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Chapter 14 12 For the devising of idols was the beginning of spiritual fornication, and the invention of them the corruption of life.13 For neither were they from the beginning, neither shall they be for ever.14 For by the vain glory of men they entered into the world, and therefore shall they come shortly to an end.15 For a father afflicted with untimely mourning, when he hath made an image of his child soon taken away, now honoured him as a god, which was then a dead man, and delivered to those that were under him ceremonies and sacrifices.16 Thus in process of time an ungodly custom grown strong was kept as a law, and graven images were worshipped by the commandments of kings.17 Whom men could not honour in presence, because they dwelt far off, they took the counterfeit of his visage from far, and made an express image of a king whom they honoured, to the end that by this their forwardness they might flatter him that was absent, as if he were present.18 Also the singular diligence of the artificer did help to set forward the ignorant to more superstition.19 For he, peradventure willing to please one in authority, forced all his skill to make the resemblance of the best fashion.20 And so the multitude, allured by the grace of the work, took him now for a god, which a little before was but honoured.21 And this was an occasion to deceive the world: for men, serving either calamity or tyranny, did ascribe unto stones and stocks the incommunicable name.22 Moreover this was not enough for them, that they erred in the knowledge of God; but whereas they lived in the great war of ignorance, those so great plagues called they peace.23 For whilst they slew their children in sacrifices, or used secret ceremonies, or made revellings of strange rites;24 They kept neither lives nor marriages any longer undefiled: but either one slew another traiterously, or grieved him by adultery.25 So that there reigned in all men without exception blood, manslaughter, theft, and dissimulation, corruption, unfaithfulness, tumults, perjury,26 Disquieting of good men, forgetfulness of good turns, defiling of souls, changing of kind, disorder in marriages, adultery, and shameless uncleanness.27 For the worshipping of idols not to be named is the beginning, the cause, and the end, of all evil.28 For either they are mad when they be merry, or prophesy lies, or live unjustly, or else lightly forswear themselves.29 For insomuch as their trust is in idols, which have no life; though they swear falsely, yet they look not to be hurt.30 Howbeit for both causes shall they be justly punished: both because they thought not well of God, giving heed unto idols, and also unjustly swore in deceit, despising holiness.31 For it is not the power of them by whom they swear: but it is the just vengeance of sinners, that punisheth always the offence of the ungodly.

Chapter 15 1 But thou, O God, art gracious and true, longsuffering, and in mercy ordering all things,2 For if we sin, we are thine, knowing thy power: but we will not sin, knowing that we are counted thine.3 For to know thee is perfect righteousness: yea, to know thy power is the root of immortality.4 For neither did the mischievous invention of men deceive us, nor an image spotted with divers colours, the painter's fruitless labour;5 The sight whereof enticeth fools to lust after it, and so they desire the form of a dead image, that hath no breath.