Against Celsus, Books VI-VIII Contra Celsum. Kata Kelsou

Author: Origen

(NOTE: The electronic text obtained from The Electronic Bible Society was not completely corrected. EWTN has corrected all mistakes found.) Transliteration of Greek words: All phonetical except: w = omega; h serves three puposes: 1. = Eta; 2. = rough breathing, when appearing intially before a vowel; 3. = in the aspirated letters theta = th, phi = ph, chi = ch. Accents are given immediately after their corresponding vowels: acute = ' , grave = `, circumflex = ^. The character ' doubles as an apostrophe, when necessary. ORIGEN

AGAINST CELSUS, BOOKS VI-VIII. BOOK VI. CHAP. I. IN beginning this our sixth book, we desire, my reverend Ambrosius, to answer in it those accusations which Celsus brings against the Christians, not, as might be supposed, those objections which he has adduced from writers on philosophy. For he has quoted a considerable number of passages, chiefly from Plato, and has placed alongside of these such declarations of holy Scripture as are fitted to impress even the intelligent mind; subjoining the assertion that "these things are stated much better among the Greeks (than in the Scriptures). and in a manner which is free from all exaggerations(1) and promises on the part of God, or the Son of God." Now we maintain, that if it is the object of the ambassadors of the truth to confer benefits upon the greatest possible number, and, so far as they can, to win over to its side, through their love to men, every one without exception--intelligent as well as simple--not Greeks only, but also Barbarians (and great, indeed, is the humanity which should succeed in converting the rustic and the ignorant(2)), it is manifest that they must adopt a style of address fitted to do good to all, and to gain over to them men of every sort. Those, on the other hand, who turn away(3) from the ignorant as being mere slaves,(4) and unable to understand the flowing periods of a polished and logical discourse, and so devote their attention solely to such as have been brought up amongst literary pursuits,(5) confine their views of the public good within very strait and narrow limits. CHAP. II. I have made these remarks in reply to the charges which Celsus and others bring against the simplicity of the language of Scripture, which appears to be thrown into the shade by the splendour of polished discourse. For our prophets, and Jesus Himself, and His apostles, were careful to adopt(6) a style of address which should not merely convey the truth, but which should be fitted to gain over the multitude, until each one, attracted and led onwards, should ascend as far as he could towards the comprehension of those mysteries which are contained in these apparently simple words. For, if I may venture to say so, few have been benefited (if they have indeed been benefited at all) by the beautiful and polished style of Plato, and those who have written like him;(7) while, on the contrary, many have received advantage from those who wrote and taught in a simple and practical manner, and with a view to the wants of the multitude. It is easy, indeed, to observe that Plato is found only in the hands of those who profess to be literary men;(8) while Epictetus is admired by persons of ordinary capacity, who have a desire to be benefited, and who perceive the improvement which may be derived from his writings. Now we make these remarks, not to disparage Plato (for the great world of men has found even him useful), but to point out the aim of those who said: "And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that our faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God."(9) For the word of God declares that the preaching (although in itself true and most worthy of belief) is not sufficient to reach the human heart, unless a certain power be imparted to the speaker from God, and a grace appear upon his words; and it is only by the divine agency that this takes place in those who speak effectually. The prophet says in the sixty-seventh Psalm, that "the Lord will give a word with great power to them who preach."(1) If, then, it should be granted with respect to certain points, that the same doctrines are found among the Greeks as in our own Scriptures, yet they do not possess the same power of attracting and disposing the souls of men to follow them. And therefore the disciples of Jesus, men ignorant so far as regards Grecian philosophy, yet traversed many countries of the world, impressing, agreeably to the desire of the Logos, each one of their hearers according to his deserts, so that they received a moral amelioration in proportion to the inclination of their will to accept of that which is good. CHAP. III. Let the ancient sages, then, make known their sayings to those who are capable of understanding them. Suppose that Plato, for example, the son of Ariston, in one of his Epistles, is discoursing about the "chief good," and that he says, "The chief good can by no means be described in words, but is produced by long habit, and bursts forth suddenly as a light in the soul, as from a fire which had leapt forth." We, then, on hearing these words, admit that they are well said, for it is God who revealed to men these as well as all other noble expressions. And for this reason it is that we maintain that those who have entertained correct ideas regarding God, but who have not offered to Him a worship in harmony with the truth, are liable to the punishments which fall on sinners. For respecting such Paul says in express words: "The wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath showed it unto them. For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four-looted beasts, and creeping things."(2) The truth, then, is verily held (in unrighteousness), as our Scriptures testify, by those who are of opinion that "the chief good cannot be described in words," but who assert that, "after long custom and familiar usage,(3) a light becomes suddenly kindled in the soul, as if by a fire springing forth, and that it now supports itself alone." CHAP. IV. Notwithstanding, those who have written in this manner regarding the "chief good" will go down to the Piraeus and offer prayer to Artemis, as if she were God, and will look (with approval) upon the solemn assembly held by ignorant men; and after giving utterance to philosophical remarks of such profundity regarding the soul, and describing its passage (to a happier world) after a virtuous life, they pass from those great topics which God has revealed to them, and adopt mean and trifling thoughts, and offer a cock to AEsculapius!(4) And although they had been enabled to form representations both of the "invisible things" of God and of the "'archetypal forms" of things from the creation of the world, and from (the contemplation of) sensible things, from which they ascend to those objects which are comprehended by the understanding alone,--and although they had no mean glimpses of His "eternal power and Godhead,"(5) they nevertheless became "foolish in their imaginations," and their "foolish heart" was involved in darkness and ignorance as to the (true) worship of God. Moreover, we may see those who greatly pride themselves upon their wisdom and theology worshipping the image of a corruptible man, in honour, they say, of Him, and sometimes even descending, with the Egyptians, to the worship of birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things! And although some may appear to have risen above such practices, nevertheless they will be found to have changed the truth of God into a lie, and to worship and serve the "creature more than the Creator."(6) As the wise and learned among the Greeks, then, commit errors in the service which they render to God, God "chose the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and base things of the world, and things that are weak, and things which are despised, and things which are nought, to bring to nought things that are;" and this, truly, "that no flesh should glory in the presence of God."(7) Our wise men, however,--Moses, the most ancient of them all, and the prophets who followed him,--knowing that the chief good could by no means be described in words, were the first who wrote that, as God manifests Himself to the deserving, and to those who are qualified to behold Him,(8) He appeared to Abraham, or to Isaac, or to Jacob. But who He was that appeared, and of what form, and in what manner, and like to which of mortal beings,(1) they have left to be investigated by those who are able to show that they resemble those persons to whom God showed Himself: for He was seen not by their bodily eyes, but by the pure heart. For, according to the declaration of our Jesus, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God."(2) CHAP. V. But that a light is suddenly kindled in the soul, as by a fire leaping forth, is a fact known long ago to our Scriptures; as when the prophet said, "Light ye for yourselves the light of knowledge."(3) John also, who lived after him, said, "That which was in the Logos was life, and the life was the light of men;"(4) which "true light lighteneth every man that cometh into the world" (i.e., the true world, which is perceived by the understanding(5)), and maketh him a light of the world: "For this light shone in our hearts, to give the light of the glorious Gospel of God in the face of Christ Jesus."(6) And therefore that very ancient prophet, who prophesied many generations before the reign of Cyrus (for he was older than he by more than fourteen generations), expressed himself in these words: "The LORD is my light and my salvation: whom shall I fear?"(7) and, "Thy law is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path;"(8) and again, "The light of Thy countenance, O LORD, was manifested towards us;"(9) and, "In Thy light we shall see light."(10) And the Logos, exhorting us to come to this light, says, in the prophecies of Isaiah: "Enlighten thyself, enlighten thyself, O Jerusalem; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee."(11) The same prophet also, when predicting the advent of Jesus, who was to turn away men from the worship of idols, and of images, and of demons, says, "To those that sat in the land and shadow of death, upon them hath the light arisen;"(12) and again, "The people that sat in darkness saw a great light."(12) Observe now the difference between the fine phrases of Plato respecting the "chief good," and the declarations of our prophets regarding the "light" of the blessed; and notice that the truth as it is contained in Plato concerning this subject did not at all help his readers to attain to a pure worship of God, nor even himself, who could philosophize so grandly about the "chief good," whereas the simple language of the holy Scriptures has led to their honest readers being filled with a divine spirit;(13) and this light is nourished within them by the oil, which in a certain parable is said to have preserved the light of the torches of the five wise virgins.(14) CHAP. VI. Seeing, however, that Celsus quotes from an epistle of Plato another statement to the following effect, viz.: "If it appeared to me that these matters could be adequately explained to the multitude in writing and in oral address, what nobler pursuit in life could have been followed by me, than to commit to writing what was to prove of such advantage to human beings, and to lead the nature of all men onwards to the light?"--let us then consider this point briefly, viz., whether or not Plato were acquainted with any doctrines more profound than are contained in his writings, or more divine than those which he has left behind him, leaving it to each one to investigate the subject according to his ability, while we demonstrate that our prophets did know of greater things than any in the Scriptures, but which they did not commit to writing. Ezekiel, e.g., received a roll,(15) written within and without, in which were contained "lamentations," and "songs," and "denunciations;"(16) but at the command of the Logos he swallowed the book, in order that its contents might not be written, and so made known to unworthy persons. John also is recorded to have seen and done a similar thing.(17) Nay, Paul even heard "unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter."(18) And it is related of Jesus, who was greater than all these, that He conversed with His disciples in private, and especially in their sacred retreats, concerning the Gospel of God; but the words which He uttered have not been preserved, because it appeared to the evangelists that they could not be adequately conveyed to the multitude in writing or in speech. And if it were not tiresome to repeat the truth regarding these illustrious individuals, I would say that they saw better than Plato (by means of the intelligence which they received by the grace of God), what things were to be committed to writing, and how this was to be done, and what was by no means to be written to the multitude, and what was to be expressed in words, and what was not to be so conveyed. And once more, John, in teaching us the difference between what ought to be committed to writing and what not, declares that he heard seven thunders instructing him on certain matters, and forbidding him to commit their words to writing.(1) CHAP. VII. There might also be found in the writings of Moses and of the prophets, who are older not only than Plato, but even than Homer and the invention of letters among the Greeks, passages worthy of the grace of God bestowed upon them, and filled with great thoughts, to which they gave utterance, but not because they understood Plato imperfectly, as Celsus imagines. For how was it possible that they should have heard one who was not yet born? And if any one should apply the words of Celsus to the apostles of Jesus, who were younger than Plato, say whether it is not on the very face of it an incredible assertion, that Paul the tentmaker, and Peter the fisherman, and John who left his father's nets, should, through misunderstanding the language of Plato in his Epistles, have expressed themselves as they have done regarding God? But as Celsus now, after having often required of us immediate assent (to his views), as if he were babbling forth something new in addition to what he has already advanced, only repeats himself,(2) what we have said in reply may suffice. Seeing, however, he produces another quotation from Plato, in which he asserts that the employment of the method of question and answer sheds light on the thoughts of those who philosophize like him, let us show from the holy Scriptures that the word of God also encourages us to the practice of dialectics: Solomon, e.g., declaring in one passage, that "instruction unquestioned goes astray;"(3) and Jesus the son of Sirach, who has left us the treatise called "Wisdom," declaring in another, that "the knowledge of the unwise is as words that will not stand investigation."(4) Our methods of discussion, however, are rather of a gentle kind; for we have learned that he who presides over the preaching of the word ought to be able to confute gainsayers. But if some continue indolent, and do not train themselves so as to attend to the reading of the word, and "to search the Scriptures," and, agreeably to the command of Jesus, to investigate the meaning of the sacred writings, and to ask of God concerning them, and to keep "knocking" at what may be closed within them, the Scripture is not on that account to be regarded as devoid of wisdom. CHAP. VIII. In the next place, after other Platonic declarations, which demonstrate that "the good" can be known by few, he adds: "Since the multitude, being puffed up with a contempt for others, which is far from right, and being filled with vain and lofty hopes, assert that, because they have come to the knowledge of some venerable doctrines, certain things are true." "Yet although Plato predicted these things, he nevertheless does not talk marvels,(5) nor shut the mouth of those who wish to ask him for information on the subject of his promises; nor does he command them to come at once and believe that a God of a particular kind exists, and that he has a son of a particular nature, who descended (to earth) and conversed with me." Now, in answer to this we have to say, that with regard to Plato, it is Aristander, I think, who has related that he was not the son of Ariston, but of a phantom, which approached Amphictione in the guise of Apollo. And there are several other of the followers of Plato who, in their lives of their master, have made the same statement. What are we to say, moreover, about Pythagoras, who relates the greatest possible amount of wonders, and who, in a general assembly of the Greeks, showed his ivory thigh, and asserted that he recognised the shield which he wore when he was Euphorbus, and who is said to have appeared on one day in two different cities! He, moreover, who will declare that what is related of Plato and Socrates belongs to the marvellous, will quote the story of the swan which was recommended to Socrates while he was asleep, and of the master saying when he met the young man, "This, then, was the swan!"(6) Nay, the third eye which Plato saw that he himself possessed, he will refer to the category of prodigies.(7) But occasion for slanderous accusations will never be wanting to those who are ill-disposed, and who wish to speak evil of what has happened to such as are raised above the multitude. Such persons will deride as a fiction even the demon of Socrates. We do not, then, relate marvels when we narrate the history of Jesus, nor have His genuine disciples recorded any such stories of Him; whereas this Celsus, who professes universal knowledge, and who quotes many of the sayings of Plato, is, I think, intentionally silent on the discourse concerning the Son of God which is related in Plato's Epistle to Hermeas and Coriscus. Plato's words are as follows: "And calling to witness the God of all things--the ruler both of things present and things to come, father and lord both of the ruler and cause--whom, if we are philosophers indeed, we shall all clearly know, so far as it is possible for happy human beings to attain such knowledge."(1) CHAP. IX. Celsus quotes another saying of Plato to the following effect: "It has occurred to me to speak once more upon these subjects at greater length, as perhaps I might express myself about them more clearly than I have already done for there is a certain 'real' cause, which proves a hindrance in the way of him who has ventured, even to a slight extent, to write on such topics; and as this has been frequently mentioned by me on former occasions, it appears to me that it ought to be stated now. In each of existing things, which are necessarily employed in the acquisition of knowledge, there are three elements; knowledge itself is the fourth; and that ought to be laid down as the fifth which is both capable of being known and is true. Of these, one is 'name;' the second is 'word;' the third, 'image;' the fourth, 'knowledge.'"(2) Now, according to this division, John is introduced before Jesus as the voice of one crying in the wilderness, so as to correspond with the "name" of Plato; and the second after John, who is pointed out by him, is Jesus, with whom agrees the statement, "The Word became flesh;" and that corresponds to the "word" of Plato. Plato terms the third "image;" but we, who apply the expression "image" to something different, would say with greater precision, that the mark of the wounds which is made in the soul by the word is the Christ which is in each one of us and this mark is impressed by Christ the Word.(3) And whether Christ, the wisdom which is in those of us who are perfect, correspond to the "fourth" element--knowledge--will become known to him who has the capacity to ascertain it. CHAP. X. He next continues: "You see how Plato, although maintaining that (the chief good) cannot be described, in words, yet, to avoid the appearance of retreating to an irrefutable position, subjoins a reason in explanation of this difficulty, as even 'nothing'(4) might perhaps be explained in words." But as Celsus adduces this to prove that we ought not to yield a simple assent, but to furnish a reason for our belief, we shall quote also the words of Paul, where he says, in censuring the hasty(5) believer, "unless ye have believed inconsiderately."(6) Now, through his practice of repeating himself, Celsus, so far as he can, forces us to be guilty of tautology, reiterating, after the boastful language which has been quoted, that "Plato is not guilty of boasting and falsehood, giving out that he has made some new discovery, or that he has come down from heaven to announce it, but acknowledges whence these statements are derived." Now, if one wished to reply to Celsus, one might say in answer to such assertions, that even Plato is guilty of boasting, when in the Timoeus(7) he puts the following language in the month of Zeus: "Gods of gods, whose creator and father I am," and so on. And if any one will defend such language on account of the meaning which is conveyed under the name of Zeus, thus speaking in the dialogue of Plato, why should not he who investigates the meaning of the words of the Son of God, or those of the Creator((8) in the prophets, express a profounder meaning than any conveyed by the words of Zeus in the Timoeus? For the characteristic of divinity is the announcement of future events, predicted not by human power, but shown by the result to be due to a divine spirit in him who made the announcement. Accordingly, we do not say to each of our hearers, "Believe, first of all, that He whom I introduce to thee is the Son of God;" but we put the Gospel before each one, as his character and disposition may fit him to receive it, inasmuch as we have learned to know "how we ought to answer every man."(9) And there are some who are capable of receiving nothing more than an exhortation to believe, and to these we address that alone; while we approach others, again, as far as possible, in the way of demonstration, by means of question and answer. Nor do we at all say, as Celsus scoffingly alleges, "Believe that he whom I introduce to thee is the Son of God, although he was shamefully bound, and disgracefully punished, and very recently(10) was most contumeliously treated before the eyes of all men;" neither do we add, "Believe it even the more (on that account)." For it is our endeavour to state, on each individual point, arguments more numerous even than we have brought forward in the preceding pages. CHAP. XI. After this Celsus continues: "If these (meaning the Christians) bring forward this person, and others, again, a different individual (as the Christ), while the common and ready cry(1) of all parties is, 'Believe, if thou wilt be saved, or else begone,' what shall those do who are in earnest about their salvation? Shall they cast the dice, in order to divine whither they may betake themselves, and whom they shall join?" Now we shall answer this objection in the following manner, as the clearness of the case impels us to do. If it had been recorded that several individuals had appeared in human life as sons of God in the manner in which Jesus did, and if each of them had drawn a party of adherents to his side, so that, on account of the similarity of the profession (in the case of each individual) that he was the Son of God, he to whom his followers bore testimony to that effect was an object of dispute, there would have been ground for his saying, "If these bring forward this person, and others a different individual, while the common and ready cry of all parties is, 'Believe, if thou wilt be saved, or else begone,'" and so on; whereas it has been proclaimed to the entire world that Jesus Christ is the only Son of God who visited the human race: for those who, like Celsus, have supposed that (the acts of Jesus) were a series of prodigies,(2) and who for that reason wished to perform acts of the same kind,(3) that they, too, might gain a similar mastery over the minds of men, were convicted of being utter nonentities.(4) Such were Simon, the Magus of Samaria, and Dositheus, who was a native of the same place; since the former gave out that he was the power of God that is called great,(5) and the latter that he was the Son of God. Now Simonians are found nowhere throughout the world; and yet, in order to gain over to himself many followers, Simon freed his disciples from the danger of death, which the Christians were taught to prefer, by teaching them to regard idolatry as a matter of indifference. But even at the beginning of their existence the followers of Simon were not exposed to persecution. For that wicked demon who was conspiring against the doctrine of Jesus, was well aware that none of his own maxims would be weakened by the teaching of Simon. The Dositheans, again, even in former times, did not rise to any eminence, and now they are completely extinguished, so that it is said their whole number does not amount to thirty. Judas of Galilee also, as Luke relates in the Acts of the Apostles,(6) wished to call himself some great personage, as did Theudas before him; but as their doctrine was not of God, they were destroyed, and all who obeyed them were immediately dispersed. We do not, then, "cast the dice in order to divine whither we shall betake ourselves, and whom we shall join," as if there were many claimants able to draw us after them by the profession of their having come down from God to visit the human race. On these points, however, we have said enough. CHAP. XII. Accordingly, let us pass on to another charge made by Celsus, who is not even acquainted with the words (of our sacred books), but who, from misunderstanding them, has said that "we declare the wisdom that is among men to be foolishness with God;" Paul having said that "the wisdom of the world is foolishness with God."(7) Celsus says that "the reason of this has been stated long ago." And the reason he imagines to be, "our desire to win over by means of this saying the ignorant and foolish alone." But, as he himself has intimated, he has said the same thing before; and we, to the best of our ability, replied to it. Notwithstanding this, however, he wished to show that this statement was an invention(8) of ours, and borrowed from the Grecian sages, who declare that human wisdom is of one kind, and divine of another. And he quotes the words of Heraclitus, where he says in one passage, that "man's method of action is not regulated by fixed principles, but that of God is;"(9) and in another, that "a foolish man listens to a demon, as a boy does to a man." He quotes, moreover, the following from the Apology of Socrates, of which Plato was the author: "For I, O men of Athens, have obtained this name by no other means than by my wisdom. And of what sort is this wisdom? Such, probably, as is human; for in that respect I venture to think that I am in reality wise."(10) Such are the passages adduced by Celsus. But I shall subjoin also the following from Plato's letter to Hermeas, and Erastus, and Coriscus: "To Erastus and Coriscus I say, although I am an old man, that, in addition to this noble knowledge of 'forms' (which they possess), they need a wisdom, with regard to the class of wicked and unjust persons, which may serve as a protective and repelling force against them. For they are inexperienced, in consequence of having passed a large portion of their lives with us, who are moderate(1) individuals, and not wicked. I have accordingly said that they need these things, in order that they may not be compelled to neglect the true wisdom, and to apply themselves in a greater degree than is proper to that which is necessary and human." CHAP. XIII. According to the foregoing, then, the one kind of wisdom is human, and the other divine. Now the "human" wisdom is that which is termed by us the wisdom of the "world," which is "foolishness with God;" whereas the "divine"--being different from the "human," because it is "divine"--comes, through the grace of God who bestows it, to those who have evinced their capacity for receiving it, and especially to those who, from knowing the difference between either kind of wisdom, say, in their prayers to God, "Even if one among the sons of men be perfect, while the wisdom is wanting that comes from Thee, he shall be accounted as nothing."(2) We maintain, indeed, that "human" wisdom is an exercise for the soul, but that "divine" wisdom is the "end," being also termed the "strong" meat of the soul by him who has said that "strong meat belongeth to them that are perfect,(3) even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil."(4) This opinion, moreover, is truly an ancient one, its antiquity not being referred back, as Celsus thinks, merely to Heraclitus and Plato. For before these individuals lived, the prophets distinguished between the two kinds of wisdom. It is sufficient for the present to quote from the words of David what he says regarding the man who is wise, according to divine wisdom, that "he will not see corruption when he beholds wise men dying."(5) Divine wisdom, accordingly, being different from faith, is the "first" of the so-called "charismata" of God; and the "second" after it--in the estimation of those who know how to distinguish such things accurately--is what is called "knowledge;"(6) and the "third"-- seeing that even the more simple class of men who adhere to the service of God, so far as they can, must be saved--is faith. And therefore Paul says: "To one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit."(7) And therefore it is no ordinary individuals whom you will find to have participated in the "divine" wisdom, but the more excellent and distinguished among those who have given in their adherence to Christianity; for it is not "to the most ignorant, or servile, or most uninstructed of mankind," that one would discourse upon the topics relating to the divine wisdom. CHAP. XIV. In designating others by the epithets of "uninstructed, and servile, and ignorant," Celsus, I suppose, means those who are not acquainted with his laws, nor trained in the branches of Greek learning; while we, on the other hand, deem those to be "uninstructed" who are not ashamed to address (supplications) to inanimate objects, and to call upon those for health that have no strength, and to ask the dead for life, and to entreat the helpless for assistance.(8) And although some may say that these objects are not gods, but only imitations and symbols of real divinities, nevertheless these very individuals, in imagining that the hands of low mechanics(9) can frame imitations of divinity, are "uninstructed, and servile, and ignorant;" for we assert that the lowest(10) among us have been set free from this ignorance and want of knowledge, while the most intelligent can understand and grasp the divine hope. We do not maintain, however, that it is impossible for one who has not been trained in earthly wisdom to receive the "divine," but we do acknowledge that all human wisdom is "folly" in comparison with the "divine." In the next place, instead of endeavouring to adduce reasons, as he ought, for his assertions, he terms us "sorcerers,"(11) and asserts that "we flee away with headlong speed(12) from the more polished(13) class of persons, because they are not suitable subjects for our impositions, while we seek to decoy(14) those who are more rustic." Now he did not observe that from the very beginning our wise men were trained in the external branches of learning: Moses, e.g., in all the wisdom of the Egyptians; Daniel, and Ananias, and Azariah, and Mishael, in all Assyrian learning, so that they were found to surpass in tenfold degree all the wise men of that country. At the present time, moreover, the Churches have, in proportion to the multitudes (of ordinary believers), a few "wise" men, who have come over to them from that wisdom which is said by us to be "according to the flesh;"(15) and they have also some who have advanced from it to that wisdom which is "divine." CHAP. XV. Celsus, in the next place, as one who has heard the subject of humility greatly talked about;(1) but who has not been at the pains to understand it,(2) would wish to speak evil of that humility which is practised among us, and imagines that it is borrowed from some words of Plato imperfectly understood, where he expresses himself in the Laws as follows: "Now God, according to the ancient account, having in Himself both the beginning and end and middle of all existing things, proceeds according to nature, and marches straight on.(3) He is constantly followed by justice, which is the avenger of all breaches of the divine law: he who is about to become happy follows her closely in humility, and becomingly adorned."(4) He did not observe, however, that in writers much older than Plato the following words occur in a prayer: "Lord, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty, neither do I walk in great matters, nor in things too wonderful for me; if I had not been humble,"(5) etc. Now these words show that he who is of humble mind does not by any means humble himself in an unseemly or inauspicious manner, falling down upon his knees, or casting himself headlong on the ground, putting on the dress of the miserable, or sprinkling himself with dust. But he who is of humble mind in the sense of the prophet, while "walking in great and wonderful things," which are above his capacity--viz., those doctrines that are truly great, and those thoughts that are wonderful--"humbles himself under the mighty hand of God." If there are some, however, who through their stupidity(6) have not clearly understood the doctrine of humiliation, and act as they do, it is not our doctrine which is to be blamed; but we must extend our forgiveness to the stupidity(6) of those who aim at higher things, and owing to their fatuity of mind(7) fail to attain them. He who is "humble and becomingly adorned," is so in a greater degree than Plato's "humble and becomingly adorned" individual: for he is becomingly adorned, on the one hand, because "he walks in things great and wonderful," which are beyond his capacity; and humble, on the other hand, because, while being in the midst of such, he yet voluntarily humbles himself, not under any one at random, but under "the mighty hand of God," through Jesus Christ, the teacher of such instruction, "who did not deem equality with God a thing to be eagerly clung to, but made Himself of no reputation, and took on Him the form of a servant, and being found in fashion as a man, humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross."(8) And so great is this doctrine of humiliation, that it has no ordinary individual as its teacher; but our great Saviour Himself says: "Learn of Me, for I am meek and lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest for your souls."(9) CHAP. XVI. In the next place, with regard to the declaration of Jesus against rich men, when He said, "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God,"(10) Celsus alleges that this saying manifestly proceeded from Plato, and that Jesus perverted the words of the philosopher, which were, that "it was impossible to be distinguished for goodness, and at the same time for riches."(11) Now who is there that is capable of giving even moderate attention to affairs-- not merely among the believers on Jesus, but among the rest of mankind-- that would not laugh at Celsus, on hearing that Jesus, who was born and brought up among the Jews, and was supposed to be the son of Joseph the carpenter, and who had not studied literature--not merely that of the Greeks, but not even that of the Hebrews--as the truth-loving Scriptures testify regarding Him,(12) had read Plato, and being pleased with the opinion he expressed regarding rich men, to the effect that "it was impossible to be distinguished for goodness and riches at the same time," had perverted this, and changed it into, "It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God!" Now, if Celsus had not perused the Gospels in a spirit of hatred and dislike, but had been imbued with a love of truth, he would have turned his attention to the point why a camel--that one of animals which, as regards its physical structure, is crooked--was chosen as an object of comparison with a rich man, and what signification the "narrow eye of a needle" had for him who saw that "strait and narrow was the way that leadeth unto life;(13) and to this point also, that this animal. according to the law, is described as "unclean," having one element of acceptability, viz. that it ruminates, but one of condemnation, viz., that it does not divide the hoof. He would have inquired, moreover, how often the camel was adduced as an object of comparison in the sacred Scriptures, and in reference to what objects, that he might thus ascertain the meaning of the Logos concerning the rich men. Nor would he have left without examination the fact that "the poor" are termed "blessed" by Jesus, while "the rich" are designated as "miserable;" and whether these words refer to the rich and poor who are visible to the senses, or whether there is any kind of poverty known to the Logos which is to be deemed "altogether blessed," and any rich man who is to be wholly condemned. For even a common individual would not thus indiscriminately have praised the poor, many of whom lead most wicked byes. But on this point we have said enough. CHAP. XVII. Since Celsus, moreover, from a desire to depreciate the accounts which our Scriptures give of the kingdom of God, has quoted none of them, as if they were unworthy of being recorded by him (or perhaps because he was unacquainted with them), while, on the other hand, he quotes the sayings of Plato, both from his Epistles and the Phoedrus, as if these were divinely inspired, but our Scriptures were not, let us set forth a few points, for the sake of comparison with these plausible declarations of Plato, which did not however, dispose the philosopher to worship in a manner worthy of him the Maker of all things. For he ought not to have adulterated or polluted this worship with what we call "idolatry," but what the many would describe by the term "superstition." Now, according to a Hebrew figure of speech, it is said of God in the eighteenth Psalm, that "He made darkness His secret place,"(1) to signify that those notions which should be worthily entertained of God are invisible and unknowable, because God conceals Himself in darkness, as it were, from those who cannot endure the splendours of His knowledge, or are incapable of looking at them, partly owing to the pollution of their understanding, which is clothed with the body of mortal lowliness, and partly owing to its feebler power of comprehending God. And in order that it may appear that the knowledge of God has rarely been vouch-safed to men, and has been found in very few individuals, Moses is related to have entered into the darkness where God was.(2) And again, with regard to Moses it is said: "Moses alone shall come near the LORD, but the rest shall not come nigh."(3) And again, that the prophet may show the depth of the doctrines which relate to God, and which is unattainable by those who do not possess the "Spirit which searcheth all things, even the deep things of God," he added: "The abyss like a garment is His covering."(4) Nay, our Lord and Saviour, the Logos of God, manifesting that the greatness of the knowledge of the Father is appropriately comprehended and known pre-eminently by Him alone, and in the second place by those whose minds are enlightened by the Logos Himself and God, declares: "No man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father but the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him."(5) For no one can worthily know the "uncreated"(6) and first-born of all created nature like the Father who begat Him, nor any one the Father like the living Logos, and His Wisdom and Truth.(7) By sharing in Him who takes away from the Father what is called "darkness," which He "made His secret place," and "the abyss," which is called His "covering," and in this way unveiling the Father, every one knows the Father who(8) is capable of knowing Him. CHAP. XVIII. I thought it right to quote these few instances from a much larger number of passages, in which our sacred writers express their ideas regarding God, in order to show that, to those who have eyes to behold the venerable character of Scripture, the sacred writings of the prophets contain things more worthy of reverence than those sayings of Plato which Celsus admires. Now the declaration of Plato, quoted by Celsus, runs as follows: "All things are around the King of all, and all things exist for his sake, and he is the cause of all good things. With things of the second rank he is second, and with those of the third rank he is third. The human soul, accordingly, is eager to learn what these things are, looking to such things as are kindred to itself, none of which is perfect. But as regards the King and those things which I mentioned, there is nothing which resembles them."(9) I might have mentioned, moreover, what is said of those beings which are called seraphim by the Hebrews, and described in Isaiah,(10) who cover the face and feet of God, and of those called cherubim, whom Ezekiel(11) has described, and the postures of these, and of the manner in which God is said to be borne upon the cherubim. But since they are mentioned in a very mysterious manner, on account of the unworthy and the indecent, who are unable to enter into the great thoughts and venerable nature of theology, I have not deemed it becoming to discourse of them in this treatise. CHAP. XIX. Celsus in the next place alleges, that "certain Christians, having misunderstood the words of Plato, loudly boast of a 'super-celestial' God thus ascending beyond the heaven of the Jews." By these words, indeed, he does not make it clear whether they also ascend beyond the God of the Jews, or only beyond the heaven by which they swear. It is not our purpose at present, however, to speak of those who acknowledge another god than the one worshipped by the Jews, but to defend ourselves, and to show that it was impossible for the prophets of the Jews, whose writings are reckoned among ours, to have borrowed anything from Plato, because they were older than he. They did not then borrow from him the declaration, that "all things are around the King of all, and that all exist on account of him;" for we have learned that nobler thoughts than these have been uttered by the prophets, by Jesus Himself and His disciples, who have clearly indicated the meaning of the spirit that was in them, which was none other than the spirit of Christ. Nor was the philosopher the first to present to view the "super-celestial" place; for David long ago brought to view the profundity and multitude of the thoughts concerning God entertained by those who have ascended above visible things, when he said in the book of Psalms: "Praise God, ye heaven of heavens and ye waters that be above the heavens, let them praise the name of the LORD."(1) I do not indeed, deny that Plato learned from certain Hebrews the words quoted from the Phoedrus, or even, as some have recorded, that he quoted them from a perusal of our prophetic writings, when he said: "No poet here below has ever sung of the super-celestial place, or ever will sing in a becoming manner," and so on. And in the same passage is the following: "For the essence, which is both colourless and formless, and which cannot be touched, which really exists, is the pilot of the soul, and is beheld by the understanding alone; and around it the genus of true knowledge holds this place."(2) Our Paul, moreover, educated by these words, and longing after things "supra-mundane" and "super-celestial," and doing his utmost for their sake to attain them, says in the second Epistle to the Corinthians: "For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are unseen are eternal."(3) CHAP. XX. Now, to those who are capable of understanding him, the apostle manifestly presents to view "things which are the objects of perception," calling them "things seen;" while he terms "unseen," things which are the object of the understanding, and cognisable by it alone. He knows, also, that things "seen" and visible are "temporal," but that things cognisable by the mind, and "not seen," are "eternal;" and desiring to remain in the contemplation of these. and being assisted by his earnest longing for them, he deemed all affliction as "light" and as "nothing," and during the season of afflictions and troubles was not at all bowed down by them, but by his contemplation of (divine) things deemed every calamity a light thing, seeing we also have "a great High Priest," who by the greatness of His power and understanding "has passed through the heavens, even Jesus the Son of God," who has promised to all that have truly learned divine things, and have lived lives in harmony with them, to go before them to the things that are supra-mundane; for His words are: "That where I go, ye may be also."(4) And therefore we hope, after the troubles and struggles which we suffer here, to reach the highest heavens,(5) and receiving, agreeably to the teaching of Jesus, the fountains of water that spring up unto eternal life, and being filled with the rivers of knowledge,(6) shall be united with those waters that are said to be above the heavens, and which praise His name. And as many of us(7) as praise Him shall not be carried about by the revolution of the heaven, but shall be ever engaged in the contemplation of the invisible things of God, which are no longer understood by us through the things which He hath made from the creation of the world, but seeing, as it was expressed by the true disciple of Jesus in these words, "then face to face;"(8) and in these, "When that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part will be done away."(9) CHAP. XXI. The Scriptures which are current in the Churches(10) of God do not speak of "seven" heavens, or of any definite number at all,(1) but they do appear to teach the existence of "heavens," whether that means the "spheres" of those bodies which the Greeks call "planets," or something more mysterious. Celsus, too, agreeably to the opinion of Plato,(2) asserts that souls can make their way to and from the earth through the planets; while Moses, our most ancient prophet, says that a divine vision was presented to the view of our prophet Jacob,(3)--a ladder stretching to heaven, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon it, and the Lord supported(4) upon its top,--obscurely pointing, by this matter of the ladder, either to the same truths which Plato had in view, or to something greater than these. On this subject Philo has composed a treatise which deserves the thoughtful and intelligent investigation of all lovers of truth. CHAP. XXII. After this, Celsus, desiring to exhibit his learning in his treatise against us, quotes also certain Persian mysteries, where he says: "These things are obscurely hinted at in the accounts of the Persians, and especially in the mysteries of Mithras, which are celebrated amongst them. For in the latter there is a representation of the two heavenly revolutions,--of the movement, viz., of the fixed(5) stars, and of that which take place among the planets, and of the passage of the soul through these. The representation is of the following nature: There is a ladder with lofty gates,(6) and on the top of it an eighth gate. The first gate consists of lead, the second of tin, the third of copper, the fourth of iron, the fifth of a mixture of metals,(7) the sixth of silver, and the seventh of gold. The first gate they assign to Saturn, indicating by the 'lead' the slowness of this star; the second to Venus, comparing her to the splendour and softness of tin; the third to Jupiter, being firm(8) and solid; the fourth to Mercury, for both Mercury and iron are fit to endure all things, and are money-making and laborious;(9) the fifth to Mars, because, being composed of a mixture of metals, it is varied and unequal; the sixth, of silver, to the Moon; the seventh, of gold, to the Sun,--thus imitating the different colours of the two latter." He next proceeds to examine the reason of the stars being arranged in this order, which is symbolized by the names of the rest of matter.(10) Musical reasons, moreover, are added or quoted by the Persian theology; and to these, again, he strives to add a second explanation, connected also with musical considerations. But it seems to me, that to quote the language of Celsus upon these matters would be absurd, and similar to what he himself has done, when, in his accusations against Christians and Jews, he quoted, most inappropriately, not only the words of Plato; but, dissatisfied even with these,(11) he adduced in addition the mysteries of the Persian Mithras, and the explanation of them. Now, whatever be the case with regard to these,-- whether the Persians and those who conduct the mysteries of Mithras give false or true accounts regarding them,--why did he select these for quotation, rather than some of the other mysteries, with the explanation of them? For the mysteries of Mithras do not appear to be more famous among the Greeks than those of Eleusis, or than those in AEgina, where individuals are initiated in the rites of Hecate. But if he must introduce barbarian mysteries with their explanation, why not rather those of the Egyptians, which are highly regarded by many,(12) or those of the Cappadocians regarding the Comanian Diana, or those of the Thracians, or even those of the Romans themselves, who initiate the noblest members of their senate?(13) But if he deemed it inappropriate to institute a comparison with any of these, because they furnished no aid in the way of accusing Jews or Christians, why did it not also appear to him inappropriate to adduce the instance of the mysteries of Mithras? CHAP. XXIII. If one wished to obtain means for a pro-founder contemplation of the entrance of souls into divine things, not from the statements of that very insignificant sect from which he quoted, hut from books--partly those of the Jews, which are read in their synagogues, and adopted by Christians, and partly from those of Christians alone--let him peruse, at the end of Ezekiel's prophecies, the visions beheld by the prophet, in which gates of different kinds are enumerated,(14) which obscurely refer to the different modes in which divine souls enter into a better world;(15) and let him peruse also, from the Apocalypse of John, what is related of the city of God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and of its foundations and gates.(16) And if he is capable of finding out also the road, which is indicated by symbols, of those who will march on to divine things, let him read the book of Moses entitled Numbers, and let him seek the help of one who is capable of initiating him into the meaning of the narratives concerning the encampments of the children of Israel; viz., of what sort those were which were arranged towards the east, as was the case with the first; and what those towards the south-west. and south; and what towards the sea; and what the last were, which were stationed towards the north. For he will see that there is in the respective places a meaning(1) not to be lightly treated, nor, as Celsus imagines, such as calls only for silly and servile listeners: but he will distinguish in the encampments certain things relating to the numbers that are enumerated, and which are specially adapted to each tribe, of which the present does not appear to us to be the proper time to speak. Let Celsus know, moreover, as well as those who read his book, that in no part of the genuine and divinely accredited Scriptures are "seven" heavens mentioned; neither do our prophets, nor the apostles of Jesus, nor the Son of God Himself, repeat anything which they borrowed from the Persians or the Cabiri. CHAP. XXIV. After the instance borrowed from the Mithraic mysteries, Celsus declares that he who would investigate the Christian mysteries, along with the aforesaid Persian, will, on comparing the two together, and on unveiling the rites of the Christians, see in this way the difference between them. Now, wherever he was able to give the names of the various sects, he was nothing loth to quote those with which he thought himself acquainted; but when he ought most of all to have done this, if they were really known to him, and to have informed us which was the sect that makes use of the diagram he has drawn, he has not done so. It seems to me, however, that it is from some statements of a very insignificant sect called Ophites,(2) which he has misunderstood, that, in my opinion, he has partly borrowed what he says about the diagram.(3) Now, as we have always been animated by a love of learning,(4) we have fallen in with this diagram, and we have found in it the representations of men who, as Paul says, "creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts; ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth."(5) The diagram was, however, so destitute of all credibility, that neither these easily deceived women, nor the most rustic class of men, nor those who were ready to be led away by any plausible pretender whatever, ever gave their assent to the diagram. Nor, indeed, have we ever met any individual, although we have visited many parts of the earth, and have sought out all those who anywhere made profession of knowledge, that placed any faith in this diagram. CHAP. XXV. In this diagram were described ten circles, distinct from each other, but united by one circle, which was said to be the soul of all things, and was called "Leviathan."(6) This Leviathan, the Jewish Scriptures say, whatever they mean by the expression, was created by God for a plaything;(7) for we find in the Psalms: "In wisdom hast Thou made all things: the earth is full of Thy creatures; so is this great and wide sea. There go the ships; small animals with great; there is this dragon, which Thou hast formed to play therein."(8) Instead of the word "dragon," the term "leviathan" is in the Hebrew. This impious diagram, then, said of this leviathan, which is so clearly depreciated by the Psalmist, that it was the soul which had travelled through all things! We observed, also, in the diagram, the being named "Behemoth," placed as it were under the lowest circle. The inventor of this accursed diagram had inscribed this leviathan at its circumference and centre, thus placing its name in two separate places. Moreover, Celsus says that the diagram was "divided by a thick black line, and this line he asserted was called Gehenna, which is Tartarus." Now as we found that Gehenna was mentioned in the Gospel as a place of punishment, we searched to see whether it is mentioned anywhere in the ancient Scriptures, and especially because the Jews too use the word. And we ascertained that where the valley of the son of Ennom was named in Scripture in the Hebrew, instead of "valley," with fundamentally the same meaning, it was termed both the valley of Ennom and also Geenna. And continuing our researches, we find that what was termed "Geenna," or "the valley of Ennom," was included in the lot of the tribe of Benjamin, in which Jerusalem also was situated. And seeking to ascertain what might be the inference from the heavenly Jerusalem belonging to the lot of Benjamin and the valley of Ennom, we find a certain confirmation of what is said regarding the place of punishment, intended for the purification of such souls as are to be purified by torments, agreeably to the saying: "The Lord cometh like a refiner's fire, and like fullers' soap: and He shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver and of gold."(9) CHAP. XXVI. It is in the precincts of Jerusalem, then, that punishments will be inflicted upon those who undergo the process of purification,(1) who have received into the substance of their soul the elements of wickedness, which in a certain place(2) is figuratively termed "lead," and on that account iniquity is represented in Zechariah as sitting upon a "talent of lead."(3) But the remarks which might be made on this topic are neither to be made to all, nor to be uttered on the present occasion; for it is not unattended with danger to commit to writing the explanation of such subjects, seeing the multitude need no further instruction than that which relates to the punishment of sinners; while to ascend beyond this is not expedient, for the sake of those who are with difficulty restrained, even by fear of eternal punishment, from plunging into any degree of wickedness, and into the flood of evils which result from sin.(4) The doctrine of Geenna, then, is unknown both to the diagram and to Celsus: for had it been otherwise, the framers of the former would not have boasted of their pictures of animals and diagrams, as if the truth were represented by these; nor would Celsus, in his treatise against the Christians, have introduced among the charges directed against them statements which they never uttered instead of what was spoken by some who perhaps are no longer in existence, but have altogether disappeared, or been reduced to a very few individuals, and these easily counted. And as it does not beseem those who profess the doctrines of Plato to offer a defence of Epicurus and his impious opinions, so neither is it for us to defend the diagram, or to refute the accusations brought against it by Celsus. We may therefore allow his charges on these points to pass as superfluous and useless,(5) for we would censure more severely than Celsus any who should be carried away by such opinions. CHAP. XXVII. After the matter of the diagram, he brings forward certain monstrous statements, in the form of question and answer,(6) regarding what is called by ecclesiastical writers the "seal," statements which did not arise from imperfect information; such as that "he who impresses the seal is called father, and he who is sealed is called young man and son;" and who answers, "I have been anointed with white ointment from the tree of life,"--things which we never heard to have occurred even among the heretics. In the next place, he determines even the number mentioned by those who deliver over the seal, as that "of seven angels, who attach themselves to both sides of the soul of the dying body; the one party being named angels of light, the others 'archontics;' "(7) and he asserts that the "ruler of those named 'archontics' is termed the 'accursed' god." Then, laying hold of the expression, he assails, not without reason; those who venture to use such language; and on that account we entertain a similar feeling of indignation with those who censure such individuals, if indeed there exist any who call the God of the Jews--who sends rain and thunder, and who is the Creator of this world, and the God of Moses, and of the cosmogony which he records--an "accursed" divinity. Celsus, however, appears to have had in view in employing these expressions, not a rational(8) object, but one of a most irrational kind, arising out of his hatred towards us, which is so unlike a philosopher. For his aim was, that those who are unacquainted with our customs should, on perusing his treatise, at once assail us as if we called the noble Creator of this world an "accursed divinity." He appears to me, indeed, to have acted like those Jews who, when Christianity began to be first preached, scattered abroad false reports of the Gospel, such as that "Christians offered up an infant in sacrifice, and partook of its flesh;" and again, "that the professors of Christianity, wishing to do the 'works of darkness,' used to extinguish the lights (in their meetings), and each one to have sexual intercourse with any woman whom he chanced to meet." These calumnies have long exercised, although unreasonably, an influence over the minds of very many, leading those who are aliens to the Gospel to believe that Christians are men of such a character; and even at the present day they mislead some, and prevent them from entering even into the simple intercourse of conversation with those who are Christians. CHAP. XXVIII. With some such object as this in view does Celsus seem to have been actuated, when he alleged that Christians term the Creator an "accursed divinity;" in order that he who believes these charges of his against us, should, if possible, arise and exterminate the Christians as the most impious Of mankind. Confusing, moreover, things that are distinct,(9) he states also the reason why the God of the Mosaic cosmogony is termed "accursed," asserting that "such is his character, and worthy of execration in the opinion of those who so regard him, inasmuch as he pronounced a curse upon the serpent, who introduced the first human beings to the knowledge of good and evil." Now he ought to have known that those who have espoused the cause of the serpent, because he gave good advice to the first human beings, and who go far beyond the Titans and Giants of fable, and are on this account called Ophites, are so far from being Christians, that they bring accusations against Jesus to as great a degree as Celsus himself; and they do not admit any one into their assembly(1) until he has uttered maledictions against Jesus. See, then, how irrational is the procedure of Celsus, who, in his discourse against the Christians, represents as such those who will not even listen to the name of Jesus, or omit even that He was a wise man, or a person of virtuous(2) character! What, then, could evince greater folly or madness, not only on the part of those who wish to derive their name from the serpent as the author of good,(3) but also on the part of Celsus, who thinks that the accusations with which the Ophites(4) are charged, are chargeable also against the Christians! Long ago, indeed, that Greek philosopher who preferred a state of poverty,(5) and who exhibited the pattern of a happy life, showing that he was not excluded from happiness although he was possessed of nothing,(6) termed himself a Cynic; while these impious wretches, as not being human beings, whose enemy the serpent is, but as being serpents, pride themselves upon being called Ophites from the serpent, which is an animal most hostile to and greatly dreaded by man, and boast of one Euphrates(7) as the introducer of these unhallowed opinions. CHAP. XXIX. In the next place, as if it were the Christians whom he was calumniating, he continues his accusations against those who termed the God of Moses and of his law an "accursed" divinity; and imagining that it is the Christians who so speak, he expresses himself thus: "What could be more foolish or insane than such senseless(8) wisdom? For what blunder has the Jewish lawgiver committed? and why do you accept, by means, as you say,(9) of a certain allegorical and typical method of interpretation, the cosmogony which he gives, and the law of the Jews, while it is with unwillingness, O most impious man, that you give praise to the Creator of the world, who promised to give them all things; who promised to multiply their race to the ends of the earth, and to raise them up from the dead with the same flesh and blood, and who gave inspiration(10) to their prophets; and, again, you slander Him! When you feel the force of such considerations, indeed, you acknowledge that you worship the same God; but when your teacher Jesus and the Jewish Moses give contradictory decisions,(11) you seek another God, instead of Him, and the Father!" Now, by such statements, this illustrious philosopher Celsus distinctly slanders the Christians, asserting that, when the Jews press them hard, they acknowledge the same God as they do; but that when Jesus legislates differently from Moses, they seek another god instead of Him. Now, whether we are conversing with the Jews, or are alone with ourselves, we know of only one and the same God, whom the Jews also worshipped of old time, and still profess to worship as God, and we are guilty of no impiety towards Him. We do not assert, however; that God will raise men from the dead with the same flesh and blood, as has been shown in the preceding pages; for we do not maintain that the natural(12) body, which is sown in corruption, and in dishonour, and in weakness, will rise again such as it was sown. On such subjects, however, we have spoken at adequate length in the foregoing pages. CHAP. XXX. He next returns to the subject of the Seven ruling Demons,(13) whose names are not found among Christians, but who, I think, are accepted by the Ophites. We found, indeed, that in the diagram, which on their account we procured a sight of, the same order was laid down as that which Celsus has given. Celsus says that "the goat was shaped like a lion," not mentioning the name given him by those who are truly the most impious of individuals; whereas we discovered that He who is honoured in holy Scripture as the angel of the Creator is called by this accursed diagram Michael the Lion- like. Again, Celsus says that the "second in order is a bull;" whereas the diagram which we possessed made him to be Suriel, the bull-like. Further, Celsus termed the third "an amphibious sort of animal, and one that hissed frightfully;" while the diagram described the third as Raphael, the serpent-like. Moreover, Celsus asserted that the "fourth had the form of an eagle;" the diagram representing him as Gabriel, the eagle-like. Again, the "fifth," according to Celsus, "had the countenance of a bear;" and this, according to the diagram, was Thauthabaoth,(1) the bear-like. Celsus continues his account, that the "sixth was described as having the face of a dog;" and him the diagram called Erataoth. The "seventh," he adds, "had the countenance of an ass, and was named Thaphabaoth or Onoel;" whereas we discovered that in the diagram he is called Onoel, or Thartharaoth, being somewhat asinine in appearance. We have thought it proper to be exact in stating these matters, that we might not appear to be ignorant of those things which Celsus professed to know, but that we Christians, knowing them better than he, may demonstrate that these are not the words of Christians, but of those who are altogether alienated from salvation, and who neither acknowledge Jesus as Saviour, nor God, nor Teacher, nor Son of God. CHAP. XXXI. Moreover, if any one would wish to become acquainted with the artifices of those sorcerers, through which they desire to lead men away by their teaching (as if they possessed the knowledge of certain secret rites), but are not at all successful in so doing, let him listen to the instruction which they receive after passing through what is termed the "fence of wickedness,"(2)-gates which are subjected to the world of ruling spirits.(3) (The following, then, is the manner in which they proceed): "I salute the one-formed(4) king, the bond of blindness, complete(5) oblivion, the first power, preserved by the spirit of providence and by wisdom, from whom I am sent forth pure, being already part of the light of the son and of the father: grace be with me; yea, O father, let it be with me." They say also that the beginnings of the Ogdoad(6) are derived from this. In the next place, they are taught to say as follows, while passing through what they call Ialdabaoth: "Thou, O first and seventh, who art born to command with confidence, thou, O Ialdabaoth, who art the rational ruler of a pure mind, and a perfect work to son and father, bearing the symbol of life in the character of a type, and opening to the world the gate which thou didst close against thy kingdom, I pass again in freedom through thy realm. Let grace be with me; yea, O father, let it be with me." They say, moreover, that the star Phaenon(7) is in sympathy(8) with the lion-like ruler. They next imagine that he who has passed through Ialdabaoth and arrived at Iao ought thus to speak: "Thou, O second Iao, who shinest by night(9) who art the ruler of the secret mysteries of son and father, first prince of death, and portion of the innocent, bearing now mine own beard as symbol, I am ready to pass through thy realm, having strengthened him who is born of thee by the living word. Grace be with me; father, let it be with me." They next come to Sabaoth, to whom they think the following should be addressed: "O governor of the fifth realm, powerful Sabaoth, defender of the law of thy creatures, who are liberated by thy grace through the help of a more powerful Pentad,(10) admit me, seeing the faultless symbol of their art, preserved by the stamp of an image, a body liberated by a Pentad. Let grace be with me, O father, let grace be with me." And after Sabaoth they come to Astaphaeus, to whom they believe the following prayer should be offered: "O Astaphaeus, ruler of the third gate, overseer of the first principle of water, look upon me as one of thine initiated,(11) admit me who am purified with the spirit of a virgin, thou who seest the essence of the world. Let grace be with me, O father, let grace be with me." After him comes Aloaeus, who is to be thus addressed: "O Aloaeus, governor of the second gate, let me pass, seeing I bring to thee the symbol of thy mother, a grace which is hidden by the powers of the realms.(12) Let grace be with me, O father, let it be with me." And last of all they name Horaeus, and think that the following prayer ought to be offered to him: "Thou who didst fearlessly overleap the rampart of fire, O Horaeus, who didst obtain the government of the first gate, let me pass, seeing thou beholdest the symbol of thine own power, sculptured(13) on the figure of the tree of life, and formed after this image, in the likeness of innocence. Let grace be with me, O father, let grace be with me." CHAP. XXXII. The supposed great learning of Celsus, which is composed, however, rather of curious trifles and silly talk than anything else, has made us touch upon these topics, from a wish to show to every one who peruses his treatise and our reply, that we have no lack of information on those subjects, from which he takes occasion to calumniate the Christians, who neither are acquainted with, nor concern themselves about, such matters. For we, too, desired both to learn and set forth these things, in order that sorcerers might not, under pretext of knowing more than we, delude those who are easily carried away by the glitter(1) of names. And I could have given many more illustrations to show that we are acquainted with the opinions of these deluders,(2) and that we disown them, as being alien to ours, and impious, and not in harmony with the doctrines of true Christians, of which we are ready to make confession even to the death. It must be noticed, too, that those who have drawn up this array of fictions, have, from neither understanding magic, nor discriminating the meaning of holy Scripture, thrown everything into confusion; seeing that they have borrowed from magic the names of Ialdabaoth, and Astaphaeus, and Horaeus, and from the Hebrew Scriptures him who is termed in Hebrew Iao or Jah, and Sabaoth, and Adonaeus, and Eloaeus. Now the names taken from the Scriptures are names of one and the same God; which, not being understood by the enemies of God, as even themselves acknowledge, led to their imagining that Iao was a different God, and Sabaoth another, and Adonaeus, whom the Scriptures term Adonai, a third besides, and that Eloaeus, whom the prophets name in Hebrew Eloi, was also different. CHAP. XXXIII. Celsus next relates other fables, to the effect that "certain persons return to the shapes of the archontics,(3) so that some are called lions, others bulls, others dragons, or eagles, or bears, or dogs." We found also in the diagram which we possessed, and which Celsus called the "square pattern," the statements(4) made by these unhappy beings concerning the gates of Paradise. The flaming sword was depicted as the diameter of a flaming circle, and as if mounting guard over the tree of knowledge and of life. Celsus, however, either would not or could not repeat the harangues which, according to the fables of these impious individuals, are represented as spoken at each of the gates by those who pass through them; but this we have done in order to show to Celsus and those who read his treatise, that we know the depth of these unhallowed mysteries,(5) and that they are far removed from the worship which Christians offer up to God. CHAP. XXXIV. After finishing the foregoing, and those analogous matters which we ourselves have added, Celsus continues as follows: "They continue to heap together one thing after another,--discourses of prophets, and circles upon circles, and effluents(6) from an earthly church, and from circumcision; and a power flowing from one Prunicos, a virgin and a living soul; and a heaven slain in order to live, and an earth slaughtered by the sword, and many put to death that they may live, and death ceasing in the world, when the sin of the world is dead; and, again, a narrow way, and gates that open spontaneously. And in all their writings (is mention made) of the tree of life, and a resurrection of the flesh by means(7) of the 'tree,' because, I imagine, their teacher was nailed to a cross, and was a carpenter by craft; so that if he had chanced to have been cast from a precipice, or thrust into a pit, or suffocated by hanging, or had been a leather-cutter, or stone-cutter, or worker in iron, there would have been (invented) a precipice of life beyond the heavens, or a pit of resurrection, or a cord of immortality, or a blessed stone, or an iron of love, or a sacred leather! Now what old woman would not be ashamed to utter such things in a whisper, even when making stories to lull an infant to sleep?" In using such language as this, Celsus appears to me to confuse together matters which he has imperfectly heard. For it seems likely that, even supposing that he had heard a few words traceable to some existing heresy, he did not clearly understand the meaning intended to be conveyed; but heaping the words together, he wished to show before those who knew nothing either of our opinions or of those of the heretics, that he was acquainted with all the doctrines of the Christians. And this is evident also from the foregoing words. CHAP. XXXV. It is our practice, indeed, to make use of the words of the prophets, who demonstrate that Jesus is the Christ predicted by them, and who show from the prophetic writings the events in the Gospels regarding Jesus have been fulfilled. But when Celsus speaks of "circles upon circles," (he perhaps borrowed the expression) from the aforementioned heresy, which includes in one circle (which they call the soul of all things, and Leviathan) the seven circles of archontic demons, or perhaps it arises from misunderstanding the preacher, when he says: "The wind goeth in a circle of circles, and returneth again upon its circles."(8) The expression, too, "effluents of an earthly church and of circumcision," was probably taken from the fact that the church on earth was called by some an effluent from a heavenly church and a better world; and that the circumcision described in the law was a symbol of the circumcision performed there, in a certain place set apart for purification. The adherents of Valentinus, moreover, in keeping with their system of error,(1) give the name of Prunicos to a certain kind of wisdom, of which they would have the woman afflicted with the twelve years' issue of blood to be the symbol; so that Celsus, who confuses together all sorts of opinions--Greek, Barbarian, and Heretical-- having heard of her, asserted that it was a power flowing forth from one Prunicos, a virgin. The "living soul," again, is perhaps mysteriously referred by some of the followers of Valentinus to the being whom they term the psychic(2) creator of the world; or perhaps, in contradistinction to a "dead" soul, the "living" soul is termed by some, not inelegantly,(3) the soul of "him who is saved." I know nothing, however, of a "heaven which is said to be slain," or of an "earth slaughtered by the sword," or of many persons slain in order that they might live; for it is not unlikely that these were coined by Celsus out of his own brain. CHAP. XXXVI. We would say, moreover, that death ceases in the world when the sin of the world dies, referring the saying to the mystical words of the apostle, which run as follows: "When He shall have put all enemies under His feet, then the last enemy that shall be destroyed is death."(4) And also: "When this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory."(5) The "strait descent,"(6) again, may perhaps be referred by those who hold the doctrine of transmigration of souls to that view of things. And it is not incredible that the gates which are said to open spontaneously are referred obscurely by some to the words, "Open to me the gates of righteousness, that I may go into them, and praise the LORD; this gate of the LORD, into it the righteous shall enter;"(7) and again, to what is said in the ninth psalm, "Thou that liftest me up from the gates of death, that I may show forth all Thy praise in the gates of the daughter of Zion."(8) The Scripture further gives the name of "gates of death" to those sins which lead to destruction, as it terms, on the contrary, good actions the "gates of Zion." So also "the gates of righteousness," which is an equivalent expression to "the gates of virtue," and these are ready to be opened to him who follows after virtuous pursuits. The subject of the "tree of life" will be more appropriately explained when we interpret the statements in the book of Genesis regarding the paradise planted by God. Celsus, moreover, has often mocked at the subject of a resurrection,--a doctrine which he did not comprehend; and on the present occasion, not satisfied with what he has formerly said, he adds, "And there is said to be a resurrection of the flesh by means of the tree;" not understanding, I think, the symbolical expression, that "through the tree came death, and through the tree comes life,"(9) because death was in Adam, and life in Christ. He next scoffs at the "tree," assailing it on two grounds, and saying, "For this reason is the tree introduced, either because our teacher was nailed to a cross, or because he was a carpenter by trade;" not observing that the tree of life is mentioned in the Mosaic writings, and being blind also to this, that in none of the Gospels current in the Churches(10) is Jesus Himself ever described as being a carpenter.(11) CHAP. XXXVII. Celsus, moreover, thinks that we have invented this "tree of life" to give an allegorical meaning to the cross; and in consequence of his error upon this point, he adds: "If he had happened to be cast down a precipice, or shoved into a pit, or suffocated by hanging, there would have been invented a precipice of life far beyond the heavens, or a pit of resurrection, or a cord of immortality." And again: "If the 'tree of life' were an invention, because he--Jesus--(is reported) to have been a carpenter, it would follow that if he had been a leather-cutter, something would have been said about holy leather; or had he been a stone-cutter, about a blessed stone; or if a worker in iron, about an iron of love." Now, who does not see at once(12) the paltry nature of his charge, in thus calumniating men whom he professed to convert on the ground of their being deceived? And after these remarks, he goes on to speak in a way quite in harmony with the tone of those who have invented the fictions of lion-like, and ass-headed, and serpent-like ruling angels,(13) and other similar absurdities, but which does not affect those who belong to the Church. Of a truth, even a drunken old woman would be ashamed to chaunt or whisper to an infant, in order to lull him to sleep, any such fables as those have done who invented the beings with asses' heads, and the harangues, so to speak, which are delivered at each of the gates. But Celsus is not acquainted with the doctrines of the members of the Church, which very few have been able to comprehend, even of those who have devoted all their lives, in conformity with the command of Jesus, to the searching of the Scriptures, and have laboured to investigate the meaning of the sacred books, to a greater degree than Greek philosophers in their efforts to attain a so- called wisdom. CHAP. XXXVIII. Our noble (friend), moreover, not satisfied with the objections which he has drawn from the diagram, desires, in order to strengthen his accusations against us, who have nothing m common with it, to introduce certain other charges, which he adduces from the same (heretics), but yet as if they were from a different source. His words are: "And that is not the least of their marvels, for there are between the upper circles--those that are above the heavens--certain inscriptions of which they give the interpretation, and among others two words especially, 'a greater and a less,' which they refer to Father and Son."(1) Now, in the diagram referred to, we found the greater and the lesser circle, upon the diameter of which was inscribed "Father and Son;" and between the greater circle (in which the lesser was contained) and another(2) composed of two circles,--the outer one of which was yellow, and the inner blue,--a barrier inscribed in the shape of a hatchet. And above it, a short circle, close to the greater of the two former, having the inscription "Love;" and lower down, one touching the same circle, with the word "Life." And on the second circle, which was intertwined with and included two other circles, another figure, like a rhomboid, (entitled) "The foresight of wisdom." And within their point of common section was "The nature of wisdom." And above their point of common section was a circle, on which was inscribed "Knowledge;" and lower down another, on which was the inscription, "Understanding." We have introduced these matters into our reply to Celsus, to show to our readers that we know better than he, and not by mere report, those things, even although we also disapprove of them. Moreover, if those who pride themselves upon such matters profess also a kind of magic and sorcery,-- which, in their opinion, is the summit of wisdom,--we, on the other hand, make no affirmation about it, seeing we never have discovered anything of the kind. Let Celsus, however, who has been already often convicted of false witness and irrational accusations, see whether he is not guilty of falsehood in these also, or whether he has not extracted and introduced into his treatise, statements taken from the writings of those who are foreigners and strangers to our Christian faith. CHAP. XXXIX. In the next place, speaking of those who employ the arts of magic and sorcery, and who invoke the barbarous names of demons, he remarks that such persons act like those who, in reference to the same things,(3) perform marvels before those who are ignorant that the names of demons among the Greeks are different from what they are among the Scythians. He then quotes a passage from Herodotus, stating that "Apollo is called Gongosyrus by the Scythians; Poseidon, Thagimasada; Aphrodite, Argimpasan; Hestia, Tabiti."(4) Now, he who has the capacity can inquire whether in these matters Celsus and Herodotus are not both wrong; for the Scythians do not understand the same thing as the Greeks, in what relates to those beings which are deemed to be gods. For how is it credible(5) that Apollo should be called Gongosyrus by the Scythians? I do not suppose that Gongosyrus, when transferred into the Greek language, yields the same etymology as Apollo; or that Apollo, in the dialect of the Scythians, has the signification of Gongosyrus. Nor has any such assertion hitherto been made regarding the other names,(6) for the Greeks took occasion from different circumstances and etymologies to give to those who are by them deemed gods the names which they bear; and the Scythians, again, from another set of circumstances; and the same also was the case with the Persians, or Indians, or Ethiopians, or Libyans, or with those who delight to bestow names (from fancy), and who do not abide by the just and pure idea of the Creator of all things. Enough, however, has been said by us in the preceding pages, where we wished to demonstrate that Sabaoth and Zeus were not the same deity, and where also we made some remarks, derived from the holy Scriptures, regarding the different dialects. We willingly, then, pass by these points, on which Celsus would make us repeat ourselves. In the next place, again, mixing up together matters which belong to magic and sorcery, and referring them perhaps to no one,--because of the non- existence of any who practise magic under pretence of a worship of this character,--and yet, perhaps, having in view some who do employ such practices in the presence of the simple (that they may have the appearance of acting by divine power), he adds: "What need to number up all those who have taught methods of purification, or expiatory hymns, or spells for averting evil, or (the making of) images, or resemblances of demons, or the various sorts of antidotes against poison (to be found)(1) in clothes, or in numbers, or stones, or plants, or roots, or generally in all kinds of things?" In respect to these matters, reason does not require us to offer any defence, since we are not liable in the slightest degree to suspicions of such a nature. CHAP. XL. After these things, Celsus appears to me to act like those who, in their intense hatred of the Christians, maintain, in the presence of those who are utterly ignorant of the Christian faith, that they have actually ascertained that Christians devour the flesh of infants, and give themselves without restraint to sexual intercourse with their women. Now, as these statements have been condemned as falsehoods invented against the Christians, and this admission made by the multitude and those altogether aliens to our faith; so would the following statements of Celsus be found to be calumnies invented against the Christians, where he says that "he has seen in the hands of certain presbyters belonging to our faith(2) barbarous books, containing the names and marvellous doings of demons;" asserting further, that "these presbyters of our faith professed to do no good, but all that was calculated to injure human beings." Would, indeed, that all that is said by Celsus against the Christians was of such a nature as to be refuted by the multitude, who have ascertained by experience that such things are untrue, seeing that most of them have lived as neighbours with the Christians, and have not even heard of the existence of any such alleged practices! CHAP. XLI. In the next place, as if he had forgotten that it was his object to write against the Christians, he says that, "having become acquainted with one Dionysius, an Egyptian musician, the latter told him, with respect to magic arts, that it was only over the uneducated and men of corrupt morals that they had any power, while on philosophers they were unable to produce any effect, because they were careful to observe a healthy manner of life." If, now, it had been our purpose to treat of magic, we could have added a few remarks in addition to what we have already said on this topic; but since it is only the more important matters which we have to notice in answer to Celsus, we shall say of magic, that any one who chooses to inquire whether philosophers were ever led captive by it or not, can read what has been written by Moiragenes regarding the memoirs of the magician and philosopher Apollonius of Tyana, in which this individual, who is not a Christian, but a philosopher, asserts that some philosophers of no mean note were won over by the magic power possessed by Apollonius, and resorted to him as a sorcerer; and among these, I think, he especially mentioned Euphrates and a certain Epicurean. Now on the other hand, affirm, and have learned by experience, that they who worship the God of all things in conformity with the Christianity which comes by Jesus, and who live according to His Gospel, using night and day, continuously and becomingly, the prescribed prayers, are not carried away either by magic or demons. For verily "the angel of the LORD encamps round about them that fear Him, and delivereth them"(3) from all evil; and the angels of the little ones in the Church, who are appointed to watch over them, are said always to behold the face of their Father who is in heaven,(4) whatever be the meaning of "face" or of "behold." CHAP. XLII. After these matters, Celsus brings the following charges against us from another quarter: "Certain most impious errors," he says, "are committed by them, due to their extreme ignorance, in which they have wandered away from the meaning of the divine enigmas, creating an adversary to God, the devil, and naming him in the Hebrew tongue, Satan. Now, of a truth, such statements are altogether of mortal invention,(5) and not even proper to be repeated, viz., that the mighty God, in His desire to confer good upon men, has yet one counterworking Him, and is helpless. The Son of God, it follows, is vanquished by the devil; and being punished by him, teaches us also to despise the punishments which he inflicts, telling us beforehand that Satan, after appearing to men as He Himself had done, will exhibit great and marvellous works, claiming for himself the glory of God, but that those who wish to keep him at a distance ought to pay no attention to these works of Satan, but to place their faith in Him alone. Such statements are manifestly the words of a deluder, planning and manoeuvring against those who are opposed to his views, and who rank themselves against them." In the next place, desiring to point out the "enigmas," our mistakes regarding which lead to the introduction of our views concerning Satan, he continues: "The ancients allude obscurely to a certain war among the gods, Heraclitus speaking thus of it: 'If one must say that there is a general war and discord, and that all things are done and administered in strife.' Pherecydes, again, who is much older than Heraclitus, relates a myth of one army drown up in hostile array against another, and names Kronos as the leader of the one, and Ophioneus of the other, and recounts their challenges and struggles, and mentions that agreements were entered into between them, to the end that whichever party should fall into the Ocean(1) should be held as vanquished, while those who had expelled and conquered them should have possession of heaven. The mysteries relating to the Titans and Giants also had some such (symbolical) meaning, as well as the Egyptian mysteries of Typhon, and Horus, and Osiris." After having made such statements, and not having got over the difficulty(2) as to the way in which these accounts contain a higher view of things, while our accounts are erroneous copies of them, he continues his abuse of us, remarking that "these are not like the stories which are related of a devil, or demon, or, as he remarks with more truth, of a man who is an impostor, who wishes to establish an opposite doctrine." And in the same way he understands Homer, as if he referred obscurely to matters similar to those mentioned by Heraclitus, and Pherecydes, and the originators of the mysteries about the Titans and Giants, in those words which Hephaestus addresses to Hera as follows:-- "Once in your cause I felt his matchless might, Hurled headlong downward from the ethereal height."(3) And in those of Zeus to Hera:-- "Hast thou forgot, when, bound and fix'd on high, From the vast concave of the spangled sky, I hung thee trembling in a golden chain, And all the raging gods opposed in vain? Headlong I hurled them from the Olympian hall, Stunn'd in the whirl, and breathless with the fall."(4) Interpreting, moreover, the words of Homer, he adds: "The words of Zeus addressed to Hera are the words of God addressed to matter; and the words addressed to matter obscurely signify that the matter which at the beginning was in a state of discord (with God), was taken by Him, and bound together and arranged under laws, which may be analogically compared to chains;(5) and that by way of chastising the demons who create disorder in it, he hurls them down headlong to this lower world." These words of Homer, he alleges, were so understood by Pherecydes, when he said that beneath that region is the region of Tartarus, which is guarded by the Harpies and Tempest, daughters of Boreas, and to which Zeus banishes any one of the gods who becomes disorderly. With the same ideas also are closely connected the peplos of Athena, which is beheld by all in the procession of the Panathenoea. For it is manifest from this, he continues, that a motherless and unsullied demon(6) has the mastery over the daring of the Giants. While accepting, moreover, the fictions of the Greeks, he continues to heap against us such accusations as the following, viz., that "the Son of God is punished by the devil, and teaches us that we also, when punished by him, ought to endure it. Now these statements are altogether ridiculous. For it is the devil, I think, who ought rather to be punished, and those human beings who are calumniated by him ought not to be threatened with chastisement." CHAP. XLIII. Mark now, whether he who charges us with having committed errors of the most impious kind, and with having wandered away from the (true meaning) of the divine enigmas, is not himself clearly in error, from not observing that in the writings of Moses, which are much older not merely than Heraclitus and Pherecydes, but even than Homer, mention is made of this wicked one, and of his having fallen from heaven. For the serpent(7)--from whom the Ophioneus spoken of by Pherecydes is derived--having become the cause of man's expulsion from the divine Paradise, obscurely shadows forth something similar, having deceived the woman(8) by a promise of divinity and of greater blessings; and her example is said to have been followed also by the man. And, further, who else could the destroying angel mentioned in the Exodus of Moses(9) be, than he who was the author of destruction to them that obeyed him, and did not withstand his wicked deeds, nor struggle against them? Moreover (the goat), which in the book Of Leviticus(10) is sent away (into the wilderness), and which in the Hebrew language is named Azazel, was none other than this; and it was necessary to send it away into the desert, and to treat it as an expiatory sacrifice, because on it the lot fell. For all who belong to the "worse" part, on account of their wickedness, being opposed to those who are God's heritage, are deserted by God.(1) Nay, with respect to the sons of Belial in the book of Judges,(2) whose sons are they said to be, save his, on account of their wickedness? And besides all these instances, in the book of Job, which is older even than Moses himself,(3) the devil is distinctly described as presenting himself before God,(4) and asking for power against Job, that he might involve him in trials(5) of the most painful kind; the first of which consisted in the loss of all his goods and of his children, and the second in afflicting the whole body of Job with the so-called disease of elephantiasis.(6) I pass by what might be quoted from the Gospels regarding the devil who tempted the Saviour, that I may not appear to quote in reply to Celsus from more recent writings on this question. In the last (chapter)(7) also of Job, in which the Lord utters to Job amid tempest and clouds what is recorded in the book which bears his name there are not a few things referring to the serpent. I have not yet mentioned the passages in Ezekiel,(8) where he speaks, as it were, of Pharaoh, or Nebuchadnezzar, or the prince of Tyre; or those in Isaiah,(9) where lament is made for the king of Babylon, from which not a little might be learned concerning evil, as to the nature of its origin and generation, and as to how it derived its existence from some who had lost their wings,(10) and who had followed him who was the first to lose his own. CHAP. XLIV. For it is impossible that the good which is the result of accident, or of communication, should be like that good which comes by nature; and yet the former will never be lost by him who, so to speak, partakes of the "living" bread with a view to his own preservation. But if it should fail any one, it must be through his own fault, in being slothful to partake of this "living bread" and "genuine drink," by means of which the wings, nourished and watered, are fitted for their purpose, even according to the saying of Solomon, the wisest of men, concerning the truly rich man, that "he made to himself wings like an eagle, and returns to the house of his patron.(11) For it became God, who knows how to turn to proper account even those who in their wickedness have apostatized from Him, to place wickedness of this sort in some part of the universe, and to appoint a training-school of virtue, wherein those must exercise themselves who would desire to recover in a "lawful manner "(12) the possession (which they had lost); in order that being tested, like gold in the fire, by the wickedness of these, and having exerted themselves to the utmost to prevent anything base injuring their rational nature, they may appear deserving of an ascent to divine things, and may be elevated by the Word to the blessedness which is above all things, and so to speak, to the very summit of goodness. Now he who in the Hebrew language is named Satan, and by some Satanas--as being more in conformity with the genius of the Greek language--signifies, when translated into Greek, "adversary." But every one who prefers vice and a vicious life, is (because acting in a manner contrary to virtue) Satanas, that is, an "adversary" to the Son of God, who is righteousness, and truth, and wisdom.(13) With more propriety, however, is he called "adversary," who was the first among those that were living a peaceful and happy life to lose his wings, and to fall from blessedness; he who, according to Ezekiel, walked faultlessly in all his ways, "until iniquity was found in him,"(14) and who being the "seal of resemblance" and the "crown of beauty" in the paradise of God, being filled as it were with good things, fell into destruction, in accordance with the word which said to him in a mystic sense: "Thou hast fallen into destruction, and shalt not abide for ever."(15) We have ventured somewhat rashly to make these few remarks, although in so doing we have added nothing of importance to this treatise. If any one, however, who has leisure for the examination of the sacred writings, should collect together from all sources and form into one body of doctrine what is recorded concerning the origin of evil, and the manner of its dissolution, he would see that the views of Moses and the prophets regarding Satan had not been even dreamed of either by Celsus or any one of those whose soul had been dragged down, and torn away from God, and from right views of Him, and from His word, by this wicked demon. CHAP. XLV. But since Celsus rejects the statements concerning Antichrist, as it is termed, having neither read what is said of him in the book of Daniel(16) nor in the writings of Paul,(1) nor what the Saviour in the Gospels(2) has predicted about his coming, we must make a few remarks upon this subject also; because, "as faces do not resemble faces,"(3) so also neither do men's "hearts" resemble one another. It is certain, then, that there will be diversities amongst the hearts of men,--those which are inclined to virtue not being all modelled and shaped towards it in the same or like degree; while others, through neglect of virtue, rash to the opposite extreme. And amongst the latter are some in whom evil is deeply engrained, and others in whom it is less deeply rooted. Where is the absurdity, then, in holding that there exist among men, so to speak, two extremes,(4)--the one of virtue, and the other of its opposite; so that the perfection of virtue dwells in the man who realizes the ideal given in Jesus, from whom there flowed to the human race so great a conversion, and healing, and amelioration, while the opposite extreme is in the man who embodies the notion of him that is named Antichrist? For God, comprehending all things by means of His foreknowledge, and foreseeing what consequences would result from both of these, wished to make these known to mankind by His prophets, that those who understand their words might be familiarized with the good, and be on their guard against its opposite. It was proper, moreover, that the one of these extremes, and the best of the two, should be styled the Son of God, on account of His pre-eminence; and the other, who is diametrically opposite, be termed the son of the wicked demon, and of Satan, and of the devil. And, in the next place, since evil is specially characterized by its diffusion, and attains its greatest height when it simulates the appearance of the good, for that reason are signs, and marvels, and lying miracles found to accompany evil, through the co- operation of its father the devil. For, far surpassing the help which these demons give to jugglers (who deceive men for the basest of purposes), is the aid which the devil himself affords in order to deceive the human race. Paul, indeed, speaks of him who is called Antichrist, describing, though with a certain reserve,(5) both the manner, and time, and cause of his coming to the human race. And notice whether his language on this subject is not most becoming, and undeserving of being treated with even the slightest degree of ridicule. CHAP. XLVI. It is thus that the apostle expresses himself: "We beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto Him, that ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by word, nor by spirit, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of the Lord is at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God. Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? And now ye know what withholdeth, that he might be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming: even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan, with all power, and signs, and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie; that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness."(6) To explain each particular here referred to does not belong to our present purpose. The prophecy also regarding Antichrist is stated in the book of Daniel, and is fitted to make an intelligent and candid reader admire the words as truly divine and prophetic; for in them are mentioned the things relating to the coming kingdom, beginning with the times of Daniel, and continuing to the destruction of the world. And any one who chooses may read it. Observe, however, whether the prophecy regarding Antichrist be not as follows: "And at the latter time of their kingdom, when their sins are coming to the full, there shall arise a king, bold in countenance, and understanding riddles. And his power shall be great, and he shall destroy wonderfully, and prosper, and practise; and shall destroy mighty men, and the holy people. And the yoke of his chain shall prosper: there is craft in his hand, and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by craft shall destroy many; and he shall stand up for the destruction of many, and shall crush them as eggs in his hand."(7) What is stated by Paul in the words quoted from him, where he says, "so that he sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God,"(8) is in Daniel referred to in the following fashion: "And on the temple shall be the abomination of desolations, and at the end of the time an end shall be put to the desolation."(1) So many, out of a greater number of passages, have I thought it right to adduce, that the hearer may understand in some slight degree the meaning of holy Scripture, when it gives us information concerning the devil and Antichrist; and being satisfied with what we have quoted for this purpose, let us look at another of the charges of Celsus, and reply to it as we best may. CHAP. XLVII. Celsus, after what has been said, goes on as follows: "I can tell how the very thing occurred, viz., that they should call him 'Son of God.' Men of ancient times termed this world, as being born of God, both his child and his son.(2) Both the one and other 'Son of God,' then, greatly resembled each other." He is therefore of opinion that we employed the expression "Son of God," having perverted(3) what is said of the world, as being born of God, and being His "Son," and "a God." For he was unable so to consider the times of Moses and the prophets, as to see that the Jewish prophets predicted generally that there was a "Son of God" long before the Greeks and those men of ancient time of whom Celsus speaks. Nay, he would not even quote the passage in the letters of Plato, to which we referred in the preceding pages, concerning Him who so beautifully arranged this world, as being the Son of God; lest he too should be compelled by Plato, whom he often mentions with respect, to admit that the architect of this world is the Son of God, and that His Father is the first God and Sovereign Ruler over all things.(4) Nor is it at all wonderful if we maintain that the soul of Jesus is made one with so great a Son of God through the highest union with Him, being no longer in a state of separation from Him For the sacred language of holy Scripture knows of other things also, which, although "dual" in their own nature, are considered to be, and really are, "one" in respect to one another. It is said of husband and wife, "They are no longer twain, but one flesh;"(5) and of the perfect man, and of him who is joined to the true Lord, Word, and Wisdom, and Truth, that "he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit."(6) And if he who "is joined to the Lord is one spirit," who has been joined to the Lord, the Very Word, and Wisdom, and Truth, and Righteousness, in a more intimate union, or even in a manner at all approaching to it than the soul of Jesus? And if this be so, then the soul of Jesus and God the Word--the first-born of every creature--are no longer two, (but one). CHAP. XLVIII. In the next place, when the philosophers of the Porch, who assert that the virtue of God and man is the same, maintain that the God who is over all things is not happier than their wise man, but that the happiness of both is equal, Celsus neither ridicules nor scoffs at their opinion. If, however, holy Scripture says that the perfect man is joined to and made one with the Very Word by means of virtue, so that we infer that the soul of Jesus is not separated from the first-born of all creation, he laughs at Jesus being called "Son of God," not observing what is said of Him with a secret and mystical signification in the holy Scriptures. But that we may win over to the reception of our views those who are willing to accept the inferences which flow from our doctrines, and to be benefited thereby, we say that the holy Scriptures declare the body of Christ, animated by the Son of God, to be the whole Church of God, and the members of this body-- considered as a whole--to consist of those who are believers; since, as a soul vivifies and moves the body, which of itself has not the natural power of motion like a living being, so the Word, arousing and moving the whole body, the Church, to befitting action, awakens, moreover, each individual member belonging to the Church, so that they do nothing apart from the Word. Since all this, then, follows by a train of reasoning not to be depreciated, where is the difficulty in maintaining that, as the soul of Jesus is joined in a perfect and inconceivable manner with the very Word, so the person of Jesus, generally speaking,(7) is not separated from the only-begotten and first-born of all creation, and is not a different being from Him? But enough here on this subject. CHAP. XLIX. Let us notice now what follows, where, expressing in a single word his opinion regarding the Mosaic cosmogony, without offering, however, a single argument in its support, he finds fault with it, saying: "Moreover, their cosmogony is extremely silly."(8) Now, if he had produced some credible proofs of its silly character, we should have endeavoured to answer them; but it does not appear to me reasonable that I should be called upon to demonstrate, in answer to his mere assertion, that it is not "silly." If any one, however, wishes to see the reasons which led us to accept the Mosaic account, and the arguments by which it may be defended, he may read what we have written upon Genesis, from the beginning of the book up to the passage, "And this is the book of the generation of men,"(1) where we have tried to show from the holy Scriptures themselves what the "heaven" was which was created in the beginning; and what the "earth," and the "invisible part of the earth," and that which was "without form;"(2) and what the "deep" was, and the "darkness" that was upon it; and what the "water" was, and the "Spirit of God" which was "borne over it;" and what the "light" which was created, and what the "firmament," as distinct from the "heaven" which was created in the beginning; and so on with the other subjects that follow. Celsus has also expressed his opinion that the narrative of the creation of man is "exceedingly silly," without stating any proofs, or endeavouring to answer our arguments; for he had no evidence, in my judgment, which was fitted to overthrow the statement that "man has been made in the image of God."(3) He does not even understand the meaning of the "Paradise" that was planted by God, and of the life which man first led in it; and of that which resulted from accident,(4) when man was cast forth on account of his sin, and was settled opposite the Paradise of delight. Now, as he asserts that these are silly statements, let him turn his attention not merely to each one of them (in general), but to this in particular, "He placed the cherubim, and the flaming sword, which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life,"(5) and say whether Moses wrote these words with no serious object in view, but in the spirit of the writers of the old Comedy, who have sportively related that "Proetus slew Bellerophon," and that "Pegasus came from Arcadia." Now their object was to create laughter in composing such stories; whereas it is incredible that he who left behind him laws(6) for a whole nation, regarding which he wished to persuade his subjects that they were given by God, should have written words so little to the purpose,(7) and have said without any meaning, "He placed the cherubim, and the flaming sword, which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life," or made any other statement regarding the creation of man, which is the subject of philosophic investigation by the Hebrew sages. CHAP. L. In the next place, Celsus, after heaping together, simply as mere assertions, the varying opinions of some of the ancients regarding the world, and the origin of man, alleges that "Moses and the prophets, who have left to us our books, not knowing at all what the nature of the world is, and of man, have woven together a web of sheer nonsense."(8) If he had shown, now, how it appeared to him that the holy Scriptures contained "sheer nonsense," we should have tried to demolish the arguments which appeared to him to establish their nonsensical character; but on the present occasion, following his own example, we also sportively give it as our opinion that Celsus, knowing nothing at all about the nature of the meaning and language of the prophets,(9) composed a work which contained "sheer nonsense," and boastfully gave it the title of a "true discourse." And since he makes the statements about the "days of creation" ground of accusation,--as if he understood them clearly and correctly, some of which elapsed before the creation of light and heaven, and sun, and moon, and stars, and some of them after the creation of these,--we shall only make this observation, that Moses must then have forgotten that he had said a little before, "that in six days the creation of the world had been finished," and that in consequence of this act of forgetfulness he subjoins to these words the following: "This is the book of the creation of man, in the day when God made the heaven and the earth!" But it is not in the least credible, that after what he had said respecting, the six days, Moses should immediately add, without a special meaning, the words, "in the day that God made the heavens and the earth;" and if any one thinks that these words may be referred to the statement, "In the beginning God made the heaven and the earth," let him observe that before the words, "Let there be light, and there was light," and these, "God called the light day," it has been stated that "in the beginning God made the heaven and the earth." CHAP. LI. On the present occasion, however, it is not our object to enter into an explanation of the subject of intelligent and sensible beings,(10) nor of the manner in which the different kinds(11) of days were allotted to both sorts, nor to investigate the details which belong to the subject, for we should need whole treatises for the exposition of the Mosaic cosmogony; and that work we had already performed, to the best of our ability, a considerable time before the commencement of this answer to Celsus, when we discussed with such measure of capacity as we then possessed the question of the Mosaic cosmogony of the six days. We must keep in mind, however, that the Word promises to the righteous through the mouth of Isaiah, that days will come(1) when not the sun, but the LORD Himself, will be to them an everlasting light, and God will be their glory.(2) And it is from misunderstanding, I think, some pestilent heresy which gave an erroneous interpretation to the words, "Let there be light," as if they were the expression of a wish(3) merely on the part of the Creator, that Celsus made the remark: "The Creator did not borrow light from above, like those persons who kindle their lamps at those of their neighbours." Misunderstanding, moreover, another impious heresy, he has said: "If, indeed, there did exist an accursed god opposed to the great God, who did this contrary to his approval, why did he lend him the light?" So far are we from offering a defence of such puerilities, that we desire, on the contrary, distinctly to arraign the statements of these heretics as erroneous, and to undertake to refute, not those of their opinions with which we are unacquainted, as Celsus does, but those of which we have attained an accurate knowledge, derived in part from the statements of their own adherents, and partly from a careful perusal of their writings. CHAP. LII. Celsus proceeds as follows: "With regard to the origin of the world and its destruction, whether it is to be regarded as uncreated and indestructible, or as created indeed, but not destructible, or the reverse, I at present say nothing." For this reason we too say nothing on these points, as the work in hand does not require it. Nor do we allege that the Spirit of the universal God mingled itself in things here below as in things alien to itself,(4) as might appear from the expression, "The Spirit of God moved upon the water;" nor do we assert that certain wicked devices directed against His Spirit as if by a different creator from the great God, and which were tolerated by the Supreme Divinity, needed to be completely frustrated. And, accordingly, I have nothing further to say to those(5) who utter such absurdities; nor to Celsus, who does not refute them with ability. For he ought either not to have mentioned such matters at all, or else, in keeping with that character for philanthropy which he assumes, have carefully set them forth, and then endeavoured to rebut these impious assertions. Nor have we ever heard that the great God, after giving his spirit to the creator, demands it back again. Proceeding next foolishly to assail these impious assertions, he asks: "What god gives anything with the intention of demanding it back? For it is the mark of a needy person to demand back (what he has given), whereas God stands in need of nothing." To this he adds, as if saying something clever against certain parties: "Why, when he lent (his spirit), was he ignorant that he was lending it to an evil being?" He asks, further: "Why does he pass without notice(6) a wicked creator who was counter-working his purposes?" CHAP. LIII. In the next place, mixing up together various heresies, and not observing that some statements are the utterances of one heretical sect, and others of a different one, he brings forward the objections which we raised against Marcion.(7) And, probably, having heard them from some paltry and ignorant individuals,(8) he assails the very arguments which combat them, but not in a way that Shows much intelligence. Quoting then our arguments against Marcion, and not observing that it is against Marcion that he is speaking, he asks: "Why does he send secretly, and destroy the works which he has created? Why does he secretly employ force, and persuasion, and deceit? Why does he allure those who, as ye assert, have been condemned or accused by him, and carry them away like a slave-dealer? Why does he teach them to steal away from their Lord? Why to flee from their father? Why does he claim them for himself against the father's will? Why does he profess to be the father of strange children?" To these questions he subjoins the following remark, as if by way of expressing his surprise:(9) "Venerable, indeed, is the god who desires to be the father of those sinners who are condemned by another (god), and of the needy,(10) and, as themselves say, of the very offscourings(11) (of men), and who is unable to capture and punish his messenger, who escaped from him!" After this, as if addressing us who acknowledge that this world is not the work of a different and strange god, he continues in the following strain: "If these are his works, how is it that God created evil? And how is it that he cannot persuade and admonish (men)? And how is it that he repents on account of the ingratitude and wickedness of men? He finds fault, moreover, with his own handwork,(12) and hates, and threatens, and destroys his own offspring? Whither can he transport them out of this world, which he himself has made?" Now it does not appear to me that by these remarks he makes clear what "evil" is; and although there have been among the Greeks many sects who differ as to the nature of good and evil, he hastily concludes, as if it were a consequence of our maintaining that this world also is a work of the universal God, that in our judgment God is the author of evil. Let it be, however, regarding evil as it may--whether created by God or not--it nevertheless follows only as a result when you compare the principal design.(1) And I am greatly surprised if the inference regarding God's authorship of evil, which he thinks follows from our maintaining that this world also is the work of the universal God, does not follow too from his own statements. For one might say to Celsus: "If these are His works, how is it that God created evil? and how is it that He cannot persuade and admonish men?" It is indeed the greatest error in reasoning to accuse those who are of different opinions of holding unsound doctrines, when the accuser himself is much more liable to the same charge with regard to his own. CHAP. LIV. Let us see, then, briefly what holy Scripture has to say regarding good and evil, and what answer we are to return to the questions, "How is it that God created evil?" and, "How is He incapable of persuading and admonishing men?" Now, according to holy Scripture, properly speaking, virtues and virtuous actions are good, as, properly speaking, the reverse of these are evil. We shall be satisfied with quoting on the present occasion some verses from the 34th Psalm, to the following effect: "They that seek the LOuD shall not want any good thing. Come, ye children, hearken unto me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD. What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good."(2) Now, the injunctions to "depart from evil, and to do good," do not refer either to corporeal evils or corporeal blessings, as they are termed by some, nor to external things at all, but to blessings and evils of a spiritual kind; since he who departs from such evils, and performs such virtuous actions, will, as one who desires the true life, come to the enjoyment of it; and as one loving to see "good days," in which the word of righteousness will be the Sun, he will see them, God taking him away from this "present evil world,"(3) and from those evil days concerning which Paul said: "Redeeming the time, because the days are evil."(4) CHAP. LV. Passages, indeed, might be found where corporeal and external (benefits) are improperly(5) called "good,"--those things, viz., which contribute to the natural life, while those which do the reverse are termed "evil." It is in this sense that Job says to his wife: "If we have received good at the hand of the Lord, shall we not also receive evil!"(6) Since, then, there is found in the sacred Scriptures, in a certain passage, this statement put into the mouth of God, "I make peace, and create evil;"(7) and again another, where it is said of Him that "evil came down from the LORD to the gate of Jerusalem, the noise of chariots and horsemen,"(8)-- passages which have disturbed many readers of Scripture, who are unable to see what Scripture means by "good" and "evil,"--it is probable that Celsus, being perplexed thereby, gave utterance to the question, "How is it that God created evil?" or, perhaps, having heard some one discussing the matters relating to it in an ignorant manner, he made this statement which we have noticed. We, on the other hand, maintain that "evil," or "wickedness," and the actions which proceed from it, were not created by God. For if God created that which is really evil, how was it possible that the proclamation regarding (the last) judgment should be confidently announced,(9) which informs us that the wicked are to be punished for their evil deeds in proportion to the amount of their wickedness, while those who have lived a virtuous life, or performed virtuous actions, will be in the enjoyment of blessedness, and will receive rewards from God? I am well aware that those who would daringly assert that these evils were created by God will quote certain expressions of Scripture (in their support), because we are not able to show one consistent series(10) of passages; for although Scripture (generally) blames the wicked and approves of the righteous, it nevertheless contains some statements which, although comparatively(11) few in number, seem to disturb the minds of ignorant readers of holy Scripture. I have not, however, deemed it appropriate to my present treatise to quote on the present occasion those discordant statements, which are many in number,(12) and their explanations, which would require a long array of proofs. Evils, then, if those be meant which are properly so called, were not created by God; but some, although few in comparison with the order of the whole world, have resulted from His principal works, as there follow from the chief works of the carpenter such things as spiral shavings and sawdust,(1) or as architects might appear to be the cause of the rubbish(2) which lies around their buildings in the form of the filth which drops from the stones and the plaster. CHAP. LVI. If we speak, however, of what are called "corporeal" and "external" evils,--which are improperly so termed,--then it may be granted that there are occasions when some of these have been called into existence by God, in order that by their means the conversion of certain individuals might be effected. And what absurdity would follow from such a course? For as, if we should hear those sufferings(3) improperly termed "evils" which are inflicted by fathers, and instructors, and pedagogues upon those who are under their care, or upon patients who are operated upon or cauterized by the surgeons in order to effect a cure, we were to say that a father was ill-treating his son, or pedagogues and instructors their pupils, or physicians their patients, no blame would be laid upon the operators or chastisers; so, in the same way, if God is said to bring upon men such evils for the conversion and cure of those who need this discipline, there would be no absurdity in the view, nor would "evils come down from the LORD upon the gates of Jerusalem,"(4)--which evils consist of the punishments inflicted upon the Israelites by their enemies with a view to their conversion; nor would one visit "with a rod the transgressions of those who forsake the law of the Lord, and their iniquities with stripes;"(5) nor could it be said, "Thou hast coals of fire to set upon them; they shall be to thee a help."(6) In the same way also we explain the expressions, "I, who make peace, and create evil;"(7) for He calls into existence "corporeal" or "external" evils, while purifying and training those who would not be disciplined by the word and sound doctrine. This, then, is our answer to the question, "How is it that God created evil?" CHAP. LVII. With respect to the question, "How is he incapable of persuading and admonishing men?" it has been already stated that, if such an objection were really a ground of charge, then the objection of Celsus might be brought against those who accept the doctrine of providence. Any one might answer the charge that God is incapable of admonishing men; for He conveys His admonitions throughout the whole of Scripture, and by means of those persons who, through God's gracious appointment, are the instructors of His hearers. Unless, indeed, some peculiar meaning be understood to attach to the word "admonish," as if it signified both to penetrate into the mind of the person admonished, and to make him hear the words of his(8) instructor, which is contrary to the usual meaning of the word. To the objection, "How is he incapable of persuading?"--which also might be brought against all who believe in providence,--we have to make the following remarks. Since the expression "to be persuaded" belongs to those words which are termed, so to speak, "reciprocal"(9) (compare the phrase "to shave a man," when he makes an effort to submit himself to the barber(10), there is for this reason needed not merely the effort of him who persuades, but also the submission, so to speak, which is to be yielded to the persuader, or the acceptance of what is said by him. And therefore it must not be said that it is because God is incapable of persuading men that they are not persuaded, but because they will not accept the faithful words of God. And if one were to apply this expression to men who are the "artificers of persuasion,"(11) he would not be wrong; for it is possible for a man who has thoroughly learned the principles of rhetoric, and who employs them properly, to do his utmost to persuade, and yet appear to fail, because he cannot overcome the will of him who ought to yield to his persuasive arts. Moreover, that persuasion does not come from God, although persuasive words may be uttered by him, is distinctly taught by Paul, when he says: "This persuasion cometh not of him that calleth you."(12) Such also is the view indicated by these words: "If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land; but if ye refuse and rebel, a sword shall devour you."(13) For that one may (really) desire what is addressed to him by one who admonishes, and may become deserving of those promises of God which he hears, it is necessary to secure the will of the hearer, and his inclination to what is addressed to him. And therefore it appears to me, that in the book of Deuteronomy the following words are uttered with peculiar emphasis: "And now, O Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, and to walk in all His ways, and to love Him, and to keep His commandments?"(1) CHAP. LVIII. There is next to be answered the following query: "And how is it that he repents when men become ungrateful and wicked; and finds fault with his own handwork, and hates, and threatens, and destroys his own offspring?" Now Celsus here calumniates and falsities what is written in the book of Genesis to the following effect: "And the LORD God, seeing that the wickedness of men upon the earth was increasing, and that every one in his heart carefully meditated to do evil continually, was grieved(2) He had made man upon the earth. And God meditated in His heart, and said, I will destroy man, whom I have made, from the face of the earth, both man and beast, and creeping thing, and fowl of the air, because I am grieved(3) that I made them;"(4) quoting words which are not written in Scripture, as if they conveyed the meaning of what was actually written. For there is no mention in these words of the repentance of God, nor of His blaming and hating His own handwork. And if there is the appearance of God threatening the catastrophe of the deluge, and thus destroying His own children in it, we have to answer that, as the soul of man is immortal, the supposed threatening has for its object the conversion of the hearers, while the destruction of men by the flood is a purification of the earth, as certain among the Greek philosophers of no mean repute have indicated by the expression: "When the gods purify the earth."(5) And with respect to the transference to God of those anthropopathic phrases, some remarks have been already made by us in the preceding pages. CHAP. LIX. Celsus, in the next place, suspecting, or perhaps seeing clearly enough, the answer which might be returned by those who defend the destruction of men by the deluge, continues: "But if he does not destroy his own offspring, whither does he convey them out of this world(6) which he himself created?" To this we reply, that God by no means removes out of the whole world, consisting of heaven and earth, those who suffered death by the deluge, but removes them from a life in the flesh, and, having set them free from their bodies, liberates them at the same time from an existence upon earth, which in many parts of Scripture it is usual to call the "world." In the Gospel according to John especially, we may frequently find the regions of earth(7) termed "world," as in the passage, "He was the true Light, which lighteneth every man that cometh into the 'world;'"(8) as also in this, "In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."(9) If, then, we understand by "removing out of the world" a transference from "regions on earth," there is nothing absurd in the expression. If, on the contrary, the system of things which consists of heaven and earth be termed "world," then those who perished in the deluge are by no means removed out of the so-called "world." And yet, indeed, if we have regard to the words, "Looking not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen;"(10) and also to these, "For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made,"(11)--we might say that he who dwells amid the "invisible" things, and what are called generally "things not seen,"is gone out of the world, the Word having removed him hence, and transported him to the heavenly regions, in order to behold all beautiful things. CHAP. LX. But after this investigation of his assertions, as if his object were to swell his book by many words, he repeats, in different language, the same charges which we have examined a little ago, saying: "By far the most silly thing is the distribution of the creation of the world over certain days, before days existed: for, as the heaven was not yet created, nor the foundation of the earth yet laid,(12) nor the sun yet revolving,(13) how could there be days?" Now, what difference is there between these words and the following: "Moreover, taking and looking at these things from the beginning, would it not be absurd in the first and greatest God to issue the command, Let this (first thing) come into existence, and this second thing, and this (third); and after accomplishing so much on the first day, to do so much more again on the second, and third, and fourth, and fifth, and sixth?" We answered to the best of our ability this objection to God's "commanding this first, second, and third thing to be created," when we quoted the words, "He said, and it was done; He commanded, and all things stood fast;"(1) remarking that the immediate(2) Creator, and, as it were, very Maker(3) of the world was the Word, the Son of God; while the Father of the Word, by commanding His own Son--the Word--to create the world, is primarily Creator. And with regard to the creation of the light upon the first day, and of the firmament upon the second, and of the gathering together of the waters that are under the heaven into their several reservoirs(4) on the third (the earth thus causing to sprout forth those (fruits) which are under the control of nature alone(5), and of the (great) lights and stars upon the fourth, and of aquatic(6) animals upon the fifth, and of land animals and man upon the sixth, we have treated to the best of our ability in our notes upon Genesis, as well as in the foregoing pages, when we found fault with those who, taking the words in their apparent signification, said that the time of six days was occupied in the creation of the world, and quoted the words: "These are the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that the LORD God made the earth and the heavens."(7) CHAP. LXI. Again, not understanding the meaning of the words, "And God ended(8) on the sixth day His works which He had made, and ceased(9) on the seventh day from all His works which He had made: and God blessed the seventh day, and hollowed it, because on it He had ceased(9) from all His works which He had begun to make;"(10) and imagining the expression," He ceased on the seventh day," to be the same as this, "He rested(11) on the seventh day," he makes the remark: "After this, indeed, he is weary, like a very bad workman, who stands in need of rest to refresh himself!" For he knows nothing of the day of the Sabbath and rest of God, which follows the completion of the world's creation, and which lasts during the duration of the world, and in which all those will keep festival with God who have done all their works in their six days, and who, because they have omitted none of their duties,(12) will ascend to the contemplation (of celestial things), and to the assembly of righteous and blessed beings. In the next place, as if either the Scriptures made such a statement, or as if we ourselves so spoke of God as having rested from fatigue, he continues: "It is not in keeping with the fitness of things(13) that the first God should feel fatigue, or work with His hands,(14) or give forth commands." Celsus says, that" it is not in keeping with the fitness of things that the first God should feel fatigue. Now we would say that neither does God the Word feel fatigue, nor any of those beings who belong to a better and diviner order of things, because the sensation of fatigue is peculiar to those who are in the body. You can examine whether this is true of those who possess a body of any kind, or of those who have an earthly body, or one a little better than this. But "neither is it consistent with the fitness of things that the first God should work with His own hands." If you understand the words" work with His own hands" literally, then neither are they applicable to the second God, nor to any other being partaking of divinity. But suppose that they are spoken in an improper and figurative sense, so that we may translate the following expressions, "And the firmament showeth forth His handywork,"(15) and "the heavens are the work of Thy hands,"(16) and any other similar phrases, in a figurative manner, so far as respects the "hands" and "limbs" of Deity, where is the absurdity in the words, "God thus working with His own hands?" And as there is no absurdity in God thus working, so neither is there in His issuing "commands;" so that what is done at His bidding should be beautiful and praiseworthy, because it was God who commanded it to be performed. CHAP. LXII. Celsus, again, having perhaps misunderstood the words, "For the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it,"(17) or perhaps because some ignorant individuals had rashly ventured upon the explanation of such things, and not understanding, moreover, on what principles parts called after the names of the bodily members are assigned to the attributes(18) of God, asserts: "He has neither mouth nor voice." Truly, indeed, God can have no voice, if the voice is a concussion of the air, or a stroke on the air, or a species of air, or any other definition which may be given to the voice by those who are skilled in such matters; but what is called the "voice of God" is said to be seen as "God's voice" by the people in the passage; "And all the people saw the voice of God;"(19) the word "saw" being taken, agreeably to the custom of Scripture, in a spiritual sense. Moreover, he alleges that "God possesses nothing else of which we have any knowledge;" but of what things we have knowledge he gives no indication. If he means "limbs," we agree with him, understanding the things "of which we have knowledge" to be those called corporeal, and pretty generally sO termed. But if we are to understand the words "of which we have knowledge" in a universal sense, then there are many things of which we have knowledge, (and which may be attributed to God); for He possesses virtue, and blessedness, and divinity. If we, however, put a higher meaning upon the words, "of which we have knowledge," since all that we know is less than God, there is no absurdity in our also admitting that God possesses none of those things" of which we have knowledge." For the attributes which belong to God are far superior to all things with which not merely the nature of man is acquainted, but even that of those who have risen far above it. And if he had read the writings of the prophets, David on the one hand saying, "But Thou art the same,"(1) and Malachi on the other, "I am (the LORD), and change not,"(2) he would have observed that none of us assert that there is any change in God, either in act or thought. For abiding the same, He administers mutable things according to their nature, and His word elects to undertake their administration. CHAP. LXIII. Celsus, not observing the difference between "after the image of God" and "God's image," next asserts that the "first-born of every creature" is the image of God,--the very word and truth, and also the very wisdom, being the image of His goodness, while man has been created after the image of God; moreover, that every man whose head is Christ is the image and glory of God;--and further, not observing to which of the characteristics of humanity the expression "after the image of God" belongs, and that it consists in a nature which never had nor longer has "the old man with his deeds," being called "after the image of Him who created it," from its not possessing these qualities,--he maintains: "Neither did He make man His image; for God is not such an one, nor like any other species of (visible) being." Is it possible to suppose that the element which is "after the image of God" should exist in the inferior part--I mean the body--of a compound being like man, because Celsus has explained that to be made after the image of God? For if that which is "after the image of God" be in the body only, the better part, the soul, has been deprived of that which is "after His image," and this (distinction) exists in the corruptible body,-- an assertion which is made by none of us. But if that which is "after the image of God" be in both together, then God must necessarily be a compound being, and consist, as it were, of soul and body, in order that the element which is "after God's image," the better part, may be in the soul; while the inferior part, and that which "is according to the body," may be in the body,--an assertion, again, which is made by none of us. It remains, therefore, that that which is "after the image of God" must be understood to be in our "inner man," which is also renewed, and whose nature it is to be "after the image of Him who created it," when a man becomes "perfect," as "our Father in heaven is perfect," and hears the command, "Be ye holy, for I the LORD your God am holy,"(3) and learning the precept, "Be ye followers of God,"(4) receives into his virtuous soul the traits of God's image. The body, moreover, of him who possesses such a soul is a temple of God; and in the soul God dwells, because it has been made after His image.(5) CHAP. LXIV. Celsus, again, brings together a number of statements, which he gives as admissions on our part, but which no intelligent Christian would allow. For not one of us asserts that "God partakes of form or colour." Nor does He even partake of "motion," because He stands firm, and His nature is permanent, and He invites the righteous man also to do the same, saying: "But as for thee, stand thou here by Me."(6) And if certain expressions indicate a kind of motion, as it were, on His part, such as this, "They heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day,"(7) we must understand them in this way, that it is by sinners that God is understood as moving, or as we understand the "sleep" of God, which is taken in a figurative sense, or His "anger," or any other similar attribute. But "God does not partake even of substance."(8) For He is partaken of (by others) rather than that Himself partakes of them, and He is partaken of by those who have the Spirit of God. Our Saviour, also, does not partake of righteousness; but being Himself "righteousness," He is partaken of by the righteous. A discussion about "substance" would be protracted and difficult, and especially if it were a question whether that which is permanent and immaterial be "substance" properly so called, so that it would be found that God is beyond" substance," communicating of His "substance," by means of office and power,(1) to those to whom He communicates Himself by His Word, as He does to the Word Himself; or even if He is "substance," yet He is said be in His nature "invisible," in these words respecting our Saviour, who is said to be "the image of the invisible God,"(2) while from the term "invisible" it is indicated that He is "immaterial." It is also a question for investigation, whether the "only- begotten" and "first-born of every creature" is to be called "substance of substances," and "idea of ideas," and the "principle of all things," while above all there is His Father and God.(3) CHAP. LXV. Celsus proceeds to say of God that "of Him are all things," abandoning (in so speaking), I know not how, all his principles;(4) while our Paul declares, that "of Him, and through Him, and to Him are all things,"(5) showing that He is the beginning of the substance of all things by the words "of Him," and the bond of their subsistence by the expression "through Him," and their final end by the terms "to Him." Of a truth, God is of nothing. But when Celsus adds, that "He is not to be reached by word,"(6) I make a distinction, and say that if he means the word that is in us--whether the word conceived in the mind, or the word that is uttered(7)--I, too, admit that God is not to be reached by word. If, however, we attend to the passage, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God,"(8) we are of opinion that God is to be reached by this Word, and is comprehended not by Him only, but by any one whatever to whom He may reveal the Father; and thus we shall prove the falsity of the assertion of Celsus, when he says, "Neither is God to be reached by word." The statement, moreover, that "He cannot be expressed by name," requires to be taken with a distinction. If he means, indeed, that there is no word or sign(9) that can represent the attributes of God, the statement is true, since there are many qualities which cannot be indicated by words. Who, for example, could describe in words the difference betwixt the quality of sweetness in a palm and that in a fig? And who could distinguish and set forth in words the peculiar qualities of each individual thing? It is no wonder, then, if in this way God cannot be described by name. But if you take the phrase to mean that it is possible to represent by words something of God's attributes, in order to lead the hearer by the hand,(10) as it were, and so enable him to comprehend something of God, so far as attainable by human nature, then there is no absurdity in saying that "He can be described by name." And we make a similar distinction with regard to the expression, "for He has undergone no suffering that can be conveyed by words." It is true that the Deity is beyond all suffering. And so much on this point. CHAP. LXVI. Let us look also at his next statement, in which he introduces, as it were, a certain person, who, after hearing what has been said expresses himself in the following manner, "How, then, shall I know God? and how shall I learn the way that leads to Him? And how will you show Him to me? Because now, indeed, you throw darkness before my eyes, and I see nothing distinctly." He then answers, as it were, the individual who is thus perplexed, and thinks that he assigns the reason why darkness has been poured upon the eyes of him who uttered the foregoing words, when he asserts that "those whom one would lead forth out of darkness into the brightness of light, being unable to withstand its splendours, have their power of vision affected(11) and injured, and so imagine that they are smitten with blindness." In answer to this, we would say that all those indeed sit in darkness, and are rooted in it, who fix their gaze upon the evil handiwork of painters, and moulders and sculptors, and who will not look upwards, and ascend in thought from all visible and sensible things, to the Creator of all things, who is light; while, on the other hand, every one is in light who has followed the radiance of the Word, who has shown in consequence of what ignorance, and impiety, and want of knowledge of divine things these objects were worshipped instead of God, and who has conducted the soul of him who desires to be saved towards the uncreated God, who is over all. For "the people that sat in darkness--the Gentiles--saw a great light, and to them who sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up,"(12)--the God Jesus. No Christian, then, would give Celsus, or any accuser of the divine Word, the answer, "How shall I know God?" for each one of them knows God according to his capacity. And no one asks, "How shall I learn the way which leads to Him?" because he has heard Him who says, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life,"(1) and has tasted, in the course of the journey, the happiness which results from it. And not a single Christian would say to Celsus, "How will you show me God?" CHAP. LXVII. The remark, indeed, was true which Celsus made, that any one, on hearing his words, would answer, seeing that his words are words of darkness, "You pour darkness before my eyes." Celsus verily, and those like him, do desire to pour darkness before our eyes: we, however, by means of the light of the Word, disperse the darkness of their impious opinions. The Christian, indeed, could retort on Celsus, who says nothing that is distinct or true, "I see nothing that is distinct among all your statements." It is not, therefore, "out of darkness" into "the brightness of light" that Celsus leads us forth: he wishes, on the contrary, to transport us from light into darkness, making the darkness light and the light darkness, and exposing himself to the woe well described by the prophet Isaiah in the following manner: "Woe unto them that put darkness for light, and light for darkness."(2) But we, the eyes of whose soul have been opened by the Word, and who see the difference between light and darkness, prefer by all means to take our stand "in the light," and will have nothing to do with darkness at all. The true light, moreover, being endued with life, knows to whom his full splendours are to be manifested, and to whom his light; for he does not display his brilliancy on account of the still existing weakness in the eyes of the recipient. And if we must speak at all of "sight being affected and injured," what other eyes shall we say are in this condition, than his who is involved in ignorance of God, and who is prevented by his passions from seeing the truth? Christians, however, by no means consider that they are blinded by the words of Celsus, or any other who is opposed to the worship of God. But let those who perceive that they are blinded by following multitudes who are in error, and tribes of those who keep festivals to demons, draw near to the Word, who can bestow the gift of sight,(3) in order that, like those poor and blind who had thrown themselves down by the wayside, and who were healed by Jesus because they said to Him, "Son of David, have mercy upon me," they too may receive mercy and recover their eyesight,(3) fresh and beautiful, as the Word of God can create it. CHAP. LXVIII. Accordingly, if Celsus were to ask us how we think we know God, and how we shall be saved by Him, we would answer that the Word of God, which entered into those who seek Him, or who accept Him when He appears, is able to make known and to reveal the Father, who was not seen (by any one) before the appearance of the Word. And who else is able to save and conduct the soul of man to the God of all things, save God the Word, who, "being in the beginning with God," became flesh for the sake of those who had cleaved to the flesh, and had become as flesh, that He might be received by those who could not behold Him, inasmuch as He was the Word, and was with God, and was God? And discoursing in human form,(4) and announcing Himself as flesh, He calls to Himself those who are flesh, that He may in the first place cause them to be transformed according to the Word that was made flesh, and afterwards may lead them upwards to behold Him as He was before He became flesh; so that they, receiving the benefit, and ascending from their great introduction to Him, which was according to the flesh, say, "Even if we have known Christ after the flesh, yet henceforth know we Him no more."(5) Therefore He became flesh, and having become flesh, "He tabernacled among us,"(6) not dwelling without us; and after tabernacling and dwelling within us, He did not continue in the form in which He first presented Himself, but caused us to ascend to the lofty mountain of His word, and showed us His own glorious form, and the splendour of His garments; and not His own form alone, but that also of the spiritual law, which is Moses, seen in glory along with Jesus. He showed to us, moreover, all prophecy, which did not perish even after His incarnation, but was received up into heaven, and whose symbol was Elijah. And he who beheld these things could say, "We beheld His glory, the glory as of the only- begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth."(6) Celsus, then, has exhibited considerable ignorance in the imaginary answer to his question which he puts into our mouth, "How we think we can know God? and how we know we shall be saved by Him?" for our answer is what we have just stated. CHAP. LXIX. Celsus, however, asserts that the answer which we give is based upon a probable conjecture,(7) admitting that he describes our answer in the following terms: "Since God is great and difficult to see,(1) He put His own Spirit into a body that resembled ours, and sent it down to us, that we might be enabled to hear Him and become acquainted with Him." But the God and Father of all things is not the only being that is great in our judgment; for He has imparted (a share) of Himself and His greatness to His Only-begotten and First-born of every creature, in order that He, being the image of the invisible God, might preserve, even in His greatness, the image of the Father. For it was not possible that there could exist a well- proportioned,(2) so to speak, and beautiful image of the invisible God, which did not at the same time preserve the image of His greatness. God, moreover, is in our judgment invisible, because He is not a body, while He can be seen by those who see with the heart that is, the understanding; not indeed with any kind of heart, but with one which is pure. For it is inconsistent with the fitness of things that a polluted heart should look upon God; for that must be itself pure which would worthily behold that which is pure. Let it be granted, indeed, that God is "difficult to see," yet He is not the only being who is so; for His Only-begotten also is "difficult to see." For God the Word is "difficult to see," and so also is His(3) wisdom, by which God created all things. For who is capable of seeing the wisdom which is displayed in each individual part of the whole system of things, and by which God created every individual thing? It was not, then, because God was "difficult to see" that He sent God His Son to be an object "easy to be seen."(4) And because Celsus does not understand this, he has represented us as saying, "Because God was 'difficult to see,' He put His own Spirit in a body resembling ours, and sent it down to us, that we might be enabled to hear Him and become acquainted with Him." Now, as we have stated, the Son also is "difficult to see," because He is God the Word, through whom all things were made, and who "tabernacled amongst us." CHAP. LXX. If Celsus, indeed, had understood our teaching regarding the Spirit of God, and had known that "as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God,"(5) he would not have returned to himself the answer which he represents as coming from us, that "God put His own Spirit into a body, and sent it down to us;" for God is perpetually bestowing of His own Spirit to those who are capable of receiving it, although it is not by way of division and separation that He dwells in (the hearts of) the deserving. Nor is the Spirit, in our opinion, a "body," any more than fire is a "body," which God is said to be in the passage, "Our God is a consuming fire."(6) For all these are figurative expressions, employed to denote the nature of "intelligent beings" by means of familiar and corporeal terms. In the same way, too, if sins are called "wood, and straw, and stubble," we shall not maintain that sins are corporeal; and if blessings are termed "gold, and silver, and precious stones,"(7) we shall not maintain that blessings are "corporeal;" so also, if God be said to be a fire that consumes wood, and straw, and stubble, and all substance(8) of sin, we shall not understand Him to be a "body," so neither do we understand Him to be a body if He should be called "fire." In this way, if God be called "spirit,"(9) we do not mean that He is a "body." For it is the custom of Scripture to give to "intelligent beings" the names of "spirits" and "spiritual things," by way of distinction from those which are the objects of "sense;" as when Paul says, "But our sufficiency is of God; who hath also made us able ministers of the New Testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit; for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life,"(10) where by the "letter" he means that "exposition of Scripture which is apparent to the senses,"(11) while by the "spirit" that which is the object of the "understanding." It is the same, too, with the expression, "God is a Spirit." And because the prescriptions of the law were obeyed both by Samaritans and Jews m a corporeal and literal(12) manner, our Saviour said to the Samaritan woman, "The hour is coming, when neither in Jerusalem, nor in this mountain, shall ye worship the Father. God is a Spirit; and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth."(13) And by these words He taught men that God must be worshipped not in the flesh, and with fleshly sacrifices, but in the spirit. And He will be understood to be a Spirit in proportion as the worship rendered to Him is rendered in spirit, and with understanding. It is not, however, with images(14) that we are to worship the Father, but "in truth," which "came by Jesus Christ," after the giving of the law by Moses. For when we turn to the Lord (and the Lord is a Spirit(15)), He takes away the veil which lies upon the heart when Moses is read. CHAP. LXXI. Celsus accordingly, as not understanding the doctrine relating to the Spirit of God ("for the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned"(1)), weaves together (such a web) as pleases himself,(2) imagining that we, in calling God a Spirit, differ in no respect in this particular from the Stoics among the Greeks, who maintain that "God is a Spirit, diffused through all things, and containing all things within Himself." Now the superintendence and providence of God does extend through all things, but not in the way that spirit does, according to the Stoics. Providence indeed contains all things that are its objects, and comprehends them all, but not as a containing body includes its contents, because they also are "body,"(3) but as a divine power does it comprehend what it contains. According to the philosophers of the Porch, indeed, who assert that principles are "corporeal," and who on that account make all things perishable, and who venture even to make the God of all things capable of perishing, the very Word of God, who descends even to the lowest of mankind, would be--did it not appear to them to be too gross an incongruity(4)--nothing else than a "corporeal" spirit; whereas, in our opinion,--who endeavour to demonstrate that the rational soul is superior to all "corporeal" nature, and that it is an invisible substance, and incorporeal,--God the Word, by whom all things were made, who came, in order that all things might be made by the Word, not to men only, but to what are deemed the very lowest of things, under the dominion of nature alone, would be no body. The Stoics, then, may consign all things to destruction by fire; we, however, know of no incorporeal substance that is destructible by fire, nor (do we believe) that the soul of man, or the substance of "angels," or of "thrones," or dominions," or "principalities," or "powers," can be dissolved by fire. CHAP. LXXII. It is therefore in vain that Celsus asserts, as one who knows not the nature of the Spirit of God, that "as the Son of God, who existed in a human body, is a Spirit, this very Son of God would not be immortal." He next becomes confused in his statements, as if there were some of us who did not admit that God is a Spirit, but maintain that only with regard to His Son, and he thinks that he can answer us by saying that there "is no kind of spirit which lasts for ever." This is much the same as if, when we term God a "consuming fire," he were to say that there "is no kind of fire which lasts for ever;" not observing the sense in which we say that our God is a fire, and what the things are which He consumes, viz., sins, and wickedness. For it becomes a God of goodness, after each individual has shown, by his efforts, what kind of combatant he has been, to consume vice by the fire of His chastisements. He proceeds, in the next place, to assume what we do not maintain, that "God must necessarily have given up the ghost;" from which also it follows that Jesus could not have risen again with His body. For God would not have received back the spirit which He had surrendered after it had been stained by contact with the body. It is foolish, however, for us to answer statements as ours which were never made by us. CHAP. LXXIII. He proceeds to repeat himself, and after saying a great deal which he had said before, and ridiculing the birth of God from a virgin,--to which we have already replied as we best could,--he adds the following: "If God had wished to send down His Spirit from Himself, what need was there to breathe it into the womb of a woman? For as one who knew already how to form men, He could also have fashioned a body for this person, without casting His own Spirit into so much pollution;(5) and in this way He would not have been received with incredulity, if He had derived His existence immediately from above." He had made these remarks, because he knows not the pure and virgin birth, unaccompanied by any corruption, of that body which was to minister to the salvation of men. For, quoting the sayings of the Stoics,(6) and affecting not to know the doctrine about "things indifferent," he thinks that the divine nature was cast amid pollution, and was stained either by being in the body of a woman, until a body was formed around it, or by assuming a body. And in this he acts like those who imagine that the sun's rays are polluted by dung and by foul-smelling bodies, and do not remain pure amid such things. If, however, according to the view of Celsus, the body of Jesus had been fashioned without generation, those who beheld the body would at once have believed that it had not been formed by generation; and yet an object, when seen, does not at the same time indicate the nature of that from which it has derived its origin. For example, suppose that there were some honey (placed before one) which had not been manufactured by bees, no one could tell from the taste or sight that it was not their workmanship, because the honey which comes from bees does not make known its origin by the senses,(1) but experience alone can tell that it does not proceed from them. In the same way, too, experience teaches that wine comes from the vine, for taste does not enable us to distinguish (the wine) which comes from the vine. In the same manner, therefore, the visible(2) body does not make known the manner of its existence. And you will be induced to accept this view,(3) by (regarding) the heavenly bodies, whose existence and splendour we perceive as we gaze at them; and yet, I presume, their appearance does not suggest to us whether they are created or uncreated; and accordingly different opinions have existed on these points. And yet those who say that they are created are not agreed as to the manner of their creation, for their appearance does not suggest it, although the force of reason(4) may have discovered that they are created, and how their creation was effected. CHAP. LXXIV. After this he returns to the subject of Marcion's opinions (having already spoken frequently of them), and states some of them correctly, while others he has misunderstood; these, however, it is not necessary for us to answer or refute. Again, after this he brings forward the various arguments that may be urged on Marcion's behalf, and also against him, enumerating what the opinions are which exonerate him from the charges, and what expose him to them; and when he desires to support the statement which declares that Jesus has been the subject of prophecy,--in order to found a charge against Marcion and his followers,--he distinctly asks, "How could he, who was punished in such a manner, be shown to be God's Son, unless these things had been predicted of him?" He next proceeds to jest, and, as his custom is, to pour ridicule upon the subject, introducing "two sons of God, one the son of the Creator,(5) and the other the son of Marcion's God; and he portrays their single combats, saying that the Theomachies of the Fathers are like the battles between quails;(6) or that the Fathers, becoming useless through age, and falling into their dotage(7) do not meddle at all with one another, but leave their sons to fight it out." The remark which he made formerly we will turn against himself: "What old woman would not be ashamed to lull a child to sleep with such stories as he has inserted in the work which he entitles A True Discourse? For when he ought seriously(8) to apply himself to argument, he leaves serious argument aside, and betakes himself to jesting and buffoonery, imagining that he is writing mimes or scoffing verses; not observing that such a method of procedure defeats his purpose, which is to make us abandon Christianity and give in our adherence to his opinions, which, perhaps, had they been stated with some degree of gravity,(9) would have appeared more likely to convince, whereas since he continues to ridicule, and scoff, and play the buffoon, we answer that it is because he has no argument of weight(10) (for such he neither had, nor could understand) that he has betaken himself to such drivelling."(11) CHAP. LXXV. To the preceding remarks he adds the following: "Since a divine Spirit inhabited the body (of Jesus), it must certainly have been different From that of other beings, in respect of grandeur, or beauty, or strength, or voice, or impressiveness,(12) or persuasiveness. For it is impossible that He, to whom was imparted some divine quality beyond other beings, should not differ from others; whereas this person did not differ in any respect from another, but was, as they report, little, and ill-favoured, and ignoble."(13) Now it is evident by these words, that when Celsus wishes to bring a charge against Jesus, he adduces the sacred writings, as one who believed them to be writings apparently fitted to afford a handle for a charge against Him; but wherever, in the same writings, statements would appear to be made opposed to those charges which are adduced, he pretends not even to know them! There are, indeed, admitted to be recorded some statements respecting the body of Jesus having been "ill-favoured;" not, however, "ignoble," as has been stated, nor is there any certain evidence that he was "little." The language of Isaiah runs as follows, who prophesied regarding Him that He would come and visit the multitude, not in comeliness of form, nor in any surpassing beauty: "Lord, who hath believed our report, and to whom was the arm of the Lord revealed? He made announcement before Him, as a child, as a root in a thirsty ground. He has no form nor glory, and we beheld Him, and He had no form nor beauty; but His form was without honour, and inferior to that of the sons of men."(1) These passages, then, Celsus listened to, because he thought they were of use to him in bringing a charge against Jesus; but he paid no attention to the words of the 45th Psalm, and why it is then said, "Gird Thy sword upon Thy thigh, O most mighty, with Thy comeliness and beauty; and continue, and prosper, and reign."(2) CHAP. LXXVI. Let it be supposed, however, that he had not read the prophecy, or that he had read it, but had been drawn away by those who misinterpreted it as not being spoken of Jesus Christ. What has he to say of the Gospel, in the narratives of which Jesus ascended up into a high mountain, and was transfigured before the disciples, and was seen in glory, when both Moses: and Elias, "being seen in glory, spake of the decease which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem?"(3) or when the prophet says, "We beheld Him, and He had no form nor beauty," etc.? and Celsus accepts this prophecy as referring to Jesus, being blinded in so accepting it,! and not seeing that it is a great proof that the Jesus who appeared to be "without form" was the Son of God, that His very appearance should have been made the subject of prophecy many years before His birth. But if another prophet speak of His comeliness and beauty, he will no longer accept the prophecy as referring to Christ And if it were to be clearly ascertained from the Gospels that "He had no form nor beauty, but that His appearance was without honour, and inferior to that of the sons of men," it might be said that it was not with reference to the prophetic writings, but to the Gospels, that Celsus made his remarks. But now, as neither the Gospels nor the apostolic writings indicate that "He had no form nor beauty," it is evident that we must accept the declaration of the prophets as true of Christ, and this will prevent the charge against Jesus from being advanced.(4) CHAP. LXXVII. But again, how did he who said, "Since a divine Spirit inhabited the body (of Jesus), it must certainly have been different from that of other beings in respect of grandeur, or voice, or strength, or impressiveness, or persuasiveness," not observe the changing relation of His body according to the capacity of the spectators (and therefore its corresponding utility), inasmuch as it appeared to each one of such a nature as it was requisite for him to behold it? Moreover it is not a subject of wonder that the matter, which is by nature susceptible of being altered and changed, and of being transformed into anything which the Creator chooses, and is capable of receiving all the qualities which the Artificer desires, should at one time possess a quality, agreeably to which it is said, "He had no form nor beauty," and at another, one so glorious, and majestic, and marvellous, that the spectators of such surpassing loveliness--three disciples who had ascended (the mount) with Jesus--should fall upon their faces. He will say, however, that these are inventions, and in no respect different from myths, as are also the other marvels related of Jesus; which objection we have answered at greater length in what has gone before. But there is also something mystical in this doctrine, which announces that the varying appearances of Jesus are to be referred to the nature of the divine Word, who does not show Himself in the same manner to the multitude as He does to those who are capable of following Him to the high mountain which we have mentioned; for to those who still remain below, and are not yet prepared to ascend, the Word "has neither form nor beauty," because to such persons His form is "without honour," and inferior to the words given forth by men, which are figuratively termed "sons of men." For we might say that the words of philosophers--who are "sons of men"--appear far more beautiful than the Word of God, who is proclaimed to the multitude, and who also exhibits (what is called) the "foolishness of preaching," and on account of this apparent "foolishness of preaching" those who look at this alone say, "We saw Him; but He had no form nor beauty." To those, indeed, Who have received power to follow Him, in order that they may attend Him even when He ascends to the "lofty mount," He has a diviner appearance, which they behold, if there happens to be (among them) a Peter, who has received within himself the edifice of the Church based upon the Word, and who has gained such a habit (of goodness) that none of the gates of Hades will prevail against him, having been exalted by the Word from the gates of death, that he may "publish the praises of God in the gates of the daughter of Sion," and any others who have derived their birth from impressive preaching,(5) and who are not at all inferior to "sons of thunder." But how can Celsus and the enemies of the divine Word, and those who have not examined the doctrines of Christianity in the spirit of truth, know the meaning of the different appearances of Jesus? And I refer also to the different stages of His life, and to any actions performed by Him before His sufferings, and after His resurrection from the dead. CHAP. LXXVIII. Celsus next makes certain observations of the following nature: "Again, if God, like Jupiter in the comedy, should, on awaking from a lengthened slumber, desire to rescue the human race from evil, why did He send this Spirit of which you speak into one corner (of the earth)? He ought to have breathed it alike into many bodies, and have sent them out into all the world. Now the comic poet, to cause laughter in the theatre, wrote that Jupiter, after awakening, despatched Mercury to the Athenians and Lacedaemonians; but do not you think that you have made the Son of God more ridiculous in sending Him to the Jews?" Observe in such language as this the irreverent character of Celsus, who, unlike a philosopher, takes the writer of a comedy, whose business is to cause laughter, and compares our God, the Creator of all things, to the being who, as represented in the play, on awaking, despatches Mercury (on an errand)! We stated, indeed, in what precedes, that it was not as if awakening from a lengthened slumber that God sent Jesus to the human race, who has now, for good reasons, fulfilled the economy of His incarnation, but who has always conferred benefits upon the human race. For no noble deed has ever been performed amongst men, where the divine Word did not visit the souls of those who were capable, although for a little time, of admitting such operations of the divine Word. Moreover, the advent of Jesus apparently to one corner (of the earth) was founded on good reasons, since it was necessary that He who was the subject of prophecy should make His appearance among those who had become acquainted with the doctrine of one God, and who perused the writings of His prophets, and who had come to know the announcement of Christ, and that He should come to them at a time when the Word was about to be diffused from one corner over the whole world. CHAP. LXXIX. And therefore there was no need that there should everywhere exist many bodies, and many spirits like Jesus, in order that the whole world of men might be enlightened by the Word of God. For the one Word was enough, having arisen as the "Sun of righteousness," to send forth from Judea His coming rays into the soul of all who were willing to receive Him. But if any one desires to see many bodies filled with a divine Spirit, similar to the one Christ, ministering to the salvation of men everywhere, let him take note of those who teach the Gospel of Jesus in all lands in soundness of doctrine and uprightness of life, and who are themselves termed "christs" by the holy Scriptures, in the passage, "Touch not Mine anointed,(1) and do not My prophets any harm."(2) For as we have heard that Antichrist cometh, and yet have learned that there are many antichrists in the world, in the same way, knowing that Christ has come, we see that, owing to Him, there are many christs in the world, who, like Him, have loved righteousness and hated iniquity, and therefore God, the God of Christ, anointed them also with the "oil of gladness." But inasmuch as He loved righteousness and hated iniquity above those who were His partners,(3) He also obtained the first-fruits of His anointing, and, if we must so term it, the entire unction of the oil of gladness; while they who were His partners shared also in His unction, in proportion to their individual capacity. Therefore, since Christ is the Head of the Church, so that Christ and the Church form one body, the ointment descended from the head to the beard of Aaron,--the symbols of the perfect man,--and this ointment in its descent reached to the very skirt of his garment. This is my answer to the irreverent language of Celsus when he says, "He ought to have breathed (His Spirit) alike into many bodies, and have sent it forth into all the world." The comic poet, indeed, to cause laughter, has represented Jupiter asleep and awaking from slumber, and despatching Mercury to the Greeks; but the Word, knowing that the nature of God is unaffected by sleep, may teach us that God administers in due season, and as right reason demands, the affairs of the world. It is 'not, however, a matter of surprise that, owing to the greatness and incomprehensibility(4) of the divine judgments, ignorant persons should make mistakes, and Celsus among them. There is therefore nothing ridiculous in the Son of God having been sent to the Jews, amongst whom the prophets had appeared, in order that, making a commencement among them in a bodily shape, He might arise with might and power upon a world of souls, which no longer desired to remain deserted by God. CHAP. LXXX. After this, it seemed proper to Celsus to term the Chaldeans a most divinely-inspired nation from the very earliest times,(5) from whom the delusive system of astrology(6) has spread abroad among men. Nay, he ranks the Magi also in the same category, from whom the art of magic derived its name and has been transmitted to other nations, to the corruption and destruction of those who employ it. In the preceding part of this work, (we mentioned) that, in the opinion even of Celsus, the Egyptians also were guilty of error, because they had indeed solemn enclosures around what they considered their temples, while within them there was nothing save apes, or crocodiles, or goats, or asps, or some other animal; but on the present occasion it pleases him to speak of the Egyptian people too as most divinely inspired, and that, too, from the earliest times,--perhaps because they made war upon the Jews from an early date. The Persians, moreover, who marry their own mothers,(1) and have intercourse with their own daughters, are, in the opinion of Celsus, an inspired race; nay, even. the Indians are so, some of whom, in the preceding, he mentioned as eaters of human flesh. To the Jews, however, especially those of ancient times, who employ none of these practices, he did not merely refuse the name of inspired, but declared that they would immediately perish. And this prediction he uttered respecting them, as being doubtless endued with prophetic power, not observing that the whole history of the Jews, and their ancient and venerable polity, were administered by God; and that it is by their fall that salvation has come to the Gentiles, and that "their fall is the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles,"(2) until the fulness of the Gentiles come, that after that the whole of Israel, whom Celsus does not know, may be saved. CHAP. LXXXI. I do not understand, however, how he should say of God, that although "knowing all things, He was not aware of this, that He was sending His Son amongst wicked men, who were both to be guilty of sin, and to inflict punishment upon Him." Certainly he appears, in the present instance, to have forgotten that all the sufferings which Jesus was to undergo were foreseen by the Spirit of God, and foretold by His prophets; from which it does not follow that "God did not know that He was sending His Son amongst wicked and sinful men, who were also to inflict punishment upon Him." He immediately adds, however, that "our defence on this point is that all these things were predicted." But as our sixth book has now attained sufficient dimensions, we shall stop here, and begin, God willing, the argument of the seventh, in which we shall consider the reasons which he thinks furnish an answer to our statement, that everything regarding Jesus was foretold by the prophets; and as these are numerous, and require to be answered at length, we wished neither to cut the subject short, in consequence of the size of the present book, nor, in order to avoid doing so, to swell this sixth book beyond its proper proportions. ORIGEN AGAINST CELSUS. BOOK VII. CHAP. I. In the six former books we have endeavoured, reverend brother Ambrosius, according to our ability to meet the charges brought by Celsus against the Christians, and have as far as possible passed over nothing without first subjecting it to a full and close examination. And now, while we enter upon the seventh book, we call upon God through Jesus Christ, whom Celsus accuses, that He who is the truth of God would shed light into our hearts and scatter the darkness of error, in accordance with that saying of the prophet which we now offer as our prayer, "Destroy them by Thy truth."(1) For it is evidently the words and reasonings opposed to the truth that God destroys by His truth; so that when these are destroyed, all who are delivered from deception may go on with the prophet to say, "I will freely sacrifice unto Thee,"(2) and may offer to the Most High a reasonable and smokeless sacrifice. CHAP. II. Celsus now sets himself to combat the views of those who say that the Jewish prophets foretold events which happened in the life of Christ Jesus. At the outset let us refer to a notion he has, that those who assume the existence of another God beSides the God of the jews have no ground on which to answer his objections; while we who recognise the same God rely for our defence on the prophecies which were delivered concerning Jesus Christ. His words are: "Let us see how they can raise a defence. To those who admit another God, no defence is possible; and they who recognise the same God will always fall back upon the same reason 'This and that must have happened.' And why? 'Because it had been predicted long before.'" To this we answer, that the arguments recently raised by Celsus against Jesus and Christians were so utterly feeble, that they might easily be overthrown even by those who are impious enough to bring in another God. Indeed, were it not dangerous to give to the weak any excuse for embracing false notions, we could furnish the answer ourselves, and show Celsus how unfounded is his opinion, that those who admit another God are not in a position to meet his arguments. However, let us for the present confine ourselves to a defence of the prophets, in continuation of what we have said on the subject before. CHAP. III. Celsus goes on to say of us: "They set no value on the oracles of the Pythian priestess, of the priests of Dodona, of Clarus, of Branchidae, of Jupiter Ammon, and of a multitude of others; although under their guidance we may say that colonies were sent forth, and the whole world peopled. But those sayings which were uttered or not uttered in Judea, after the manner of that country, as indeed they are still delivered among the people of Phoenicia and Palestine--these they look upon as marvellous sayings, and unchangeably true." In regard to the oracles here enumerated, we reply that it would be possible for us to gather from the writings of Aristotle and the Peripatetic school not a few things to overthrow the authority of the Pythian and the other oracles. From Epicurus also, and his followers, we could quote passages to show that even among the Greeks themselves there were some who utterly discredited the oracles which were recognised and admired throughout the whole of Greece. But let it be granted that the responses delivered by the Pythian and other oracles were not the utterances of false men who pretended to a divine inspiration; and let us see if, after all, we cannot convince any sincere inquirers that there is no necessity to attribute these oracular responses to any divinities, but that, on the other hand, they may be traced to wicked demons--to spirits which are at enmity with the human race, and which in this way wish to hinder the soul from rising upwards, from following the path of virtue, and from returning to God in sincere piety. It is said of the Pythian priestess, whose oracle seems to have been the most celebrated, that when she sat down at the mouth of the Castalian cave, the prophetic Spirit of Apollo entered her private parts; and when she was filled with it, she gave utterance to responses which are regarded with awe as divine truths. Judge by this whether that spirit does not show its profane and impure nature, by choosing to enter the soul of the prophetess not through the more becoming medium of the bodily pores which are both open and invisible, but by means of what no modest man would ever see or speak of. And this occurs not once or twice, which would be more permissible, but as often as she was believed to receive inspiration from Apollo. Moreover, it is not the part of a divine spirit to drive the prophetess into such a state of ecstasy and madness that she loses control of herself. For he who is under the influence of the Divine Spirit ought to be the first to receive the beneficial effects; and these ought not to be first enjoyed by the persons who consult the oracle about the concerns of natural or civil life, or for purposes of temporal gain or interest; and, moreover, that should be the time of clearest perception, when a person is in close intercourse with the Deity. CHAP. IV. Accordingly, we can show from an examination of the sacred Scriptures, that the Jewish prophets, who were enlightened as far as was necessary for their prophetic work by the Spirit of God, were the first to enjoy the benefit of the inspiration; and by the contact--if I may so say--of the Holy Spirit they became clearer in mind, and their souls were filled with a brighter light. And the body no longer served as a hindrance to a virtuous life; for to that which we call "the lust of the flesh" it was deadened. For we are persuaded that the Divine Spirit "mortifies the deeds of the body," and destroys that enmity against God which the carnal passions serve to excite. If, then, the Pythian priestess is beside herself when she prophesies, what spirit must that be which fills her mind and clouds her judgment with darkness, unless it be of the same order with those demons which many Christians cast out of persons possessed with them? And this, we may observe, they do without the use of any curious arts of magic, or incantations, but merely by prayer and simple adjurations which the plainest person can use. Because for the most part it is unlettered persons who perform this work; thus making manifest the grace which is in the word of Christ, and the despicable weakness of demons, which, in order to be overcome and driven out of the bodies and souls of men, do not require the power and wisdom of those who are mighty in argument, and most learned in matters of faith.(1) CHAP. V. Moreover, if it is believed not only among Christians and Jews, but also by many others among the Greeks and Barbarians, that the human soul lives and subsists after its separation from the body; and if reason supports the idea that pure souls which are not weighed down with sin as with a weight of lead ascend on high to the region of purer and more ethereal bodies, leaving here below their grosser bodies along with their impurities; whereas souls that are polluted and dragged down to the earth by their sins, so that they are unable even to breathe upwards, wander hither and thither, at some times about sepulchres, where they appear as the apparitions of shadowy spirits, at others among other objects on the ground;--if this is so, what are we to think of those spirits that are attached for entire ages, as I may say, to particular dwellings and places, whether by a sort of magical force or by their own natural wickedness? Are we not compelled by reason to set down as evil such spirits as employ the power of prophesying--a power in itself neither good nor bad -for the purpose of deceiving men, and thus turn them away from God, and from the purity of His service? It is moreover evident that this is their character, when we add that they delight in the blood of victims, and in the smoke odour of sacrifices, and that they feed their bodies on these, and that they take pleasure in such haunts as these, as though they sought in them the sustenance of their lives; in this resembling those depraved men who despise the purity of a life apart from the senses, and who have no inclination except for the pleasures of the body, and for that earthly and bodily life in which these pleasures are found. If the Delphian Apollo were a god, as the Greeks suppose, would he not rather have chosen as his prophet some wise man? or if such an one was not to be found, then one who was endeavouring to become wise How came he not to prefer a man to a woman for the utterance of his prophesies? And if he preferred the latter sex, as though he could only find pleasure in the breast of a woman, why did he not choose among women a virgin to interpret his will? CHAP. VI. But no; the Pythian, so much admired among the Greeks, judged no wise man, nay, no man at all, worthy of the divine possession, as they call it. And among women he did not choose a virgin, or one recommended by her wisdom, or by her attainments in philosophy; but he selects a common woman. Perhaps the better class of men were too good to become the subjects of the inspiration. Besides, if he were a god, he should have employed his prophetic power as a bait, so to speak, with which he might draw men to a change of life, and to the practice of virtue. But history nowhere makes mention of anything of the kind. For if the oracle did call Socrates the wisest of all men, it takes from the value of that eulogy by what is said in regard to Euripides and Sophocles. The words are:-- "Sophocles is wise, and Euripides is wiser, But wiser than all men is Socrates."(1) As, then, he gives the designation "wise" to the tragic poets, it is not on account of his philosophy that he holds up Socrates to veneration, or because of his love of truth and virtue. It is poor praise of Socrates to say that he prefers him to men who for a paltry reward compete upon the stage, and who by their representations excite the spectators at one time to tears and grief, and at another to unseemly laughter (for such is the intention of the satyric drama). And perhaps it was not so much in regard to his philosophy that he called Socrates the wisest of all men, as on account of the victims which he sacrificed to him and the other demons. For it seems that the demons pay more regard in distributing their favours to the sacrifices which are offered them than to deeds of virtue. Accordingly, Homer, the best of the poets, who describes what usually took place, when, wishing to show us what most influenced the demons to grant an answer to the wishes of their votaries, introduces Chryses, who, for a few garlands and the 'thighs of bulls and goats, obtained an answer to his prayers for his daughter Chryseis, so that the Greeks were driven by a pestilence to restore her back to him. And I remember reading in the book of a certain Pythagorean, when writing on the hidden meanings in that poet, that the prayer of Chryses to Apollo, and the plague which Apollo afterwards sent upon the Greeks, are proofs that Homer knew of certain evil demons who delight in the smoke of sacrifices, and who, to reward those who offer them, grant in answer to their prayers the destruction of others. "He," that is, Jupiter, "who rules over wintry Dodona, where his prophets have ever unwashed feet, and sleep upon the ground,"(2) has rejected the male sex, and, as Celsus observes, employs the women of Dodona for the prophetic office. Granting that there are oracles similar to these, as that at Clarus, another in Branchidae, another in the temple of Jupiter Ammon, or anywhere else; yet how shall it be proved that these are gods, and not demons? CHAP. VII. In regard to the prophets among the Jews, some of them were wise men before they became divinely inspired prophets, while others became wise by the illumination which their minds received when divinely inspired. They were selected by Divine Providence to receive the Divine Spirit, and to be the depositaries of His holy oracles, on the ground of their leading a life of almost unapproachable excellence, intrepid, noble, unmoved by danger or death. For reason teaches that such ought to be the character of the prophets of the Most High, in comparison with which the firmness of Antisthenes, Crates, and Diogenes will seem but as child's play. It was therefore for their firm adherence to truth, and their faithfulness in the reproof of the wicked, that "they were stoned; they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword; they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; they wandered in deserts and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth, of whom the world was not worthy:"(3) for they looked always to God and to His blessings, which, being invisible, and not to be perceived by the senses, are eternal. We have the history of the life of each of the prophets; but it will be enough at present to direct attention to the life of Moses, whose prophecies are contained in the law; to that of Jeremiah, as it is given in the book which bears his name; to that of Isaiah, who with unexampled austerity walked naked and barefooted for the space of three years.(4) Read and consider the severe life of those children, Daniel and his companions, how they abstained from flesh, and lived on water and pulse.(5) Or if you will go back to more remote times, think of the life of Noah, who prophesied;(6) and of Isaac, who gave his son a prophetic blessing; or of Jacob, who addressed each of his twelve sons, beginning with "Come, that I may tell you what shall befall you in the last days."(7) These, and a multitude of others, prophesying on behalf of God, foretold events relating to Jesus Christ. We therefore for this reason set at nought the oracles of the Pythian priestess, or those delivered at Dodona, at Clarus, at Branchidae, at the temple of Jupiter Ammon, or by a multitude of other so-called prophets; whilst we regard with reverent awe the Jewish prophets: for we see that the noble, earnest, and devout lives of these men were worthy of the inspiration of the Divine Spirit, whose wonderful effects were widely different from the divination of demons. CHAP. VIII. I do not know what led Celsus, when saying, "But what things were spoken or not spoken in the land of Judea, according to the custom of the country," to use the words "or not spoken," as though implying that he was incredulous, and that he suspected that those things which were written were never spoken. In fact, he is unacquainted with these times; and he does not know that those prophets who foretold the coming of Christ, predicted a multitude of other events many years beforehand. He adds, with the view of casting a slight upon the ancient prophets, that "they prophesied in the same way as we find them still doing among the inhabitants of Phoenicia and Palestine." But he does not tell us whether he refers to persons who are of different principles from those of the Jews and Christians, or to persons whose prophecies are of the same character as those of the Jewish prophets. However it be, his statement is false, taken in either way. For never have any of those who have not embraced our faith done any thing approaching to what was done by the ancient prophets; and in more recent times, since the coming of Christ, no prophets have arisen among the Jews, who have confessedly been abandoned by the Holy Spirit on account of their impiety towards God, and towards Him of whom their prophets spoke. Moreover, the Holy Spirit gave signs of His presence at the beginning of Christ's ministry, and after His ascension He gave still more; but since that time these signs have diminished, although there are still traces of His presence in a few who have had their souls purified by the Gospel, and their actions regulated by its influence. "For the holy Spirit of discipline will flee deceit, and remove from thoughts that are without understanding."(1) CHAP. IX. But as Celsus promises to give an account of the manner in which prophecies are delivered in Phoenicia and Palestine, speaking as though it were a matter with which he had a full and personal acquaintance, let us see what he has to say on the subject. First he lays it down that there arc several kinds of prophecies, but he does not specify what they arc; indeed, he could not do so, and the statement is a piece of pure ostentation. However, let us see what he considers the most perfect kind of prophecy among these nations. "There are many," he says, "who, although of no name, with the greatest facility and on the slightest occasion, whether within or without temples, assume the motions and gestures of inspired persons; while others do it in cities or among armies, for the purpose of attracting attention and exciting surprise. These are accustomed to say, each for himself, 'I am God; I am the Son of God; or, I am the Divine Spirit; I have come because the world is perishing, and you, O men, are perishing for your iniquities. But I wish to save you, and you shall see me returning again with heavenly power. Blessed is he who now does me homage. On all the rest I will send down eternal fire, both on cities and on countries. And those who know not the punishments which await. them shall repent and grieve in vain; while those who are faithful to me I will preserve eternally.'" Then he goes on to say: "To these promises are added strange, fanatical, and quite unintelligible words, of which no rational person can find the meaning: for so dark are they, as to have no meaning at all; but they give occasion to every fool or impostor to apply them to suit his own purposes." CHAP. X. But if he were dealing honestly in his accusations, he ought to have given the exact terms of the prophecies, whether those in which the speaker is introduced as claiming to be God Almighty, or those in which the Son of God speaks, or finally those under the name of the Holy Spirit. For thus he might have endeavoured to overthrow these assertions, and have shown that there was no divine inspiration in those words which urged men to forsake their sins, which condemned the past and foretold the future. For the prophecies were recorded and preserved by men living at the time, that those who came after might read and admire them as the oracles of God, and that they might profit not only by the warnings and admonitions, but also by the predictions, which, being shown by events to have proceeded from the Spirit of God, bind men to the practice of piety as set forth in the law and the prophets. The prophets have therefore, as God commanded them, declared with all plainness those things which it was desirable that the hearers should understand at once for the regulation of their conduct; while in regard to deeper and more mysterious subjects, which lay beyond the reach of the common understanding, they set them forth in the form of enigmas and allegories, or of what are called dark sayings, parables, or similitudes. And this plan they have followed, that those who are ready to shun no labour and spare no pains in their endeavours after truth and virtue might search into their meaning, and having found it, might apply it as reason requires. But Celsus, ever vigorous in his denunciations, as though he were angry at his inability to understand the language of the prophets, scoffs at them thus: "To these grand promises are added strange, fanatical, and quite unintelligible words, of which no rational person can find the meaning; for so dark are they as to have no meaning at all; but they give occasion to every fool or impostor to apply them so as to suit his own purposes." This statement of Celsus seems ingeniously designed to dissuade readers from attempting any inquiry or careful search into their meaning. And in this he is not unlike certain persons, who said to a man whom a prophet had visited to announce future events, "Wherefore came this mad fellow to thee?"(1) CHAP. XI. I am convinced, indeed, that much better arguments could be adduced than any I have been able to bring forward, to show the falsehood of these allegations of Celsus, and to set forth the divine inspiration of the prophecies; but we have according to our ability, in our commentaries on Isaiah, Ezekiel, and some of the twelve minor prophets, explained literally and in detail what he calls "those fanatical and utterly unintelligible passages."(2) And if God give us grace in the time that He appoints for us, to advance in the knowledge of His word, we shall continue our investigation into the parts which remain, or into such at least as we are able to make plain. And other persons of intelligence who wish to study Scripture may also find out its meaning for themselves; for although there are many places in which the meaning is not obvious, yet there are none where, as Celsus affirms, "there is no sense at all." Neither is it true that "any fool or impostor can explain the passages so as to make them suit his own purposes." For it belongs only to those who are wise in the truth of Christ (and to all them it does belong) to unfold the connection and meaning of even the obscure parts of prophecy, "comparing spiritual things with spiritual," and interpreting each passage according to the usage of Scripture writers. And Celsus is not to be believed when he says that he has heard such men prophesy; for no prophets bearing any resemblance to the ancient prophets have appeared in the time of Celsus. If there had been any, those who heard and admired them would have followed the example of the ancients, and have recorded the prophecies in writing. And it seems quite clear that Celsus is speaking falsely, when he says that "those prophets whom he had heard, on being pressed by him, confessed their true motives, and acknowledged that the ambiguous words they used really meant nothing." He ought to have given the names of those whom he says he had heard, if he had any to give, so that those who were competent to judge might decide whether his allegations were true or false. CHAP. XII. He thinks, besides, that those who support the cause of Christ by a reference to the writings of the prophets can give no proper answer in regard to statements in them which attribute to God that which is wicked, shameful, or impure; and assuming that no answer can be given, he proceeds to draw a whole train of inferences, none of which can be allowed. But he ought to know that those who wish to live according to the teaching of sacred Scripture understand the saying, "The knowledge of the unwise is as talk without sense,"(3) and have learnt "to be ready always to give an answer to every one that asketh us a reason for the hope that is in us."(4) And they are not satisfied with affirming that such and such things have been predicted; but they endeavour to remove any apparent inconsistencies, and to show that, so far from there being anything evil, shameful, or impure in these predictions, everything is worthy of being received by those who understand the sacred Scriptures. But Celsus ought to have adduced from the prophets examples of what he thought bad, or shameful, or impure, if he saw any such passages; for then his argument would have had much more force, and would have furthered his purpose much better. He gives no instances, however, but contents himself with loudly asserting the false charge that these things are to be found in Scripture. There is no reason, then, for us to defend ourselves against groundless charges, which are but empty sounds, or to take the trouble of showing that in the writings of the prophets there is nothing evil, shameful, impure, or abominable. CHAP. XIII. And there is no truth in the statement of Celsus, that "God does the most shameless deeds, or suffers the most shameless sufferings" or that "He favours the commission of evil; for whatever he may say, no such things have ever been foretold. He ought to have cited from the prophets the passages in which God is represented as favouring evil, or as doing and enduring the most shameless deeds, and not to have sought without foundation to prejudice the minds of his readers. The prophets, indeed, foretold what Christ should suffer, and set forth the reason why He should suffer. God therefore also knew what Christ would suffer; but where has he learnt that those things which the Christ of God should suffer were most base and dishonourable? He goes on to explain what those most shameful and degrading things were which Christ suffered, in these words: "For what better was it for God to eat the flesh of sheep, or to drink vinegar and gall, than to feed on filth?" But God, according to us, did not eat the flesh of sheep; and while it may seem that Jesus ate, He did so only as possessing a body. But in regard to the vinegar and gall mentioned in the prophecy, "They gave me also gall for my meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink,"(1) we have already referred(2) to this point; and as Celsus compels us to recur to it again, we would only say further, that those who resist the word of truth do ever offer to Christ the Son of God the gall of their own wickedness, and the vinegar of their evil inclinations; but though He tastes of it, yet He will not drink it. CHAP. XIV. In the next place, wishing to shake the faith of those who believe in Jesus on the ground of the prophecies which were delivered in regard to Him, Celsus says: "But pray, if the prophets foretold that the great God-- not to put it more harshly--would become a slave, or become sick or die; would there be therefore any necessity that God should die, or suffer sickness, or become a slave, simply because such things had been foretold? Must he die in order to prove his divinity? But the prophets never would utter predictions so wicked and impious. We need not therefore inquire whether a thing has been predicted or not, but whether the thing is honourable in itself, and worthy of God. In that which is evil and base, although it seemed that all men in the world had foretold it in a fit of madness, we must not believe. How then can the pious mind admit that those things which are said to have happened to him, could have happened to one who is God?" From this it is plain that Celsus feels the argument from prophecy to be very effective for convincing those to whom Christ is preached; but he seems to endeavour to overthrow it by an opposite probability, namely," that the question is not whether the prophets uttered these predictions or not." But if he wished to reason justly and without evasion, he ought rather to have said, "We must show that these things were never predicted, or that those things which were predicted of Christ have never been fulfilled in him," and in that way he would have established the position which he holds. In that way it would have been made plain what those prophecies are which we apply to Jesus, and how Celsus could justify himself in asserting that that application was false. And we should thus have seen whether he fairly disproved all that we bring from the prophets in behalf of Jesus, or whether he himself is convicted of a shameless endeavour to resist the plainest truths by violent assertions. CHAP. XV. After assuming that some things were foretold which are impossible in themselves, and inconsistent with the character of God, he says: "If these things were predicted of the Most High God, are we bound to believe them of God simply because they were predicted?" And thus he thinks he proves, that although the prophets may have foretold truly such things of the Son of God, yet it is impossible for us to believe in those prophecies declaring that He would do or suffer such things. To this our answer is that the supposition is absurd, for it combines two lines of reasoning which are opposed to each other, and therefore mutually destructive. This may be shown as follows. The one argument is: "If any true prophets of the Most High say that God will become a slave, or suffer sickness, or die, these things will come to God; for it is impossible that the prophets of the great God should utter lies." The other is: "If even true prophets of the Most High God say that these same things shall come to pass, seeing that these things foretold are by the nature of things impossible, the prophecies are not true, and therefore those things which have been foretold will not happen to God." When, then, we find two processes of reasoning in both of which the major premiss is the same, leading to two contradictory conclusions, we use the form of argument called "the theorem of two propositions,"(3) to prove that the major premiss is false, which in the case before us is this, "that the prophets have foretold that the great God should become a slave, suffer sickness, or die." We conclude, then, that the prophets never foretold such things; and the argument is formally expressed as follows: 1st, Of two things, if the first is true, the second is true; 2d, if the first is(4) true, the second is not true, therefore the first is not true. The concrete example which the Stoics give to illustrate this form of argument is the following: 1st, If you know that you are dead, you are dead; 2d, if you know that you are dead, you are not dead. And the conclusion is--"you do not know that you are dead." These propositions are worked out as follows: If you know that you are dead, that which you know is certain; therefore you are dead. Again, if you know that you are dead, your death is an object of knowledge; but as the dead know nothing, your knowing this proves that you are not dead. Accordingly, by joining the two arguments together, you arrive at the conclusion--"you do not know that you are dead." Now the hypothesis of Celsus which we have given above is much of the same kind. CHAP. XVI. But besides, the prophecies which he introduces into his argument are very different from what the prophets actually foretold of Jesus Christ. For the prophecies do not foretell that God will be crucified, when they say of Him who should suffer, "We beheld Him, and He had no form or comeliness; but His form was dishonoured and marred more than the sons of men; He was a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief."(1) Observe, then, how distinctly they say that it was a man who should endure these human sufferings. And Jesus Himself, who knew perfectly that one who was to die must be a man, said to His accusers: "But now ye seek to kill Me, a man that hath spoken unto you the truth which I heard of God."(2) And if in that man as He appeared among men there was something divine, namely the only-begotten Son of God, the first-born of all creation, one who said of Himself, "I am the truth," "I am the life," "I am the door," "I am the way," "I am the living bread which came down from heaven," of this Being and His nature we must judge and reason in a way quite different from that in which we judge of the man who was seen in Jesus Christ. Accordingly, you will find no Christian, however simple he may be, and however little versed in critical studies, who would say that He who died was "the truth," "the life," "the way," "the living bread which came down from heaven," "the resurrection;" for it was He who appeared to us in the form of the man Jesus, who taught us, saying, "I am the resurrection." There is no one amongst us, I say, so extravagant as to affirm "the Life died," "the Resurrection died." The supposition of Celsus would have some foundation if we were to say that it had been foretold by the prophets that death would befall God the Word, the Truth, the Life, the Resurrection, or any other name which is assumed by the Son of God. CHAP. XVII. In one point alone is Celsus correct in his statements on this subject. It is that in which he says: "The prophets would not foretell this, because it involves that which is wicked and impious,"--namely, that the great God should become a slave or suffer death. But that which is predicted by the prophets is worthy of God, that He who is the brightness and express image of the divine nature should come into the world with the holy human soul which was to animate the body of Jesus, to sow the seed of His word, which might bring all who received and cherished it into union with the Most High God, and which would lead to perfect blessedness all those who felt within them the power of God the Word, who was to be in the body and soul of a man. He was to be in it indeed, but not in such a way as to confine therein all the rays of His glory; and we are not to suppose that the light of Him who is God the Word is shed forth in no other way than in this. If, then, we consider Jesus in relation to the divinity that was in Him, the things which He did in this capacity present nothing to offend our ideas of God, nothing but what is holy; and if we consider Him as man, distinguished beyond all other men by an intimate communion with the Eternal Word, with absolute Wisdom, He suffered as one who was wise and perfect, whatever it behoved Him to suffer who did all for the good of the human race, yea, even for the good of all intelligent beings. And there is nothing absurd in a man having died, and in His death being not only an example of death endured for the sake of piety, but also the first blow in the conflict which is to overthrow the power of that evil spirit the devil, who had obtained dominion over the whole world.(3) For we have signs and pledges of the destruction of his empire, in those who through the coming of Christ are everywhere escaping from the power of demons, and who, after their deliverance from this bondage in which they were held, consecrate themselves to God, and earnestly devote themselves day by day to advancement in a life of piety. CHAP. XVIII. Celsus adds: "Will they not besides make this reflection? If the prophets of the God of the Jews foretold that he who should come into the world would be the Son of this same God, how could he command them through Moses to gather wealth, to extend their dominion, to fill the earth, to put their enemies of every age to the sword, and to destroy them utterly, which indeed he himself did--as Moses says--threatening them, moreover, that if they did not obey his commands, he would treat them as his avowed enemies; whilst, on the other hand, his Son, the man of Nazareth, promulgated laws quite opposed to these, declaring that no one can come to the Father who loves power, or riches, or glory; that men ought not to be more careful in providing food than the ravens; that they were to be less concerned about their raiment than the lilies; that to him who has given them one blow, they should offer to receive another? Whether is it Moses or Jesus who teaches falsely? Did the Father, when he sent Jesus, forget the commands which he had given to Moses? Or did he change his mind, condemn his own laws, and send forth a messenger with counter instructions?" Celsus, with all his boasts of universal knowledge, has here fallen into the most vulgar of errors, in supposing that in the law and the prophets there is not a meaning deeper than that afforded by a literal rendering of the words. He does not see how manifestly incredible it is that worldly riches should be promised to those who lead upright lives, when it is a matter of common observation that the best of men have lived in extreme poverty. Indeed, the prophets themselves, who for the purity of their lives received the Divine Spirit, "wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented: they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth."(1) For, as the Psalmist, says, "many are the afflictions of the righteous."(2) If Celsus had read the writings of Moses, he would, I daresay, have supposed that when it is said to him who kept the law, "Thou shalt lend unto many nations, and thou thyself shalt not borrow,"(3) the promise is made to the just man, that his temporal riches should be so abundant, that he would be able to lend not only to the Jews, not only to two or three nations, but "to many nations." What, then, must have been the wealth which the just man received according to the law for his righteousness, if he could lend to many nations? And must we not suppose also, in accordance with this interpretation, that the just man would never borrow anything? For it is written, "and thou shalt thyself borrow nothing." Did then that nation remain for so long a period attached to the religion which was taught by Moses, whilst, according to the supposition of Celsus, they saw themselves so grievously deceived by that lawgiver? For nowhere is it said of any one that he was so rich as to lend to many nations. It is not to be believed that they would have fought so zealously in defence of a law whose promises had proved glaringly false, if they understood them in the sense which Celsus gives to them. And if any one should say that the sins which are recorded to have been committed by the people are a proof that they despised the law, doubtless from the feeling that they had been deceived by it, we may reply that we have only to read the history of the times in order to find it shown that the whole people, after having done that which was evil in the sight of the Lord, returned afterwards to their duty, and to the religion prescribed by the law. CHAP. XIX. Now if these words in the law, "Thou shalt have dominion over many nations, and no one shall rule over thee," were simply a promise to them of dominion, and if they contain no deeper meaning than this, then it is certain that the people would have had still stronger grounds for despising the promises of the law. Celsus brings forward another passage, although he changes the terms of it, where it is said that the whole earth shall be filled with the Hebrew race; which indeed, according to the testimony of history, did actually happen after the coming of Christ, although rather as a result of God's anger, if I may so say, than of His blessing. As to the promise made to the Jews that they should slay their enemies, it may be answered that any one who examines carefully into the meaning of this passage will find himself unable to interpret it literally. It is sufficient at present to refer to the manner in which in the Psalms the just man is represented as saying, among other things, "Every morning will I destroy the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all workers of iniquity from the city of Jehovah."(4) Judge, then, from the words and spirit of the speaker, whether it is conceivable that, after having in the preceding part of the Psalm, as any one may read for himself, uttered the noblest thoughts and purposes, he should in the sequel, according to the literal rendering of his words, say that in the morning, and at no other period of the day, he would destroy all sinners from the earth, and leave none of them alive, and that he would slay every one in Jerusalem who did iniquity. And there are many similar expressions to be found in the law, as this, for example: "We left not anything alive."(5) CHAP. XX. Celsus adds, that it was foretold to the Jews, that if they did not obey the law, they would be treated in the same way as they treated their enemies; and then he quotes from the teaching of Christ some precepts which he considers contrary to those of the law, and uses that as an argument against us. But before proceeding to this point, we must speak of that which precedes. We hold, then, that the law has a twofold sense, --the one literal, the other spiritual,--as has been shown by some before us. Of the first or literal sense it is said, not by us, but by God, speaking in one of the prophets, that "the statutes are not good, and the judgments not good;"(1) whereas, taken in a spiritual sense, the same prophet makes God say that "His statutes are good, and His judgments good." Yet evidently the prophet is not saying things which are contradictory of each other. Paul in like manner says, that "the letter killeth, and the spirit giveth life,"(2) meaning by "the letter" the literal sense, and by "the spirit" the spiritual sense of Scripture. We may therefore find in Paul, as well as in the prophet, apparent contradictions. Indeed, if Ezekiel says in one place, "I gave them commandments which were not good, and judgments whereby they should not live," and in another, "I gave them good commandments and judgments, which if a man shall do, he shall live by them,"(3) Paul in like manner, when he wishes to disparage the law taken literally, says, "If the ministration of death, written and engraven in stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not stedfastly behold the face of Moses for the glory of his countenance, which glory was to be done away; how shall not the ministration of the Spirit be rather glorious?"(4) But when in another place he wishes to praise and recommend the law, he calls it "spiritual," and says, "We know that the law is spiritual;" and, "Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good."(5) CHAP. XXI. When, then, the letter of the law promises riches to the just, Celsus may follow the letter which killeth, and understand it of worldly riches, which blind men; but we say that it refers to those riches which enlighten the eyes, and which enrich a man "in all utterance and in all knowledge." And in this sense we "charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; that they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate."(6) For, as Solomon says, "riches" are the true good, which "are the ransom of the life of a man;" but the poverty which is the opposite of these riches is destructive, for by it "the poor cannot bear rebuke."(7) And what has been said of riches applies to dominion, in regard to which it is said, "The just man shall chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight."(8) Now if riches are to be taken in the sense we have just explained, consider if it is not according to God's promise that he who is rich in all utterance, in all knowledge, in all wisdom, in all good works, may not out of these treasures of utterance, of wisdom, and of knowledge, lend to many nations. It was thus that Paul lent to all the nations that he visited, "carrying the Gospel of Christ from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum."(9) And as the divine knowledge was given to him by revelation, and his mind was illumined by the Divine Word, he himself therefore needed to borrow from no one, and required not the ministry to any man to teach him the word of truth. Thus, as it had been written, "Thou shalt have dominion over many nations, and they shall not have dominion over thee," he ruled over the Gentiles whom he brought under the teaching Of Jesus Christ; and he never "gave place by subjection to men, no, not for an hour,(10) as being himself mightier than they. And thus also he "filled the earth." CHAP. XXII. If I must now explain how the just man "slays his enemies," and prevails everywhere, it is to be observed that, when he says, "Every morning will I destroy the wicked of the land, that I may cut off all workers of iniquity from the city of Jehovah," by "the land" he means the flesh whose lusts are at enmity with God; and by "the city of Jehovah" he designates his own soul, in which was the temple of God, containing the true idea and conception of God, which makes it to be admired by all who look upon it. As soon, then, as the rays of the Sun of righteousness shine into his soul, feeling strengthened and invigorated by their influence, he sets himself to destroy all the lusts of the flesh, which are called "the wicked of the land," and drives out of that city of the Lord which is in his soul all thoughts which work iniquity, and all suggestions which are opposed to the truth. And in this way also the just give up to destruction all their enemies, which are their vices, so that they do not spare even the children, that is, the early beginnings and promptings of evil. In this sense also we understand the language of the 137th Psalm: "O daughter of Babylon, who art to be destroyed; happy shall he be that rewardeth thee as thou hast served us: happy shall he be that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones."(11) For "the little ones" of Babylon (which signifies confusion) are those troublesome sinful thoughts which arise in the soul and he who subdues them by striking, as it were, their heads against the firm and solid strength of reason and truth, is the man who "dasheth the little ones against the stones;" and he is therefore truly blessed. God may therefore have commanded men to destroy all their vices utterly, even at their birth, without having enjoined anything contrary to the teaching of Christ; and He may Himself have destroyed before the eyes of those who were "Jews inwardly"(1) all the offspring of evil as His enemies. And, in like manner, those who disobey the law and word of God may well be compared to His enemies led astray by sin; and they may well be said to suffer the same fate as they deserve who have proved traitors to the truth of God. CHAP. XXIII. From what has been said, it is clear then that Jesus, "the man of Nazareth," did not promulgate laws opposed to those just considered in regard to riches, when He said, "It is hard for the rich man to enter into the kingdom of God;''(2) whether we take the word "rich" in its simplest sense, as referring to the man whose mind is distracted by his wealth, and, as it were, entangled with thorns, so that he brings forth no spiritual fruit; or whether it is the man who is rich in the sense of abounding in false notions, of whom it is written in the Proverbs, "Better is the poor man who is just, than the rich man who is false."(3) Perhaps it is the following passages which have led Celsus to suppose that Jesus forbids ambition to His disciples: "Whoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all;"(4) "The princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them,"(5) and "they that exercise authority upon them are called benefactors."(6) But there is nothing here inconsistent with the promise, "Thou shalt rule over many nations, and they shall not rule over thee," especially after the explanation which we have given of these words. Celsus next throws in an expression in regard to wisdom, as though he thought that, according to the teaching of Christ, no wise man could come to the Father. But we would ask in what sense he speaks of a wise man. For if he means one who is wise in "the wisdom of this world," as it is called, "which is foolishness with God,"(7) then we would agree with him in saying that access to the Father is denied to one who is wise in that sense. But if by wisdom any one means Christ, who is "the power and wisdom of God," far from such a wise man being refused access to the Father, we hold that he who is adorned by the Holy Spirit with that gift which is called "the word of wisdom," far excels all those who have not received the same grace. CHAP. XXIV. The pursuit of human glory, we maintain, is forbidden not only by the teaching of Jesus, but also by the Old Testament. Accordingly we find one of the prophets, when imprecating upon himself certain punishments for the commission of certain sins, includes among the punishments this one of earthly glory. He says, "O Lord my God, if I have done this; if there be iniquity in my hands; if I have rewarded evil unto him that was at peace with me; (yea, rather, I have delivered him that without cause is mine enemy;) let the enemy persecute my soul, and take it; yea, let him tread down my life upon the earth, and set my glory up an high."(8) And these precepts of our Lord, "Take no thought what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink. Behold the fowls of the air, or behold the ravens: for they sow not, neither do they reap; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. How much better are ye than they! And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field;"(9)--these precepts, and those which follow, are not inconsistent with the promised blessings of the law, which teaches that the just "shall eat their bread to the full;(10) nor with that saying of Solomon, "The righteous eateth to the satisfying of his soul, but the belly of the wicked shall want."(11) For we must consider the food promised in the law as the food of the soul, which is to satisfy not both parts of man's nature, but the soul only. And the words of the Gospel, although probably containing a deeper meaning, may yet be taken in their more simple and obvious sense. as teaching us not to be disturbed with anxieties about our food and clothing, but, while living in plainness, and desiring only what is needful, to put our trust in the providence of God. CHAP. XXV. Celsus then extracts from the Gospel the precept, "To him who strikes thee once, thou shalt offer thyself to be struck again," although without giving any passage from the Old Testament which he considers opposed to it. On the one hand, we know that "it was said to them in old time, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth;"(1) and on the other, we have read, "I say unto you, Whoever shall smite thee on the one cheek, turn to him the other also."(2) But as there is reason to believe that Celsus produces the objections which he has heard from those who wish to make a difference between the God of the Gospel and the God of the law, we must say in reply, that this precept, "Whosoever shall strike thee on the one cheek, turn to him the other," is not unknown in the older Scriptures. For thus, in the Lamentations of Jeremiah, it is said, "It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth: he sitteth alone, and keepeth silence, because he hath borne it upon him. He giveth his cheek to him that smiteth him; he is filled full with reproach."(3) There is no discrepancy, then, between the God of the Gospel and the God of the law, even when we take literally the precept regarding the blow on the face. So, then, we infer that neither "Jesus nor Moses has taught falsely." The Father in sending Jesus did not "forget the commands which He had given to Moses:" He did not "change His mind, condemn His own laws, and send by His messenger counter instructions." CHAP. XXVI. However, if we must refer briefly to the difference between the constitution which was given to the Jews of old by Moses, and that which the Christians, under the direction of Christ's teaching, wish now to establish, we would observe that it must be impossible for the legislation of Moses, taken literally, to harmonize with the calling of the Gentiles, and with their subjection to the Roman government; and on the other hand, it would be impossible for the Jews to preserve their civil economy unchanged, supposing that they should embrace the Gospel. For Christians could not slay their enemies, or condemn to be burned or stoned, as Moses commands, those who had broken the law, and were therefore condemned as deserving of these punishments; since the Jews themselves, however desirous of carrying out their law, are not able to inflict these. punishments. But in the case of the ancient Jews, who had a land and a form of government of their own, to take from them the right of making war upon their enemies, of fighting for their country, of putting to death or otherwise punishing adulterers, murderers, or others who were guilty of similar crimes, would be to subject them to sudden and utter destruction whenever the enemy fell upon them; for their very laws would in that case restrain them, and prevent them from resisting the enemy. And that same providence which of old gave the law, and has now given the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not wishing the Jewish state to continue longer, has destroyed their city and their temple: it has abolished the worship which was offered to God in that temple by the sacrifice of victims, and other ceremonies which He had prescribed. And as it has destroyed these things, not wishing that they should longer continue, in like manner it has extended day by day the Christian religion, so that it is now preached everywhere with boldness, and that in spite of the numerous obstacles which oppose the spread of Christ's teaching in the world. But since it was the purpose of God that the nations should receive the benefits of Christ's teaching, all the devices of men against Christians have been brought to sought; for the more that kings, and rulers, and peoples have persecuted them everywhere, the more have they increased in number and grown in strength. CHAP. XXVII. After this Celsus relates at length opinions which he ascribes to us, but which we do not hold, regarding the Divine Being, to the effect that "he is corporeal in his nature, and possesses a body like a man." As he undertakes to refute opinions which are none of ours, it would be needless to give either the opinions themselves or their refutation. Indeed, if we did hold those views of God which he ascribes to us, and which he opposes, we would be bound to quote his words, to adduce our own arguments, and to refute his. But if he brings forward opinions which he has either heard from no one, or if it be assumed that he has heard them, it must have been from those who are very simple and ignorant of the meaning of Scripture, then we need not undertake so superfluous a task as that of refuting them. For the Scriptures plainly speak of God as of a being without body. Hence it is said, "No man hath seen God at any time;"(4) and the First-born of all creation is called "the image of the invisible God,"s which is the same as if it were said that He is incorporeal. However, we have already said something on the nature of God while examining into the meaning of the words, "God is a Spirit, and they who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth." CHAP. XXVIII. After thus misrepresenting our views of the nature of God, Celsus goes on to ask of us "where we hope to go after death;" and he makes our answer to be, "to another land better than this." On this he comments as follows: "The divine men of a former age have spoken of a happy life reserved for the souls of the blessed. Some designated it 'the isles of the blest,' and others 'the Elysian plain,' so called because they were there to be delivered from their present evils. Thus Homer says: 'But the gods shall send thee to the Elysian plain, on the borders of the earth, where they lead a most quiet life.'(1) Plato also, who believed in the immortality of the soul, distinctly gives the name 'land' to the place where it is sent. 'The extent of it,' a says he, 'is immense, and we only occupy a small portion of it, from the Phasis to the Pillars of Hercules, where we dwell along the shores of the sea, as grasshoppers and frogs beside a marsh. But there are many other places inhabited in like manner by other men. For there are in different parts of the earth cavities, varying in form and in magnitude, into which run water, and clouds, and air. But that land which is pure lies in the pure region of heaven.'" Celsus therefore supposes that what we say of a land which is much better and more excellent than this, has been borrowed from certain ancient writers whom he styles "divine," and chiefly from Plato, who in his Phaedon discourses on the pure land lying in a pure heaven. But he does not see that Moses, who is much older than the Greek literature, introduces God as promising to those who lived according to His law the holy land, which is "a good land and a large, a land flowing with milk and honey;"(3) which promise is not to be understood to refer, as some suppose, to that part of the earth which we call Judea; for it, however good it may be, still forms part of the earth, which was originally cursed for the transgression of Adam. For these words, "Cursed shall the ground be for what thou hast done; with grief, that is, with labour, shalt thou eat of the fruit of it all the days of thy life,"(4) were spoken of the whole earth, the fruit of which every man who died in Adam eats with sorrow or labour all the days of his life. And as all the earth has been cursed, it brings forth thorns and briers all the days of the life of those who in Adam were driven out of paradise; and in the sweat of his face every man eats bread until he returns to the ground from which he was taken. For the full exposition of all that is contained in this passage much might be said; but we have confined ourselves to these few words at present, which are intended to remove the idea, that what is said of the good land promised by God to the righteous, refers to the land of Judea. CHAP. XXIX. If, then, the whole earth has been cursed in the deeds of Adam and of those who died in him, it is plain that all parts of the earth share in the curse, and among others the land of Judea; so that the words, "a good land and a large, a land flowing with milk and honey, cannot apply to it, although we may say of it, that both Judea and Jerusalem were the shadow and figure of that pure land, goodly and large, in the pure region of heaven, in which is the heavenly Jerusalem. And it is in reference to this Jerusalem that the apostle spoke, as one who, "being risen with Christ, and seeking those things which are above," had found a truth which formed no part of the Jewish mythology. "Ye are come," says he, "unto Mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels."(5) And in order to be assured that our explanation of "the good and large land" of Moses is not contrary to the intention of the Divine Spirit, we have only to read in all the prophets what they say of those who, after having left Jerusalem, and wandered astray from it, should afterwards return and be settled in the place which is called the habitation and city of God, as in the words, "His dwelling is in the holy place;"(6) and, "Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, in the mountain of His holiness, beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth."(7) It is enough at present to quote the words of the thirty-seventh Psalm, which speaks thus of the land of the righteous, "Those that wait upon the Lord they shall inherit the earth;" and a little after, "But the meek shall inherit the earth, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace;" and again, "Those who bless Him shall inherit the earth;" and, "The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever."(8) And consider whether it is not evident to intelligent readers that the following words from this same Psalm refer to the pure land in the pure heaven: "Wait on the Lord, and keep His way; and He shall exalt thee to inherit the land." CHAP. XXX. It seems to me also that the fancy of Plato, that those stones which we call precious stones derive their lustre from a reflection, as it were, of the stones in that better land, is taken from the words of Isaiah in describing the city of God, "I will make thy battlements of jasper, thy stones shall be crystal, and thy borders of precious stones;"(1) and, "I will lay thy foundations with sapphires." Those who hold in greatest reverence the teaching of Plato, explain this myth of his as an allegory. And the prophecies from which, as we conjecture, Plato has borrowed, will be explained by those who, leading a godly life like that of the prophets, devote all their time to the study of the sacred Scriptures, to those who are qualified to learn by purity of life, and their desire to advance in divine knowledge. For our part, our purpose has been simply to say that what we affirm of that sacred land has not been taken from Plato or any of the Greeks, but that they rather--living as they did not only after Moses, who was the oldest, but even after most of the prophets--borrowed from them, and in so doing either misunderstood their obscure intimations on such subjects, or else endeavoured, in their allusions to the better land, to imitate those portions of Scripture which had fallen into their hands. Haggai expressly makes a distinction between the earth and the dry land, meaning by the latter the land in which we live. He says: "Yet once, and I will shake the heavens, and the earth, and the dry land, and the sea."(2) CHAP. XXXI. Referring to the passage in the Phaedon of Plato, Celsus says: "It is not easy for every one to understand the meaning of Plato's words, when he says that on account of our weakness and slowness we are unable to reach the highest region of the air; but that if our nature were capable of so sublime a contemplation, we would then be able to understand that that is the true heaven, and that the true light." As Celsus has deferred to another opportunity the explanation of Plato's idea, we also think that it does not fall within our purpose at present to enter into any full description of that holy and good land, and of the city of God which is in it; but reserve the consideration of it for our Commentary on the Prophets, having already in part, according to our power, treated of the city of God in our remarks on the forty-sixth and forty-eighth Psalms. The writings of Moses and the prophets--the most ancient of all books--teach us that all things here on earth which are in common use among men, have other things corresponding to them in name which are alone real. Thus, for instance, there is the true light, and another heaven beyond the firmament, and a Sun of righteousness other than the sun we see. In a word, to distinguish those things from the objects of sense, which have no true reality, they say of God that "His works are truth;"(3) thus making a distinction between the works of God and the works of God's hands, which latter are of an inferior sort. Accordingly, God in Isaiah complains of men, that "they regard not the works of the Lord, nor consider the operation of His hands."(4) But enough on this point. CHAP. XXXII. Celsus next assails the doctrine of the resurrection, which is a high and difficult doctrine, and one which more than others requires a high and advanced degree of wisdom to set forth how worthy it is of God; and how sublime a truth it is which teaches us that there is a seminal principle lodged in that which Scripture speaks of as the "tabernacle" of the soul, in which the righteous "do groan, being burdened, not for that they would be unclothed, but clothed upon."(5) Celsus ridicules this doctrine because he does not understand it, and because he has learnt it from ignorant persons, who were unable to support it on any reasonable grounds. It will be profitable, therefore, that in addition to what we have said above, we should make this one remark. Our teaching on the subject of the resurrection is not, as Celsus imagines, derived from anything that we have heard on the doctrine of metempsychosis; but we know that the soul, which is immaterial and invisible in its nature, exists in no material place, without having a body suited to the nature of that place. Accordingly, it at one time puts off one body which was necessary before, but which is no longer adequate in its changed state, and it exchanges it for a second; and at another time it assumes another in addition to the former, which is needed as a better covering, suited to the purer ethereal regions of heaven. When it comes into the world at birth, it casts off the integuments which it needed in the womb; and before doing this, it puts on another body suited for its life upon earth. Then, again, as there is "a tabernacle" and "an earthly house" which is in some sort necessary for this tabernacle, Scripture teaches us that "the earthly house of this tabernacle shall be dissolved," but that the tabernacle shall "be clothed upon with a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens."(6) The men of God say also that "the corruptible shall put on incorruption,"(7) which is a different thing from "the incorruptible;" and "the mortal shall put on immortality," which is different from "the immortal." Indeed, what "wisdom" is to "the wise," and "justice" to "the just," and "peace" to "the peaceable," the same relation does "incorruption" hold to "the incorruptible," and "immortality" to "the immortal." Behold, then, to what a prospect Scripture encourages us to look, when it speaks to us of being clothed with incorruption and immortality, which are, as it were, vestments which will not suffer those who are covered with them to come to corruption or death. Thus far I have taken the liberty of referring to this subject, in answer to one who assails the doctrine of the resurrection without understanding it, and who, simply because he knew nothing about it, made it the object of contempt and ridicule. CHAP. XXXIII. As Celsus supposes that we uphold the doctrine of the resurrection in order that we may see and know God, he thus follows out his notions on the subject: "After they have been utterly refuted and vanquished, they still, as if regardless of all objections, come back again to the same question, 'How then shall we see and know God? how shall we go to Him?'" Let any, however, who are disposed to hear us observe, that if we have need of a body for other purposes, as for occupying a material locality to which this body must be adapted, and if on that account the "tabernacle" is clothed in the way we have shown, we have no need of a body in order to know God. For that which sees God is not the eye of the body; it is the mind which is made in the image of the Creator,(1) and which God has in His providence rendered capable of that knowledge. To see God belongs to the pure heart, out of which no longer proceed "evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies, the evil eye,"(2) or any other evil thing. Wherefore it is said, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God."(3) But as the strength of our will is not sufficient to procure the perfectly pure heart, and as we need that God should create it, he therefore who prays as he ought, offers this petition to God, "Create in me a clean heart, O God."(4) CHAP. XXXIV. And we do not ask the question, "How shall we go to God?" as though we thought that God existed in some place. God is of too excellent a nature for any place: He holds all things in His power, and is Himself not confined by anything whatever. The precept, therefore, "Thou shall walk after the Lord thy God,"(5) does not command a bodily approach to God; neither does the prophet refer to physical nearness to God, when he says in his prayer, "My soul followeth hard after Thee."(6) Celsus therefore misrepresents us, when he says that we expect to see God with our bodily eyes, to hear Him with our ears, and to touch Him sensibly with our hands. We know that the holy Scriptures make mention of eyes, of ears, and of hands, which have nothing but the name in common with the bodily organs; and what is more wonderful, they speak of a diviner sense, which is very different from the senses as commonly spoken of. For when the prophet says, "Open Thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Thy law,"(7) or, "The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes,"(8) or, "Lighten mine eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death,"(9) no one is so foolish as to suppose that the eyes of the body behold the wonders of the divine law, or that the law of the Lord gives light to the bodily eyes, or that the sleep of death falls on the eyes of the body. When our Saviour says, "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear,"(10) any one will understand that the ears spoken of are of a diviner kind. When it is said that the word of the Lord was "in the hand" of Jeremiah or of some other prophet; or when the expression is used, "the law by the hand of Moses," or, "I sought the Lord with my hands, and was not deceived,(11)--no one is so foolish as not to see that the word "hands" is taken figuratively, as when John says, "Our hands have handled the Word of life."(12) And if you wish further to learn from the sacred writings that there is a diviner sense than the senses of the body, you have only to hear what Solomon says, "Thou shalt find a divine sense."(13) CHAP. XXXV. Seeking God, then, in this way, we have no need to visit the oracles of Trophonius, of Amphiaraus, and of Mopsus, to which Celsus would send us, assuring us that we would there "see the gods in human form, appearing to us with all distinctness, and without illusion." For we know that these are demons, feeding on the blood, and smoke, and odour of victims, and shut up by their base desires in prisons, which the Greeks call temples of the gods, but which we know are only the dwellings of deceitful demons. To this Celsus maliciously adds, in regard to these gods which, according to him, are in human form, "they do not show themselves for once, or at intervals, like him who has deceived men, but they are ever open to intercourse with those who desire it." From this remark, it would seem that Celsus supposes that the appearance of Christ to His disciples after His resurrection was like that of a spectre flitting before their eyes; whereas these gods, as he calls them, in human shape always present themselves to those who desire it. But how is it possible that a phantom which, as he describes it, flew past to deceive the beholders, could produce such effects after it had passed away, and could so turn the hearts of men as to lead them to regulate their actions according to the will of God, as in view of being hereafter judged by Him? And how could a phantom drive away demons, and show other indisputable evidences of power, and that not in any one place, like these so-called gods in human form, but making its divine power felt through the whole world, in drawing and congregating together all who are found disposed to lead a good and noble life? CHAP. XXXVI. After these remarks of Celsus, which we have endeavoured to answer as we could, he goes on to say, speaking of us: "Again they will ask, 'How can we know God, unless by the perception of the senses? for how otherwise than through the senses are we able to gain any knowledge?'" To this he replies: "This is not the language of a man; it comes not from the soul, but from the flesh. Let them hearken to us, if such a spiritless and carnal race are able to do so: if, instead of exercising the senses, you look upwards with the soul; if, turning away the eye of the body, you open the eye of the mind thus and thus only will you be able to see God. And if you seek one to be your guide along this way, you must shun all deceivers and jugglers, who will introduce you to phantoms. Otherwise you will be acting the most ridiculous part, if, whilst you pronounce imprecatious upon those others that are recognised as gods, treating them as idols, you yet do homage to a more wretched idol than any of these, which indeed is not even an idol or a phantom, but a dead man, and you seek a father like to him." The first remark which we have to make on this passage is in regard to his use of personification, by which he makes us m defend in this way the doctrine of the resurrection. This figure of speech is properly employed when the character and sentiments of the person introduced are faithfully preserved; but it is an abuse of the figure when these do not agree with the character and opinions of the speaker. Thus we should justly condemn a man who put into the mouths of barbarians, slaves, or uneducated'. people the language of philosophy; because we know that the philosophy belonged to the author, and not to such persons, who could not know anything of philosophy. And in like manner we should condemn a man for introducing persons who are represented as wise and well versed in divine knowledge, and should make them give expression to language which could only come out of the mouths of those who are ignorant or under the influence of vulgar passions. Hence Homer is admired, among other things, for preserving a consistency of character in his heroes, as in Nestor, Ulysses, Diomede, Agamemnon, Telemachus, Penelope, and the rest. Euripides, on the contrary, was assailed in the comedies of Aristophanes as a frivolous talker, often putting into the mouth of a barbarian woman, a wretched slave, the wise maxims which he had learned from Anaxagoras or some other philosophers. CHAP. XXXVII. Now if this is a true account of what constitutes the right and the wrong use of personification, have we not grounds for holding Celsus up to ridicule for thus ascribing to Christians words which they never uttered? For if those whom he represents as speaking are the unlearned, how is it possible that such persons could distinguish between "sense" and "reason," between "objects of sense" and "objects of the reason?" To argue in this way, they would require to have studied under the Stoics, who deny all intellectual existences, and maintain that all that we apprehend is apprehended through the senses, and that all knowledge comes through the senses. But if, on the other hand, he puts these words into the mouth of philosophers who search carefully into the meaning of Christian doctrines, the statements in question do not agree with their character and principles. For no one who has learnt that God is invisible, and that certain of His works are invisible, that is to say, apprehended by the reason,(1) can say, as if to justify his faith in a resurrection, "How can they know God, except by the perception of the senses?" or, "How otherwise than through the senses can they gain any knowledge?" For it is not in any secret writings, perused only by a few wise men, but in such as are most widely diffused and most commonly known among the people, that these words are written: "The invisible things of God from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made."(2) From whence it is to be inferred, that though men who live upon the earth have to begin with the use of the senses upon sensible objects, in order to go on from them to a knowledge of the nature of things intellectual, yet their knowledge must not stop short with the objects of sense. And thus, while Christians would not say that it is impossible to have a knowledge of intellectual objects without the senses, but rather that the senses supply the first means of obtaining knowledge, they might well ask the question, "Who can gain any knowledge without the senses?" without deserving the abuse of Celsus, when he adds, "This is not the language of a man; it comes not from the soul, but from the flesh." CHAP. XXXVIII. Since we hold that the great God is in essence simple, invisible, and incorporeal, Himself pure intelligence, or something transcending intelligence and existence, we can never say that God is apprehended by any other means than through the intelligence which is formed in His image, though now, in the words of Paul, "we see in a glass obscurely, but then face to face."(1) And if we use the expression "face to face," let no one pervert its meaning; but let it be explained by this passage, "Beholding with open face the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory," which shows that we do not use the word in this connection to mean the visible face, but take it figuratively, in the same way as we have shown that the eyes, the ears, and the other parts of the body are employed. And it is certain that a man--I mean a soul using a body, otherwise called "the inner man," or simply "the soul"--would answer, not as Celsus makes us answer, but as the man of God himself teaches. It is certain also that a Christian will not make use of "the language of the flesh," having learnt as he has "to mortify the deeds of the body"(2) by the spirit, and "to bear about in his body the dying of Jesus;"(3) and "mortify your members which are on the earth,"(4) and with a true knowledge of these words, "My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh,"(5) and again, "They that are in the flesh cannot please God,"(6) he strives in every way to live no longer according to the flesh, but only according to the Spirit. CHAP. XXXIX. Now let us hear what it is that he invites us to learn, that we may ascertain from him how we are to know God, although he thinks that his words are beyond the. capacity of all Christians. "Let them hear," says he, "if they are able to do so." We have then to consider what the philosopher wishes us to hear from him. But instead of instructing us as he ought, he abuses us; and while he should have shown his goodwill to those whom he addresses at the outset of his discourse, he stigmatizes as "a cowardly race" men who would rather die than abjure Christianity even by a word, and who are ready to suffer every form of torture, or any kind of death. He also applies to us that epithet "carnal" or "flesh-indulging," "although," as we are wont to say, "we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth we know Him no more,"(7) and although we are so ready to lay down our lives for the cause of religion, that no philosopher could lay aside his robes more readily. He then addresses to us these words: "If, instead of exercising your senses, you look upwards with the soul; if, turning away the eye of the body, you open the eye of the mind, thus and thus only you will be able to see God." He is not aware that this reference to the two eyes, the eye of the body and the eye of the mind, which he has borrowed from the Greeks, was in use among our own writers; for Moses, in his account of the creation of the world, introduces man before his transgression as both seeing and not seeing: seeing, when it is said of the woman, "The woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise;"(8) and again not seeing, as when he introduces the serpent saying to the woman, as if she and her husband had been blind, "God knows that on the day that ye eat thereof your eyes shall be opened;"(9) and also when it is said, "They did eat, and the eyes of both of them were opened."(10) The eyes of sense were then opened, which they had done well to keep shut, that they might not be distracted, and hindered from seeing with the eyes of the mind; and it was those eyes of the mind which in consequence of sin, as I imagine, were then closed, with which they had up to that time enjoyed the delight of beholding God and His paradise. This twofold kind of vision in us was familiar to our Saviour, who says," For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not, might see, and that they which see might be made blind,"(11)--meaning, by the eyes that see not; the eyes of the mind, which are enlightened by His teaching; and the eyes which see are the eyes of sense, which His words do render blind, in order that the soul may look without distraction upon proper objects. All true Christians therefore have the eye of the mind sharpened, and the eye of sense closed; so that each one, according to the degree in which his better eye is quickened, and the eye of sense darkened, sees and knows the Supreme God, and His Son, who is the Word, Wisdom, and so forth. CHAP. XL. Next to the remarks of Celsus on which we have already commented, come others which he addresses to all Christians, but which, if applicable to any, ought to be addressed to persons whose doctrines differ entirely from those taught by Jesus. For it is the Ophians who, as we have before shown,(1) have utterly renounced Jesus, and perhaps some others of similar opinions who are "the impostors and jugglers, leading men away to idols and phantoms;" and it is they who with miserable pains learn off the names of the heavenly doorkeepers. These words are therefore quite inappropriate as addressed to Christians: "If you seek one to be your guide along this way, you must shun all deceivers and jugglers, who will introduce you to phantoms." And, as though quite unaware that these impostors entirely agree with him, and are not behind him in speaking ill of Jesus and His religion, he thus continues, confounding us with them: "otherwise you will be acting the most ridiculous part, if, whilst you pronounce imprecations upon those other recognised gods, treating them as idols, you yet do homage to a more wretched idol than any of these, which indeed is not even an idol or a phantom, but a dead man, and you seek a father like to himself." That he is ignorant of the wide difference between our opinions and those of the inventors of these fables, and that he imagines the charges which he makes against them applicable to us, is evident from the following passage: "For the sake of such a monstrous delusion, and in support of those wonderful advisers, and those wonderful words which you address to the lion, to the amphibious creature, to the creature in the form of an ass, and to others, for the sake of those divine doorkeepers whose names you commit to memory with such pains, in such a cause as this you suffer cruel tortures, and perish at the stake." Surely, then, he is unaware that none of those who regard beings in the form of an ass a lion, or an amphibious animal, as the doorkeepers or guides on the way to heaven, ever expose themselves to death in defence of that which they think the truth. That excess of zeal, if it may be so called, which leads us for the sake of religion to submit to every kind of death, and to perish at the stake, is ascribed by Celsus to those who endure no such sufferings; and he reproaches us who suffer crucifixion for our faith, with believing in fabulous creatures--in the lion, the amphibious animal, and other such monsters. If we reject all these fables, it is not out of deference to Celsus, for we have never at any time held any such fancies; but it is in accordance with the teaching of Jesus that we oppose all such notions, and will not allow to Michael, or to any others that have been referred to, a form and figure of that sort. CHAP. XLI. But let us consider who those persons are whose guidance Celsus would have us to follow, so that we may not be in want of guides who are recommended both by their antiquity and sanctity. He refers us to divinely inspired poets, as he calls them, to wise men and philosophers, without mentioning their names; so that, after promising to point out those who should guide us, he simply hands us over in a general way to divinely inspired poets, wise men, and philosophers. If he had specified their names in particular, we should have felt ourselves bound to show him that he wished to give us as guides men who were blinded to the truth, and who must therefore lead us into error; or that if not wholly blinded, yet they are in error in many matters of belief. But whether Orpheus, Parmenides, Empedocles, or even Homer himself, and Hesiod, are the persons whom he means by "inspired poets," let any one show how those who follow their guidance walk in a better way, or lead a more excellent life, than those who, being taught in the school of Jesus Christ, have rejected all images and statues, and even all Jewish superstition, that they may look upward through the Word of God to the one God, who is the Father of the Word. Who, then, are those wise men and philosophers from whom Celsus would have us to learn so many divine truths, and for whom we are to give up Moses the servant of God, the prophets of the Creator of the world, who have spoken so many things by a truly divine inspiration, and even Him who has given light and taught the way of piety to the whole human race, so that no one can reproach Him if he remains without a share in the knowledge of His mysteries? Such, indeed, was the abounding love which He had for men, that He gave to the more learned a theology capable of raising the soul far above all earthly things; while with no less consideration He comes down to the weaker capacities of ignorant men, of simple women, of slaves, and, in short, of all those who from Jesus alone could have received that help for the better regulation of their lives which is supplied by his instructions in regard to the Divine Being, adapted to their wants and capacities. CHAP. XLII. Celsus next refers us to Plato as to a more effective teacher of theological truth, and quotes the following passage from the Timaeus: "It is a hard matter to find out the Maker and Father of this universe; and after having found Him, it is impossible to make Him known to all." To which he himself adds this remark: "You perceive, then, how divine men seek after the way of truth, and how well Plato knew that it was impossible for all men to walk in it. But as wise men have found it for the express purpose of being able to convey to us some notion of Him who is the first, the unspeakable Being,--a notion, namely; which may represent Him to us through the medium of other objects,--they endeavour either by synthesis, which is the combining of various qualities, or by analysis, which is the separation and setting aside of some qualities, or finally by analogy;--in these ways, I say, they endeavour to set before us that which it is impossible to express in words. I should therefore be surprised if you could follow in that course, since you are so completely wedded to the flesh as to be incapable of seeing ought but what is impure." These words of Plato are noble and admirable; but see if Scripture does not give us an example of a regard for mankind still greater in God the Word, who was "in the beginning with God," and "who was made flesh," in order that He might reveal to all men truths which, according to Plato, it would be impossible to make known to all men, even after he had found them himself. Plato may say that "it is a hard thing to find out the Creator and Father of this universe;" by which language he implies that it is not wholly beyond the power of human nature to attain to such a knowledge as is either worthy of God, or if not, is far beyond that which is commonly attained (although if it were true that Plato or any other of the Greeks had found God. they would never have given homage and worship, or ascribed the name of God, to any other than to Him: they would have abandoned all others, and would not have associated with this great God objects which can have nothing in common with Him).(1) For ourselves, we maintain that human nature is in no way able to seek after God, or to attain a clear knowledge of Him without the help of Him whom it seeks. He makes Himself known to those who, after doing all that their powers will allow, confess that they need help from Him, who discovers Himself to those whom He approves, in so far as it is possible for man and the soul still dwelling in the body to know God. CHAP. XLIII. Observe that when Plato says, that "after having found out the Creator and Father of the universe, it is impossible to make Him known to all men," he does not speak of Him as unspeakable, and as incapable of being expressed in words. On the contrary, he implies that He may be spoken of, and that there are a few to whom He may be made known. But Celsus, as if forgetting the language which he had just quoted from Plato, immediately gives God the name of "the unspeakable." He says: "since the wise men have found out this way, in order to be able to give us some idea of the First of Beings, who is unspeakable." For ourselves, we hold that not God alone is unspeakable, but other things also which are inferior to Him. Such are the things which Paul labours to express when he says, "I heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter,"(2) where the word "heard" is used in the sense of "understood;" as in the passage, "He who hath ears to hear, let him hear." We also hold that it is a hard matter to see the Creator and Father of the universe; but it is possible to see Him in the way thus referred to, "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God;"(3) and not only so, but also in the sense of the words of Him "who is the image of the invisible God; "He who hath seen Me hath seen the Father who sent Me."(4) No sensible person could suppose that these last words were spoken in reference to His bodily presence, which was open to the view of all; otherwise all those who said, "Crucify him, crucify him," and Pilate, who had power over the humanity of Jesus, were among those who saw God the Father, which is absurd. Moreover, that these words, "He that hath seen Me, hath seen the Father who sent Me," are not to be taken in their grosser sense, is plain from the answer which He gave to Philip, "Have I been so long time with you, and yet dost thou not know Me, Philip?" after Philip had asked, "Show us the Father, and it sufficeth us." He, then, who perceives how these words, "The Word was made flesh," are to be understood of the only-begotten Son of God, the first-born of all creation, will also understand how, in seeing the image of the invisible God, we see "the Creator and Father of the universe." CHAP. XLIV. Celsus supposes that we may arrive at a knowledge of God either by combining or separating certain things after the methods which mathematicians call synthesis and analysis, or again by analogy, which is employed by them also, and that in this way we may as it were gain admission to the chief good. But when the Word of God says, "No man knoweth the Father but the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him,"(1) He declares that no one can know God but by the help of divine grace coming from above, with a certain divine inspiration. Indeed, it is reasonable to suppose that the knowledge of God is beyond the reach of human nature, and hence the many errors into which men have fallen in their views of God. It is, then, through the goodness and love of God to mankind, and by a marvellous exercise of divine grace to those whom He saw in His foreknowledge, and knew that they would walk worthy of Him who had made Himself known to them, and that they would never swerve from a faithful attachment to His service, although they were condemned to death or held up to ridicule by those who, in ignorance of what true religion is, give that name to what deserves to be called anything rather than religion. God doubtless saw the pride and arrogance of those who, with contempt for all others, boast of their knowledge of God, and of their profound acquaintance with divine things obtained from philosophy, but who still, not less even than the most ignorant, run after their images, and temples, and famous mysteries; and seeing this, He "has chosen the foolish things of this world"(2)--the simplest of Christians, who lead, however, a life of greater moderation and purity than many philosophers--"to confound the wise," who are not ashamed to address inanimate things as gods or images of the gods. For what reasonable man can refrain from smiling when he sees that one who has learned from philosophy such profound and noble sentiments about God or the gods, turns straightway to images and offers to them his prayers, or imagines that by gazing upon these material things he can ascend from the visible symbol to that which is spiritual and immaterial.(3) But a Christian, even of the common people, is assured that every place forms part of the universe, and that the whole universe is God's temple. In whatever part of the world he is, he prays; but he rises above the universe, "shutting the eyes of sense, and raising upwards the eyes of the soul." And he stops not at the vault of heaven; but passing in thought beyond the heavens, under the guidance of the Spirit of God, and having thus as it were gone beyond the visible universe, he offers prayers to God. But he prays for no trivial blessings, for he has learnt from Jesus to seek for nothing small or mean, that is, sensible objects, but to ask only for what is great and truly divine; and these things God grants to us, to lead us to l that blessedness which is found only with Him through His Son, the Word, who is God. CHAP. XLV. But let us see further what the things are which he proposes to teach us, if indeed we can comprehend them, since he speaks of us as being "utterly wedded to the flesh;" although if we live well, and in accordance with the teaching of Jesus, we hear this said of us: "Ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if the Spirit of God dwelleth in you."(4) He says also that we look upon nothing that is pure, although our endeavour is to keep even our thoughts free from all defilement of sin, and although in prayer we say, "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me,"(5) so that we may behold Him with that "pure heart" to which alone is granted the privilege of seeing Him. This, then, is what he proposes for our instruction: "Things are either intelligible, which we call substance--being; or visible, which we call becoming:(6) with the former is truth; from the latter arises error. Truth is the object of knowledge; truth and error form opinion. Intelligible objects are known by the reason, visible objects by the eyes; the action of the reason is called intelligent perception, that of the eyes vision. As, then, among visible things the sun is neither the eye nor vision, but that which enables the eye to see, and renders vision possible, and in consequence of it visible things are seen, all sensible things exist and itself is rendered visible; so among things intelligible, that which is neither reason, nor intelligent perception, nor knowledge, is yet the cause which enables the reason to know, which renders intelligent perception possible; and in consequence of it knowledge arises, all things intelligible, truth itself and substance have their existence; and itself, which is above all these things, becomes in some ineffable way intelligible. These things are offered to the consideration of the intelligent; and if even you can understand any of them, it is well. And if you think that a Divine Spirit has descended from God to announce divine things to men, it is doubtless this same Spirit that reveals these truths, and it was under the same influence that men of old made known many important truths. But if you cannot comprehend these things, then keep silence; do not expose your own ignorance, and do not accuse of blindness those who see, or of lameness those who run, while you yourselves are utterly lamed and mutilated in mind, and lead a merely animal life--the life of the body, which is the dead part of our nature." CHAP. XLVI. We are careful not to oppose fair arguments even if they proceed from those who are not of our faith; we strive not to be captious, or to seek to overthrow any sound reasonings. But here we have to reply to those who slander the character of persons wishing to do their best in the service of God, who accepts the faith which the meanest place in Him, as well as the more refined and intelligent piety of the learned; seeing that both alike address to the Creator of the world their prayers and thanksgivings through the High Priest who has set before men the nature of pure religion. We say, then, that those who are stigmatized as "lamed and mutilated in spirit," as "living only for the sake of the body which is dead," are persons whose endeavour it is to say with sincerity: "For though we live' in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh; for the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but mighty through God." It is for those who throw out such vile accusations against men' who desire to be God's servants, to beware lest, by the calumnies which they cast upon others who strive to live well, they "lame" their own souls, and "mutilate" the inner man, by severing from it that justice and moderation of mind which the Creator has planted in the nature of all His rational creatures. As for those, however, who, along with other lessons given by the Divine Word, have learned and practised this, "when reviled to bless, when persecuted to endure, when defamed to entreat,"(2) they may be said to be walking in spirit in the ways of uprightness, to be purifying and setting in order the whole soul. They distinguish--and to them the distinction is not one of words merely-- between "substance," or that which is, and that which is "becoming;" between things apprehended by reason, and things apprehended by sense; and they connect truth with the one, and avoid the errors arising out of the other; looking, as they have been taught, not at the things "becoming" or phenomenal, which are seen, and therefore temporary, but at better things than these, whether we call them "substance," or "spiritual" things, as being apprehended by reason, or "invisible," because they lie out of the reach of the senses. The disciples of Jesus regard these phenomenal things only that they may use them as steps to ascend to the knowledge of the things of reason. For "the invisible things of God," that is, the objects of the reason, "from the creation of the world are clearly seen" by the reason, "being understood by the things that are made." And when they have risen from the created things of this world to the invisible things of God, they do not stay there; but after they have sufficiently exercised their minds upon these, and have understood their nature, they ascend to "the eternal power of God," in a word, to His divinity. For they know that God, in His love to men, has "manifested" His truth, and "that which is known of Him," not only to those who devote themselves to His service, but also to some who are far removed from the purity of worship and service which He requires; and that some of those who by the providence of God had attained a knowledge of them truths, were yet doing things unworthy of, that knowledge, and "holding the truth in unrighteousness," and who are unable to find any excuse before God after the knowledge of such great truths which He has given them. CHAP. XLVII. For Scripture testifies, in regard to those who have a knowledge of those things of which Celsus speaks, and who profess a philosophy founded on these principles, that they, "when they knew God, glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful, but became vain in their imaginations;" and notwithstanding the bright light of knowledge with which God had enlightened them, "their foolish heart" was carried away, and became "darkened."(3) Thus we may see how those who accounted themselves wise gave proofs of great folly, when, alter such grand arguments delivered in the schools on God and on things apprehended by the reason, they "changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things."(4) As, then, they lived in a way unworthy of the knowledge which they had received from God, His providence leaving them to themselves, they were given "up to uncleanness, through the lusts of their own hearts to dishonour their own bodies,"(5) in shamelessness and licentiousness, because they "changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator." CHAP. XLVIII. But those who are despised for their ignorance, and set down as fools and abject slaves, no sooner commit themselves to God's guidance by accepting the teaching of Jesus, than, so far from defiling themselves by licentious indulgence or the gratification of shameless passion, they in many cases, like perfect priests, for whom such pleasures have no charm, keep themselves in act and in thought in a state of virgin purity. The Athenians have one hierophant, who, not having confidence in his power to restrain his passions within the limits he, prescribed for himself, determined to check them at their seat by the application of hemlock; and thus he was accounted pure, and fit for the celebration of religious worship among the Athenians. But among Christians may be found men who have no need of hemlock to fit them for the pure service of God, and for whom the Word in place of hemlock is able to drive all evil desires from their thoughts, so that they may present their prayers to the Divine Being. And attached to the other so-called gods are a select number of virgins, who are guarded by men, or it may be not guarded (for that is not the point in question at present), and who are supposed to live in purity for the honour of the god they serve. But among Christians, those who maintain a perpetual virginity do so for no human honours, for no fee or reward, from no motive of vainglory;(1) but "as they choose to retain God in their knowledge,"(2) they are preserved by God in a spirit well-pleasing to Him, and in the discharge of every duty, being filled with all righteousness and goodness. CHAP. XLIX. What I have now said, then, is offered not for the purpose of cavilling with any right opinions or sound doctrines held even by Greeks, but with the desire of showing that the same things, and indeed much better and diviner things than these, have been said by those divine men, the prophets of God and the apostles of Jesus. These truths are fully investigated by all who wish to attain a perfect knowledge of Christianity, and who know that "the mouth of the righteous speaketh wisdom, and his tongue talketh of judgment; the law of his God is in his heart."(3) But even in regard to those who, either from deficiency or knowledge or want of inclination, or from not having Jesus to lead them to a rational view of religion, have not gone into these deep questions, we find that they believe in the Most High God, and in His Only-begotten Son, the Word and God, and that they often exhibit in their character a high degree of gravity, of purity, and integrity; while those who call themselves wise have despised these virtues, and have wallowed in the filth of sodomy, in lawless lust, "men with men working that which is unseemly."(4) CHAP. L. Celsus has not explained how error accompanies the "becoming," or product of generation; nor has he expressed himself with sufficient clearness to enable us to compare his ideas with ours, and to pass judgment on them. But the prophets, who have given some wise suggestions on the subject of things produced by generation, tell us that a sacrifice for sin was offered even for new-born infants, as not being free from sin.(5) They say, "I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me;"(6) also, "They are estranged from the womb;" which is followed by the singular expression, "They go astray as soon as they are born, speaking lies."(7) Besides, our wise men have such a contempt for all sensible objects, that sometimes they speak of all material things as vanity: thus, "For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him that subjected the same in hope;"(8) at other times as vanity of vanities, "Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, all is vanity."(9) Who has given so severe an estimate of the life of the human soul here on earth, as he who says: "Verily every man at his best estate is altogether vanity?"(10) He does not hesitate at all as to the difference between the present life of the soul and that which it is to lead hereafter. He does not say, "Who knows if to die is not to live, and if to live is not death"(11) But he boldly proclaims the truth, and says, "Our soul is bowed down to the dust;"(12) and, "Thou hast brought me into the dust of death;"(13) and similarly, "Who will deliver me from the body of this death?"(14) also, "Who will change the body of our humiliation."(15) It is a prophet also who says, "Thou hast brought us down in a place of affliction;"(16) meaning by the "place of affliction" this earthly region, to which Adam, that is to say, man, came after he was driven out of paradise for sin. Observe also how well the different life of the soul here and hereafter has been recognised by him who says, "Now we see in a glass, obscurely, but then face to face;"(17) and, "Whilst we are in our home in the body, we are away from our home in the Lord;" wherefore "we are well content to go from our home in the body, and to come to our home with the Lord."(18) CHAP. LI. But what need is there to quote any more passages against Celsus, in order to prove that his words contain nothing which was not said long before among themselves, since that has been sufficiently established by what we have said? It seems that what follows has some reference to this: "If you think that a Divine Spirit has descended from God to announce divine things to men, it is doubtless this same Spirit that reveals these truths; and it was under the same influence that men of old made known many important truths." But he does not know how great is the difference between those things and the clear and certain teaching of those who say to us, "Thine incorruptible spirit is in all things, wherefore God chasteneth them by little and little that offend;"(1) and of those who, among their other instructions, teach us that words, "Receive ye the Holy Ghost,"(2) refer to a degree of spiritual influence higher than that in the passage, "Ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence."(3) But it is a difficult matter, even after much careful consideration, to perceive the difference between those who have received a knowledge of the truth and a notion of God at different intervals and for short periods of time, and those who are more fully inspired by God, who have constant communion with Him, and are always led by His Spirit. Had Celsus set himself to understand this, he would not have reproached as with ignorance, or forbidden us to characterize as "blind" those who believe that religion shows itself in such products of man's mechanical art as images. For every one who sees with eyes of his soul serves the Divine Being in no other way than in that which leads him ever to have regard to the Creator of all, to address his prayers to Him alone, and to do all things as in the sight of God, who sees us altogether, even to our thoughts. Our earnest desire then is both to see for ourselves, and to be leaders of the blind, to bring them to the Word of God, that He may take away from their minds the blindness of ignorance. And if our actions are worthy of Him who taught His disciples, "Ye are the light of the world,"(4) and of the Word, who says, "The light shineth in darkness,"(5) then we shall be light to those who are in darkness we shall give wisdom to those who are without it, and we shall instruct the ignorant. CHAP. LII. And let not Celsus be angry if we describe as Fame and mutilated in soul those who run to the temples as to places having a real sacredness and who cannot see that no mere mechanical work of man can be truly sacred. Those whose piety is grounded on the teaching of Jesus also run until they come to the end of their course, when they can say in all truth and confidence: "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course I have kept the faith; henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness."(6) And each of us runs "not as uncertain," and he so fights with evil "not as one beating the air," (7) but as against those who are subject to "the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience."(8) Celsus may indeed say of us that we "live with the body which is a dead thing;" but we have learnt, "If ye live after the flesh, ye shall die; but if ye by the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live;"(9) and, "If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit."(10) Would that we might convince him by our actions that he did us wrong, when he said that we "live with the body which is dead!" CHAP. LIII. After these remarks of Celsus, which we have done our best to refute, he goes on to address us thus: "Seeing you are so eager for some novelty, how much better it would have been if you had chosen as the object of your zealous homage some one of those who died a glorious death, and whose divinity might have received the support of some myth to perpetuate his memory! Why, if you were not satisfied with Hercules or Aesculapius, and other heroes of antiquity, you had Orpheus, who was confessedly a divinely inspired man, who died a violent death. But perhaps some others have taken him up before you. You may then take Anaxarchus, who, when cast into a mortar, and beaten most barbarously, showed a noble contempt for his suffering, and said, 'Beat, beat the shell of Anaxarchus, for himself you do not beat,'--a speech surely of a spirit truly divine. But others were before you in following his interpretation of the laws of nature. Might you not, then, take Epictetus, who, when his master was twisting his leg, said, smiling and. unmoved, 'You will break my leg;' and when it was broken, he added, Did I not tell you that you would break it?' What saying equal to these did your god' utter under suffering? If you had said even of the Sibyl, whose authority some of you acknowledge, that she was a child of God, you would have said something more reasonable. But you have had the presumption to include in her writings many impious things,(11) and set up as a god one who ended a most infamous life by a most miserable death. How much more suitable than he would have been Jonah in the whale's belly, or Daniel delivered from the wild beasts, or any of a still more portentous kind!" CHAP. LIV. But since he sends us to Hercules, let him repeat to us any of his sayings, and let him justify his shameful subjection to Omphale. Let him show that divine honours should be paid to one who, like a highway robber, carries off a farmer's ox by force, and afterwards devours it, amusing himself meanwhile with the curses of the owner; in memory of which even to this day sacrifices offered to the demon of Hercules are accompanied with curses. Again he proposes Aesculapius to us, as if to oblige us to repeat what we have said already; but we forbear. In regard to Orpheus, what does he admire in him to make him assert that, by common consent, he was regarded as a divinely inspired man, and lived a noble life? I am greatly deceived if it is not the desire which Celsus has to oppose us and put down Jesus that leads him to sound forth the praises of Orpheus; and whether, when he made himself acquainted with his impious fables about the gods, he did not cast them aside as deserving, even more than the poems of Homer, to be excluded from a well-ordered state. For, indeed, Orpheus says much Worse things than Homer of those whom they call gods. Noble, indeed, it was in Anaxarchus to say to Aristocreon, tyrant of Cyprus, "Beat on, beat the shell of Anaxarchus," but it is the one admirable incident in the life of Anaxarchus known to the Greeks; and although, on the strength of that, some like Celsus might deservedly honour the man for his courage, yet to look up to Anaxarchus as a god is not consistent with reason. He also directs us to Epictetus, whose firmness is justly admired, although his saying when his leg was broken by his master is not to be compared with the marvellous acts and words of Jesus which Celsus refuses to believe; and these words were accompanied by such a divine power, that even to this day they convert not only some of the more ignorant and simple, but many also of the most enlightened of men. CHAP. LV. When, to his enumeration of those to whom he would send us, he adds, "What saying equal to these did your god utter under sufferings?" we would reply, that the silence of Jesus under scourgings, and amidst all His sufferings, spoke more for His firmness and submission than all that was said by the Greeks when beset by calamity. Perhaps Celsus may believe what was recorded with all sincerity by trustworthy men, who, while giving a truthful account of all the wonders performed by Jesus, specify among these the silence which He preserved when subjected to scourgings; showing the same singular meekness Under the insults which were heaped upon Him, when they put upon Him the purple robe, and set the crown of thorns upon His head, and when they put in His hand a reed in place of a sceptre: no unworthy or angry word escaped Him against those who subjected Him to such outrages. Since, then, He received the scourgings with silent firmness, and bore with meekness all the insults of those who outraged Him, it cannot be said, as is said by some, that it was in cowardly weakness that He uttered the words: "Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as Thou wilt."(1) The prayer which seems to be contained in these words for the removal of what He calls "the cup" bears a sense which we have elsewhere examined and set forth at large. But taking it in its more obvious sense, consider if it be not a prayer offered to God with all piety. For no man naturally regards anything which may befall him as necessary and inevitable; though he may submit to what is not inevitable, if occasion requires. Besides, these words, "nevertheless, not as I will, but as Thou wilt," are not the language of one who yielded to necessity, but of one who was contented with what was befalling Him, and who submitted with reverence to the arrangements of Providence. CHAP. LVI. Celsus then adds, for what reason I know not, that instead of calling Jesus the Son of God, we had better have given that honour to the Sibyl, in whose books he maintains we have interpolated many impious statements, though he does not mention what those interpolations are.(2) He might have proved his assertion by producing some older copies which are free from the interpolations which he attributes to us; but he does not do so even to justify his statement that these passages are of an impious character. Moreover, he again speaks of the life of Jesus as "a most infamous life," as he has done before, not once or twice, but many times, although he does not stay to specify any of the actions of His life which he thinks most infamous. He seems to think that he may in this way make assertions without proving them, and rail against one of whom he knows nothing. Had he set himself to show what sort of infamy he found in the actions of Jesus, we should have repelled the several charges brought against Him. Jesus did indeed meet with a most sad death; but the same might be said of Socrates, and of Anaxarchus, whom he had just mentioned, and a multitude of others. If the death of Jesus was a miserable one, was not that of the others so too? And if their death was not miserable, can it be said that the death of Jesus was? You see from this, then, that the object of Celsus is to vilify the character of Jesus; and I can only suppose that he is driven to it by some spirit akin to those whose power has been broken and vanquished by Jesus, and which now finds itself deprived of the smoke and blood on which it lived, whilst deceiving those who sought for God here upon earth in images, instead of looking up to the true God, the Governor of all things. CHAP. LVII. After this, as though his object was to swell the size of his book, he advises us "to choose Jonah rather than Jesus as our God;" thus setting Jonah, who preached repentance to the single city of Nineveh, before Jesus, who has preached repentance to the whole world, and with much greater results. He would have us to regard as God a man who, by a strange miracle, passed three days and three nights in the whale's belly; and he is unwilling that He who submitted to death for the sake of men, He to whom God bore testimony through the prophets, and who has done great things in heaven and earth, should receive on that ground honour second only to that which is given to the Most High God. Moreover, Jonah was swallowed by the whale for refusing to preach as God had commanded him; while Jesus suffered death for men after He had given the instructions which God wished Him to give. Still further, he adds that Daniel rescued from the lions is more worthy of our adoration than Jesus, who subdued the fierceness of every opposing power, and gave to us "authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy."(1) Finally, having no other names to offer us, he adds, "and others of a still more monstrous kind," thus casting a slight upon both Jonah and Daniel, for the spirit which is in Celsus cannot speak well of the righteous. CHAP. LVIII. Let us now consider what follows. "They have also," says he, "a precept to this effect, that we ought not to avenge ourselves on one who injures us, or, as he expresses it, 'Whosoever shall strike thee on the one cheek, turn to him the other also.' This is an ancient saying, which had been admirably expressed long before, and which they have only reported in a coarser way. For Plato introduces Socrates conversing with Crito as follows: 'Must we never do injustice to any?' 'Certainly not.' 'And since we must never do injustice, must we not return injustice for an injustice that has been done to us, as most people think?' 'It seems to me that we should not.' 'But tell me, Crito, may we do evil to any one or not?' 'Certainly not, O Socrates.' 'Well, is it just, as is commonly said, for one who has suffered wrong to do wrong in return, or is it unjust?' 'It is unjust. Yes; for to do harm to a man is the same as to do him injustice.' 'You speak truly. We must then not do injustice in return for injustice, nor must we do evil to any one, whatever evil we may have suffered from him.' Thus Plato speaks; and he adds, 'Consider, then, whether you are at one with me, and whether, starting from this principle, we may not come to the conclusion .that it is never right to do injustice, even in return for an injustice which has been received; or whether, on the other hand, you differ from me, and do not admit the principle from which we started. That has always been my opinion, and is so still.'(2) Such are the sentiments of Plato, and indeed they were held by divine men before his time. But let this suffice as one example of the way in which this and other truths have been borrowed and corrupted. Any one who wishes can easily by searching find more of them." CHAP. LIX. When Celsus here or elsewhere finds himself unable to dispute the truth of what we say, but avers that the same things were said by the Greeks, our answer is, that if the doctrine be sound, and the effect of it good, whether it was, made known to the Greeks by Plato or any of the wise men of Greece, or whether it was delivered to the Jews by Moses or any of the prophets, or whether it was given to the Christians in the recorded teaching of Jesus Christ, or in the instructions of His apostles, that does not affect the value of the truth communicated. It is no objection to the principles of Jews or Christians, that the same things were also said by the Greeks, especially if it be proved that the writings of the Jews are older than those of the Greeks. And further, we are not to imagine that a truth adorned with the graces of Grecian speech is necessarily better than the same when expressed in the more humble and unpretending language used by Jews and Christians, although indeed the language of the Jews, in which the prophets wrote the books which have come down to us, has a grace of expression peculiar tO the genius of the Hebrew tongue. And even if we were required to show that the same doctrines have been better expressed among the Jewish prophets or in Christian writings, however paradoxical it may seem, we are prepared to prove this by an illustration taken from different kinds of food, and from the different modes of preparing them. Suppose that a kind of food which is wholesome and nutritious has been prepared and seasoned in such a way as to be fit, not for the simple tastes of peasants and poor labourers, but for those only who are rich and dainty in their tastes. Suppose, again, that that same food is prepared not to suit the tastes of the more delicate, but for the peasants, the poor labourers, and the common people generally, in short, so that myriads of persons might eat of it. Now if, according to the supposition, the food prepared in the one way promotes the health of those only who are styled the better classes, while none of the others could taste it, whereas when prepared in the other way it promoted the health of great multitudes of men, which shall we esteem as most contributing to the public welfare,--those who prepare food for persons of mark, or those who prepare it for the multitudes?--taking for granted that in both cases the food is equally wholesome and nourishing; while it is evident that the welfare of mankind and the common good are promoted better by that physician who attends to the health of the many, than by one who confines his attention to a few. CHAP. LX. Now, after understanding this illustration, we have to apply it to the qualities of spiritual food with which the rational part of man is nourished. See, then, if Plato and the wise men among the Greeks, in the beautiful things they say, are not like those physicians who confine their attentions to what are called the better classes of society, and despise the multitude; whereas the prophets among the Jews, and the disciples of Jesus, who despise mere elegances of style, and what is called in Scripture "the wisdom of men," "the wisdom according to the flesh," which delights in what is obscure, resemble those who study to provide the most wholesome food for the largest number of persons. For this purpose they adapt their language and style to the capacities of the common people, and avoid whatever would seem foreign to them, lest by the introduction of strange forms of expression they should produce a distaste for their teaching. Indeed, if the true use of spiritual food, to keep up the figure, is to produce in him who partakes of it the virtues of patience and gentleness, must that discourse not be better prepared when it produces patience and gentleness in multitudes, or makes them grow in these virtues, than that which confines its effects to a select few, supposing that it does really make them gentle and patient? If a Greek wished by wholesome instruction to benefit people who understood only Egyptian or Syriac, the first thing that he would do would be to learn their language; and he would rather pass for a Barbarian among the Greeks, by speaking as the Egyptians or Syrians, in order to be useful to them, than always remain Greek, and be without the means of helping them. In the same way the divine nature, having the purpose of instructing not only those who are reputed to be learned in the literature of Greece, but also the rest of mankind, accommodated itself to the capacities of the simple multitudes whom it addressed. It seeks to win the attention of the more ignorant by the use of language which is familiar to them, so that they may easily be induced, after their first introduction, to strive after an acquaintance with the deeper truths which lie hidden in Scripture. For even the ordinary reader of Scripture may see that it contains many things which are too deep to be apprehended at first; but these are understood by such as devote themselves to a careful study of the divine word, and they become plain to them in proportion to the pains and zeal which they expend upon its investigation. CHAP. LXI. From these remarks it is evident, that when Jesus said "coarsely," as Celsus terms it, "To him who shall strike thee on the one cheek, turn the other also; and if any man be minded to sue thee at the law, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also,"(1) He expressed Himself in such a way as to make the precept have more practical effect than the words of Plato in the Crito; for the latter is so far from being intelligible to ordinary persons, that even those have a difficulty in understanding him, who have been brought up in the schools of learning, and have been initiated into the famous philosophy of Greece. It may also be observed, that the precept enjoining patience under injuries is in no way corrupted or degraded by the plain and simple language which our Lord employs, but that in this, as in other cases, it is a mere calumny against our religion which he utters when he says: "But let this suffice as one example of the way in which this and other truths have been borrowed and corrupted. Any one who wishes can easily by searching find more of them." CHAP. LXII. Let us now see what follows. "Let us pass on," says he, "to another point. They cannot tolerate temples, altars, or images.(1) In this they are like the Scythians, the nomadic tribes of Libya, the Seres who worship no god, and some other of the most barbarous and impious nations in the world. That the Persians hold the same notions is shown by Herodotus in these words: 'I know that among the Persians it is considered unlawful to erect images, altars, or temples; but they charge those with folly who do so, because, as I conjecture, they do not, like the Greeks, suppose the gods to be of the nature of men.'(2) Heraclitus also says in one place: 'Persons who address prayers to these images act like those who speak to the walls, without knowing who the gods or the heroes are.' And what wiser lesson have they to teach us than Heraclitus? He certainly plainly enough implies that it is a foolish thing for a man to offer prayers to images, whilst he knows not who the gods and heroes are. This is the opinion of Heraclitus; but as for them, they go further, and despise without exception all images. If they merely mean that the stone, wood, brass, or gold which has been wrought by this or that workman cannot be a god, they are ridiculous with their wisdom. For who, unless he be utterly childish in his simpliCity, can take these for gods, and not for offerings consecrated to the service of the gods, or images representing them? But if we are not to regard these as representing the Divine Being, seeing that God has a different form, as the Persians concur with them in saying, then let them take care that they do not contradict themselves; for they say that God made man His own image, and that He gave him a form like to Himself. However, they will admit that these images, whether they are like or not, are made and dedicated to the honour of certain beings. But they will hold that the beings to whom they are dedicated are not gods, but demons, and that a worshipper of God ought not to worship demons." CHAP. LXIII. To this our answer is, that if the Scythians, the nomadic tribes of Libya, the Seres, who according to Celsus have no god, if those other most barbarous and impious nations in the world, and if the Persians even cannot bear the sight of temples, altars, and images, it does not follow because we cannot suffer them any more than they, that the grounds on which we object to them are the same as theirs. We must inquire into the principles on which the objection to temples and images is rounded, in order that we may approve of those who object on sound principles, and condemn those whose principles are false. For one and the same thing may be done for different reasons. For example, the philosophers who follow Zeno of Citium abstain from committing adultery, the followers of Epicurus do so too, as well as others again who do so on no philosophical principles; but observe what different reasons determine the conduct of these different classes. The first consider the interests of society, and hold it to be forbidden by nature that a man who is a reasonable being should corrupt a woman whom the laws have already given to another, and should thus break up the household of another man. The Epicureans do not reason in this way; but if they abstain from adultery, it is because, regarding pleasure as the chief end of man, they perceive that one who gives himself up to, adultery, encounters for the sake of this one pleasure a multitude of obstacles to pleasure, such as imprisonment, exile, and death itself. They often, indeed, run considerable risk at the outset, while watching for the departure from the house of the master and those in his interest. So that, supposing it possible for a man to commit adultery, and escape the knowledge of the husband, of his servants, and of others whose esteem he would forfeit, then the Epicurean would yield to the commission of the crime for the sake of pleasure. The man of no philosophical system, again, who abstains from adultery when the opportunity comes to him, does so generally from dread of the law and its penalties, and not for the sake of enjoying a greater number of other pleasures. You see, then, that an act which passes for being one and the same--namely, abstinence from adultery-- is not the same, but differs in different men according to the motives which actuate it: one man refraining for sound reasons, another for such bad and impious ones as those of the Epicurean, and the common person of whom we have spoken. CHAP. LXIV. As, then, this act of self-restraint, which in appearance is one and the same, is found in fact to be different in different persons, according to the principles and motives which lead to it; so in the same way with those who cannot allow in the worship of the Divine Being altars, or temples, or images. The Scythians, the Nomadic Libyans, the godless Seres, and the Persians, agree in this with the Christians and Jews, but they are actuated by very different principles. For none of these former abhor altars and images on the ground that they arc afraid of degrading the worship of God, and reducing it to the worship of material things wrought by the hands of men.(3) Neither do they object to them from a belief that the demons choose certain forms and places, whether because they are detained there by virtue of certain charms, or because for some other possible reason they have selected these haunts, where they may pursue their criminal pleasures, in partaking of the smoke of sacrificial victims. But Christians and Jews have regard to this command, "Thou shalt fear the Lord thy God, and serve Him alone;"(1) and this other, "Thou shalt have no other gods before Me: thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them;"(2) and again, "Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve."(3) It is in consideration of these and many other such commands, that they not only avoid temples, altars, and images, but are ready to suffer death when it is necessary, rather than debase by any such impiety the conception which they have of the Most High God. CHAP. LXV. In regard to the Persians, we have already said that though they do not build temples, yet they worship the sun and the other works of God. This is forbidden to us, for we have been taught not to worship the creature instead of the Creator, but to know that "the creation shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the liberty of the glory of the children of God;" and "the earnest expectation of the creation is waiting for the revelation of the sons of God;" and "the creation was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by; reason of him who made it subject:, in hope."(4) We believe, therefore, that things "under the bondage of corruption," and "subject to vanity," which remain in this condition "in hope" of a better state, ought not in our worship to hold the place of God, the all-sufficient, and of His Son, the First-born of all creation. Let this suffice, in addition to what we have already said of the Persians, who abhor altars and images, but who serve the creature instead of the Creator. As to the passage quoted by Celsus from Heraclitus, the purport of which he represents as being, "that it is childish folly for one to offer prayers to images, whilst he knows not who the gods and heroes are," we may reply that it is easy to know that God and the Only-begotten Son of God, and those whom God has honoured with the title of God, and who partake of His divine nature, are very different from all the gods of the nations which are demons; but it is not possible at the same time to know God and to address prayers to images.(5) CHAP. LXVI. And the charge of folly applies not only to those who offer prayers to images, but also to such as pretend to do so in compliance with the example of the multitude: and to this class belong the Peripatetic philosophers and the followers of Epicurus and Democritus. For there is no falsehood or pretence in the soul which is possessed with true piety towards God. Another reason also why we abstain from doing honour to images, is that we may give no support to the notion that the images are gods. It is on this ground that we condemn Celsus, and all others who, while admitting that they are not gods, yet, with the reputation of being wise men, render to them what passes for homage. In this way they lead into sin the multitude who follow their example, and who worship these images not simply out of deference to custom, but from a belief into which they have fallen that they are true gods, and that those are not to be listened to who hold that the objects of their worship are not true gods. Celsus, indeed, says that "they do not take them for gods, but only as offerings dedicated to the gods." But he does not prove that they are not rather dedicated to men than, as he says, to the honour of the gods themselves; for it is clear that they are the offerings of men who were in error in their views of the Divine Being. Moreover, we do not imagine that these images are representations of God, for they cannot represent a being who is invisible and incorporeal.(6) But as Celsus supposes that we fall into a contradiction, whilst on the one hand we say that God has not a human form, and on the other we profess to believe that God made man the image of Himself, and created man the image of God; our answer is the same as has been given already, that we hold the resemblance to God to be preserved in the reasonable soul, which is formed to virtue, although Celsus, who does not see the difference between "being the image of God," and "being created after the image of God," pretends that we said, "God made man His own image, and gave him a form like to His own." But this also has been examined before. CHAP. LXVII. His next remark upon the Christians is: "They will admit that these images, whether they are like or not, are made and dedicated to the honour of certain beings; but they will hold that the beings to whom they are dedicated are not gods, but demons, and that a worshipper of God ought not to worship demons." If he had been acquainted with the nature of demons, and with their several operations, whether led on to them by the conjurations of those who are skilled in the art, or urged on by their own inclination to act according to their power and inclination; if, I say, he had thoroughly understood this subject, which is both wide in extent and difficult for human comprehension, he would not have condemned us for saying that those who worship the Supreme Being should not serve demons. For ourselves, so far are we from wishing to serve demons, that by the use of prayers and other means which we learn from Scripture, we drive them out of the souls of men, out of places where they have established themselves, and even sometimes from the bodies of animals; for even these creatures often suffer from injuries inflicted upon them by demons. CHAP. LXVIII. After all that we have already said concerning Jesus, it would be a useless repetition for us to answer these words of Celsus: "It is easy to convict them of worshipping not a god, not even demons, but a dead person." Leaving, then, this objection for the reason assigned, let us pass on to what follows: "In the first place, I would ask why we are not to serve demons? Is it not true that all things are ordered according to God's will, and that His providence governs all things? Is not everything which happens in the universe, whether it be the work of God, of angels, of other demons, or of heroes, regulated by the law of the Most High God? Have these not had assigned them various departments of which they were severally deemed worthy? it not just, therefore, that he who worships God should serve those also to whom God has assigned such power? Yet it is impossible, he says, for a man to serve many masters." Observe here again how he settles at once a number of questions which require considerable research, and a profound acquaintance with what is most mysterious in the government of the universe. For we must inquire into the meaning of the statement, that "all things are ordered according to God's will," and ascertain whether sins are or are not included among the things which God orders. For if God's government extends to sins not only in men, but also in demons and in any other spiritual beings who are capable of sin, it is for those who speak in this manner to see how inconvenient is the expression that "all things are ordered by the will of God." For it follows from it that all sins and all their consequences are ordered by the will of God, which is a different thing from saying that they come to pass with God's permission. For if we take the word "ordered" in its proper signification, and say that "all the results of sin were ordered," then it is evident that all things are ordered according to God's will, and that all, therefore, who do evil do not offend against His government. And the same distinction holds in regard to "providence." When we say that "the providence of God regulates all things," we utter a great truth if we attribute to that providence nothing but what is just and right. But if we ascribe to the providence of God all things whatsoever, however unjust they rusty be, then it is no longer true that the providence of God regulates all things, unless we refer directly to God's providence things which flow as results from His arrangements. Celsus maintains also, that "whatever happens in the universe, whether it be the work of God, of angels, of other demons, or of heroes, is regulated by the law of the Most High God." But this also is incorrect; for we cannot say that transgressors follow the law of God when they transgress; and Scripture declares that it is not only wicked men who are transgressors, but also wicked demons and wicked angels. CHAP. LXIX. And it is not we alone who speak of wicked demons, but almost all who acknowledge the existence of demons. Thus, then, it is not true that all observe the law of the Most High; for all who fall away from the divine law, whether through heedlessness, or through depravity and vice, or through ignorance of what is right, all such do not keep the law of God, but, to use a new phrase which we find in Scripture, "the law of sin. I say, then, that in the opinion of most of those who believe in the existence of demons, some of them are wicked; and these, instead of keeping the law of God, offend against it. But, according to our belief, it is true of all demons, that they were not demons originally, but they became so in departing from the true way; so that the name "demons" is given to those beings who have fallen away from God. Accordingly, those who worship God must not serve demons. We may also learn the true nature of demons if we consider the practice of those who call upon them by charms to prevent certain things, or for many other purposes. For this is the method they adopt, in order by means of incantations and magical arts to invoke the demons, and induce them to further their wishes. Wherefore, the worship of all demons would be inconsistent in us who worship the Supreme God; and the service of demons is the service of so-called gods, for "all the gods of the heathen are demons.''(1) The same thing also appears from the fact that the dedication of the most famous of the so-called sacred places, whether temples or statues, was accompanied by curious magical incantations, which were performed by those who zealously served the demons with magical arts. Hence we are determined to avoid the worship of demons even as we would avoid death; and we hold that the worship, which is supposed among the Greeks to be rendered to gods at the altars, and images, and temples, is in reality offered to demons. CHAP. LXX. His next remark was, "Have not these inferior powers had assigned to them by God different departments, according as each was deemed worthy?" But this is a question which requires a very profound knowledge. For we must determine whether the Word of God, who governs all things, has appointed wicked demons for certain employments, in the same way as in states executioners are appointed, and other officers with creel but needful duties to discharge; or whether as among robbers, who infest desert places, it is customary for them to choose out of their number one who may be their leader,--so the demons, who are scattered as it were in troops in different parts of the earth, have chosen for themselves a chief under whose command they may plunder and pillage the souls of men. To explain this fully, and to justify the conduct of the Christians in refusing homage to any object except the Most High God, and the First-born of all creation, who is His Word and God, we must quote this from Scripture, "All that ever came before Me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them;" and again, "The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy;"' and other similar passages, as, "Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power. of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you;"(2) and again, "Thou shall tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shall thou trample under feet."(3) But of these things Celsus knew nothing, or he would not have made use of language like this: "Is not everything which happens in the universe, whether it be the work of God, of angels, of other demons, or of heroes, regulated by the law of the Most High God? Have these not had assigned to them various departments of which they were severally deemed worthy? Is it not just, therefore, that he who serves God should serve those also to whom God has assigned such power?" To which he adds, "It is impossible, they say, for a man to serve many masters." This last point we must postpone to the next book; for this, which is the seventh book which we have written in answer to the treatise of Celsus, is already of sufficient length. ORIGEN AGAINST CELSUS. BOOK VIII. CHAP. I. Having completed seven books, I now propose to begin the eighth. And may God and His Only-begotten Son the Word be with us, to enable us effectively to refute the falsehoods which Celsus has published under the delusive title of A True Discourse, and at the same time to unfold the truths of Christianity with such fulness as our purpose requires. And as Paul said, "We are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us,"' so would we in the same spirit and language earnestly desire to be ambassadors for Christ to men, even as the Word of God beseeches them to the love of Himself, seeking to win over to righteousness truth, and the other virtues, those who, until they receive the doctrines of Jesus Christ, live in darkness about God and in ignorance of their Creator. Again, then, I would say, may God bestow upon us His pure and true Word, even "the Lord strong and mighty in battle"(2) against sin. We must now proceed to state the next objection of Celsus, and afterwards to answer it. CHAP. II. In a passage previously quoted Celsus asks us why we do not worship demons, and to his remarks on demons we gave such an answer as seemed to us in accordance with the divine word. After having put this question for the purpose of leading us to the worship of demons, he represents us as answering that it is impossible to serve many masters. "This," he goes on to say, "is the language of sedition, and is only used by those who separate themselves and stand aloof from all human society. Those who speak in this way ascribe," as he supposes, "their own feelings and passions to God. It does hold true among men, that he who is in the service of one master cannot well serve another, because the service which he renders to the one interferes with that which he owes to the other; and no one, therefore, who has already engaged himself to the service of one, must accept that of another. And, in like manner, it is impossible to serve at the same time heroes or demons of different natures. But in regard to God, who is subject to no suffering or loss, it is," he thinks, "absurd to be on our guard against serving more gods, as though we had to do with demi-gods, or other spirits of that sort." He says also, "He who serves many gods does that which is pleasing to the Most High, because he honours that which belongs to Him." And he adds, "It is indeed wrong to give honour to any to whom God has not given honour." "Wherefore," he says, "in honouring and worshipping all belonging to God, we will not displease Him to whom they all belong." CHAP. III. Before proceeding to the next point, it may be well for us to see whether we do not accept with approval the saying, "No man can serve two masters," with the addition, "for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other," and further, "Ye cannot serve God and mammon."(3) The defence of this passage will lead us to a deeper and more searching inquiry into the meaning and application of the words "gods" and "lords." Divine Scripture teaches us that there is "a great Lord above all gods."(4) And by this name "gods" we are not to understand the objects of heathen worship (for we know that "all the gods of the heathen are demons"(5)), but the gods mentioned by the prophets as forming an assembly, whom God "judges," and to each of whom He assigns his proper work. For "God standeth in the assembly of the gods: He judgeth among the gods."(6) For "God is Lord of gods," who by His Son "hath called the earth from the rising of the sun unto the going down thereof."(1) We are also commanded to "give thanks to the God of gods."(2) Moreover, we are taught that "God is not the God of the dead, but of the living."(3) Nor are these the only passages to this effect; but there are very many others. CHAP. IV. The sacred Scriptures teach us to think, in like manner, of the Lord of lords. For they say in one place, "Give thanks to the God of gods, for His mercy endureth for ever. Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for His mercy endureth for ever;" and in another, "God is King of kings, and Lord of lords." For Scripture distinguishes between those gods which are such only in name and those which are truly gods, whether they are called by that name or not; and the same is true in regard to the use of the word "lords." To this effect Paul says, "For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, as there are gods many, and lords many."(4) But as the God of gods calls whom He pleases through Jesus to his inheritance, "from the east and from the west," and the Christ of God thus shows His superiority to all rulers by entering into their several provinces, and summoning men out of them to be subject to Himself, Paul therefore, with this in view, goes on to say, "But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by Him;" adding, as if with a deep sense of the marvellous and mysterious nature of the doctrine, "Howbeit there is not in every man that knowledge." When he says, "To us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things," by "us" he means himself and all those who have risen up to the supreme God of gods and to the supreme Lord of lords. Now he has risen to the supreme God who gives Him an entire and undivided worship through His Son--the word and wisdom of God made manifest in Jesus. For it is the Son alone who leads to God those who are striving, by the purity of their thoughts, words, and deeds, to come near to God the Creator of the universe. I think, therefore, that the prince of this world, who "transforms himself into an angel of light," s was referring to this and such like statements in the words, "Him follows a host of gods and demons, arranged in eleven bands."(6) Speaking of himself and the philosophers, he says, "We are of the party of Jupiter; others belong to other demons." CHAP. V. Whilst there are thus many gods and lords, whereof some are such in reality, and others are such only in name, we strive to rise not only above those whom the nations of the earth worship as gods, but also beyond those spoken of as gods in Scripture, of whom they are wholly ignorant who are strangers to the covenants of God given by Moses and by our Saviour Jesus, and who have no part in the promises which He has made to us through them. That man rises above all demon-worship who does nothing that is pleasing to demons; and he rises to a blessedness beyond that of those whom Paul calls "gods," if he is enabled, like them, or in any way he may, "to look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are unseen." And he who considers that" the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God, not willingly, but by reason of him who subjected the same in hope," whilst he praises the creature, and sees how "it shall be freed altogether from the bondage of corruption, and restored to the glorious liberty of the children of God,"(7)--such a one cannot be induced to combine with the service of God the service of any other, or to serve two masters. There is therefore nothing seditious or factious in the language of those who hold these views, and who refuse to serve more masters than one. To them Jesus Christ is an all-sufficient Lord, who Himself instructs them, in order that when fully instructed He may form them into a kingdom worthy of God, and present them to God the Father. But indeed they do in a sense separate themselves and stand aloof from those who are aliens from the commonwealth of God and strangers to His covenants, in order that they may live as citizens of heaven, "coming to the living God, and to the city of God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and Church of the first-born, which are written in heaven."(8) CHAP. VI. But when we refuse to serve any other than God through His word and wisdom, we do so, not as though we would thereby be doing any harm or injury to God, in the same way as injury would be done to a man by his servant entering into the service of another, but we fear that we ourselves should suffer harm by depriving ourselves of our portion in God, through which we live in the participation of the divine blessedness, and are imbued with that excellent spirit of adoption which in the sons of the heavenly Father cries, not with words, but with deep effect in the inmost heart, "Abba, Father." The Lacedaemonian ambassadors, when brought before the king of Persia, refused to prostrate themselves before him, when the attendants endeavoured to compel them to do so, out of respect for that which alone had authority and lordship over them, namely, the law of Lycurgus.(1) But they who have a much greater and diviner embassy in "being ambassadors for Christ" should not worship any ruler among Persians, or Greeks or Egyptians, or of any nation whatever, even although their officers and ministers, demons and angels of the devil, should seek to compel them to do so, and should urge them to set at nought a law which is mightier than all the laws upon earth. For the Lord of those who are "ambassadors for Christ" is Christ Himself, whose ambassadors they are, and who is "the Word, who was in the beginning, was with God, and was God."(2) CHAP. VII. But when Celsus speaks of heroes and demons, he starts a deeper question than he is aware of. For after the statement which he made in regard to service among men, that" the first master is injured when any of his servants wishes at the same time to serve another," he adds, that "the same holds true of heroes, and other demons of that kind." Now we must inquire of him what nature he thinks those heroes and demons possess of whom he affirms that he who serves one hero may not serve another, and he who serves one demon may not serve another, as though the former hero or demon would be injured in the same way as men are injured when they who serve them first afterwards give themselves to the service of others. Let him also state what loss he supposes those heroes or demons will suffer. For he will be driven either to plunge into endless absurdities, and first repeat, then retract his previous statements; or else to abandon his frivolous conjectures, and confess that he understands nothing of the nature of heroes and demons. And in regard to his statement, that men suffer injury when the servant of one man enters the service of a second master, the question arises: "What is the nature of the injury which is done to the former master by a servant who, while serving him, wishes at the same time to serve another?" CHAP. VIII. For if he answers, as one who is unlearned and ignorant of philosophy, that the injury sustained is one which regards things that are outside of us, it will be plainly manifest that he knows nothing of that famous saying of Socrates, "Anytus and Melitus may kill me, but they cannot injure me; for it is impossible that the better should ever be injured by the worse." But if by injury he means a wicked impulse or an evil habit, it is plain that no injury of this kind would befall the wise, by one man serving two wise men in different places. If this sense does not suit his purpose, it is evident that his endeavours are vain to weaken the authority of the passage, "No man can serve two masters;" for these words can be perfectly true only when they refer to the service which we render to the Most High through His Son, who leadeth us to God. And we will not serve God as though He stood in need of our service, or as though He would be made unhappy if we ceased to serve Him; but we do it because we are ourselves benefited by the service of God, and because we are freed from griefs and troubles by serving the Most High God through His only-begotten Son, the Word and Wisdom. CHAP. IX. And observe the recklessness of that expression, "For if thou worship any other of the things in the universe," as though he would have us believe that we are led by our service of God to the worship of any other things which belong to God, without any injury to ourselves. But, as if feeling his error, he corrects the words, "If thou worship any other of the things in the universe," by adding, "We may honour none, however, except those to whom that right has been given by God." And we would put to Celsus this question in regard to those who are honoured as gods, as demons, or as heroes: "Now, sir, can you prove that the right to be honoured has been given to these by God, and that it has not arisen from the ignorance and folly of men who in their wanderings have fallen away from Him to whom alone worship and service are properly due? You said a little ago, O Celsus, that Antinous, the favourite of Adrian, is honoured; but surely you will not say that the right to be worshipped as a god was given to him by the God of the universe? And so of the others, we ask proof that the right to be worshipped was given to them by the Most High God." But if the same question is put to us in regard to the worship of Jesus, we will show that the right to be honoured was given to Him by God, "that all may honour the Son, even as they honour the Father."(3) For all the prophecies which preceded His birth were preparations for His worship. And the wonders which He wrought--through no magical art, as Celsus supposes, but by a divine power, which was foretold by the prophets--have served as a testimony from God in behalf of the worship of Christ. He who honours the Son, who is the Word and Reason, acts in nowise contrary to reason, and gains for himself great good; he who honours Him, who is the Truth, becomes better by honouring truth: and this we may say of honouring wisdom, righteousness, and all the other names by which the sacred Scriptures are wont to designate the Son of God. CHAP. X. But that the honour which we pay to the Son of God, as well as that which we render to God the Father, consists of an upright course of life, is plainly taught us by the passage, "Thou that makest thy boast of the law, through breaking the law dishonourest thou God?"(1) and also, "Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?"(2) For if he who transgresses the law dishonours God by his transgression, and he who treads under foot the word treads under foot the Son of God, it is evident that he who keeps the law honours God, and that the worshipper of God is he whose life is regulated by the principles and precepts of the divine word. Had Celsus known who they are who are God's people, and that they alone are wise,--and who they are who are strangers to God, and that these are all the wicked who have no desire to give themselves to virtue,he would have considered before he gave expression to the words, "How can he who honours any of those whom God acknowledges as His own be displeasing to God, to whom they all belong?" CHAP. XI. He adds, "And indeed he who, when speaking of God, asserts that there is only one who may be called Lord, speaks impiously, for he divides the kingdom of God, and raises a sedition therein, implying that there are separate factions in the divine kingdom, and that there exists one who is His enemy." He might speak after this fashion, if he could prove by conclusive arguments that those who are worshipped as gods by the heathens are truly gods, and not merely evil spirits, which are supposed to haunt statues and temples and altars. But we desire not only to understand the nature of that divine kingdom of which we are continually speaking and writing, but also ourselves to be of those who are under the rule of God alone, so that the kingdom of God may be ours. Celsus, however, who teaches us to worship many gods, ought in consistency not to speak of "the kingdom of God," but of "the kingdom of the gods." There are therefore no factions in the kingdom of God, nor is there any god who is an adversary to Him, although there are some who, like the Giants and Titans, in their wickedness wish to contend with God in company with Celsus, and those who declare war against Him who has by innumerable proofs established the claims of Jesus, and against Him who, as the Word, did, for the salvation of our race, show Himself before all the world in such a form as each was able to receive Him. CHAP. XII. In what follows. some may imagine that he says something plausible against us. "If," says he, "these people worshipped one God alone, and no other, they would perhaps have some valid argument against the worship of others. But they pay excessive reverence to one who has but lately appeared among men, and they think it no offence against God if they worship also His servant." To this we reply, that if Celsus had known that saying," I and My Father are one,"(3) and the words used in prayer by the Son of God, "As Thou and I are one,(4) he would not have supposed that we worship any other besides Him who is the Supreme God. "For," says He, "My Father is in Me, and I in Him."(5) And if any should from these words be afraid of our going over to the side of those who deny that the Father and the Son are two persons, let him weigh that passage, "And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul,"(6) that he may understand the meaning of the saying, "I and My Father are one." We worship one God, the Father and the Son, therefore, as we have explained; and our argument against the worship of other gods still continues valid. And we do not "reverence beyond measure one who has but lately appeared," as though He did not exist before;(7) for we believe Himself when He says, "Before Abraham was, I am."(8) Again He says, "I am the truth;"(9) and surely none of us is so simple as to suppose that truth did not exist before the time when Christ appeared.(10) We worship, therefore, the Father of truth, and the Son, who is the truth; and these, while they are two, considered as persons or subsistences, are one in unity of thought, in harmony and in identity of will. So entirely are they one, that he who has seen the Son, "who is the brightness of God's glory, and the express image of His person,"' has seen in Him who is the image, of God, God Himself. CHAP. XIII. He further supposes, that "because we join along with the worship of God the worship of His Son, it follows that, in our view, not only God, but also the servants of God, are to be worshipped." If he had meant this to apply to those who are truly the servants of God, after His only-begotten Son,--to Gabriel and Michael, and the other angels and archangels,and if he had said of these that they ought to be worshipped,--if also he had clearly defined the meaning of the word "worship," and the duties of the worshippers,--we might perhaps have brought forward such thoughts as have occurred to us on so important a subject. But as he reckons among the servants of God the demons which are worshipped by the heathen, he cannot induce us, on the plea of consistency, to worship such as are declared by the word to be servants of the evil one, the prince of this world, who leads astray from God as many as he can. We decline, therefore, altogether to worship and serve those whom other men worship, for the reason that they are not servants of God. For if we had been taught to regard them as servants of the Most High, we would not have called them demons. Accordingly, we worship with all our power the one God, and His only Son, the Word and the Image of God, by prayers and supplications; and we offer our petitions to the God of the universe through His only-begotten Son. To the Son we first present them, and beseech Him, as "the propitiation for our sins,"(2) and our High Priest, to offer our desires, and sacrifices, and prayers, to the Most High. Our faith, therefore, is directed to God through His Son, who strengthens it in us; anti Celsus can never show that the Son of God is the cause of any sedition or disloyalty in the kingdom of God. We honour the Father when we admire His Son, the Word, and Wisdom, and Truth, and Righteousness, and all that He who is the Son of so great a Father is said in Scripture to be. So much on this point. CHAP. XIV. Again Celsus proceeds: "If you should tell them that Jesus is not the Son of God, but that, God is the Father of all, and that He alone: ought to be truly worshipped, they would not consent to discontinue their worship of him who is their leader in the sedition. And they call him Son of God, not out of any extreme reverence for God, but from an extreme desire to extol Jesus Christ." We, however, have learned who the Son of God is, and know that He is "the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person," and "the breath of the power of God, and a pure influence flowing from the glory of the Almighty;" moreover, "the brightness of the everlasting light, the unspotted mirror of the power of God, and the image of His goodness."(3) We know, therefore, that He is the Son of God, and that God is His father. And there is nothing extravagant or unbecoming the character of God in the doctrine that He should have begotten such an only Son; and no one will persuade us that such a one is not a Son of the unbegotten God and Father. If Celsus has heard something of certain persons holding that the Son of God is not the Son of the Creator of the universe, that is a matter which lies between him and the supporters of such an opinion. Jesus is, then, not the leader of any seditious movement, but the promoter of peace. For He said to His disciples, "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give unto you;" and as He knew that it would be men of the world, and not men of God, who would wage war against us, he added, "Not as the world giveth peace, do I give peace unto you."(4) And even although we are oppressed in the world, we have confidence in Him who said, "In the world ye shall have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." And it is He whom we call Son of God--Son of that God, namely, whom, to quote the words of Celsus, "we most highly reverence;" and He is the Son who has been most highly exalted by the Father. Grant that there may be some individuals among the multitudes of believers who are not in entire agreement with us, and who incautiously assert that the Saviour is the Most High God; however, we do not hold with them, but rather believe Him when He says, "The Father who sent Me is greater than I."(5) We would not therefore make Him whom we call Father inferior--as Celsus accuses us of doing--to the Son of God. CHAP. XV. Celsus goes on to say: "That I may give a true representation of their faith, I will use their own words, as given in what is called A Heavenly Dialogue: 'If the Son is mightier than God, and the Son of man is Lord over Him, who else than the Son can be Lord over that God who is the ruler over all things? How comes it, that while so many go about the well, no one goes down into it? Why art thou afraid when thou hast gone so far on the way? Answer: Thou art mistaken, for I lack neither courage nor weapons.' Is it not evident, then, that their views are precisely such as I have described them to be? They suppose that another God, who is above the heavens, is the Father of him whom with one accord they honour, that they may honour this Son of man alone, whom they exalt under the form and name of the great God, and whom they assert to be stronger than God, who rules the world, and that he rules over Him. And hence that maxim of theirs, 'It is impossible to serve two masters,' is maintained for the purpose of keeping up the party who are on the side of this Lord." Here, again, Celsus quotes opinions from some most obscure sect of heretics, and ascribes them to all Christians. I call it "a most obscure sect;" for although we have often contended with heretics, yet we are unable to discover from what set of opinions he has taken this passage, if indeed he has quoted it from any author, and has not rather concocted it himself, or added it as an inference of his own. For we who say that the visible world is under the government to Him who created all things, do thereby declare that the Son is not mightier than the Father, but inferior to Him. And this belief we ground on the saying of Jesus Himself, "The Father who sent Me is greater than I." And none of us is so insane as to affirm that the Son of man is Lord over God. But when we regard the Saviour as God the Word, and Wisdom, and Righteousness, and Truth, we certainly do say that He has dominion over all things which have been subjected to Him in this capacity, but not that His dominion extends over the God and Father who is Ruler over all.(1) Besides, as the Word rules over none against their will, there are still wicked beings--not only men, but also angels, and all demons--over whom we say that in a sense He does not rule, since they do not yield Him a willing obedience; but, in another sense of the word, He rules even over them, in the same way as we say that man rules over the irrational animals,--not by persuasion, but as one who tames and subdues lions and beasts of burden. Nevertheless, he leaves no means untried to persuade even those who are still disobedient to submit to His authority. So far as we are concerned, therefore, we deny the truth of that which Celsus quotes as one of our sayings, "Who else than He can be Lord over Him who is God over all?" CHAP. XVI The remaining part of the extract given by Celsus seems to have been taken from some other form of heresy, and the whole jumbled together in strange confusion: "How is it, that while so many go about the well, no one goes down into it? Why dost thou shrink with fear when thou hast gone so far on the way? Answer: Thou art mistaken, for I lack neither courage nor weapons." We who belong to the Church which takes its name from Christ, assert that none of these statements are true. For he seems to have made them simply that they might harmonize 'with what he had said before; but they have no reference to us. For it is a principle with us, not to worship any god whom we merely "suppose" to exist, but Him alone who is the Creator of this universe, and of all things besides which are unseen by the eye of sense. These remarks of Celsus may apply to those who go on another road and tread other paths from us,--men who deny the Creator, and make to themselves another god under a new form, having nothing but the name of God, whom they esteem higher than the Creator; and with these may be joined any that there may be who say that the Son is greater than the God who rules all things. In reference to the precept that we ought not to serve two masters, we have already shown what appears to us the principle contained in it, when we proved that no sedition or disloyalty could be charged against the followers of Jesus their Lord, who confess that they reject every other lord, and serve Him alone who is the Son and Word of God. CHAP. XVII. Celsus then proceeds to say that "we shrink from raising altars, statues, and temples; and this," he thinks, "has been agreed upon among us as the badge or distinctive mark of a secret and forbidden society." He does not perceive that we regard the spirit of every good man as an altar from which arises an incense which is truly and spiritually sweet-smelling, namely, the prayers ascending from a pure conscience. Therefore it is said by John in the Revelation, "The odours are the prayers of saints;"(2) and by the Psalmist, "Let my prayer come up before Thee as incense."(3) And the statues and gifts which are fit offerings to God are the work of no common mechanics, but are wrought and fashioned in us by the Word of God, to wit, the virtues in which we imitate "the First-born of all creation," who has set us an example of justice, of temperance, of courage, of wisdom, of piety, and of the other virtues. In all those, then, who plant and cultivate within their souls, according to the divine word, temperance, justice, wisdom, piety, and other virtues, these excellences are their statues they raise, in which we are persuaded that it is becoming for us to honour the model and prototype of all statues: "the image of the invisible God," God the Only-begotten. And again, they who "put off the old man with his deeds, and put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that hath created him," in taking upon them the image of Him who hath created them, do raise within themselves a statue like to what the Most High God Himself desires. And as among statuaries there are some who are marvellously perfect in their art, as for example Pheidias and Polycleitus, and among painters, Zeuxis and Apelles, whilst others make inferior statues, and others, again, are inferior to the second-rate artists,--so that, taking all together, there is a wide difference in the execution of statues and pictures,--in the same way there are some who form images of the Most High in a better manner and with a more perfect skill; so that there is no comparison even between the Olympian Jupiter of Pheidias and the man who has been fashioned according to the image of God the Creator. But by far the most excellent of all these throughout the whole creation is that image in our Saviour who said, "My Father is in Me." CHAP. XVIII. And every one who imitates Him according to his ability, does by this very endeavour raise a statue according to the image of the Creator for in the contemplation of God with a pure heart they become imitators of Him. And, in general, we see that all Christians strive to raise altars and statues as we have described them and these not of a lifeless and senseless kind and not to receive greedy spirits intent upon lifeless things, but to be filled with the Spirit of God who dwells in the images of virtue of which we have spoken, and takes His abode in the soul which is conformed to the image of the Creator. Thus the Spirit of Christ dwells in those who bear, so to say, a resemblance in form and feature to Himself. And the Word of God, wishing to set this clearly before us, represents God as promising to the righteous, "I will dwell in them, and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people."(1) And the Saviour says, "If any man hear My words, and do them, I and My Father will come to him, and make Our abode with him."(2) Let any one, therefore, who chooses compare the altars which I have described with those spoken of by Celsus, and the images in the souls of those who worship the Most High God with the statues of Pheidias, Polycleitus, and such like, and he will clearly perceive, that while the latter are lifeless things, and subject to the ravages of time, the former abide in the immortal spirit as long as the reasonable soul wishes to preserve them. CHAP. XIX. And if, further, temples are to be compared with temples, that we may prove to those who accept the opinions of Celsus that we do not object to the erection of temples suited to the images and altars of which we have spoken, but that we do refuse to build lifeless temples to the Giver of all life, let any one who chooses learn how we are taught, that our bodies are the temple of God, and that if any one by lust or sin defiles the temple of God, he will himself be destroyed, as acting impiously towards the true temple. Of all the temples spoken of in this sense, the best and most excellent was the pure and holy body of our Saviour Jesus Christ. When He knew that wicked men might aim at the destruction of the temple of God in Him, but that their purposes of destruction would not prevail against the divine power which had built that temple, He says to them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it again. ... This He said of the temple of His body."(3) And in other parts of holy Scripture where it speaks of the mystery of the resurrection to those whose ears are divinely opened, it says that the temple which has been destroyed shall be built up again of living and most precious stones, thereby giving us to understand that each of those who are led by the word of God to strive together in the duties of piety, will be a precious stone in the one great temple of God. Accordingly, Peter says, "Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ;"(4) and Paul also says, "Being built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ our Lord being the chief cornerstone."(5) And there is a similar hidden allusion in this passage in Isaiah, which is addressed to Jerusalem: "Behold, I will lay thy stones with carbuncles, and lay thy foundations with sapphires. And I will make thy battlements of jasper, and thy gates of crystal, and all thy borders of pleasant stones. And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children. In righteousness shall thou be established."(6) CHAP. XX. There are, then, among the righteous some who are carbuncles, others sapphires, others jaspers, and others crystals, and thus there is among the righteous every kind of choice and precious stone. As to the spiritual meaning of the different stones,--what is their nature, and to what kind of soul the name of each precious stone especially applies,--we cannot at present stay, to examine. We have only felt it necessary to show thus briefly what we understand by temples, and what the one Temple of God built of precious stones truly means. For as if in some cities a dispute should arise as to which had the finest temples, those who thought their own were the best would do their utmost to show the excellence of their own temples and the inferiority of the others,--in like manner, when they reproach us for not deeming it necessary to worship the Divine Being by raising lifeless temples, we set before them our temples, and show to such at least as are not blind and senseless, like their senseless gods, that there is no comparison between our statues and the statues of the heathen, nor between our altars, with what we may call the incense ascending from them, and the heathen altars, with the fat and blood of the victims; nor, finally, between the temples of senseless gods, admired by senseless men, who have no divine faculty for perceiving God, and the temples, statues, and altars which are worthy of God. It is not therefore true that we object to building altars, statues, and temples, because we have agreed to make this the badge of a secret and forbidden society; but we do so, because we have learnt from Jesus Christ the true way of serving God, and we shrink from whatever, under a pretence of piety, leads to utter impiety those who abandon the way marked out for us by Jesus Christ. For it is He who alone is the way of piety, as He truly said, "I am the way, the truth, the life." CHAP. XXI. Let us see what Celsus further says of God, and how he urges us to the use of those things which are properly called idol offerings, or, still better, offerings to demons, although, in his ignorance of what true sanctity is, and what sacrifices are well-pleasing to God, he call them "holy sacrifices." His words are, "God is the God of all alike; He is good, He stands in need of nothing, and He is without jealousy. What, then, is there to hinder those who are most devoted to His service from taking part in public feasts. I cannot see the connection which he fancies between God's being good, and independent, and free from jealousy, and His devoted servants taking part in public feasts. I confess, indeed, that from the fact that God is good, and without want of anything, and free from jealousy, it would follow as a consequence that we might take part in public feasts, if it were proved that the public feasts had nothing wrong in them, and were grounded upon true views of the character of God, so that they resulted naturally from a devout service of God. If, however, the so- called public festivals can in no way be shown to accord with the service of God, but may on the contrary be proved to have been devised by men when occasion offered to commemorate some human events, or to set forth certain qualities of water or earth, or the fruits of the earth,--in that case, it is clear that those who wish to offer an enlightened worship to the Divine Being will act according to sound reason, and not take part in the public feasts. For "to keep a feast," as one of the wise men of Greece has well said, "is nothing else than to do one's duty;"(1) and that man truly celebrates a feast who does his duty and prays always, offering up continually bloodless sacrifices in prayer to God. That therefore seems to me a most noble saying of Paul, "Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain."(2) CHAP. XXII. If it be objected to us on this subject that we ourselves are accustomed to observe certain days, as for example the Lord's day, the Preparation, the Passover, or Pentecost, I have to answer, that to the perfect Christian, who is ever in his thoughts, words, and deeds serving his natural Lord, God the Word, all his days are the Lord's, and he is always keeping the Lord's day. He also who is unceasingly preparing himself for the true life, and abstaining from the pleasures of this life which lead astray so many,--who is not indulging the lust of the flesh, but "keeping under his body, and bringing it into subjection,"--such a one is always keeping Preparation-day. Again, he who considers that "Christ our Passover was sacrificed for us," and that it is his duty to keep the feast by eating of the flesh of the Word, never ceases to keep the paschal feast; for the pascha means a "passover," and he is ever striving in all his thoughts, words, and deeds, to pass over from the things of this life to God, and is hastening towards the city of God. And, finally, he who can truly say, "We are risen with Christ," and "He hath exalted us, and made us to sit with Him in heavenly places in Christ," is always living in the season of Pentecost; and most of all, when going up to the upper chamber, like the apostles of Jesus, he gives himself to supplication and prayer, that he may become worthy of receiving "the mighty wind rushing from heaven," which is powerful to destroy sin and its fruits among men, and worthy of having some share of the tongue of fire which God sends. CHAP. XXIII. But the majority of those who are accounted believers are not of this advanced class; but from being either unable or unwilling to keep every day in this manner, they require some sensible memorials to prevent spiritual things from passing altogether away from their minds. It is to this practice of setting apart some days distinct from others, that Paul seems to me to refer in the expression, "part of the feast;"(1) and by these words he indicates that a life in accordance with the divine word consists not "in a part of the feast," but in one entire and never ceasing festival? Again, compare the festivals, observed among us as these have been described above, with the public feasts of Celsus and the heathen, and say if the former are not much more sacred observances than those feasts in which the lust of the flesh runs riot, and leads to drunkenness and debauchery. It would be too long for us at present to show why we are required by the law of God to keep its festivals by eating "the bread of affliction,"(3) or "unleavened with bitter herbs,"(4) or why it says, "Humble your souls,"(5) and such like. For it is impossible for man, who is a compound being, in which "the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh,"(6) to keep the feast with his whole nature; for either he keeps the feast with his spirit and afflicts the body, which through the lust of the flesh is unfit to keep it along with the spirit, or else he keeps it with the body, and the spirit is unable to share in it. But we have for the present said enough on the subject of feasts. CHAP. XXIV. Let us now see on what grounds Celsus urges us to make use of the idol offerings and the public sacrifices in the public feasts. His words are, "If these idols are nothing, what harm will there be in taking part in the feast? On the other hand, if they are demons, it is certain that they too are God's creatures, and that we must believe in them, sacrifice to them according to the laws, and pray to them that they may be propitious." In reference to this statement, it would be profitable for us to take up and clearly explain the whole passage of the first Epistle to the Corinthians, in which Paul treats of offerings to idols.(7) The apostle draws from the fact that "an idol is nothing in the world," the consequence that it is injurious to use things offered to idols; and he shows to those who have ears to hear on such subjects, that he who partakes of things offered to idols is worse than a murderer, for he destroys his own brethren, for whom Christ died. And further, he maintains that the sacrifices are made to demons; and from that he proceeds to show that those who join the table of demons become associated with the demons; and he concludes that a man cannot both be a partaker of the table of the Lord and of the table of demons. But since it would require a whole treatise to set forth fully all that is contained on this subject in the Epistle to the Corinthians, we shall content ourselves with this brief statement of the argument; for it will be evident to any one who carefully considers what has been said, that even if idols are nothing, nevertheless it is an awful thing to join in idol festivals. And even supposing that there are such beings as demons to whom the sacrifices are offered, it it has been clearly shown that we are forbidden to take part in these festivals, when we know the difference between the table of the Lord and the table of demons. And knowing this, we endeavour as much as we can to be always partakers of the Lord's table, and beware to the utmost of joining at any time the table of demons. CHAP. XXV. Celsus says that "the demons belong to God, and are therefore to be believed, to be sacrificed to according to laws, and to be prayed to that they may be propitious." Those who are disposed to learn, must know that the word of God nowhere says of evil things that they belong to God, for it judges them unworthy of such a Lord. Accordingly, it is not all men who bear the name of "men of God," but only those who are worthy of God,--such as Moses and Elias, and any others who are so called, or such as resemble those who are so called in Scripture. In the same way, all angels are not said to be angels of God, but only those that are blessed: those that have fallen away into sin are called "angels of the devil," just as bad men are called "men of sin," "sons of perdition," or "sons of iniquity." Since, then, among men some are good and others bad, and the former are said to be God's and the latter the devil's, so among angels some are angels of God, and others angels of the devil. But among demons there is no such distinction, for all are said to be wicked. We do not therefore hesitate to say that Celsus is false when he says, "If they are demons, it is evident that they must also belong to God." He must either show that this distinction of good and bad among angels and men has no foundation, or else that a similar distinction may be shown to hold among demons. If that is impossible, it is plain that demons do not belong to God; for their prince is not God, but, as holy Scripture says, "Beelzebub." CHAP. XXVI. And we are not to believe in demons, although Celsus urges us to do so; but if we are to obey God, we must die, or endure anything, sooner than obey demons. In the same way, we are not to propitiate demons; for it is impossible to propitiate beings that are wicked and that seek the injury of men. Besides, what are the laws in accordance with which Celsus would have us propitiate the demons? For if he means laws enacted in states, he must show that they are in agreement with the divine laws. But if that cannot be done, as the laws of many states are quite inconsistent with each other, these laws, therefore, must of necessity either be no laws at all in the proper sense of the word, or else the enactments of wicked men; and these we must not obey, for "we must obey God rather than men." Away, then, with this counsel, which Celsus gives us, to offer prayer to demons: it is not to be listened to for a moment; for our duty is to pray to the Most High God alone, and to the Only-begotten, the First-born of the whole creation, and to ask Him as our High Priest to present the prayers which ascend to Him from us, to His God and our God, to His Father and the Father of those who direct their lives according to His word.(1) And as we would have no desire to enjoy the favour of those men who wish us to follow their wicked lives, and who give us their favour only on condition that we choose nothing opposed to their wishes, because their favour would make us enemies of God, who cannot be pleased with those who have such men for their friends,--in the same way those who are acquainted with the nature, the purposes, and the wickedness of demons, can never wish to obtain their favour. CHAP. XXVII. And Christians have nothing to fear, even if demons should not be well- disposed to them; for they are protected by the Supreme God, who is well pleased with their piety, and who sets His divine angels to watch over those who are worthy of such guardianship, so that they can suffer nothing from demons. He who by his piety possesses the favour of the Most High, who has accepted the guidance of Jesus, the "Angel of the great counsel,''(2) being well contented with the favour of God through Christ Jesus, may say with confidence that he has nothing to suffer from the whole host of demons. "The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear."(3) So much, then, in reply to those statements of Celsus: "If they are demons, they too evidently belong to God, and they are to be believed, to be sacrificed to according to the laws, and prayers are to be offered to them that they may he propitious." CHAP. XXVIII. We shall now proceed to the next statement of Celsus, and examine it with care: "If in obedience to the traditions of their fathers they abstain from such victims, they must also abstain from all animal food, in accordance with the opinions of Pythagoras, who thus showed his respect for the soul and its bodily organs. But if, as they say, they abstain that they may not eat along with demons, I admire their wisdom, in having at length discovered, that whenever they eat they eat with demons, although they only refuse to do so when they are looking upon a slain victim; for when they eat bread, or drink wine, or taste fruits, do they not receive these things, as well as the water they drink and the air they breathe, from certain demons, to whom have been assigned these different provinces of nature?" Here I would observe that I cannot see how those whom he speaks of as abstaining from certain victims, in accordance with the traditions of their fathers, are consequently bound to abstain from the flesh of all animals. We do not indeed deny that the divine word does seem to command something similar to this, when to raise us to a higher and purer life it says, "It is good neither to eat flesh, nor to drink wine, nor anything whereby thy brother stumbleth, or is offended, or is made weak;"(4) and again, "Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died;"(5) and again, "If meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend."(6) CHAP. XXIX. But it is to be observed that the Jews, who claim for themselves a correct understanding of the law of Moses, carefully restrict their food to such things as are accounted clean, and abstain from those that are unclean. They also do not use in their food the blood of an animal nor the flesh of an animal torn by wild beasts, and some other things which it would take too long for us at present to detail. But Jesus, wishing to lead all men by His teaching to the pure worship and service of God, and anxious not to throw any hindrance in the way of many who might be benefited by Christianity, through the imposition of a burdensome code of rules in regard to food, has laid it down, that "not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man, but that which cometh out of the mouth; for whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught. But those things which proceed out of the mouth are evil thoughts when spoken, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies."(1) Paul also says, "Meat commendeth us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse."(2) Wherefore, as there is some obscurity about this matter, without some explanation is given, it seemed good to the apostles of Jesus and the elders assembled together at Antioch,(3) and also, as they themselves say, to the Holy Spirit, to write a letter to the Gentile believers, forbidding them to partake of those things from which alone they say it is necessary to abstain, namely, "things offered to idols, things strangled, and blood."(3) CHAP. XXX. For that which is offered to idols is sacrificed to demons, and a man of God must not join the table of demons. As to things strangled, we are forbidden by Scripture to partake of them, because the blood is still in them; and blood, especially the odour arising from blood, is said to be the food of demons. Perhaps, then, if we were to eat of strangled animals, we might have such spirits feeding along with us. And the reason which forbids the use of strangled animals for food is also applicable to the use of blood. And it may not be amiss, as bearing on this point, to recall a beautiful saying in the writings of Sextus,(4) which is known to most Christians: "The eating of animals," says he, "is a matter of indifference; but to abstain from them is more agreeable to reason." It is not, therefore, simply on account of some traditions of our fathers that we refrain from eating victims offered to those called gods or heroes or demons, but for other reasons, some of which I have here mentioned. it is not to be supposed, however, that we are to abstain from the flesh of animals in the same way as we are bound to abstain from all race and wickedness: we are indeed to abstain not only from the flesh of animals, but from all other kinds of food, if we cannot partake of them without incurring evil, and the consequences of evil. For we are to avoid eating for gluttony, or for the mere gratification of the appetite, without regard to the health and sustenance of the body. We do not believe that souls pass from one body to another, and that they may descend so low as to enter the bodies of the brutes. If we abstain at times from eating the flesh of animals, it is evidently, therefore, not for the same reason as Pythagoras; for it is the reasonable soul alone that we honour, and we commit its bodily organs with due honours to the grave. For it is not right that the dwelling-place of the rational soul should be cast aside anywhere without honour, like the carcases of brute beasts; and so much the more when we believe that the respect paid to the body redounds to the honour of the person who received from God a soul which has nobly employed the organs of the body in which it resided. In regard to the question, "How are the dead raised up, and with what body do they come?"(5) we have already answered it briefly, as our purpose required. CHAP. XXXI. Celsus afterwards states what is adduced by Jews and Christians alike in defence of abstinence from idol sacrifices, namely, that it is wrong for those who have dedicated themselves to the Most High God to eat with demons. What he brings forward against this view, we have already seen. In our opinion, a man can only be said to eat and drink with demons when he eats the flesh of what are called sacred victims, and when he drinks the wine poured out to the honour of the demons. But Celsus thinks that we cannot eat bread or drink wine in any way whatever, or taste fruits, or even take a draught of water, without eating and drinking with demons. He adds also, that the air which we breathe is received from demons, and that not an animal can breathe without receiving the air from the demons who are set over the air. If any one wishes to defend this statement of Celsus, let him show that it is not the divine angels of god, but demons, the whole race of whom are bad, that have been appointed to communicate all those blessings which have been mentioned. We indeed also maintain with regard not only to the fruits of the earth, but to every flowing stream and every breath of air that the ground brings forth those things which are said to grow up naturally,--that the water springs in fountains, and refreshes the earth with running streams,--that the air is kept pure, and supports the life of those who breathe it, only in consequence of the agency and control of certain beings whom we may call invisible husbandmen and guardians; but we deny that those invisible agents are demons. And if we might speak boldly, we would say that if demons have any share at all in these things, to them belong famine, blasting of the vine and fruit trees, pestilence among men and beasts: all these are the proper occupations of demons, who in the capacity of public executioners receive power at certain times to carry out the divine judgments, for the restoration of those who have plunged headlong into wickedness, or for the trial and discipline of the souls of the wise. For those who through all their afflictions preserve their piety pure and unimpaired, show their true character to all spectators, whether visible or invisible, who behold them; while those who are otherwise minded, yet conceal their wickedness, when they have their true character exposed by misfortunes, become manifest to themselves as well as to those whom we may also call spectators. CHAP. XXXII. The Psalmist bears witness that divine justice employs certain evil angels to inflict calamities upon men: "He cast upon them the fierceness of His anger, wrath, and indignation, and trouble, sent by evil angels."(1) Whether demons ever go beyond this when they are suffered to do what they are ever ready, though through the restraint put upon them they are not always able to do, is a question to be solved by that man who can conceive, in so far as human nature will allow, how it accords with the divine justice, that such multitudes of human souls are separated from the body while walking in the paths which lead to certain death. "For the judgments of God are so great," that a soul which is still clothed with a mortal body cannot comprehend them; "and they cannot be expressed: therefore by unnurtured souls"(2) they are not in any measure to be understood. And hence, too, rash spirits, by their ignorance in these matters, and by recklessly setting themselves against the Divine Being, multiply impious objections against providence. It is not from demons, then, that men receive any of those things which meet the necessities of life, and least of all ourselves, who have been taught to make a proper use of these things. And they who partake of corn and wine, and the fruits of trees, of water and of air, do not feed with demons, but rather do they feast with divine angels, who are appointed for this purpose, and who are as it were invited to the table of the pious man, who hearkens to the precept of the word, which says, "Whether ye eat or drink, or whatever y.e do, do all to the glory of God."(3) And again, in another place it is written, "Do all things in the name of God."(4) When, therefore, we eat and drink and breathe to the glory of God, and act in all things according to what is right, we feast with no demons, but with divine angels: "For every creature is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer."(5) But it could not be good, and it could not be sanctified, if these things were, as Celsus supposes, entrusted to the charge of demons. CHAP. XXXIII. From this it is evident that we have already met the next statement of Celsus, which is as follows: "We must either not live, and indeed not come into this life at all, or we must do so on condition that we give thanks and first-fruits and prayers to demons, who have been set over the things of this world: and that we must do as long as we live, that they may prove good and kind." We must surely live, and we must live according to the word of God, as far as we are enabled to do so. And we are thus enabled to live, when, "whether we eat or drink, we do all to the glory of God;" and we are not to refuse to enjoy those things which have been created for our use, but must receive them with thanksgiving to the Creator. And it is under these conditions, and not such as have been imagined by Celsus, that we have been brought into life by God; and we are not placed under demons, but we are under the government of the Most High God, through Him who hath brought us to God--Jesus Christ. It is not according to the law of God that any demon has had a share in worldly affairs, but it was by their own lawlessness that they perhaps sought out for themselves places destitute of the knowledge of God and of the divine life, or places where there are many enemies of God. Perhaps also, as being fit to rule over and punish them, they have been set by the Word, who governs all things, to rule over those who subjected themselves to evil and not to God. For this reason, then, let Celsus, as one who knows not God, give thank-offerings to demons. But we give thanks to the Creator of all, and, along with thanksgiving and prayer for the blessings we have received, we also eat the bread presented to us; and this bread becomes by prayer a sacred body, which sanctifies those who sincerely partake of it. CHAP. XXXIV. Celsus would also have us to offer first-fruits to demons. But we would offer them to Him who said, "Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself upon the earth."(1) And to Him to whom we offer first-fruits we also send up our prayers, "having a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God," and "we hold fast this profession"(2) as long as we live; for we find God and His only-begotten Son, manifested to us in Jesus; to be gracious and kind to us. And if we would wish to have besides a great number of beings who shall ever prove friendly to us, we are taught that "thousand thousands stood before Him, and ten thousand times ten thousand ministered unto Him."(3) And these, regarding all as their relations and friends who imitate their piety towards God, and in prayer call upon Him with sincerity, work along with them for their salvation, appear unto them, deem it their office and duty to attend to them, and as if by common agreement they visit with all manner of kindness and deliverance those who pray to God, to whom they themselves also pray: "For they are all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation."(4) Let the learned Greeks say that the human soul at its birth is placed under the charge of demons: Jesus has taught us not to despise even the little ones in His Church, saying, "Their angels do always behold the face of My Father which is in heaven."(5) And the prophet says, "The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear Him, and delivereth them."(6) We do not, then, deny that there are many demons upon earth, but we maintain that they exist and exercise power among the wicked, as a punishment of their wickedness. But they have no power over those who "have put on the whole armour of God," who have received strength to "withstand the wiles of the devil,"(7) and who are ever engaged in contests with them, knowing that "we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."(8) CHAP. XXV. Now let us consider another saying of Celsus, which is as follows: "The satrap of a Persian or Roman monarch, or ruler or general or governor, yea, even those who fill lower offices of trust or service in the state, would be able to do great injury to those who despised them; and will the satraps and ministers of earth and air be insulted with impunity?" Observe now how he introduces servants of the Most High--rulers, generals, governors, and those filling lower offices of trust and service--as, after the manner of men, inflicting injury upon those who insult them. For he does not consider that a wise man would not wish to do harm to any, but would strive to the utmost of his power to change and amend them; unless, indeed, it be that those whom Celsus makes servants and rulers appointed by the Most High are behind Lycurgus, the lawgiver of the Lacedaemonians, or Zeno of Citium. For when Lycurgus had had his eye put out by a man, he got the offender into his power; but instead of taking revenge upon him, he ceased not to use all his arts of persuasion until he induced him to become a philosopher. And Zeno, on the occasion of some one saying, "Let me perish rather than not have my revenge on thee," answered him, "But rather let me perish if I do not make a friend of thee." And I am not yet speaking of those whose characters have been formed by the teaching of Jesus, and who have heard the words, "Love your enemies, and pray for them which despitefully use you, that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven; for He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust."(9) And in the prophetical writings the righteous man says, "O Lord my God, if I have done this; if there be iniquity in my hands; if I have returned evil to those who have done evil to me, let me fall helpless under mine enemies: let my enemy persecute my soul, and take it; yea, let him tread down my life upon the earth."(10) CHAP. XXXVI. But the angels, who are the true rulers and generals and ministers of God, do not, as Celsus supposes, "injure those who offend them;" and if certain demons, whom Celsus had in mind, do inflict evils, they show that they are wicked, and that they have received no office of the kind from God. And they even do injury to those who are under them, and who have acknowledged them as their masters; and accordingly, as it would seem that those who break through the regulations which prevail in any country in regard to matters of food, suffer for it if they are under the demons of that place, while those who are not under them, and have not submitted to their power, are free from all harm, and bid defiance to such spirits; although if, in ignorance of certain things, they have come under the power of other demons, they may suffer punishment from them. But the Christian-- the true Christian, I mean--who has submitted to God alone and His Word, will suffer nothing from demons, for He is mightier than demons. And the Christian will suffer nothing, for "the angel of the Lord will encamp about them that fear Him, and will deliver them,"(1) and his "angel," who "always beholds the face of his Father in heaven,"(2) offers up his prayers through the one High Priest to the God of all, and also joins his own prayers with those of the man who is committed to his keeping. Let not, then, Celsus try to scare us with threats of mischief from demons, for we despise them. And the demons, when despised, can do no harm to those who are under the protection of Him who can alone help all who deserve His aid; and He does no less than set His own angels over His devout servants, so that none of the hostile angels, nor even he who is called "the prince of this world,"(3) can effect anything against those who have given themselves to God. CHAP. XXXVII. In the next place, Celsus forgets that he is addressing Christians, who pray to God alone through Jesus; and mixing up other notions with theirs, he absurdly attributes them all to Christians. "If," says he, "they who are addressed are called upon by barbarous names, they will have power, but no longer will they have any if they are addressed in Greek or Latin." Let him, then, state plainly whom we call upon for help by barbarous names. Any one will be convinced that this is a false charge which Celsus brings against us, when he considers that Christians in prayer do not even use the precise names which divine Scripture applies to God; but the Greeks use Greek names, the Romans Latin names, and every one prays and sings praises to God as he best can, in his mother tongue. For the Lord of all the languages of the earth hears those who pray to Him in each different tongue, hearing, if I may so say, but one voice, expressing itself in different dialects.(4) For the Most High is not as one of those who select one language, Barbarian or Greek, knowing nothing of any other, and caring nothing for those who speak in other tongues. CHAP. XXXVIII. He next represents Christians as saying what he never heard from any Christian; or if he did, it must have been from one of the most ignorant and lawless of the people. "Behold," they are made to say, "I go up to a statue of Jupiter or Apollo, or some other god: I revile it, and beat it, yet it takes no vengeance on me." He is not aware that among the prohibitions of the divine law is this, "Thou shalt not revile the gods,"(5) and this is intended to prevent the formation of the habit of reviling any one whatever; for we have been taught, "Bless, and curse not,"(6) and it is said that "revilers shall not inherit the kingdom of God."(7) And who amongst us is so foolish as to speak in the way Celsus describes, and to fail to see that such contemptuous language can be of no avail for removing prevailing notions about the gods? For it is matter of observation that there are men who utterly deny the existence of a God or of an overruling providence, and who by their impious and destructive teaching have founded sects among those who are called philosophers, and yet neither they themselves, nor those who have embraced their opinions, have suffered any of those things which mankind generally account evils: they are both strong in body and rich in possessions. And yet if we ask what loss they have sustained, we shall find that they have suffered the most certain injury. For what greater injury can befall a man than that he should be unable amidst the order of the world to see Him who has made it? and what sorer affliction can come to any one than that blindness of mind which prevents him from seeing the Creator and Father of every soul? CHAP. XXXIX, After putting such words into our mouth, and maliciously charging Christians with sentiments which they never held, he then proceeds to give to this supposed expression of Christian feeling an answer, which is indeed more a mockery than an answer, when he says, "Do you not see, good sir, that even your own demon is not only reviled, but banished from every land and sea, and you yourself, who are as it were an image dedicated to him, are bound and led to punishment, and fastened to the stake, whilst your demon--or, as you call him, 'the Son of God'--takes no vengeance on the evil-doer?" This answer would be admissible if we employed such language as he ascribes to us; although even then he would have no right to call the Son of God a demon. For as we hold that all demons are evil, He who turns so many men to God is in our view no demon, but God the Word, and the Son of God. And I know not how Celsus has so far forgotten himself as to call Jesus Christ a demon, when he nowhere alludes to the existence of any evil demons. And finally, as to the punishments threatened against the ungodly, these will come upon them after they have refused all remedies, and have been, as we may say, visited with an incurable malady of sinfulness. CHAP. XL. Such is our doctrine of punishment; and the inculcation of this doctrine turns many from their sins. But let us see, on the other hand, what is the response given on this subject by the priest of Jupiter or Apollo of whom Celsus speaks. It is this: "The mills of the gods grind slowly."(1) Another describes punishment as reaching "to children's children, and to those who came after them."(2) How much better are those words of Scripture: "The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, nor the children for the fathers. Every man shall be put to death for his own sin."(3) And again, "Every man that eateth the sour grape, his teeth shall be set on edge."(4) And, "The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him."(5) If any shall say that the response, "To children's children, and to those who come after them," corresponds with that passage, "Who visits the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate Me,"(6) let him learn from Ezekiel that this language is not to be taken literally; for he reproves those who say, "Our fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge,"(7) and then he adds, "As I live, saith the Lord, every one shall die for his own sin." As to the proper meaning of the figurative language about sins being visited unto the third and fourth generation, we cannot at present stay to explain. CHAP. XLI. He then goes on to rail against us after the manner of old wives. "You," says he, "mock and revile the statues of our gods; but if you had reviled Bacchus or Hercules in person, you would not perhaps have done so with impunity. But those who crucified your God when present among men, suffered nothing for it, either at the time or during the whole of their lives. And what new thing has there happened since then to make us believe that he was not an impostor, but the Son of God? And forsooth, he who sent his Son with certain instructions for mankind, allowed him to be thus cruelly treated, and his instructions to perish with him, without ever during all this long time showing the slightest concern. What father was ever so inhuman? Perhaps, indeed, you may say that he suffered so much, because it was his wish to bear what came to him. But it is open to those whom you maliciously revile, to adopt the same language, and say that they wish to be reviled, and therefore they bear it with patience; for it is best to deal equally with both sides,--although these (gods) severely punish the scorner, so that he must either flee and hide himself, or be taken and perish." Now to these statements I would answer that we revile no one, for we believe that "revilers will not inherit the kingdom of God."(8) And we read, "Bless them that curse you; bless, and curse not;" also, "Being reviled, we bless." And even although the abuse which we pour upon another may seem to have some excuse in the wrong which we have received from him, yet such abuse is not allowed by the word of God. And how much more ought we to abstain from reviling others, when we consider what a great folly it is !And it is equally foolish to apply abusive language to stone or gold or silver, turned into what is supposed to be the form of God by those who have no knowledge of God. Accordingly, we throw ridicule not upon lifeless images, but upon those only who worship them. Moreover, if certain demons reside in certain images, and one of them passes for Bacchus, another for Hercules, we do not vilify them: for, on the one hand, it would be useless; and, on the other, it does not become one who is meek, and peaceful, and gentle in spirit, and who has learnt that no one among men or demons is to be reviled, however wicked he may be. CHAP. XLII. There is an inconsistency into which, strangely enough, Celsus has fallen unawares. Those demons or gods whom he extolled a little before, he now shows to be in fact the vilest of creatures, punishing more for their own revenge than for the improvement of those who revile them. His words are, "If you had reviled Bacchus or Hercules when present in person, you would not have escaped with impunity." How any one can hear without being present in person, I leave any one who will to explain; as also those other questions, "Why he is sometimes present, and sometimes absent?" and, "What is the business which takes demons away from place to place?" Again, when he says, "Those who crucified your God himself, suffered no harm for doing so," he supposes that it is the body of Jesus extended on the cross and slain, and not His divine nature, that we call God; and that it was as God that Jesus was crucified and slain. As we have already dwelt at length on the sufferings which Jesus suffered as a man, we shall. purposely say no more here, that we may not repeat what we have said already. But when he goes on to say that "those who inflicted death upon Jesus suffered nothing afterwards through so long a time," we must inform him, as well as all who are disposed to learn the truth, that the city in which the Jewish people called for the crucifixion of Jesus with shouts of" Crucify him, crucify him," preferring to have the robber set free, who had been cast into prison for sedition and murder and Jesus, who had been delivered through envy, to be crucified,--that this city not long afterwards was attacked, and, after a long siege, was utterly overthrown and laid waste; for God judged the inhabitants of that place unworthy of living together the life of citizens. And yet, though it may seem an incredible thing to say, God spared this people in delivering them to their enemies; for He saw that they were incurably averse to any amendment, and were daily sinking deeper and deeper into evil. And all this befell them, because the blood of Jesus was shed at their instigation and on their land; and the land was no longer able to bear those who were guilty of so fearful a crime against Jesus. CHAP. XLIII. Some new thing, then, has come to pass since the time that Jesus suffered,--that, I mean, which has happened to the city, to the whole nation, and in the sudden and general rise of a Christian community. And that, too, is a new thing, that those who were strangers to the covenants of God, with no part in His promises, and far from the truth, have by a divine power been enabled to embrace the truth. These things were not the work of an impostor, but were the work of God, who sent His Word, Jesus Christ, to make known His purposes.(2) The sufferings and death which Jesus endured with such fortitude and meekness, show the cruelty and injustice of those who inflicted them, but they did not destroy the announcement of the purposes of God; indeed, if we may so say, they served rather to make them known. For Jesus Himself taught us this when He said, "Except a grain of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth by itself alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit."(3) Jesus, then, who is this grain of wheat, died, and brought forth much fruit. And the Father is ever looking forward for the results of the death of the grain of wheat, both those which are arising now, and those which shall arise hereafter. The Father of Jesus is therefore a tender and loving Father, though "He spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up" as His lamb "for us all,"(4) that so "the Lamb of God," by dying for all men, might "take away the sin of the world." It was not by compulsion, therefore, but willingly, that He bore the reproaches of those who reviled Him. Then Celsus, returning to those who apply abusive language to images, says: "Of those whom you load with insults, you may in like manner say that they voluntarily submit to such treatment, and therefore they bear insults with patience; for it is best to deal equally with both sides. Yet these severely punish the scorner, so that he must either flee and hide himself, or be taken and perish." It is not, then, because Christians cast insults upon demons that they incur their revenge, but because they drive them away out of the images, and from the bodies and souls of men. And here, although Celsus perceives it not, he has on this subject spoken something like the truth; for it is true that the souls of those who condemn Christians, and betray them, and rejoice in persecuting them, are filled with wicked demons. CHAP, XLIV. But when the souls of those who die for the Christian faith depart from the body with great glory, they destroy the power of the demons, and frustrate their designs against men. Wherefore I imagine, that as the demons have learnt from experience that they are defeated and overpowered by the martyrs for the truth, they are afraid to have recourse again to violence. And thus, until they forget the defeats they have sustained, it is probable that the world will be at peace with the. Christians. But when they recover their power, and, with eyes blinded by sin, wish again to take their revenge on Christians, and persecute them, then again they will be defeated, and then again the souls of the godly, who lay down their lives for the cause of godliness, shall utterly destroy the army of the wicked one. And as the demons perceive that those who meet death victoriously for the sake of religion destroy their authority, while those who give way under their sufferings, and deny the faith, come under their power, I imagine that at times they feel a deep interest in Christians when on their trial, and keenly strive to gain them over to their side, feeling as they do that their confession is torture to them, and their denial is a relief and encouragement to them. And traces of the same feeling may be seen in the demeanour of the judges; for they are greatly distressed at seeing those who bear outrage and torture with patience, but are greatly elated when a Christian gives way under it. Yet it is from no feeling of humanity that this arises. They see well, that, while "the tongues" of those who are overpowered by the tortures "may take the oath, the mind has not sworn.", And this may serve as an answer to the remark of Celsus: "But they severely punish one who reviles them, so that he must either flee and hide himself, or be taken and perish." If a Christian ever flees away, it is not from fear, but in obedience to the command of his Master, that so he may preserve himself, and employ his strength for the benefit of others. CHAP. XLV. Let us see what Celsus next goes on to say. It is as follows: "What need is there to collect all the oracular responses, which have been delivered with a divine voice by priests and priestesses, as wall as by others, whether men or women, who were under a divine influence?--all the wonderful things that have been heard issuing from the inner sanctuary?-- all the revelations that have been made to those who consulted the sacrificial victims?--and all the knowledge that has been conveyed to men by other signs and prodigies? To some the gods have appeared in visible forms. The world is full of such instances. How many cities have been built in obedience to commands received from oracles; how often, in the same way, delivered from disease and famine! Or again, how many cities, from disregard or forgetfulness of these oracles, have perished miserably! How many colonies have been established and made to flourish by following their orders! How many princes and private persons have, from this cause, had prosperity or adversity! How many who mourned over their childlessness, have obtained the blessing they asked for! How many have turned away from themselves. the anger of demons! How many who were maimed in their limbs, have had them restored! And again, how many have met with summary punishment for showing want of reverence to the temples--some being instantly seized with madness, others openly confessing their crimes, others having put an end to their lives, and others having become the victims of incurable maladies! Yea, some have been slain by a terrible voice issuing from the inner sanctuary." I know not how it comes that Celsus brings forward these as undoubted facts, whilst at the same time he treats as mere fables the wonders which are recorded and handed down to us as having happened among the Jews, or as having been performed by Jesus and His disciples. For why may not our accounts be true, and those of Celsus fables and fictions? At least, these latter were not believed by the followers of Democritus, Epicurus, and Aristotle, although perhaps these Grecian sects would have been convinced by the evidence in support of our miracles, if Moses or any of the prophets who wrought these wonders, or Jesus Christ Himself, had come in their way. CHAP. XLVI. It is related of the priestess of Apollo, that she at times allowed herself to be influenced in her answers by bribes; but our prophets were admired for their plain truthfulness, not only by their contemporaries, but also by those who lived in later times. For through the commands pronounced by the prophets cities were founded, men were cured, and plagues were stayed. Indeed, the whole Jewish race went out as a colony from Egypt to Palestine, in accordance with the divine oracles. They also, when they followed the commands of God, were prosperous; when they departed from them, they suffered reverses. What need is there to quote all the princes and private persons in Scripture history who fared well or ill according as they obeyed or despised the words of the prophets? If we refer to those who were unhappy because they were childless, but who, after offering prayers to the Creator of all, became fathers and mothers, let any one read the accounts of Abraham and Sarah, to whom at an advanced age was born Isaac, the father of the whole Jewish nation: and there are other instances of the same thing. Let him also read the account of Hezekiah, who not only recovered from his sickness, according to the prediction of Isaiah, but was also bold enough to say, "Afterwards I shall beget children, who shall declare Thy righteousness."(2) And in the fourth book of Kings we read that the prophet Elisha made known to a woman who had received him hospitably, that by the grace of God she should have a son; and through the prayers of Elisha she became a mother.(8) The maimed were cured by Jesus in great numbers. And the books of the Maccabees relate what punishments were inflicted upon those who dared to profane the Jewish service in the temple at Jerusalem. CHAP. XLVII. But the Greeks Will say that these accounts are fabulous, although two whole nations are witnesses to their truth. But why may we not consider the accounts of fife Greeks as fabulous rather than those? Perhaps some one, however, wishing not to appear blindly to accept his own statements and reject those of others, would conclude, after a close examination of the matter, that the wonders mentioned by the Greeks were performed by certain demons; those among the Jews by prophets or by angels, or by God through the means of angels; and those recorded by Christians by Jesus Himself, or by His power working in His apostles. Let us, then, compare all these accounts together; let us examine into the aim and purpose of those who performed them; and let us inquire what effect was produced upon the persons on whose account these acts of kindness were performed, whether beneficial or hurtful, or neither the one nor the other. The ancient Jewish people, before they sinned against God, and were for their great wickedness cast off by Him, must evidently have been a people of great wisdom.(1) But Christians, who have in so wonderful a manner formed themselves into a community, appear at first to have been more induced by miracles than by exhortations to forsake the institutions of their fathers, and to adopt others which were quite strange to them. And indeed, if we were to reason from what is probable as to the first formation of the Christian society, we should say that it is incredible that the apostles of Jesus Christ, who were unlettered men of humble life, could have been emboldened to preach Christian truth to men by anything else than the power which was conferred upon them, and the grace which accompanied their words and rendered them effective; and those who heard them would not have renounced the old- established usages of their fathers, and been induced to adopt notions so different from those in which they had been brought up, unless they had been moved by some extraordinary power, and by the force of miraculous events. CHAP. XLVIII. In the next place, Celsus, after referring to the enthusiasm with which men will contend unto death rather than abjure Christianity, adds strangely enough some remarks, in which he wishes to show that our doctrines are similar to those delivered by the priests at the celebration of the heathen mysteries. He says, "Just as you, good sir, believe in eternal punishments, so also do the priests who interpret and initiate into the sacred mysteries. The same punishments with which you threaten others, they threaten you. Now it is worthy of examination, which of the two is more firmly established as true; for both parties contend with equal assurance that the truth is on their side. But if we require proofs, the priests of the heathen gods produce many that are clear and convincing, partly from wonders performed by demons, and partly from the answers given by oracles, and various other modes of divination." He would, then, have us believe that we and the interpreters of the mysteries equally teach the doctrine of eternal punishment, and that it is a matter for inquiry on which side of the two the truth lies. Now I should say that the truth lies with those who are able to induce their hearers to live as men who are convinced of the truth of what they have heard. But Jews and Christians have been thus affected by the doctrines they hold about what we speak of as the world to come, and the rewards of the righteous, and the punishments of the wicked. Let Celsus then, or any one who will, show us who have been moved in this way in regard to eternal punishments by the teaching of heathen priests and mystagogues. For surely the purpose of him who brought to light this doctrine was not only to reason upon the subject of punishments, and to strike men with terror of them, but to induce those who heard the truth to strive with all their might against those sins which are the causes of punishment. And those who study the prophecies with care, and are not content with a cursory perusal of the predictions contained in them, will find them such as to convince the intelligent and sincere reader that the Spirit of God was in those men, and that with their writings there is nothing in all the works of demons, responses of oracles, or sayings of soothsayers, for one moment to be compared. CHAP. XLIX. Let us see in what terms Celsus next addresses us: "Besides, is it not most absurd and inconsistent in you, on the one hand, to make so much of the body as you do--to expect that the same body will rise again, as though it were the best and most precious part of us; and yet, on the other, to expose it to such tortures as though it were worthless? But men who hold such notions, and are so attached to the body, are not worthy of being reasoned with; for in this and in other respects they show themselves to be gross, impure, and bent upon revolting without any reason from the common belief. But I shall direct my discourse to those who hope for the enjoyment of eternal life with God by means of the soul or mind, whether they choose to call it a spiritual substance, an intelligent spirit, holy and blessed, or a living soul, or the heavenly and indestructible offspring of a divine and incorporeal nature, or by whatever name they designate the spiritual nature of man. And they are rightly persuaded that those who live well shall be blessed, and the unrighteous shall all suffer everlasting punishments. And from this doctrine neither they nor any other should ever swerve." Now, as he has often already reproached us for our opinions on the resurrection, and as we have on these occasions defended our opinions in what seemed to us a reasonable way, we do not intend, at each repetition of the one objection, to go into a repetition of our defence. Celsus makes an unfounded charge against us when he ascribes to us the opinion that "there is nothing in our complex nature better or more precious than the body;" for we hold that far beyond all bodies is the soul, and especially the reasonable soul; for it is the soul, and not the body, which bears the likeness of the Creator. For, according to us, God is not corporeal, unless we fall into the absurd errors of the followers of Zeno and Chrysippus. CHAP. L. But since he reproaches us with too great an anxiety about the body, let him know that when that feeling is a wrong one we do not share in it, and when it is indifferent we only long for that which God has promised to the righteous. But Celsus considers that we are inconsistent with ourselves when we count the body worthy of honour from God, and therefore hope for its resurrection, and yet at the same time expose it to tortures as though it were not worthy of honour. But surely it is not without honour for the body to suffer for the sake of godliness, and to choose afflictions on account of virtue: the dishonourable thing would be for it to waste its powers in vicious indulgence. For the divine word says: "What is an honourable seed? The seed of man. What is a dishonourable seed? The seed of man."(1) Moreover, Celsus thinks that he ought not to reason with those who hope for the good of the body, as they are unreasonably intent upon an object which can never satisfy their expectations. He also calls them gross and impure men, bent upon creating needless dissensions. But surely he ought, as one of superior humanity, to assist even the rude and depraved. For society does not exclude from its pale the coarse and uncultivated, as it does the irrational animals, but our Creator made us on the same common level with all mankind. It is not an undignified thing, therefore, to reason even with the coarse and unrefined, and to try to bring them as far as possible to a higher state of refinement--to bring the impure to the highest practicable degree of purity--to bring the unreasoning multitude to reason, and the diseased in mind to spiritual health. CHAP. LI In the next place, he expresses his approval of those who "hope that eternal life shall be enjoyed with God by the soul or mind, or, as it is variously called, the spiritual nature, the reasonable soul, intelligent, holy, and blessed;" and he allows the soundness of the doctrine, "that those who had a good life shall be happy, and the unrighteous shall suffer eternal punishments." And yet I wonder at what follows, more than at anything that Celsus has ever said; for he adds, "And from this doctrine let not them or any one ever swerve." For certainly in writing against Christians, the very essence of whose faith is God, and the promises made by Christ to the righteous, and His warnings of punishment awaiting the wicked, he must see that, if a Christian were brought to renounce Christianity by his arguments against it, it is beyond doubt that, along with his Christian faith, he would cast off the very doctrine from which he says that no Christian and no man should ever swerve. But I think Celsus has been far surpassed in consideration for his fellow-men by Chrysippus in his treatise, On the Subjugation of the Passions. For when he sought to apply remedies to the affections and passions which oppress and distract the human spirit, after employing such arguments as seemed to himself to be strong, he did not shrink from using in the second and third place others which he did not himself approve of. "For," says he, "if it were held by any one that there are three kinds of good, we must seek to regulate the passions in accordance with that supposition; and we must not too curiously inquire into the opinions held by a person at the time that he is under the influence of passion, lest, if we delay too long for the purpose of overthrowing the opinions by which the mind is possessed, the opportunity for curing the passion may pass away." And he adds, "Thus, supposing that pleasure were the highest good, or that he was of that opinion whose mind was under the dominion of passion, we should not the less give him help, and show that, even on the principle that pleasure is the highest and final good of man, all passion is disallowed." And Celsus, in like manner, after having embraced the doctrine, "that the righteous shall be blessed, and the wicked shall suffer eternal punishments," should have followed out his subject; and, after having advanced what seemed to him the chief argument, he should have proceeded to prove and enforce by further reasons the truth that the unjust shall surely suffer eternal punishment, and those who lead a good life shall be blessed. CHAP. LII. For we who have been persuaded by many, yea by innumerable, arguments to lead a Christian life, are especially anxious to bring all men as far as possible to receive the whole system of Christian truth; but when we meet with persons who are prejudiced by the calumnies thrown out against Christians, and who, from a notion that Christians are an impious people, will not listen to any who offer to instruct them in the principles of the divine word, then, on the common principles of humanity, we endeavour to the best of our ability to convince them of the doctrine of the punishment of the wicked, and to induce even those who are unwilling to become Christians to accept that truth. And we are thus anxious to persuade them of the rewards of right living, when we see that many things which we teach about a healthy moral life are also taught by the enemies of our faith. For you will find that they have not entirely lost the common notions of right and wrong, of good and evil. Let all men, therefore, when they look upon the universe, observe the constant revolution of the unerring stars, the converse motion of the planets, the constitution of the atmosphere, and its adaptation to the necessities of the animals, and especially of man, with all the innumerable contrivances for the well-being of mankind; and then, after thus considering the order of the universe, let them beware of doing ought which is displeasing to the Creator of this universe, of the soul and its intelligent principle; and let them rest assured that punishment shall be inflicted on the wicked, and rewards shall be bestowed upon the righteous, by Him who deals with every one as he deserves, and who will proportion His rewards to the good that each has done, and to the account of himself that he is able to give.(1) And let all men know that the good shall be advanced to a higher state, and that the wicked shall be delivered over to sufferings and torments, in punishment of their licentiousness and depravity, their cowardice, timidity, and all their follies. CHAP. LIII. Having said so much on this subject, let us proceed to another statement of Celsus: "Since men are born united to a body, whether to suit the order of the universe, or that they may in that way suffer the punishment of sin; or because the soul is oppressed by certain passions until it is purged from these at the appointed period of time,--for, according to Empedocles, all mankind must be banished from the abodes of the blessed for 30,000 periods of time,--we must therefore believe that they are entrusted to certain beings as keepers of this prison-house." You will observe that Celsus, in these remarks, speaks of such weighty matters in the language of doubtful human conjecture. He adds also various opinions as to the origin of man, and shows considerable reluctance to set down any of these opinions as false. When he had once come to the conclusion neither indiscriminately to accept nor recklessly to reject the opinions held by the ancients, would it not have been in accordance with that same rule of judging, if, when he found himself not disposed to believe the doctrines taught by the Jewish prophets and by Jesus, at any rate to have held them as matters open to inquiry? And should he not have considered whether it is very probable that a people who faithfully served the Most High God, and who ofttimes encountered numberless dangers, and even death, rather than sacrifice the honour of God, and what they believed to be the revelations of His will, should have been wholly overlooked by God? Should it not rather be thought probable that people who despised the efforts of human art to represent the Divine Being, but strove rather to rise in thought to the knowledge of the Most High, should have been favoured with some revelation from Himself? Besides, he ought to have considered that the common Father and Creator of all, who sees and hears all things, and who duly esteems the intention of every man who seeks Him and desires to serve Him, will grant unto these also some of the benefits of His rule, and will give them an enlargement of that knowledge of Himself which He has once bestowed upon them. If this had been remembered by Celsus and the others who hate Moses and the Jewish prophets, and Jesus, and His faithful disciples, who endured so much for the sake of His word, they would not thus have reviled Moses, and the prophets, and Jesus, and His apostles; and they would not have singled out for their contempt the Jews beyond all the nations of the earth, and said they were worse even than the Egyptians,--a people who, either from superstition or some other form of delusion, went as far as they could in degrading the Divine Being to the level of brute beasts. And we invite inquiry, not as though we wished to lead any to doubt regarding the truths of Christianity, but in order to show that it would be better for those who in every way revile the doctrines of Christianity, at any rate to suspend their judgment, and not so rashly to state about Jesus and His apostles such things as they do not know, and as they cannot prove, either by what the Stoics call" apprehensive perception,"(1) or by any other methods used by different sects of philosophers as criteria of truth. CHAP. LIV. When Celsus adds, "We must therefore believe that men are entrusted to certain beings who are the keepers of this prison-house," our answer is, that the souls of those who are called by Jeremiah "prisoners of the earth,"(2) when eager in the pursuit of virtue, are even in this life delivered from the bondage of evil; for Jesus declared this, as was foretold long before His advent by the prophet Isaiah, when he said that "the prisoners would go forth, and they that were in darkness would show themselves."(3) And Jesus Himself, as Isaiah also foretold of Him, arose as "a light to them that sat in darkness and in the shadow of death,"(4) so that we may therefore say, "Let us break their bands asunder, and cast their cords from us."(5) If Celsus, and those who like him are opposed to us, had been able to sound the depths of the Gospel narratives, they would not have counselled us to put our confidence in those beings whom they call "the keepers of the prison-house." It is written in the Gospel that a woman was bowed together, and could in no wise lift up herself. And when Jesus beheld her, and perceived from what cause she was bowed together, he said, "Ought not this daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound, lo, these eighteen years, to be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath day?"(6) And how many others are still bowed down and bound by Satan, who hinders them from looking up at all, and who would have us to look down also! And no one can raise them up, except the Word, that came by Jesus Christ, and that aforetime inspired the prophets: And Jesus came to release those who were under the dominion of the devil; and, speaking of him, He said with that depth of meaning which characterized His words, "Now is the prince of this world judged." We are, then, indulging in no baseless calumnies against demons, but are condemning their agency upon earth as destructive to mankind, and show that, under cover of oracles and bodily cures, and such other means, they are seeking to separate from God the soul which has descended to this "body of humiliation;" and those who feel this humiliation exclaim, "0 wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?"(7) It is not in vain, therefore, that we expose our bodies to be beaten and tortured; for surely it is not in vain for a man to submit to such sufferings, if by that means he may avoid bestowing the name of gods on those earthly spirits that unite with their worshippers to bring him to destruction. Indeed, we think it both reasonable in itself and well-pleasing to God, to suffer pain for the sake of virtue, to undergo torture for the sake of piety, and even to suffer death for the sake of holiness; for "precious in the sight of God is the death of His saints;"(8) and we maintain that to overcome the love of life is to enjoy a great good. But when Celsus compares us to notorious criminals, who justly suffer punishment for their crimes, and does not shrink from placing so laudable a purpose as that which we set before us upon the same level with the obstinacy of criminals, he makes himself the brother and companion of those who accounted Jesus among criminals, fulfilling the Scripture, which saith, "He was numbered with transgressors."(9) CHAP. LV. Celsus goes on to say: "They must make their choice between two alternatives. If they refuse to render due service to the gods, and to respect those who are set over this service, let them not come to manhood, or marry wives, or have children, or indeed take any share in the affairs of life; but let them depart hence with all speed, and leave no posterity behind them, that such a race may become extinct from the face of the earth. Or, on the other hand, if they will take wives, and bring up children, and taste of the fruits of the earth, and partake of all the blessings of life, and bear its appointed sorrows (for nature herself hath allotted sorrows to all men; for sorrows must exist, and earth is the only place for them), then must they discharge the duties of life until they are released from its bonds, and render due honour to those beings who control the affairs of this life, if they would not show themselves ungrateful to them. For it would be unjust in them, after receiving the good things which they dispense, to pay them no tribute in return." To this we reply, that there appears to us to be no good reason for our leaving this world, except when piety and virtue require it; as when, for example, those who are set as judges, and think that they have power over our lives, place before us the alternative either to live in violation of the commands of Jesus, or to die if we continue obedient to them. But God has allowed us to marry, because all are not fit for the higher, that is, the perfectly pure life; and God would have us to bring up all our children, and not to destroy any of the offspring given us by His providence. And this does not conflict with our purpose not to obey the demons that are on the earth; for, "being armed with the whole armour of God, we stand"(1) as athletes of piety against the race of demons that plot against us. CHAP. LVI. Although, therefore, Celsus would, in his own words, "drive us with all haste out of life," so that "such a race may become extinct from the earth;" yet we, along with those who worship the Creator, will live according to the laws of God, never consenting to obey the laws of sin. We will marry if we wish, and bring up the children given to us in marriage; and if need be, we will not only partake of the blessings of life, but bear its appointed sorrows as a trial to our souls. For in this way is divine Scripture accustomed to speak of human afflictions, by which, as gold is tried in the fire, so the spirit of man is tried, and is found to be worthy either of condemnation or of praise. For those things which Celsus calls evils we are therefore prepared, and are ready to say, "Try me, O Lord, and prove me; purge my reins and my heart."(2) For "no one will be crowned," unless here upon earth, with this body of humiliation, "he strive lawfully."(3) Further, we do not pay honours supposed to be due to those whom Celsus speaks of as being set over the affairs of the world. For we worship the Lord our God, and Him only do we serve, and desire to be followers of Christ, who, when the devil said to Him, "All these things will I give thee if thou wilt fall down and worship me," answered him by the words, "Thou shall worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shall thou serve."(4) Wherefore we do not render the honour supposed to be due to those who. according to Celsus, are set over the affairs of this world; for "no man can serve two masters," and we "cannot serve God and mammon," whether this name be applied to one or more. Moreover, if any one "by transgressing the law dishonours the lawgiver," it seems clear to us that if the two laws, the law of God and the law of mammon, are completely opposed to each other, it is better for us by transgressing the law of mammon to dishonour mammon, that we may honour God by keeping His law, than by transgressing the law of God to dishonour God, that by obeying the law of mammon we may honour mammon, CHAP. LVII. Celsus supposes that men "discharge the duties of life until they are loosened from its bonds," when, in accordance with commonly received customs, they offer sacrifices to each of the gods recognised in the state; and he fails to perceive the true duty which is fulfilled by an earnest piety. For we say that he truly discharges the duties of life who is ever mindful who is his Creator, and what things are agreeable to Him, and who acts in all things so that he may please God. Again, Celsus wishes us to be thankful to these demons, imagining that we owe them thank-offerings. But we, while recognising the duty of thankfulness, maintain that we show no ingratitude by refusing to give thanks to beings who do us no good, but who rather set themselves against us when we neither sacrifice to them nor worship them. We are much more concerned lest we should be ungrateful to God, who has loaded us with His benefits, whose workmanship we are, who cares for us in whatever condition we may be, and who has given us hopes of things beyond this present life. And we have a symbol of gratitude to God in the bread which we call the Eucharist. Besides, as we have shown before, the demons have not the control of those things which have been created for our use; we commit no wrong, therefore, when we partake of created things, and yet refuse to offer sacrifices to beings who have no concern with them. Moreover, as we know that it is not demons, but angels, who have been set over the fruits of the earth, and over the birth of animals, it is the latter that we praise and bless, as having been appointed by God over the things needful for our race; yet even to them we will not give the honour which is due to God. For this would not be pleasing to God, nor would it be any pleasure to the angels themselves to whom these things have been committed. Indeed, they are much more pleased if we refrain from offering sacrifices to them than if we offer them; for they have no desire for the sacrificial odours which rise from the earth. CHAP. LVIII. Celsus goes on to say: "Let any one inquire of the Egyptians, and he will find that everything, even to the most insignificant, is committed to the care of a certain demon. The body of man is divided into thirty-six parts, and as many demons of the air are appointed to the care of it, each having charge of a different part, although others make the number much larger. All these demons have in the language of that country distinct names; as Chnoumen, Chnachoumen, Cnat, Sicat, Biou, Erou, Erebiou, Ramanor, Reianoor, and other such Egyptian names. Moreover, they call upon them, and are cured of diseases of particular parts of the body. What, then, is there to prevent a man from giving honour to these or to others, if he would rather be in health than be sick, rather have prosperity than adversity, and be freed as much as possible from all plagues and troubles?" In this way, Celsus seeks to degrade our souls to the worship of demons, under the assumption that they have possession of our bodies, and that each one has power over a separate member. And he wishes us on this ground to put confidence in these demons of which he speaks, and to serve them, in order that we may be in health rather than be sick, have prosperity rather than adversity, and may as far as possible escape all plagues and troubles. The honour of the Most High God, which cannot be divided or shared with another, is so lightly esteemed by him, that he cannot believe in the ability of God, if called upon and highly honoured, to give to those who serve Him a power by which they may be defended from the assaults directed by demons against the righteous. For he has never beheld the efficacy of those words, "in the name of Jesus," when uttered by the truly faithful, to deliver not a few from demons and demoniacal possessions and other plagues. CHAP. LIX. Probably those who embrace the views of Celsus will smile at us when we say, "At the name of Jesus every knee shall bow, of things in heaven, of things on earth, and of things under the earth, and every tongue" is brought to "confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.''(1) But although they may ridicule such a statement. yet they will receive much more convincing arguments in support of it than Celsus brings in behalf of Chnoumen, Chnachoumen, Cnat, Sicat, and the rest of the Egyptian catalogue, whom he mentions as being called upon, and as healing the diseases of different pans of the human body. And observe how, while seeking to turn us away from our faith in the God of all through Jesus Christ, he exhorts us for the welfare of our bodies to faith in six-and- thirty barbarous demons, whom the Egyptian magi alone call upon in some unknown way, and promise us in return great benefits. According to Celsus, then, it would be better for us now to give ourselves up to magic and sorcery than to embrace Christianity, and to put our faith in an innumerable multitude of demons than in the almighty, living, self- revealing God, who has manifested Himself by Him who by His great power has spread the true principles of holiness among all men throughout the world; yea, I may add without exaggeration, He has given this knowledge to all beings everywhere possessed of reason, and needing deliverance from the plague and corruption of sin. CHAP. LX. Celsus, however, suspecting that the tendency of such teaching as he here gives is to lead to magic, and dreading that harm may arise from these statements, adds: "Care, however, must be taken lest any one, by familiarizing his mind with these matters, should become too much engrossed with them, and lest, through an excessive regard for the body, he should have his mind turned away from higher things, and allow them to pass into oblivion. For perhaps we ought not to despise the opinion of those wise men who say that most of the earth-demons are taken up with carnal indulgence, blood, odours, sweet sounds, and other such sensual things; and therefore they are unable to do more than heal the body, or foretell the fortunes of men and cities, and do other such things as relate to this mortal life." If there is, then, such a dangerous tendency in this direction, as even the enemy of the truth of God confesses, how much better is it to avoid all danger of giving ourselves too much up to the power of such demons, and of becoming turned aside from higher things, and suffering them to pass into oblivion through an excessive attention to the body; by entrusting ourselves to the Supreme God through Jesus Christ, who has given us such instruction, and asking of Him all help, and the guardianship of holy and good angels, to defend us from the earth-spirits intent on lust, and blood, and sacrificial odours,(2) and strange sounds, and other sensual things! For even, by the confession of Celsus, they can do nothing more than cure the body. But, indeed, I would say that it is not clear that these demons, however much they are reverenced, can even cure the body. But in seeking recovery from disease, a man must either follow the inure ordinary and simple method, and have recourse to medical art; or if he would go beyond the common methods adopted by men, he must rise to the higher and better way of seeking the blessing of Him who is God over all, through piety and prayers. CHAP. LXI. For consider with yourself which disposition of mind will be more acceptable to the Most High, whose power is supreme and universal, and who directs all for the welfare of mankind in body, and in mind, and in outward things,--whether that of the man who gives himself up to God in all things, or that of the man who is curiously inquisitive about the names of demons, their powers and agency, the incantations, the herbs proper to them, and the stones with the inscriptions graven on them, corresponding symbolically or otherwise to their traditional shapes? It is plain even to the least intelligent, that the disposition of the man who is simpleminded and not given to curious inquiries, but in all things devoted to the divine will, will be most pleasing to God, and to all those who are like God; but that of the man who, for the sake of bodily health, of bodily enjoyment, and outward prosperity, busies himself about the names of demons, and inquires by what incantations he shall appease them, will be condemned by God as bad and impious, and more agreeable to the nature of demons than of men, and will be given over to be torn and otherwise tormented by demons. For it is probable that they, as being wicked creatures, and, as Celsus confesses, addicted to blood, sacrificial odours, sweet sounds, and such like, will not keep their most solemn promises to those who supply them with these things. For if others invoke their aid against the persons who have already called upon them, and purchase their favour with a larger supply of blood, and odours, and such offerings as they require, they will take part against those who yesterday sacrificed and presented pleasant offerings to them. CHAP. LXII. In a former passage, Celsus had spoken at length on the subject of oracles, and had referred us to their answers as being the voice of the gods; but now he makes amends, and confesses that "those who foretell the fortunes of men and cities, and concern themselves about mortal affairs, are earth-spirits, who are given up to fleshly lust, blood, odours, sweet sounds, and other such things, and who are unable to rise above these sensual objects." Perhaps, when we opposed the theological teaching of Celsus in regard to oracles, and the honour done to those called gods, some one might suspect us of impiety when we alleged that these were stratagems of demoniacal powers, to draw men away to carnal indulgence. But any who entertained this suspicion against us, may now believe that the statements put forth by Christians were well-founded, when they see the above passage from the writings of one who is a professed adversary of Christianity, but who now at length writes as one who has been overcome by the spirit of truth. Although, therefore, Celsus says that "we must offer sacrifices to them, in so far as they are profitable to us, for to offer them indiscriminately is not allowed by reason," yet we are not to offer sacrifices to demons addicted to blood and odours; nor is the Divine Being to be profaned in our minds, by being brought down to the level of wicked demons. If Celsus had carefully weighed the meaning of the word "profitable," and had considered that the tritest profit lies in virtue and in virtuous action, he would not have applied the phrase "as far as it is profitable" to the service of such demons, as he has acknowledged them to be. If, then, health of body and success in life were to come to us on condition of our serving such demons, we should prefer sickness and misfortune accompanied with the consciousness of our being truly devoted to the will of God. For this is preferable to being mortally diseased in mind, and wretched through being separate and outcasts from God, though healthy in body and abounding in earthly prosperity. And we would rather go for help to one who seeks nothing whatever but the well-being of men and of all rational creatures, than to those who delight in blood and sacrificial odours. CHAP. LXIII. After having said so much of the demons, and of their fondness for blood and the odour of sacrifices, Celsus adds, as though wishing to retract the charge he had made: "The more just opinion is, that demons desire nothing and need nothing, but that they take pleasure in those who discharge towards them offices of piety." If Celsus believed this to be true, he should have said so, instead of making his previous statements. But, indeed, human nature is never utterly forsaken by God and His only- begotten Son, the Truth. Wherefore even Celsus spoke the truth when he made the demons take pleasure in the blood and smoke of victims; although, by the force of his own evil nature, he falls back into his errors, and compares demons with men who rigorously discharge every duty, even to those who show no gratitude; while to those who are grateful they abound in acts of kindness. Here Celsus appears to me to get into confusion. At one time his judgment is darkened by the influence of demons, and at another he recovers from their deluding power, and gets some glimpses of the truth. For again he adds: "We must never m any way lose our hold of God, whether by day or by night, whether in public or in secret, whether in word or in deed, but in whatever we do, or abstain from doing." That is, as I understand it, whatever we do in public, in all our actions, in all our words, "let the soul be constantly fixed upon God." And yet again, as though, after struggling in argument against the insane inspirations of demons, he were completely overcome by them, he adds: "If this is the case, what harm is there in gaining the favour of the rulers of the earth, whether of a nature different from ours, or human princes and kings? For these have gained their dignity through the instrumentality of demons." In a former part, Celsus did his utmost to debase our souls to the worship of demons; and now he wishes us to seek the favour of kings and princes, of whom, as the world and all history are full of them. I do not consider it necessary to quote examples. CHAP. LXIV. There is therefore One whose favour we should seek, and to whom we ought to pray that He would be gracious to us--the Most High God, whose favour is gained by piety and the practice of every virtue. And if he would have us to seek the favour of others after the Most High God, let him consider that, as the motion of the shadow follows that of the body which casts it, so in like manner it follows, that when we have the favour of God, we have also the good-will of all angels and spirits who are friends of God. For they know who are worthy of the divine approval, and they are not only well disposed to them, but they co-operate with them in their endeavours to please God: they seek His favour on their behalf; with their prayers they join their own prayers and intercessions for them. We may indeed boldly say, that men who aspire after better things have, when they pray to God, tens of thousands of sacred powers upon their side. These, even when not asked, pray with them, they bring succour to our mortal race, and if I may so say, take up arms alongside of it: for they see demons warring and fighting most keenly against the salvation of those who devote themselves to God, and despise the hostility of demons; they see them savage in their hatred of the man who refuses to serve them with the blood and fumes of sacrifices, but rather strives in every way, by word and deed, to be in peace and union with the Most High through Jesus, who put to flight multitudes of demons when He went about "heating,'' and delivering "all who were oppressed by the devil."(1) CHAP. LXV. Moreover, we are to despise ingratiating ourselves with kings or any other men, not only if their favour is to be won by murders, licentiousness, or deeds of cruelty, but even if it involves impiety towards God, or any servile expressions of flattery and obsequiousness, which things are unworthy of brave and high-principled men, who aim at joining with their other virtues that highest of virtues, patience and fortitude. But whilst we do nothing which is contrary to the law and word of God, we are not so mad as to 'stir up against us the wrath of kings and princes, which will bring upon us sufferings and tortures, or even death. For we read: "Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God."(2) These words we have in our exposition of the Epistle to the Romans, to the best of our ability, explained at length, and with various applications; but for the present we have taken them in their more obvious and generally received acceptation, to meet the saying of Celsus, that "it is not without the power of demons that kings have been raised to their regal dignity." Here much might be said on the constitution of kings and rulers, for the subject is a wide one, embracing such rulers as reign cruelly and tyrannically, and such as make the kingly office the means of indulging in luxury and sinful pleasures. We shall therefore, for the present, pass over the full consideration of this subject. We will, however, never swear by "the fortune of the king," nor by ought else that is considered equivalent to God. For if the word "fortune" is nothing but an expression for the uncertain course of events, as some say, although they seem not to be agreed, we do not swear by that as God which has no existence, as though it did really exist and was able to do something, lest we should bind ourselves by an oath to things which have no existence. If, on the other hand (as is thought by others, who say that to swear by the fortune of the king of the Romans is to swear by his demon), what is called the fortune of the king is in the power of demons, then in that case we must die sooner than swear by a wicked and treacherous demon, that ofttimes sins along with the man of whom it gains possession, and sins even more than he. CHAP. LXVI. Then Celsus, following the example of those who are under the influence of demons--at one time recovering, at another relapsing, as though he were again becoming sensible--says: "If, however, any worshipper of God should be ordered to do anything impious, or to say anything base, such a command should in no wise be regarded; but we must encounter all kinds of torment, or submit to any kind of death, rather than say or even think anything unworthy of God." Again, however, from ignorance of our principles, and in entire confusion of thought, he says: "But if any one commands you to celebrate the sun, or to sing a joyful triumphal song in praise of Minerva, you will by celebrating their praises seem to render the higher praise to God; for piety, in extending to all things, becomes more perfect." To this our answer is, that we do not wait for any command to celebrate the praises of the sun; for we have been taught to speak well not only of those creatures that are obedient to the will of God, but even of our enemies. We therefore praise the sun as the glorious workmanship of God, which obeys His laws and hearkens to the call, "Praise the Lord, sun and moon,"(1) and with all your powers show forth the praises of the Father and Creator of all. Minerva, however, whom Celsus classes with the sun, is the subject of various Grecian myths, whether these contain any hidden meaning or not. They say that Minerva sprang fully armed from the brain of Jupiter; that when she was pursued by Vulcan, she fled from him to preserve her honour; and that from the seed which fell to the ground in the heat of Vulcan's passion, there grew a child whom Minerva brought up and called Erichthonius, "That owed his nurture to the blue-eyed maid, But from the teeming furrow took his birth, The mighty offspring of the foodful earth."(2) It is therefore evident, that if we admit Minerva the daughter of Jupiter, we must also admit many fables and fictions which can be allowed by no one who discards fables and seeks after truth. CHAP. LXVII. And to regard these myths in a figurative sense, and consider Minerva as representing prudence, let any one show what were the actual facts of her history, upon which this allegory is based. For, supposing honour was given to Minerva as having been a woman of ancient times, by those who instituted mysteries and ceremonies for their followers, and who wished her name to be celebrated as that of a goddess, much more are we forbidden to pay divine honours to Minerva, if we are not permitted to worship so glorious an object as the sun, although we may celebrate its glory. Celsus, indeed, says that "we seem to do the greater honour to the great God when we sing hymns in honour of the sun and Minerva;" but we know it to be the opposite of that. For we sing hymns to the Most High alone, and His Only- begotten, who is the Word and God; and we praise God and His Only-begotten, as do also the sun, the moon, the stars, and all the host of heaven.(3) For these all form a divine chorus, and unite with the just among men in celebrating the praises of the Most High God and His Only-begotten. We have already said that we must not swear by a human king, or by what is called "the fortune of the king." It is therefore unnecessary for us again to refute these statements: "If you are commanded to swear by a human king, there is nothing wrong in that. For to him has been given whatever there is upon earth; and whatever you receive in this life, you receive from him." We deny, however, that all things which are on the earth have been given to the king, or that whatever we receive in this life we receive from him. For whatever we receive rightly and honourably we receive from God, and by His providence, as ripe fruits, and "corn which strengtheneth man's heart, and the pleasant vine, and wine which rejoiceth the heart of man."(4) And moreover, the fruit of the olive-tree, to make his face to shine, we have from the providence of God. CHAP. LXVIII. Celsus goes on to say: "We must not disobey the ancient writer, who said long ago, 'Let one be king, whom the son of crafty Saturn appointed ;'"(5) and adds: "If you set aside this maxim, you will deservedly suffer for it at the hands of the king. For if all were to do the same as you, there would be nothing to prevent his being left in utter solitude and desertion, and the affairs of the earth would fall into the hands of the wildest and most lawless barbarians; and then there would no longer remain among men any of the glory of your religion or of the true wisdom." If, then, "there shall be one lord, one king," he must be, not the man "whom the son of crafty Saturn appointed," but the man to whom He gave the power, who "removeth kings and setteth up kings,"(6) and who "raiseth up the useful man in time of need upon earth."(7) For kings are not appointed by that son of Saturn, who, according to Grecian fable, hurled his father from his throne, and sent him down to Tartarus (whatever interpretation may be given to this allegory), but by God, who governs all things, and who wisely arranges whatever belongs to the appointment of kings. We therefore do set aside the maxim contained in the line, "Whom the son of crafty Saturn appointed;" for we know that no god or father of a god ever devises anything crooked or crafty. But we are far from setting aside the notion of a providence, and of things happening directly or indirectly through the agency of providence. And the king will not "inflict deserved punishment" upon us, if we say that not the son of crafty Saturn gave him his kingdom, but He who "removeth and setteth up kings." And would that all were to follow my example in rejecting the maxim of Homer, maintaining the divine origin of the kingdom, and observing the precept to honour the king! In these circumstances the king will not "be left in utter solitude and desertion," neither will "the affairs of the world fall into the hands of the most impious and wild barbarians." For if, in the words of Celsus," they do as I do," then it is evident that even the barbarians, when they yield obedience to the word of God, will become most obedient to the law, and most humane; and every form of worship will be destroyed except the religion of Christ, which will alone prevail. And indeed it will one day triumph, as its principles take possession of the minds of men more and more every day. CHAP. LXIX. Celsus, then, as if not observing that he was saying anything inconsistent with the words he had just used, "if all were to do the same as you," adds: "You surely do not say that if the Romans were, in compliance with your wish, to neglect their customary duties to gods and men, and were to worship the Most High, or whatever you please to call him, that he will come down and fight for them, so that they shall need no other help than his. For this same God, as yourselves say, promised of old this and much more to those who served him, and see in what way he has helped them and you! They, in place of being masters of the whole world, are left with not so much as a patch of ground or a home; and as for you, if any of you transgresses even in secret, he is sought out and punished with death." As the question started is, "What would happen if the Romans were persuaded to adopt the principles of the Christians, to despise the duties paid to the recognised gods and to men, and to worship the Most High?" this is my answer to the question. We say that "if two" of us "shall agree on earth as touching anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of the Father" of the just, "which is in heaven;"(1) for God rejoices in the agreement of rational beings, and turns away from discord. And what are we to expect, if not only a very few agree, as at present, but the whole of the empire of Rome? For they will pray to the Word, who of old said to the Hebrews, when they were pursued by the Egyptians, "The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace;"(2) and if they all unite in prayer with one accord, they will be able to put to flight far more enemies than those who were discomfited by the prayer of Moses when he cried to the Lord, and of those who prayed with him. Now, if what God promised to those who keep His law has not come to pass, the reason of its nonfulfilment is not to be ascribed to the unfaithfulness of God. But He had made the fulfilment of His promises to depend on certain conditions,--namely, that they should observe and live according to His law; and if the Jews bare not a plot of ground nor a habitation left to them, although they had received these conditional promises, the entire blame is to be laid upon their crimes, and especially upon their guilt in the treatment of Jesus. CHAP. LXX. But if all the Romans, according to the supposition of Celsus, embrace the Christian faith, they will, when they pray, overcome their enemies; or rather, they will not war at all, being guarded by that divine power which promised to save five entire cities for the sake of fifty just persons. For men of God are assuredly the salt of the earth: they preserve the order of the world;(3) and society is held together as long as the salt is uncorrupted: for "if the salt have lost its savour, it is neither fit for the land nor for the dunghill; but it shall be cast out, and trodden under foot of men. He that hath ears, let him hear"(4) the meaning of these words, When God gives to the tempter permission to persecute us, then we suffer persecution; and when God wishes us to be free from suffering, even in the midst of a world that hates us, we enjoy a wonderful peace, trusting in the protection of Him who said, "Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world."(5) And truly He has overcome the world. Wherefore the world prevails only so long as it is the pleasure of Him who received from the Father power to overcome the world; and from His victory we take courage. Should He even wish us again to contend and struggle for our religion, let the enemy come against us, and we will say to them, "I can do all things, through Christ Jesus our Lord, which strengtheneth me."(6) For of "two sparrows which are sold for a farthing," as the Scripture says, "not one of them falls on the ground without our Father in heaven."(7) And so completely does the Divine Providence embrace all things, that not even the hairs of our head fail to be numbered by Him. CHAP. LXXI. Celsus again, as is usual with him, gets confused, and attributes to us things which none of us have ever written. His words are: "Surely it is intolerable for you to say, that if our present rulers, on embracing your opinions, are taken by the enemy, you will still be able to persuade those who rule after them; and after these have been taken you will persuade their successors and so on, until at length, when all who have yielded to your persuasion have been taken some prudent ruler shall arise, with a foresight of what is impending, and he will destroy you all utterly before he himself perishes." There is no need of any answer to these allegations: for none of us says of our present rulers, that if they embrace our opinions, and are taken by the enemy, we shall be able to persuade their successors; and when these are taken, those who come after them, and so on in succession. But on what does he ground the assertion, that when a succession of those who have yielded to our persuasion have been taken because they did not drive back the enemy, some prudent ruler shall arise, with a foresight of what is impending, who shall utterly destroy us? But here he seems to me to delight in inventing and uttering the wildest nonsense. CHAP. LXXII. Afterwards he says: "If it were possible," implying at the same time that he thought it most desirable, "that all the inhabitants of Asia, Europe, and Libya, Greeks and Barbarians, all to the uttermost ends of the earth, were to come under one law;" but judging this quite impossible, he adds, "Any one who thinks this possible, knows nothing." It would require careful consideration and lengthened argument to prove that it is not only possible, but that it will surely come to pass, that all who are endowed with reason shall come under one law. However, if we must refer to this subject, it will be with great brevity. The Stoics, indeed, hold that, when the strongest of the elements prevails, all things shall be turned into fire. But our belief is, that the Word shall prevail over the entire rational creation, and change every soul into His own perfection; in which state every one, by the mere exercise of his power, will choose what he desires, and obtain what he chooses. For although, in the diseases and wounds of the body, there are some which no medical skill can cure, yet we hold that in the mind there is no evil so strong that it may not be overcome by the Supreme Word and God. For stronger than all the evils in the soul is the Word, and the healing power that dwells in Him; and this healing He applies, according to the will of God, to every man. The consummation of all things is the destruction of evil, although as to the question whether it shall be so destroyed that it can never anywhere arise again, it is beyond our present purpose to say. Many things are said obscurely in the prophecies on the total destruction of evil, and the restoration to righteousness of every soul; but it will be enough for our present purpose to quote the following passage from Zephaniah: "Prepare and rise early; all the gleanings of their vineyards are destroyed. Therefore wait ye upon Me, saith the LORD, on the day that I rise up for a testimony; for My determination is to gather the nations, that I may assemble the kings, to pour upon them Mine indignation, even all My fierce anger: for all the earth shall be devoured with the fire of My jealousy. For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the LORD, to serve Him with one consent. From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia My suppliants, even the daughter of My dispersed, shall bring My offering. In that day shalt thou not be ashamed for all thy doings, wherein thou hast transgressed against Me: for then I will take away out of the midst of thee them that rejoice in thy pride; and thou shalt no more be haughty because of My holy mountain. I will also leave in the midst of thee an afflicted and poor people, and they shall trust in the name of the LORD. The remnant of Israel shall not do iniquity, nor speak lies; neither shall a deceitful tongue be found in their mouth: for they shall feed and lie down, and none shall make them afraid."(1) I leave it to those who are able, after a careful study of the whole subject, to unfold the meaning of this prophecy, and especially to inquire into the signification of the words, "When the whole earth is destroyed, there will be turned upon the peoples a language according to their race,"(2) as things were before the confusion of tongues. Let them also carefully consider the promise, that all shall call upon the name of the Lord, and serve Him with one consent; also that all contemptuous reproach shall be taken away, and there shall be no longer any injustice, or vain speech, or a deceitful tongue. And thus much it seemed needful for me to say briefly, and without entering into elaborate details, in answer to the remark of Celsus, that he considered any agreement between the inhabitants of Asia, Europe, and Libya, as well Greeks as Barbarians, was impossible. And perhaps such a result would indeed be impossible to those who are still in the body, but not to those who are released from it. CHAP. LXXIII. In the next place, Celsus urges us "to help the king with all our might, and to labour with him in the maintenance of justice, to fight for him; and if he requires it, to fight under him, or lead an army along with him." To this our answer is, that we do, when occasion requires, give help to kings, and that, so to say, a divine help, "putting on the whole armour of God."(1) And this we do in obedience to the injunction of the apostle, "I exhort, therefore, that first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; for kings, and for all that are in authority;"(2) and the more any one excels in piety, the more effective help does he render to kings, even more than is given by soldiers, who go forth to fight and slay as many of the enemy as they can. And to those enemies of our faith who require us to bear arms for the commonwealth, and to slay men, we can reply: "Do not those who are priests at certain shrines, and those who attend on certain gods, as you account them, keep their hands free from blood, that they may with hands unstained and free from human blood offer the appointed sacrifices to your gods; and even when war is upon you, you never enlist the priests in the army. If that, then, is a laudable custom, how much more so, that while others are engaged in battle, these too should engage as the priests and ministers of God, keeping their hands pure, and wrestling in prayers to God on behalf of those who are fighting in a righteous cause, and for the king who reigns righteously, that whatever is opposed to those who act righteously may be destroyed!" And as we by our prayers vanquish all demons who stir up war, and lead to the violation of oaths, and disturb the peace, we in this way are much more helpful to the kings than those who go into the field to fight for them. And we do take our part in public affairs, when along with righteous prayers we join self-denying exercises and meditations, which teach us to despise pleasures, and not to be led away by them. And none fight better for the king than we do. We do not indeed fight under him, although he require it; but we fight on his behalf, forming a special army- -an army of piety--by offering our prayers to God. CHAP. LXXIV. And if Celsus would have us to lead armies in defence of our country, let him know that we do this too, and that not for the purpose of being seen by men, or of vainglory. For "in secret," and in our own hearts, there are prayers which ascend as from priests in behalf of our fellow-citizens. And Christians are benefactors of their country more than others. For they train up citizens, and inculcate piety to the Supreme Being; and they promote those whose lives in the smallest cities have been good and worthy, to a divine and heavenly city, to whom it may be said, "Thou hast been faithful in the smallest city, come into a great one,"(3) where "God standeth in the assembly of the gods, and judgeth the gods in the midst;" and He reckons thee among them, if thou no more "die as a man, or fall as one of the princes."(4) CHAP. LXXV. Celsus also urges us to "take office in the government of the country, if that is required for the maintenance of the laws and the support of religion." But we recognise in each state the existence of another national organization(5) founded by the Word of God, and we exhort those who are mighty in word and of blameless life to rule over Churches. Those who are ambitious of ruling we reject; but we constrain those who, through excess of modesty, are not easily induced to take a public charge in the Church of God. And those who rule over us well are under the constraining influence of the great King, whom we believe to be the Son of God, God the Word. And if those who govern in the Church, and are called rulers of the divine nation--that is, the Church--rule well, they rule in accordance with the divine commands, and never suffer themselves to be led astray by worldly policy. And it is not for the purpose of escaping public duties that Christians decline public offices, but that they may reserve themselves for a diviner and more necessary service in the Church of God--for the salvation of men. And this service is at once necessary and right. They take charge of all--of those that are within, that they may day by day lead better lives, and of those that are without, that they may come to abound in holy words and in deeds of piety; and that, while thus worshipping God truly, and training up as many as they can in the same way, they may be filled with the word of God and the law of God, and thus be united with the Supreme God through His Son the Word, Wisdom, Truth, and Righteousness, who unites to God all who are resolved to conform their lives in all things to the law of God. CHAP. LXXVI. You have here, reverend Ambrosius, the conclusion of what we have been enabled to accomplish by the power given to us in obedience to your command. In eight books we have embraced all that we considered it proper to say in reply to that book of Celsus which he entitles A True Discourse. And now it remains for the readers of his discourse and of my reply to judge which of the two breathes most of the Spirit of the true God, of piety towards Him, and of that truth which leads men by sound doctrines to the noblest life. You must know, however, that Celsus had promised another treatise as a sequel to this one, in which he engaged to supply practical rules of living to those who felt disposed to embrace his opinions. If, then, he has not fulfilled his promise of writing a second book, we may well be contented with these eight books which we have written in answer to his discourse. But if he has begun and finished that second book, pray obtain it and send it to us, that we may answer it as the Father of truth may give us ability, and either overthrow the false teaching that may be in it, or, laying aside all jealousy, we may testify our approval of whatever truth it may contain. GLORY BE TO THEE, OUR GOD; GLORY BE TO THEE.

Taken from "The Early Church Fathers and Other Works" originally published by Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co. in English in Edinburgh, Scotland beginning in 1867. (ANF 4, Roberts and Donaldson.) The original digital version was by The Electronic Bible Society, P.O. Box 701356, Dallas, TX 75370, 214-407- WORD.