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Writings In Connection With The Manichaean Controversy by St. Augustine

Chapter 32. --From God Also is the Very Power to Be Hurtful.

Likewise because the power even of those that are hurtful is from God alone, thus it stands written, Wisdom speaking: |Through me kings reign and tyrants hold the land through me.| The apostle also says: |For there is no power but of God.| But that it is worthily done is written in the book of Job: |Who maketh to reign a man that is a hypocrite, on account of the perversity of the people.| And concerning the people of Israel God says: |I gave them a king in my wrath.| For it is not unrighteous, that the wicked receiving the power of being hurtful, both the patience of the good should be proved and the iniquity of the evil punished. For through power given to the Devil both Job was proved so that he might appear righteous, and Peter was tempted lest he should be presumptuous, and Paul was buffeted lest he should be exalted, and Judas was damned so that he should hang himself. When, therefore, through the power which He has given the Devil, God Himself shall have done all things righteously, nevertheless punishment shall at last be rendered to the Devil not for these things justly done, but for the unrighteous willing to be hurtful, which belonged to himself, when it shall be said to the impious who persevered in consenting to his wickedness, |Go ye into everlasting fire which my God has prepared for the Devil and his angels.|
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