« Prev Chapter XIV Next »

Chapter XIV.

The following, then, are his words:  “It is folly on their part to suppose that when God, as if He were a cook,41274127    ὥσπερ μάγειρος. introduces the fire (which is to consume the world), all the rest of the human race will be burnt up, while they alone will remain, not only such of them as are then alive, but also those who are long since dead, which latter will arise from the earth clothed with the self-same flesh (as during life); for such a hope is simply one which might be cherished by worms.  For what sort of human soul is that which would still long for a body that had been subject to corruption?  Whence, also, this opinion of yours is not shared by some of the Christians, and they pronounce it to be exceedingly vile, and loathsome, and impossible; for what kind of body is that which, after being completely corrupted, can return to its original nature, and to that self-same first condition out of which it fell into dissolution?  Being unable to return any answer, they betake themselves to a most absurd refuge, viz., that all things are possible to God.  And yet God cannot do things that are disgraceful, nor does He wish to do things that are contrary to His nature; nor, if (in accordance with the wickedness of your own heart) you desired anything that was evil, would God accomplish it; nor must you believe at once that it will be done.  For God does not rule the world in order to satisfy inordinate desires, or to allow disorder and confusion, but to govern a nature that is upright and just.41284128    οὐ γὰρ τῆς πλημμελοῦς ὀρέξεως, οὐδὲ τῆς πεπλανημένης ἀκοσμίας, ἀλλὰ τῆς ὀρθῆς καὶ δικαίας φύσεως Θεός ἐστιν ἀρχηγέτης.  For the soul, indeed, He might be able to provide an everlasting life; while dead bodies, on the contrary, are, as Heraclitus observes, more worthless than dung.  God, however, neither can nor will declare, contrary to all reason, that the flesh, which is full of those things which it is not even honourable to mention, is to exist for ever.  For He is the reason of all things that exist, and therefore can do nothing either contrary to reason or contrary to Himself.”


« Prev Chapter XIV Next »





Advertisements



| Define | Popups: Login | Register | Prev Next | Help |