1Every soul be subject to higher powers. For there is no power but of God (For there is no authority except from God), and those things that be of God, be ordained. 2Therefore he that against-standeth power, against-standeth the ordinance of God; and they that against-stand (that), get to themselves damnation. 3For princes be not to the dread of good work(s), but of evil (works) (For rulers, or leaders, be not to be feared by those who do good works, but by those who do evil works). But wilt thou, that thou dread not power? Do thou (a) good thing, and thou shalt have (the) praising of it; [For why princes be not to the dread of good work(s), but of evil. Soothly wilt thou not dread power? Do good, and thou shalt have (the) praising of it;] 4for he is the minister of God to thee into good. But if thou doest evil, dread thou; for not without cause he beareth the sword, for he is the minister of God, venger into wrath to him that doeth evil. (for he is God’s servant for your own good. But if thou doest evil, fear thou; for not without cause he beareth the sword, for he is God’s servant, the avenger unto wrath of those who do evil.) 5And therefore by need be ye subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience. 6For therefore ye give tributes, they be the ministers of God, and serve for this same thing. (And so for this ye pay taxes, for they be God’s servants, and serve by these duties.) 7Therefore yield ye to all men (your) debts, to whom tribute, tribute, to whom toll, (or a custom duty for things borne about), toll, (or such a custom duty), to whom dread, dread, to whom honour, honour. (And so yield to all men your debts, to whom taxes, taxes, to whom a custom duty, or a toll, a custom duty, or a toll, to whom fear, fear, to whom honour, honour.)
8To no man owe ye anything, [no] but that ye love together (except that ye love one another). For he that loveth his neighbour, hath fulfilled the law. 9For, Thou shalt do no lechery (Thou shalt not do adultery), Thou shalt not slay, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not say false witnessing (Thou shalt not give false testimony), Thou shalt not covet the thing of thy neighbour, and if there be any other commandment, it is enstored, or included, (or enclosed), in this word, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 10The love of thy neighbour worketh not evil; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
11And we know (at) this time, that the hour is now, that we rise from sleep; for now is our health near(er) [soothly now our health is nearer] (for now our salvation, or our deliverance, is nearer), than when we (first) believed. 12The night went before, but the day hath nighed. Therefore cast we away the works of darknesses, and be we clothed in the armours of light [and be we clothed with the armours of light]. (The night went before, but now the day hath approached. And so let us throw off the works of darkness, and be we clothed in the armour of light.) 13As in [the] day wander, (or walk, or go), we honestly, not in superfluous feasts, (or in oft eatings), and drunkennesses, not in beds, (or in bedchambers), and unchastities, not in strife and in envy; 14but be ye clothed in the Lord Jesus Christ, and do ye not (do) the busyness, (or the cares), of (the) flesh in desires.
Wycliffe’s Old Testament
Wycliffe’s New Testament
and JOHN PURVEY
A modern-spelling edition of their
14TH century Middle English translation,
the first complete English vernacular version,
with an Introduction by
TERENCE P. NOBLE
Used by Permission