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Chapter X.—The Absolute God Entirely Incomprehensible by Man.

“For instance, then, what did you say in the beginning?  If the wicked one has been begotten of God, being of the same substance as He, then God is wicked.  But when I showed you, from the example which you yourself adduced, that wicked beings come from good, and good from wicked, you did not admit the argument, for you said that the example was a human one.  Wherefore I now do not admit that the term ‘being begotten’14261426    The text is corrupt here.  Literally it is, “I do not admit that God had been begotten.” can be used with reference to God; for it is characteristic of man, and not of God, to beget.  Not only so; but God cannot be good or evil, just or unjust.  Nor indeed can He have intelligence, or life, or any of the other attributes which can exist in man; for all these are peculiar to man.  And if we must not, in our investigations in regard to God, give Him the good attributes which belong to man, it is not possible for us to have any thought or make any statement in regard to God; but all we can do is to investigate One point alone,—namely, what is His will which He has Himself allowed us to apprehend, in order that, being judged, we might be without excuse in regard to those laws which we have not observed, though we knew them.”


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