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Chapter XXXIII.

The remarks which we have made not only answer the statements of Celsus regarding the superintending spirits, but anticipate in some measure what he afterwards brings forward, when he says:  “Let the second party come forward; and I shall ask them whence they come, and whom they regard as the originator of their ancestral customs.  They will reply, No one, because they spring from the same source as the Jews themselves, and derive their instruction and superintendence41944194    χοροστάτην. from no other quarter, and notwithstanding they have revolted from the Jews.”  Each one of us, then, is come “in the last days,” when one Jesus has visited us, to the “visible mountain of the Lord,” the Word that is above every word, and to the “house of God,” which is “the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.”41954195    Cf. 1 Tim. iii. 15.  And we notice how it is built upon “the tops of the mountains,” i.e., the predictions of all the prophets, which are its foundations.  And this house is exalted above the hills, i.e., those individuals among men who make a profession of superior attainments in wisdom and truth; and all the nations come to it, and the “many nations” go 558forth, and say to one another, turning to the religion which in the last days has shone forth through Jesus Christ:  “Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in them.”41964196    Cf. Isa. ii. 3.  For the law came forth from the dwellers in Sion, and settled among us as a spiritual law.  Moreover, the word of the Lord came forth from that very Jerusalem, that it might be disseminated through all places, and might judge in the midst of the heathen, selecting those whom it sees to be submissive, and rejecting41974197    ἐλέγχῃ. the disobedient, who are many in number.  And to those who inquire of us whence we come, or who is our founder,41984198    ἀρχηγέτην. we reply that we are come, agreeably to the counsels of Jesus, to “cut down our hostile and insolent ‘wordy’41994199    συγκόψαι τὰς πολεμικὰς ἡμῶν λογικὰς μαχαίρας καὶ ὑβριστικὰς εἰς ἄροτρα, καὶ τὰς κατὰ τὸ πρότερον ἡμῶν μάχιμον ζιβύνας εἰς δρέπανα μετασκευάζομεν. swords into ploughshares, and to convert into pruning-hooks the spears formerly employed in war.”42004200    Cf. Isa. ii. 4.  For we no longer take up “sword against nation,” nor do we “learn war any more,” having become children of peace, for the sake of Jesus, who is our leader, instead of those whom our fathers followed, among whom we were “strangers to the covenant,” and having received a law, for which we give thanks to Him that rescued us from the error (of our ways), saying, “Our fathers honoured lying idols, and there is not among them one that causeth it to rain.”42014201    Cf. Jer. xvi. 19 and xiv. 22ὡς ψευδῆ ἐκτήσαντο οἱ πατέρες ἡμῶν εἴδωλα, καὶ οὐκ ἔστιν ἐν αὐτοῖς ὑετίζων.  Our Superintendent, then, and Teacher, having come forth from the Jews, regulates the whole world by the word of His teaching.  And having made these remarks by way of anticipation, we have refuted as well as we could the untrue statements of Celsus, by subjoining the appropriate answer.


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