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.
6 Both they that make them, they that desire them, and they that worship them, are lovers of evil things, and are worthy to have such things to trust upon.
7 For the potter, tempering soft earth, fashioneth every vessel with much labour for our service: yea, of the same clay he maketh both the vessels that serve for clean uses, and likewise also all such as serve to the contrary: but what is the use of either sort, the potter himself is the judge.
8 And employing his labours lewdly, he maketh a vain god of the same clay, even he which a little before was made of earth himself, and within a little while after returneth to the same, out when his life which was lent him shall be demanded.
9 Notwithstanding his care is, not that he shall have much labour, nor that his life is short: but striveth to excel goldsmiths and silversmiths, and endeavoureth to do like the workers in brass, and counteth it his glory to make counterfeit things.
10 His heart is ashes, his hope is more vile than earth, and his life of less value than clay:
11 Forasmuch as he knew not his Maker, and him that inspired into him an active soul, and breathed in a living spirit.
12 But they counted our life a pastime, and our time here a market for gain: for, say they, we must be getting every way, though it be by evil means.
13 For this man, that of earthly matter maketh brittle vessels and graven images, knoweth himself to offend above all others.
14 And all the enemies of thy people, that hold them in subjection, are most foolish, and are more miserable than very babes.
15 For they counted all the idols of the heathen to be gods: which neither have the use of eyes to see, nor noses to draw breath, nor ears to hear, nor fingers of hands to handle; and as for their feet, they are slow to go.
16 For man made them, and he that borrowed his own spirit fashioned them: but no man can make a god like unto himself.
17 For being mortal, he worketh a dead thing with wicked hands: for he himself is better than the things which he worshippeth: whereas he lived once, but they never.
18 Yea, they worshipped those beasts also that are most hateful: for being compared together, some are worse than others.
19 Neither are they beautiful, so much as to be desired in respect of beasts: but they went without the praise of God and his blessing.
1 σὺ δέ ὁ θεὸς ἡμῶν χρηστὸς καὶ ἀληθής μακρόθυμος καὶ ἐλέει διοικῶν τὰ πάντα
2 καὶ γὰρ ἐὰν ἁμάρτωμεν σοί ἐσμεν εἰδότες σου τὸ κράτος οὐχ ἁμαρτησόμεθα δέ εἰδότες ὅτι σοὶ λελογίσμεθα
3 τὸ γὰρ ἐπίστασθαί σε ὁλόκληρος δικαιοσύνη καὶ εἰδέναι σου τὸ κράτος ῥίζα ἀθανασίας
4 οὔτε γὰρ ἐπλάνησεν ἡμᾶς ἀνθρώπων κακότεχνος ἐπίνοια οὐδὲ σκιαγράφων πόνος ἄκαρπος εἶδος σπιλωθὲν χρώμασιν διηλλαγμένοις
5 ὧν ὄψις ἄφροσιν εἰς ὄρεξιν ἔρχεται ποθεῖ τε νεκρᾶς εἰκόνος εἶδος ἄπνουν
6 κακῶν ἐρασταὶ ἄξιοί τε τοιούτων ἐλπίδων καὶ οἱ δρῶντες καὶ οἱ ποθοῦντες καὶ οἱ σεβόμενοι
7 καὶ γὰρ κεραμεὺς ἁπαλὴν γῆν θλίβων ἐπίμοχθον πλάσσει πρὸς ὑπηρεσίαν ἡμῶν ἓν ἕκαστον ἀλλ᾽ ἐκ τοῦ αὐτοῦ πηλοῦ ἀνεπλάσατο τά τε τῶν καθαρῶν ἔργων δοῦλα σκεύη τά τε ἐναντία πάντα ὁμοίως τούτων δὲ ἑτέρου τίς ἑκάστου ἐστὶν ἡ χρῆσις κριτὴς ὁ πηλουργός
8 καὶ κακόμοχθος θεὸν μάταιον ἐκ τοῦ αὐτοῦ πλάσσει πηλοῦ ὃς πρὸ μικροῦ ἐκ γῆς γενηθεὶς μετ᾽ ὀλίγον πορεύεται ἐξ ἧς ἐλήμφθη τὸ τῆς ψυχῆς ἀπαιτηθεὶς χρέος
9 ἀλλ᾽ ἔστιν αὐτῷ φροντὶς οὐχ ὅτι μέλλει κάμνειν οὐδ᾽ ὅτι βραχυτελῆ βίον ἔχει ἀλλ᾽ ἀντερείδεται μὲν χρυσουργοῖς καὶ ἀργυροχόοις χαλκοπλάστας τε μιμεῖται καὶ δόξαν ἡγεῖται ὅτι κίβδηλα πλάσσει
10 σποδὸς ἡ καρδία αὐτοῦ καὶ γῆς εὐτελεστέρα ἡ ἐλπὶς αὐτοῦ πηλοῦ τε ἀτιμότερος ὁ βίος αὐτοῦ
11 ὅτι ἠγνόησεν τὸν πλάσαντα αὐτὸν καὶ τὸν ἐμπνεύσαντα αὐτῷ ψυχὴν ἐνεργοῦσαν καὶ ἐμφυσήσαντα πνεῦμα ζωτικόν
12 ἀλλ᾽ ἐλογίσαντο παίγνιον εἶναι τὴν ζωὴν ἡμῶν καὶ τὸν βίον πανηγυρισμὸν ἐπικερδῆ δεῖν γάρ φησιν ὅθεν δή κἂν ἐκ κακοῦ πορίζειν
13 οὗτος γὰρ παρὰ πάντας οἶδεν ὅτι ἁμαρτάνει ὕλης γεώδους εὔθραυστα σκεύη καὶ γλυπτὰ δημιουργῶν
14 πάντες δὲ ἀφρονέστατοι καὶ τάλανες ὑπὲρ ψυχὴν νηπίου οἱ ἐχθροὶ τοῦ λαοῦ σου καταδυναστεύσαντες αὐτόν
15 ὅτι καὶ πάντα τὰ εἴδωλα τῶν ἐθνῶν ἐλογίσαντο θεούς οἷς οὔτε ὀμμάτων χρῆσις εἰς ὅρασιν οὔτε ῥῖνες εἰς συνολκὴν ἀέρος οὔτε ὦτα ἀκούειν οὔτε δάκτυλοι χειρῶν εἰς ψηλάφησιν καὶ οἱ πόδες αὐτῶν ἀργοὶ πρὸς ἐπίβασιν
16 ἄνθρωπος γὰρ ἐποίησεν αὐτούς καὶ τὸ πνεῦμα δεδανεισμένος ἔπλασεν αὐτούς οὐδεὶς γὰρ αὐτῷ ὅμοιον ἄνθρωπος ἰσχύει πλάσαι θεόν
17 θνητὸς δὲ ὢν νεκρὸν ἐργάζεται χερσὶν ἀνόμοις κρείττων γάρ ἐστιν τῶν σεβασμάτων αὐτοῦ ὧν αὐτὸς μὲν ἔζησεν ἐκεῖνα δὲ οὐδέποτε
18 καὶ τὰ ζῷα δὲ τὰ ἔχθιστα σέβονται ἀνοίᾳ γὰρ συγκρινόμενα τῶν ἄλλων ἐστὶ χείρονα
19 οὐδ᾽ ὅσον ἐπιποθῆσαι ὡς ἐν ζῴων ὄψει καλὰ τυγχάνει ἐκπέφευγεν δὲ καὶ τὸν τοῦ θεοῦ ἔπαινον καὶ τὴν εὐλογίαν αὐτοῦ
1 [Tu autem, Deus noster, suavis et verus es,
2 Etenim si peccaverimus, tui sumus,
3 Nosse enim te, consummata justitia est;
4 Non enim in errorem induxit nos
5 cujus aspectus insensato dat concupiscentiam,
6 Malorum amatores digni sunt qui spem habeant in talibus,
7 [Sed et figulus mollem terram premens,
8 Et cum labore vano deum fingit de eodem luto
9 Sed cura est illi non quia laboraturus est,
10 Cinis est enim cor ejus,
11 quoniam ignoravit qui se finxit,
12 Sed et æstimaverunt ludum esse vitam nostram,
13 Hic enim scit se super omnes delinquere,
14 Omnes enim insipientes,
15 quoniam omnia idola nationum deos æstimaverunt,
16 Homo enim fecit illos;
17 Cum enim sit mortalis, mortuum fingit manibus iniquis.
18 [Sed et animalia miserrima colunt;
19 Sed nec aspectu aliquis ex his animalibus bona potest conspicere: