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Verse 18

And if the righteous scarcely be saved - If it shall be with extreme difficulty that the Christians shall escape from Jerusalem, when the Roman armies shall come against it with the full commission to destroy it, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? Where shall the proud Pharisaic boaster in his own outside holiness, and the profligate transgressor of the laws of God, show themselves, as having escaped the Divine vengeance? The Christians, though with difficulty, did escape, every man; but not one of the Jews escaped, whether found in Jerusalem or elsewhere.

It is rather strange, but it is a fact, that this verse is the Septuagint translation of Proverbs 11:31 ; : Behold, the righteous shall be recompensed in the earth; much more the wicked and the sinner. For this the Septuagint and St. Peter have, If the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear? Such a latitude of construction can scarcely be accounted for. The original is this: וחוטא רשע כי אף ישלם בארץ צדיק הן hen tsaddik baarets yeshullam aph ki rasha vechote : "Behold, to the righteous it shall be returned on the earth; and also to the wicked and the transgressor."

The Chaldee paraphrast has given this a different turn: Behold, the righteous shall be strengthened in the earth; but the ungodly and the sinners shall be consumed from the earth.

The Syriac thus: If the righteous scarcely live, the ungodly and the sinner where shall he stand?

The Arabic is nearly the same as the Septuagint and the apostle; the Vulgate follows the Hebrew.

I have on several occasions shown that, when Cestius Gallus came against Jerusalem, many Christians were shut up in it; when he strangely raised the siege the Christians immediately departed to Pella in Coele-syria, into the dominions of King Agrippa, who was an ally of the Romans, and there they were in safety; and it appears, from the ecclesiastical historians, that they had but barely time to leave the city before the Romans returned under the command of Titus, and never left the place till they had destroyed the temple, razed the city to the ground, slain upwards of a million of those wretched people, and put an end to their civil polity and ecclesiastical state.

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