16. But God wanted not power
to make man such as that he should not be able to sin: but He chose
rather to make him such, as that it should lie in his power18591859 to sin, if
he would; not to sin, if he would not; forbidding the one,
enjoining the other; that it might be to him first a good desert
not to sin, and after a just reward not to be able to sin. For such
also at the last will He makes His Saints, as to be without all
power to sin. Such forsooth even now hath He His angels, whom in
Him we so love, as to have no fear for any of them, lest by sinning
he become a devil. And this we presume not of any just man in this
mortal life. But we trust that all will be such in that immortal
life. For Almighty God Who worketh good even of our evils, what
good will He give, when He shall have set us free from all evils?
Much may be said more fully and more subtilely on the good use of
evil; but this is not what we have undertaken in our present
discourse, and we must avoid in it excess of length.