1Brethren, whether ye know not; for I speak to men that know the law; for the law hath lordship in a man (that the Law hath lordship over a man), as long (a) time as he liveth? 2For that woman that is under an husband, is bound to the law, while the husband liveth; but if her husband is dead, she is delivered, (or she is unbound), from the law of the husband. 3Therefore she shall be called (an) adulteress, if she be with another man, while the husband liveth; but if her husband is dead, she is delivered from the law of the husband (but if her husband dieth, she is released from the marriage law), (so) that she be not (an) adulteress, if she be with another man.
4And so, my brethren, ye be made dead to the law by the body of Christ, (so) that ye be of another, that rose again from death (who rose again from the dead), (so) that ye bear fruit to God. [Truly, brethren, and ye be made dead to the law through the body of Christ, that ye be another’s, that rose again from (the) dead, (so) that we bear fruit to God.] 5For when we were in (the) flesh, (the) passions of sins, that were by the law (which were stirred up by the Law), wrought in our members, to bear fruit to death. 6But now we be unbound from the law of death, in which we were held, so that we serve in (a) newness of spirit, and not in (the) oldness of (the) letter(s).
7What therefore shall we say? The law is sin? God forbid. But I knew not sin, [no] but by [the] law (But I did not know sin, except for the Law); for I knew not that coveting was sin, [no] but for the law said, Thou shalt not covet. 8And through occasion taken, sin by the commandment hath wrought in me all covetousness; for without the law, sin was dead. 9And I lived without the law sometime; but when the commandment was come [but when the commandment had come], sin lived again. But I was dead, 10and this commandment that was to life, was found to me, to be to death. 11For sin, through occasion taken by the commandment, deceived me, and by that it slew me. 12Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, and just, and good.
13Is then that thing that is good, made death to me? God forbid. But sin, that it seem sin, through good thing wrought death to me, (so) that me sin over-manner/(so) that men sin over-manner through the commandment. [Therefore that that is good, is made death to me? Far be it. But that sin appear, or be known, (as) sin, through good thing wrought death to me, (so) that there be made sin sinning over-manner, or over-measure, by (the) commandment.]
14And we know, that the law is spiritual; but I am fleshly, sold under sin. 15For I understand not that that I work; for I do not the good thing that I will (for I do not do the good thing that I desire to do), but I do that evil thing that I hate. 16And if I do that thing that I will not, (then) I consent to the law, that it is good. (And if I do that which I do not desire to do, then I agree with the Law, that it is good, or that it is right.) 17But now I work not it now [Now soothly I work not it now/Now soothly I work not that thing now], but the sin that dwelleth in me. 18But I know, that in me, that is, in my flesh, dwelleth no good; for will lieth to me (for the will, or the desire, to do good lieth before me), but I find not (how) to perform (any) good thing. 19For I do not that good thing that I will, but I do that evil thing that I will not. (For I do not do that good thing that I desire to do, but I do that evil thing that I do not desire to do.) 20And if I do that evil thing that I will not (And if I do that evil thing that I do not desire to do), (then) I work not it, but the sin that dwelleth in me.
21Therefore I find the law to me willing to do good thing [Therefore I find a law to me willing, (or desiring), to do (the) good thing], for evil thing lieth to me. (And so I find this law in me; I desire to do the good thing, but only the evil thing lieth before me.) 22For I delight (al)together to the law of God, after the inner man. (For I greatly delight in the Law of God, in my inner man.) 23But I see another law in my members, fighting against the law of my soul, and making me captive in the law of sin, that is in my members. 24I am an unhappy man, (or a woeful man); who shall deliver me from the body of this sin? 25The grace of God, by Jesus Christ our Lord. Therefore I myself by the soul serve to the law of God; but by the flesh to the law of sin.
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