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What wisdom and philosophy, and perpetual experience, and revelation, and promises, and blessings cannot do, a mighty fear can; it can allay the confidences of bold lust and imperious sin, and soften our spirit into the lowness of a child, our revenge into charity of prayers, our impudence into the blushings of a chidden girl; and therefore God hath taken a cause proportionable.
Bunyan twice uses this verse; once in The Pilgrim's Progress, opposite the following passage: 'I looked then, and saw a man named Evangelist coming to him, and asked wherefore didst thou cry? He answered, Sir, I perceive by the Book in my hand, that I am condemned to die, and after that to come to Judgment, and I find that I am not willing to do the first, nor able to do the second.' The other reference is in The Holy War, where Captain Judgment uses it to warn the 'woeful town of Mansoul' against impenitence.
The greater part of literature in the Middle Ages, at least from the twelfth century, may be considered as artillery levelled against the clergy I do not say against the Church, which might imply a doctrinal opposition by no means universal. But if there is one theme upon which the most serious as well as the lightest, the most orthodox as the most heretical writers are united, it is ecclesiastical corruption.
Hallam, Introduction to the Literature of Europe, part I. chap. ii.
Compare Mr. Morley's famous description of modern Britain: 'A community where the great aim of all classes and orders with power, is by dint of rigorous silence, fast shutting of the eyes, and stern stopping of the ears, to keep the social pyramid on its apex, with the fatal result of preserving for England its glorious fame as a paradise for the well-to-do, a purgatory for the able, and a hell for the poor.
The repeated political humiliations paralysed the national spirit, and the paralysis extended itself to the people's religion ana even to its morals. The nationality was exhausted; it could no more put forth out of itself a saviour to retrieve its fortunes.... And the national exhaustion was accompanied by religious decay, for in all the history of Israel a full tide of national life and a high faith in Jehovah were always the counterparts of one another.
Prof. A. B. Davidson, The Exile and the Restoration, pp. 13, 14.
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Nicoll, William Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Ezekiel 22". Expositor's Dictionary of Text. https://studylight.org/
the Second Week of Advent