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Chapter XCV.

The true God, however, neither employs irrational animals, nor any individuals whom chance may offer,40544054    οὔτε τοῖς τυχοῦσι τῶν ἀνθρώπων. to convey a knowledge of the future; but, on the contrary, the most pure and holy of human souls, whom He inspires and endows with prophetic power.  And therefore, whatever else in the Mosaic writings may excite our wonder, the following must be considered as fitted to do so:  “Ye shall not practise augury, nor observe the flight of birds;”40554055    Cf. Lev. xix. 26.  The Septuagint here differs from the Masoretic text. and in another place:  “For the nations whom the Lord thy God will destroy from before thy face, shall listen to omens and divinations; but as for thee, the Lord thy God has not suffered thee to do so.”40564056    Cf. Deut. xviii. 14, cf. 12.  And he adds:  “A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you from among your brethren.”40574057    Cf. Deut. xviii. 15.  On one occasion, moreover, God, wishing by means of an augur to turn away (His people) from the practice of divination, caused the spirit that was in the augur to speak as follows:  “For there is no enchantment in Jacob, nor is there divination in Israel.  In due time will it be declared to Jacob and Israel what the Lord will do.”40584058    Cf. Num. xxiii. 23.  And now, we who knew these and similar sayings wish to observe this precept with the mystical meaning, viz., “Keep thy heart with all diligence,”40594059    Prov. iv. 23. that nothing of a demoniacal nature may enter into our minds, or any spirit of our adversaries turn our imagination whither it chooses.  But we pray that the light of the knowledge of the glory of God may shine in our hearts, and that the Spirit of God may dwell in our imaginations, and lead them to contemplate the things of God; for “as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.”40604060    Cf. Rom. viii. 14.


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