The test (Wis 11:9-11:14)

“When they were tried,

Even though they were being disciplined in mercy,

They learned how the ungodly were tormented

When judged in wrath.

You tested them

As a parent does

In warning.

But you examined the ungodly

As a stern king does

In condemnation.

Whether absent or present,

They were equally distressed.

A twofold grief possessed them.

There was a groaning

At the memory of what had occurred.

They heard

That through their own punishments,

The righteous had received benefit.

They perceived

It was the Lord’s doing.

Even though they had mockingly rejected him,

Who long before had been cast out and exposed,

At the end of the events

They marveled at him.

They felt thirst in a different way

From the righteous.”

The righteous began to understand that their trials and thirst for water in Deuteronomy, chapter 8, were nothing in comparison to the punishment that the ungodly (ἀσεβεῖς) had received. They were disciplined in mercy, while the ungodly were angrily tormented and judged. They were treated like children getting a paternal (ὡς πατὴρ) warning, while the ungodly were given a royal (βασιλεὺς) condemnation. The Lord (τοῦ Κυρίου) gave benefits to the Israelites because the Egyptians had mocked and rejected him. The thirst that the two of them had was completely different between the righteous (δικαίοις) and the ungodly. Finally, the ungodly marveled at the Lord.

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