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GILDAS On the Ruin and Conquest of Britain

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GILDAS
On the Ruin and Conquest of Britain
page 42



esc 50—33.] ABRAHAM, HOSEA, AMOS. 335 people hath forgotten me." And somewhat also after this, propounding unto them an election, he speaking saith, "Thus saith our Lord, Do ye judgment and justice, and deliver him who by power is oppressed out of the hand of the malicious accuser ; and for the stranger, and orphan, and widow, do not provoke their sorrow, neither yet work ye unjustly the grief of others, nor shed ye forth the innocent blood. For if indeed ye shall accomplish this word, there shall enter in through the gates of this house, kings of the lineage of David, sitting upon his throne. But if ye will not hearken unto these words, by myself I have sworn (saith our Lord) that this house shall be turned into a desert." And again (for he spoke of a wicked king), " As I live (saith our Lord) if so be that Jechonias shall be a ring on my right hand, I will pluck him away, and give him over into the hands of them who seek his life." § 51. Moreover, holy Abraham crieth out, saying, "Woe be unto them who build a city in blood, and prepare a town in iniquities, saying, Are not these things from our almighty Lord ? and many people have failed in fire, and many nations nave been diminished." And thus complaining, he begins his prophecy : " How long, Ο Lord, shall I call, and thou wilt not hear ? Shall I cry out unto thee, to what end hast thou given me labours and griefs, to behold misery and impiety?" And on the other side, " And judgment was sat upon, and the judge hath taken in regard hereof, the law is rent in pieces, and judgment is not brought fully to his conclusion, because the wicked through power treadeth the just under foot. In this respect hath passed forth perverse judgment." § 52. And mark ye also what blessed Hosea the prophet says of princes : " For that they have transgressed my covenant, and ordained against my law, and exclaimed, we have known thee, because thou art against Israel. They have persecuted good, as if it were evil. They have reigned for themselves and not by me ; they have held a principality, neither yet have they acknowledged me." § 53. And hear ye likewise the holy prophet Amos, in this sort threatening : " In three heinous offences of the sons of Judah, and in four I will not convert them, for that they have cast away the law of our Lord, and not kept his com


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