometime they swooned, as though their owne soule should betraie them: for a sudden feare not looked for, came vpon them. 15 And thus, whosoeuer fell downe, he was kept and shut in prison, but without chaines. 16 For whether hee was an husband man, or a shepheard, or one that was set to worke alone, if he were taken, hee must suffer this necessitie, that hee could not auoide: 17 (For with one chaine of darkenesse were they all bounde) whether it were an hissing winde, or a sweete song of the birdes among the thicke branches of the trees, or the vehemencie of hastie running water, 18 Or a great noyse of the falling downe of stones, or the running of skipping beastes, that coulde not be seene, or the noise of cruell beastes, that roared, or the sounde that answereth againe in the holowe mountaines: these fearefull thinges made them to swoone. 19 For al the world shined with cleare light, and no man was hindred in his labour. 20 Onely vpon them there fell an heauie night, an image of that darkenesse that was to come vpon them: yea, they were vnto themselues more grieuous then darkenesse.