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Chapter LIII.

All the arguments, indeed, which this Jew of Celsus advances against those who believe on Jesus, may, by parity of reasoning, be urged as ground of accusation against Moses:  so that there is no difference in asserting that the sorcery practised by Jesus and that by Moses were similar to each other,33323332    ὥστε μηδὲν διαφέρειν παραπλήσιον εἶναι λέγειν γοητειαν της ᾽Ιησοῦ τῇ Μωϋσέως.—both of them, so far as the language of this Jew of Celsus is concerned, being liable to the same charge; as, e.g., when this Jew says of Christ, “But, O light and truth! Jesus with his own voice expressly declares, as you yourselves have recorded, that there will appear among you others also, who will perform miracles like mine, but who are wicked men and sorcerers,” some one, either Greek or Egyptian, or any other party who disbelieved the Jew, might say respecting Moses, “But, O light and truth! Moses with his own voice expressly declares, as ye also have recorded, that there will appear among you others also, who will perform miracles like mine, but who are wicked men and sorcerers.  For it is written in your law, ‘If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, and the sign or wonder come to pass whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; thou shalt not hearken to the words of that prophet, or dreamer of dreams,’”33333333    Deut. xiii. 1–3. etc.  Again, perverting the words of Jesus, he says, “And he terms him who devises such things, one Satan;” while one, applying this to Moses, might say, “And he terms him who devises such things, a prophet who dreams.”  And as this Jew asserts regarding Jesus, that “even he himself does not deny that these works have in them nothing of divinity, but are the acts of wicked men;” so any one who disbelieves the writings of Moses might say, quoting what has been already said, the same thing, viz., that, “even Moses does not deny that these works have in them nothing of divinity, but are the acts of wicked men.”  And he will do the same thing also with respect to this:  “Being compelled by the force of truth, Moses at the same time both exposed the doings of others, and convicted himself of the same.”  And when the Jew says, “Is it not a wretched inference from the same acts, to con453clude that the one is a God, and the others sorcerers?” one might object to him, on the ground of those words of Moses already quoted, “Is it not then a wretched inference from the same acts, to conclude that the one is a prophet and servant of God, and the others sorcerers?”  But when, in addition to those comparisons which I have already mentioned, Celsus, dwelling upon the subject, adduces this also:  “Why from these works should the others be accounted wicked, rather than this man, seeing they have him as a witness against himself?”—we, too, shall adduce the following, in addition to what has been already said:  “Why, from those passages in which Moses forbids us to believe those who exhibit signs and wonders, ought we to consider such persons as wicked, rather than Moses, because he calumniates some of them in respect of their signs and wonders?”  And urging more to the same effect, that he may appear to strengthen his attempt, he says:  “He himself acknowledged that these were not the works of a divine nature, but were the inventions of certain deceivers, and of very wicked men.”  Who, then, is “himself?”  You O Jew, say that it is Jesus; but he who accuses you as liable to the same charges, will transfer this “himself” to the person of Moses.


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