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Obadiah Hughes (1695-1751) on Ezekiel 33:11 (Informal Reference)

September 22, 2009

Hughes:

[Proverbs 14:32 The wicked is driven away in his wickedness: but the righteous hath hope in his death.]

2. Let us now inquire into the import of what is here asserted in reference to the righteous; “he hath hope in his death.”

By his death some understand the wicked man’s death, and put this construction on the text:

When the good man is struggling with the troubles of life, the many of which perhaps are occasioned to him by the wicked; he has hope, that God will cut off the wicked, and then it shall be well with the righteous.

But I confess this construction appears to me unwarranted and forced; nor indeed can I see how it is consistent with the character of a righteous man, to hope or wish the death of any, how wicked and troublesome soever they are; the repentance and conversion and forgiveness of the wicked is the only proper matter of prayer with reference to them; our Savior has taught us to show our charity and good-will to our worst enemies in this way: and as the blessed God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked [Ezek. xxxiii. 11.]; it cannot surely be desired or hoped for by his servants.

Obadiah Hughes, The Righteous Man’s hope in death consider’d and improv’d, in a Sermon On Occasion of the Death of the late Reverend Mr Samuel Say. Preached in Westminster, April 24, 1743. (London: Printed and sold by M. Fenner, at the Turk’s head in Gracechurch-street, 1743), 12-13.  [Some spelling modernized; some reformatting; underlining mine; and verse insert mine.]

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