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Chapter 21 [XX.]—Love the Root of All Good Things; Cupidity, of All Evil Ones.

The “capacity,” then, of which we speak is not (as he supposes) the one identical root both of good things and evil. For the love which is the root of good things is quite different from the cupidity which is the root of evil things—as different, indeed, as virtue is from vice. But without doubt this “capacity” is capable of either root: because a man is not only able to possess love, whereby the tree becomes a good one; but he is likewise able to have cupidity, which makes the tree evil. This human cupidity, however, which is a vice, has for its author man, or man’s deceiver, but not man’s Creator. It is indeed that “lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, which is not of the Father, but is of the world.”18311831     1 John ii. 16. And who can be ignorant of the usage of the Scripture, which under the designation of “the world” is accustomed to describe those who inhabit the world?


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