where God builds a church, the devil will build a chapel

Quot. 1942 cites the version of the saying found in George Herbert’s Outlandish Proverbs (1640) no. 674.

1560 T. BECON Works I. 516v For commonly, where so ever God buildeth a church, the Deuyll wyl builde a Chappell iuste by.

1701 DEFOE True-born Englishman 4 Wherever God erects a House of Prayer, The Devil always builds a Chapel there: And ‘twill be found upon Examination, The latter has the largest Congregation.

1903 G. H. KNIGHT Master’s Questions xiii. Nowhere does the devil build his little chapels more cunningly than close under the shadow of the great temple of Christian liberty. A thing in itself completely right and good, may be, in its effects on others, completely evil.

1942 M. MARLETT Devil Builds a Chapel (epigraph) No sooner is a temple built to God, but the Devil builds a chapel hard by.

2001 S. KENDRICK Night Watch iv. 134 ‘I’m beginning to think there’s great truth in the old saying “Wherever God builds a church, the devil builds a chapel next door.”’

Proverbs new dictionary.

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