It is a passage that has not lost its relevance. In the world at present, it does sometimes seem that the malice of men has proved stronger than the goodness of God. So it must have seemed to communities suffering under tyrannies down the ages, and in every region. Yet something of worth was always salvaged. It is a hope to cling to now. Or lacking faith, at least to hold on with pagan Horace “and stand secure amidst a falling world”
si fractus illabatur orbis
impavidum ferient ruinae
That Horace should survive the Roman Empire, western and eastern, over twenty centuries after his death, and be valued in regions not known to Romans of his day, must that not feed hope in the eventual triumph of good?