Copyright
John Wycliffe.

Select English works of John Wyclif (Volume 3) online

. (page 9 of 51)
Online LibraryJohn WycliffeSelect English works of John Wyclif (Volume 3) → online text (page 9 of 51)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


hope God and man. He is God of his fadris substaunce, borne
spiritualy bifore pe world, and he is man of his inodirs substaunce,
bom and maad man in pe world.

And so he is parfi5t God, as he was bifore \q world, and he
is parfi5t man, maad of a resonable soule and of mannis flesch.
And so he is bicomen oure bro))ir, not maad of godheed and
of flesche, wijjoute mannis soule in fis fleisch, ne of godheed and
of his soule wiJ)OUten verri body of man ; but Crist ha|) verri
bodi and soule as oj^ere brijjren Jiat he haj>, of ])e same kynde
Jjat ))ei ben, al if he my3te not synne as J)ei.

Equalis patri secundum divinitatem, minor patre se-
cundum humanitatem. Here moten men lerne, for heretikis,
how \t\ schulen speke in J)is matir. For as trynauntis ^ bigilen
foolis in matir of )je Trinyte, so \q\ bigilen o)jere trynauntis ^
in ])e incarnacioun of Jesus Crist. And herfore bileeve techij)
us what we schulden trowe of Crist, and how we schulden
graunte of him \zi fallij? to his clene manheed, and also to his
clene godheed; si]j Crist is bojje ))es two togidere, and so,
evejte to pe fadir bi his godheed, and lesse pan pe fadir bi his
manheed.

And si|) Crist is })es two kyndis bi myracle and dyvers resoun,
graunte we bo|)e jjese of him, as we graunten of jses two kyndis.
And sijj Crist is bojje God and man, graunte we })at he is evere
wijj ])e Fadir, and jjerewi)) lesse \z\\ |)e Fadir, for his godheed
and his manheed is sich, and ];ese two ben not contraries.
' truantes, U.



8o



WVCLIF'S WORKS.



Crist is evene wi|) |)e Fadir, and Crist is lesse jjan })e Fadir,
* sij) Crist is bo)je jjees kyndes ; but 3if Crist were evene wi}) ))e
Fadir, and \<tx\s\\ lesse })an jje Fadir,* ^ bi \t same kynde of
Crist, Jjanne two contraries folowiden him. And })us graunti)>
Crist in \q. gospel, wi)>oute cloutinge of o|)ere wordis, })at \q
Fadir is moore jjan he, and al |)at ))e Fadir haj) is his. And if
we graunten to )>is witt \2X Crist is not evene wi|> J)e Fadir, for
his manheed is not evene, j)is is not contrarie to ])e to)?er ; as,
sum man renne)), sum man renne)) not.

Qui licet Deus sit et homo, non duo tamen, sed unus
est Cristus : But if Crist be God and mati, and so two kyndis,
and hope of hem, hapelees Crist is not two persoones, but oon,

J)at is bojje God and man, and |>is persoone is godheed, and
jjerto it is manheed. And so schal we graunte of Crist wi))Outen
drede, bi jjese two kyndis, bo})e Jjat \dX fallij) to his godheed,
and })erwij) ))at fallij) to his manheed.

Unus autem, non conversione divinitatis in carnem, sed
assumpcione humanitatis in Deum : Crist is o persoone, not
by turnyfige of Godheed into Jlesch, but bi takynge of manheed into
godheed.

For Crist took manheed })at he bifore was not, and lefte not
godheed j)at he was evere. And jit godheed may not be man-
heed, aljif J)ei ben o persoone.

Unus autem ^, non confusione substantiae, sed unitate
persone : And \\x%, Crist is algatis oon, 7iot by confusioun of
his substaunce, but bi oonheed of his persoone, J)at is ])0j)e ))es two
substaimces.

And so Crist bigan to be J)is, but he bigan not to be per-
soone, as Crist was not twies persoone, ne * twies man by his
dee)). And so \q godheed of Crist is not medlid wij) his man-
heed, ne ne))er of ))ese kyndis turne)) into 6\>\t, but J)ese kindis
ben hool in Crist.

Nam sicut anima racionalis et cEiro unus est homo, ita
Deus et homo unus est Cristus: For whi ? as a resonable
souk and Jlesch is hope o man, so in Crist bope God and man is o
persoone in Crist.

• The words between asterisks are supplied from U : they are found also
in Q, but om. in T. ' Unus omnino, Q. ' So U and Q ; not, T.

WYCLIF.



EXEGEJICAL AND DIDACTIC. 8i

And so })is soule, \zX is, )>is man, is no part but al ])is man,
and jms so|)li a man is spirit, and schal lyve aftir jjat he is deed.

Qm passus est pro salute nostra, descendit ad inferos,
tertia die resurrexit a mortuis.

And ))us we graunten to enemyes Jsat Crist suflfride for oure
heel|?e, wente doun into helle, and on Jje ))ridde day roos fro
deejj. First he suffride bi his flesch, and wente to helle by his
soule, and roos bo)je bi his Godhede and bi his manheed \zX
he quikenede. But Crist left nevere to be ))is spirit, al if he
left oonys to be flesch. And {jus he ha|) power to put his liif, and
to take it ajein.

Ascendit ad celos ; sedet ad dexteram Dei Patris omni-
potentis ; inde venturus est judicare vivos et mortuos :
And pus Crist stiede to hevenes, sittip on pe ri'^t side of pe fadir
almy^ti, atid fro pens he is to come to deeme qwike men and dede.

Crist stiede bi his manheed, j)at was moved bi his godheed,
and passide manye hevenes, and restijj evermoore in glorie, and
at ))e day of doom schal come to juge boj^e qwike and dede, J)e
whiche han served him truly, and doon unkindeli a3ens him.

Ad cujus adventum omnes homines resurgere habent
cum corporibus suis, et reddituri sunt de factis propriis
rationem : To pis comyng at pe laste day schal al maner fnen
arise, and yve resoun to Crist of her ozvne dedis here.

Et qtii bona egerunt, ibunt in vitam eternam ; qui vero
mala, in ignem eternum : And pes men pat han do goodis
schulen go to liif ivipouten eende, and pes men pat han doonyvelis
schtilen go to fier wipotiten eeiide.

And we speken here of good and yvel, by hem J^at dyen here
in |>ese.

Hee est fides catholica, quam, nisi quisque fldeliter
firmiterque crediderit, salvus esse non poterit: \^is is
general bileeve,pe which but if ech man troive truly and stidefastly,
he may not herewip be saaf

And al if }jis crede accorde unto prestis, najjelees |)e hi5er
prelatis, as [popes cardinalis] » and bishopis, schulden moore
specialy cunne |)is crede, and teche it to men undir liem. Amen.

•'' The words have been erased in Bodl. 288, but I have supplied them
from U and Q.

WOEKS. VOL, III. G



8a



WYC LIE'S WORKS.



11.



pE TEN COMAUNDEMENTIS.



[The following tract on the Ten Commandments is found in at least two
different forms, beginning alike, but soon diverging. The one here printed
is that found in the beautiful MS. Bodl. 789. The other may be seen in
the following MSS., Laud 524, and Univ. Coll. 97. There are two other
MSS., according to Shirley's Catalogue, at Dublin and in the British
Museum ; but I have not examined either closely.

The version found in the Laud and Univ. Coll. MSS. is considerably
fuller than that here printed ; but it is at the same time tamer, and less
characteristic. It might have been written by any well-meaning priest
living at the time, but the Bodl. MS. contains quite different touches.
The attack upon non-preaching priests at p. 87, the assertion of the
ultra-Puritan doctrine of dominion being founded in grace (p. 88), and
the exhortation to the reading of the Scriptures (p. 90), if they do not
prove the tract to have been by Wyclif, at any rate show it to be of Wycliffite
or Lollard origin. Now not one of these passages is found in the mild and
colourless commentary of the Laud MS. I am inclined to think that the
author — and I see no reason why it should not have been Wyclif — found a
pre-existing commentary, which he used as the vehicle for the introduction
of his views. The tract is ascribed to Wyclif by Bishop Bale, under the
title ' Compendium Decem Praeceptorum.']

Alle manere of men schulde holde J)e comaundementis of
God, for wijjouten holdynge of hem may no man be savyd.
And so J)e gospel ^ telli]) how oon askide Crist what he schulde
do for to come to hevene. And Crist seide, 3 if ))0u wolt come
to blisse, kep myn comaundementis.

Pnmum Mandatum.

pis is pe firste maundement of God. God spak alle J>iise
wordis: I am Lord J)i God, \z.\. ladde ])e out of Egipt, and
• So in BB ; V has ai pe gospel.



EXEGETICAL AND DIDACTIC.



83



brou^te )>e out of servage, )jere \o\x servedist men. pow schalt
not have bifore me alyen Goddis. pow schalt noon ymage
have, graven wi]? mannys hoond, ne no leeknesse in hevene ne
in erjie ne in watris ; Jjou schalt not loute hem, ne worschipe
hem, for I am ]je Lord J)i God, a stronge gelous lovere ; I visite
wickidnesse of fadris into )je sones, ])e J)ridde and J>e ferjie of
hem ))at hatiden me, and I do merci unto })0usandis of hem |)at
loven me and kepen myn hestis.

But, for manye men wenen \2X \€\ kepe ]?iise maundementis,
and jit \t\ lyven J^ere-ajens, Jjerfore men schulden wite \2X what
maner ])ing ]jat a man love}> moost, he maki]> his god ; and so,
sy]>]je al synne stondi|> in love, everi heed synne is brekynge of
})is heeste. And so J^iise ten hestis ben as ten mirouris J)at men
may se hemsilf ynne. And sij^en \€\ ben })re synnes, as Seynt
Joon seijj, J)at em\Tappe]j alle o])ere, in jjre maneris may a man
breke ])is maundement, — in \t% ]jre, love of fleische, and love of
eije, and pride of liif. And so glotouns and lecchouris breken
J)is heeste ; as Poul sei]j, \z.\. j^es glotouns makyn hire beli hire
god. For God biddij) \q feede \& in mesure, and jit ]jou
passist ])is mesure for lust of \\ beli ; ]?i fleische stiri}) ))e moore
to do ))at |>i fleische aski]? ; and so J)Ou makist falsli ])i beli j)i
god. And on \& same wise ]je coveytous man maki}? his maw-
met ]>e temporal goodis, as Poul sei]? J)at averyce is service of
mawmetis. And so ])e proude man makijj \q feend his god.
pus it is in dede, howevere oure moujj blabre. And so preestis
J)at prechen moore to have a loos, ojjir for wynnynge of worldli
goodis, ojjir lustis of hire beli, makyn fals leeknesse in hevene
and erjje and water. And J)us mai men knowe how )>ese
maundementis ben brokyn, bo]?e of preestis and of seculeres.
And so in trust of ymagis many ben disceyved, in hope of
help or heljje in a maner neede, as J)e olde lawe and ])e newe
witnyssen. pe Dedis of Apostlis, in jje seventen))e chapiter,
sei)) Jjus ; Si])en God is Lord of hevene and of erjje, he wone])
not in templis maad wi|) hondis, ne he is worschipid \\\\ mannys
honde, for })at he ha]> neede of any J)inge jjat man do|), si))en he
jivej) unto alle liif, and wynde enspirynge, and al o\\x ])ing.
And of o jjinge he made al mankynde for to inhabite on al jje
face of )je er))e, and tymes and termes, or habitatioun ; for to



84 JVrCL/F'S WORKS.

seeke here God. For in him we liven, and in him we stiren, and
we ben also his kyn, as poetis seyn. And si))J)e we ben \q kyn
of God, us aujte not suppose J)at j^at perteyne}) unto God is
like unto gold or silver or ston, of J^e craft of gravynge, or of
mannis hond-worchynge. For J)at J)ing J^at is hije to men, is
abhominacioun bifore God. But, for we knowyn him litil, we
loven him ))e lesse. And jif we undirstoode Jje mijt of \e
Fadir, ))e wisdoom of \e. Sone, and ))e goode wille or grace of
))e Holi Goost, we schulden be war to kepe hem soundeli, for
bodeli jjingis distractijj men to kepe hem rijt. And J)is is
sumdeel ^q resoun ' of j^e firste maundement.



2 Comaundemefit.

pe secounde maner maundement of God perteyne)) to })e
Sone. pow schalt not take ]je name of ])i Lord God in veyn,
nejjjjer in word neijjer in lyvynge. Eche man takij> Goddis
name in veyn, J)at swerij? bi his name more }jan is need. Crist
techijj in \q, gospel to have oure wordis ))us, jhe, jhe, and nai,
nay, wij^outen ony oojj. pere he doubli]? his wordis, as if he
wolde seie, — yS. je seie jhe in joure soule, seie jhe wij? joure
moujj, and be je trewe men. For God techij? bi Jeremie J)e
prophete, wi]j \xq condiciouns it is leefful to swere. First })at
\t\ be war \z.\. \€\ swere treujje, and j^at ]je cause of hire o\ be
to schewe rijt, and sij^en, Jjat in jugement be it need to swere ;
and ellis schulde alle men kepe hem from o))is.^ For it is writen
in Ecclesiasticus, J)e ]jre and twenti chapitre, jjere he sei]> }jus ;
A man much sweringe schal be fulfilled with wickidnesse, and
veniaunce schal not go awey fro his hous. For so])e wi}) werst
jeldinge schal be fulfiUid })e hous of him. But we schullen wite
afterward, ))at everi man berij) jje name of God printid in his
soule, for ellis he mijte not be, as Seynt Austyn seijj;— in pre
jjingis, mynde, resoun, and wille, and alle ben o substaunce.
And so \q gospel techi|> ))at \qm schuldist on ))re maners wor-
schipe )>e name of ))i God, )jat ))0U hast wijj ))ee. pow schuldist
love I'i God of al j-in herte, of al \\ soule, and of al |>i mynde.

' corrected ; rosoun in Bodl. 789.



EXEGETICAL AND DIDACTIC.

Panne }>ou lovest j>i God of al ))in herte, whanne ))i witte and Jji
power is oonli set on him, )jat everi eende of \\ werk is worschip
to ])i God. pou lovest God of al \\ soule, whanne ])OU ordeynest
al j?i lif to worschip of \\ God. Also J)Ou lovest \\ God of al ])i
mynde, whanne Jjou forjetist not jjus to J)enke on J)i God ; but
})enkinge is in dede as it is in mynde. On jjis wise schulde men
worschipe Jje Trinite. And whanne a man doj) Jjat he schulde
not do, or levej> J^at he schulde do, he takij> in veyn J)is hije and
holi name. For no man is maad but to serve God, in doynge
his wille or suffrynge peyne.

/// Mandatum.

In })e Jjridde maundement God biddi)) have mynde to halwe
]jin holiday. In sixe dales ]>ou mijte worche, and in \q sevenjjc
day is reste of jje Lord God. In ]jat day Jjou schalt do no
servile werk, ne no werk of synne, ])0u, ne \\ sone, ne J)i
dou5ter, ne ))i servaunt, ne J)in hand-mayden, ne ]ji werk-beest,
ne )je straunger in Jjin hous. For in sixe dales God made
hevene and erjje, and al \zX is jjerinne, and restide in jje seven])e
day.

Now it were to wite how men schulen halwe and kepe
here holi dai. And si}? jie moost servile werk is worchinge of
synne, eche man schulde on ]je holiday kepe him out of synne,
si])]je Crist himsilf sei|) })at hosoevere do)) synne makij) himsilf
servaunt to synne. And no ]>inge is worse J)an \t occasioun.
For we schulden spende ))e holiday in heriynge of God, and
ellis we synnen greetli in faylinge of his service ; for J)e moost
hi5e service |)at man can serve God |>erinne, schulde he schape
him to do on jje holidai. But God wole Jiat freedom of his
lawe be kept, and specialli as Poul techijj. But be war Jiat
\0M kepe J)iise four feestis principalli, Christemasse and Estre,
Ascension and Whitsountide, and ]je Soneday )>our5 ])e jeer.
For no feeste ne service is plesynge to God, but in as myche
as it scharpij) a man to love oure Lord Jesus Crist. For upon
\q Sunday God made Jje worlde, and on \q Sunday God roos
fro deejj to lyve, and on J>e Sunday he sente J>e Holi Goost ;
and, as clerkis seyn, upon })e Sundai schal be ])e laste jugement
])at ever man schal have. And Cristene men schulde leerne



85



86



WYC LIE'S WORKS.



bi techinge of priistis, and bisie hem devoulli on j^e holiday
to studie on virtues, and on \q. ten comaundementis, and on ))e
sevene dedis of merci, bodili and goostli, and speke \v\\ men,
and specialli \\\\ hem of hevenli })ingis, and putte awai giles and
wrongis and o))ir synnes ; and leerne we to love God in parfit
charite, and eende ))erynne.

pf //// Comaundenunl.

pe fourjje comaundement is )jis. pou schalt worschipe \\
fadir and \\ moder, ]jat J)Ou be longe lyved upon erj^e, and jji
nei3bore as ]>i self. And whoevere love)) his neijebore, love))
his God, and dwelli)) in God and God in him. And so \qs
twei braunchis of charite mowe not be departid, as Seynt Joon
sei)) in his firste pistil. He jiat love]) not his bro])ir j)at he see))
wi)) eije, how love]) he his God ])at he see]) not ? So as God
ha]) more resoun of love, for he made \q of noujt, and kepi))
J)e, and medij) ])e. And herfore sei]) Crist, He ])at love)) his
eldris moore ])an him is not wor])i of him. And he worschipi))
his fadir and moder as he schulde do, ))at kepi]) hem in nede,
bo])e bodili and goostli. So schulde ech man understonde ))is
worschip as Poul techi)). 3if ]'ei ben nedi, helpe hem in resoun,
but make not ])i kyn riche to gete \& a name, if J)ei suffice to
fynde hemsilf bi hir owene travail. For Crist cam of poore
men, and leet his modir be poore, and his poore cosynes ; and
whanne \e\ askiden worschip and richesse of ])e world, he
denyede hem ])at, and ordeynede hem passiouns ; and bileve
techi)) us ))at he dide al for \q betere. And so schulde we
serve him, jif we been his children, and love him moore ])an
J)e worlde or oure veyne name.

\)e fifpe Comaundement.

pe fifj)e comaundement of. God biddi];, pow schalt not sle
))i bro))ir ; and it is undirstonden of unskilful sleynge. And
here men seyn, ))at men ])at be killid bi mannis lawe been not
slayn of men, but ])e lawe slee]) hem, and hire owene dedis.
But wile)) wel, ))is maundement is sibbe to many synnes. For



EXEGETICAL AND DIDACTIC.



87



Seynt Joon sei]), he ))at hatijj his bro))ir is a mansleer, jhe, ofte
tymes moore to blame J^an he }>at sleej) his bodi, for ]je synne
is moore. And bi ]jis skile a bac-bitere is a man-sleer. But,
as clerkis seyen, upon sixe maneris is \\% consent doon, and
men schulden wel knowe it. He consentij) to \q yvel ])at wirchij)
wi)j jperto ; he jjat defendi|> and conseilip ]jerto ; he Jjat bi whos
auctorite is })e yvel don ; or he })at wijjdrawij) his hel|)e or scharp
reprevynge, whanne he mi3te don it and schulde bi Goddis
lawe. And among alle synnes bi whiche J?e feend bigilejj men,
noon is moore sutil ])an such consent. And J?erfore ]>e pro-
phetis of Jie olde lawe tolden men hire periles, til \€\ suffriden
dee)> ; and in j)is cause \% apostilis of Crist weren martrid, and
we schulde, jif we were trewe men. But cowardise and de-
faute of love of God makij) us sterte abac, as traytours don.
And what trowen we of j^e Cherche, ))at sellen men leve to
synne, and ^iven hem leve to last perinne for an anuel rente
bi jere.? And persones J)at leeven to traveile in here office,
bi power of lordis and jyvynge of money, ben suffrid to lyve
))us wijjouten prechinge. And so ofte tymes ben priistis irre-
guler, for J^e multitude of soulis J)at j^ei sleen ]jus; and
]jis irregularite is moore for to drede ])an irregularite chargid
of )je worlde. For ofte tyme hit falli]? Jjat bi a medeful dede
men been maad irreguler bi jugement of Jje world, but bi \\%
irregularite ben priistis dampned of God.

p<? VI Comaundement.

pe sixte comaundement is }>is; pou schalt do no lecherie,
bodili ne goostli. Goostli leecherie is whanne a man forsaki]?
]je love of his God for love of a creature ; and ])is leecherie is
moost for to charge, for no leecherie is synne but jif J^is be
])ere. And sy])en ech mannis soule schulde be Cristis spouse,
what leechour ]jat synne]> ))us synnej) in avouterie, for he breki))
\Q marriage ])at schulde be bitwixte Crist and him. But bodili
lecherie is hard for to vencuse or maistir, in men })at norschen ^
here fleische stronge in kynde, for kynde mevejj to \e dede,

^ should be norischen.



88 WrCLIF'S WORKS.

I but not to jje synne. And heer seyn clerkis on })is wise, }'at
' specialli in ))is synne moot a man be coward, and fle occasioun

|iat meve)) to J)is synne, and truste not in strenjje ne in witte.

For what man was strengere ))an Sampson ? or w^ho wiser pan

David ? or hwo moore witti )jan Salomon his sone ? and alle

weren brent wi}) jje fier of lust. And if \o\x wolt be Cristis clene
\ child, fle as Godis coward J)e cumpanye of wymmen. pe
' secounde medicyne |>at helpij> a3ens j)is synne were to kepe |)i

bodi fro lusti fode, for fleisch Jjat is yvel fedde delitej? \e lasse
i to J)is synne. pe Jjridde medecyne a5ens })is synne were a man

to be bisy in clene occupacioun, for such lust comejj not but
' if J)0U5t go bifore. And jjerfore occupie }ji jjoujt and ]pi bodi

in clene occupacioun, and so fle })is synne, and be Cristis

spouse, and dwelle jjerinne.

VII Mandatum.

pe seven))e comaundement is jjis ; pou schalt do no |'ef|)e, —
sij)))e God })i fader is treujie ; and jif he be })i fadir, j)Ou schalt
not noye ]ji bro))ir in bodi ne in godis ; ne ))0u schalt not desire
no godis of him unskilfulli, to have in harmynge of ))i nei3ebore,
pryve ne apeert. As comunes, bi false o])is in chaff"arynge and
in questis, up trust of absolucioun, or on feyned pardoun, |)at
dewe restitucioun j^enke]) nevere to jelde ; and marchauntis
bi usure, under colour of treujje J)at \t\ clepyn chevysaunce,
to blynde wi|) );e puple, — for \q devyl schamej) to speke of J)is
)jef|)e, — and lordis, \2X bi extorsiouns oppresse J)e puple wi|)
tyrauntrye and raveyne, a^ens Goddis lawe, not dredynge him
jjat is Lord of alle. So eche man in his degree is boundoun
to serve God. And jif he wante ))is service, he is no lord
of goodis bi no trewe title. For he Jiat stondi]) in grace is
verrey lord of ))ingis a ; and whoevere failijj by defaute of grace,
he faili)) rijt title of Jjing j^at he occupiejj, and unablijj himsilf
to have \q goodis of God. And so curatis of ]je Chirche
stelen Jjc goodis of God, J)at comen in bi j^e roof, and not bi
l»e dore, ))at is Crist, ben nyjt |)eves and dai })eves of simonie

* .See the prefatory notice.



EXEGETICAL AND DIDACTIC. 89

of benefices, and sillynge of sacramentis. And herefore seij)
Crist, herde of alle herdis, \2X })iise ben stronge jjeves and cursid
of God. As Zacharie ))e prophete seijj, he sau^ a book fleynge
in |)e eire, |jat was of twenti cubitis longe and ten of breede ;
and he axide )?e aungel of God what it mi3te be, and he seide,
It is Jje curse of God J^at goj; to alle jjeves houses. And si))]5e
Jjis was sent for worldli goodis, ]jese Anticristis clerkis aujten
sore to drede, Jjat ))us lurken under lordis, as )jeves doon in
wodis. Crist sei)>, ]jat may not lye, Jjat ))iise ben jjeves, sij^en
J)ei taken J)e godis of Crist, wijjouten his leeve ])at is cheef Lord,
if ony suche been.

X)e VIII Comaundement.

In Jje ei3t]>e comaundement Crist forbedi]> alle men to speke
fals witnesse a3ens here nei^eboris. And J)is is needful to
execute |)e lawe ; for Goddis lawe and mannis lawe axen wit-
nesse, and of suche witnesse come]) jugement of man; and
falshede of witnesse maki|) fals jugement, and so errour in wit-
nesse strecchi)) ful fer. For many been diseritid and many been
hangid by suche fals witnessis; and of )jis spryngi]) mani fals
eyres. Whoso witnessi)) fals, he witnessij? ajens treujje; and
si})]5e God himsilf is treu])e, he witnessijj ajens God. And so,
whanne he witnessij) fals, he takij> God to witnesse ]jat J>at jjing
Jjat he seiJj is trewe and of God ; and sij)jje jjat |;ing is fals, as
muche as in him is he makijj his God fals, and bringi]> him to
nou3t; for God may not be, but 3if he be trewe. And ])us
berij) noon fals witnesse but 3if he reverse God. And alle Jje
seyntis in hevene and alle creaturis witnessen of here God a3ens
him ]?at lie]). But her seyn wise men, bi witnesse of seintis,
f>at j^e craft of liynge is evere moore unleefful, for it comej) but
of |)e feend, J)at first made lesynge. And if it were leefFul,
it worschipide Crist, ]je meene persone of God Jjat is ]je firste
treujje. And jjerfor I dar seie, bi witnesse of hevene, \zi nojt
contrariejj Crist moore J)an dojj lesynge. So ))at if a man mi3te
bi a prive lesinge save al J)is worlde jjat ellis schulde perische,
3it schulde he not lye for savynge of Jjis worlde.



90 WFCLIF'S WORKS.



\)e IX Comaunde??ient.
In \>e nynj)e comaundement God forbedej) })e to covete j)i
neijebores hous, ne noon o])ere jjingis })at ben unmevable ;
as ben suche pingis as ben not on lyve, ne of power to meve
hemsilf fro o place to ano))ir. For no man ha}) wrongli any
suche godis, but grounde of his havynge be fals coveitise.
And as a weed is wel purgid of a loond whan \>q roote is
drawyn away, so })iise foure maundementis ben wel kept whanne
\t fals coveitise is fulli quenchid. And herfore sei|) Seynt Poul,
Jjat \e roote of all yvelis is wickide coveitise in a mannys
soule ^.

])e X Cotnaun dement.

pe laste maundement of God is boden in )>ese wordis ; — pou
schalt not desire \q wiif of \\ nei3ebore, ne his servaunt, ne his
maide, ne his oxe, ne his asse, ne no J)ing \zX is his. And so
in })is maundement is desire forboden, for ofte it falli]> J)at \c
synne is moore groundid in yvel wille })an )je dede wi))Outefor]).
And herfore Crist oure hevenli leche forfendi)) suche desire.

And J)us ))ese ten maundementis ben lawe surest of alle, and
moost of autorite, and eke of moost nede. And si))J>e J)iise ten
lawis techen al j^e wille of oure Lord, })is lawe schulden be
holden, and ojjere lawis despisid, but if it be groundid in J)is,
and declare j^is lawe. And so, siJ)J>e lawe of \t emperoure, and



Online LibraryJohn WycliffeSelect English works of John Wyclif (Volume 3) → online text (page 9 of 51)