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My son, hast thou sinned? do so no more, but ask pardon for thy former sins. How good is it, when thou art reproved, to shew repentance! for so shalt thou escape wilful sin. He that hateth to be reproved is in the way of sinners: but he that feareththe Lord will repent from his heart. It is much better to reprove, than to be angry secretly: and he that confesseth his fault shall be preserved from hurt. Say not, I have sinned, and what harm hath happened unto me? for the Lord is long-suffering, he will in no wise let thee go. And say not, His mercy is great; he will be pacified for the multitude of my sins: for mercy and wrath come from him, and his indignation resteth upon sinners. Make no tarrying to turn to the Lord, and put not off from day to day: for suddenly shall the wrath of the Lord come forth, and in thy security thou shalt be destroyed, and perish in the day of vengeance. Before judgement examine thyself, and in the day of visitation thou shalt find mercy. Humble thyself before thou be sick, and in the time of «ns shew repentance. Let nothing hinder thee to pay thy vow in due time, and defer not until death to be justified. Think upon the-wrath that shall be at the end, and the time of vengeance, when he shall turn away his face. He that washeth himself after the touching of a dead body, if he touch it again what availeth his washing? So it is with a man that fasteth for his sins, and goeth again, and doeth the same: who will hear his prayer? or what doth his humbling profit him? Return unto the Lord and forsake thy sins, make thy prayer before his face, and offend less. Turn again to the Most High, and turn away from iniquity: for he will lead thee out of darkness unto the light of health; and hate thou abomination vehemently. How great is the loving kindness of the Lord our God, and his compassion unto such as turn unto him in holiness.
As I live, saith the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way. and live: turn ye, turn ye, from your evil ways: for why will ye die? If the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes,
and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. AH his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live. Have I any pleasure at all that the wicked should die I saith the Lord God; and not that he should return from his ways and live? When the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doeth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive. Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die. None of his sins that he hath committed shall be mentioned unto him: he hath done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live. For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord God: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.
He that covereth his sins shall not prosper; butwhoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.
Vol. i. x
Pray unto God, and he will be favourable. Seek unto God betimes, and make thy supplication to the Almighty. He looketh upon men, and if iyiy say, I have sinned, and perverted that which was right, and it profited me not; he will deliver his soul from going inio the pit, and his life shall see the light.
Therefore also now, saith the Lord, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning: and rend your hi art, and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his
thoughts: and letiiiin return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
On old age.
O how comely a thing is judgement for grcy hairs, and for ancient men to know counsel! O how comely is the wisdom of old men, and understanding and counsel to men of honour! Much experience is the crown of old men, and the fear of God is their glory.
The hoary head is a crown of glory if it be found in the way of righteousness.