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words of repentance and say,

This is the man whom we once held in derision and made a byword of reproach—we fools! We thought that his life was madness and that his end was without honor. Why has he been numbered among the sons

of God? And why is his lot among the saints? So it was we who strayed from the way of

truth, and the light of righteousness did not shine

upon us, and the sun did not rise upon us. We took our fill of the paths of lawlessness

and destruction, and we journeyed through trackless deserts, but the way of the Lord we have not known. What has our arrogance profited us? And what good has our boasted wealth

brought us? Wisdom of Solomon 5:4-8

Otherwise, the righteous appear stereotypically as a designation of Israel.108 They plunder the ungodly and fight off their foes, the Egyptians, who are characterized throughout the book as enemies, lacked or ungodly and fools.

Idolatry as an Enemy

Idols, idol worshipers and idol makers appear as enemies in the Wisdom of Solomon. Idols, "though part of God's creation, became an abomination, and became traps for the souls of men and a snare to the feet of the foolish" (14:11). The striking, indeed tragic, thing about these idols is the fact that they are elements of God's creation.

108

10:20; 11:3.

186

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