1. FOR thy iudgements o Lord are great, & thy wordes inexplicable, for this cause the soules lacking discipline haue erred.
2. For whiles the wicked are perswaded that they can rule ouer the holie nation: fettered with the bands of darknes, and long night, shut vp vnder roofes, they haue lyen fugitiues from the euerlasting prouidence.
3. And whiles they thincke that they be hid in obscure sinnes, they were dispersed by the darke couert of obliuion, being horribly afrayd and disturbed with exceding admiration.
4. For neither did the denne that conteyned them, keepe them without feare: because the sound coming downe trubled them, and sorowful visions appearing to them, put them in feare.
5. And no force certes of the fyre could geue them light, neither could the clere flames of the starres lighten that horrible night.
6. But there appeared to them soden fyre, ful of feare: and being stroken with the feare of that face, which was not sene, they estemed the thinges that were sene to be werse:
7. and there were added derisions of the magical art, and contumelious rebuke of the glorie of their wisdom.
8. For they which promised that they would expel feares and perturbations from the languishing soule, these with derision languished ful of feare.
9. For although none of the monsters disturbed them: being moued with the passing by of beasts, and hissing of serpents, they perished trembling: and denying that they saw the ayre, which by no meanes any man could avoyde.
10. For wheras wickednes is fearful, it geueth testimonie of condemnation: for a trubled conscience doth alwayes presume cruel thinges.
11. For feare is nothing els but a betraying of the aydes of cogitation.
12. And whiles inwardly there is lesse expection, the greater doth he count the ignorance of that cause which maketh the torment.
13. But they that during the night in deede impotent, and coming vpon them from the lowest and highest hel, slept the same sleepe,
14. were sometime molested with the feare of monsters; sometime fayled by passing away of the soule: for soden feare and vnlooked for came vpon them.
15. Moreouer if any of them had fallen downe, he was kept shut vp in prison with yron.
16. For if one were a husbandman, or if a shepheard, or worker of the labours in the filde were sodenly taken, he susteyned necessitie ineuitable.
17. For with one chayne of darkenes they were al tyed together. Whether it were the hissing winde, or among the thicke boughes of trees the sweete sound of birdes, or the force of water running downward exceedingly,
18. or the mightie sound of rockes tumbled headlong, or the running of playing beasts, that were not sene, or the mightie noyse of roaring beastes, or an echo resounding from the highest mountaynes: they made them swoone for feare.
19. For al the world was illuminated with a cleare light, & none was hindred in their workes.
20. But ouer them onlie was layd an heauie night, the image of darkenes, which was to come vpon them. They therfore were vnto themselues more heauie then the darknes.