or less extent, depending upon the intellectual sphere
author:software source：Fog lock smoke fan net browse: 【大middle小】 release time:2023-12-05 03:24:03 Comments:
"They, who ween that the Heaven is a god, are in error. For we see it turning and mowing by law, and consisting of many parts, whence also it is called Cosmos! Now a `Cosmos' is the handiwork of some artificer; and that which is wrought by handiwork hath beginning and end. And the firmament is moved by law together with its luminaries. The stars are borne from Sign to Sign, each in his order and place: some rise, while others set: and they run their journey according to fixed seasons, to fulfil summer and winter, as it hath been ordained for them by God, nor do they transgress their proper bounds, according to the inexorable law of nature, in common with the heavenly firmament. Whence it is evident that the heaven is not a god, but only a work of God.
"They again that think that the Earth is a goddess have gone astray. We behold it dishonoured, mastered, defiled and rendered useless by mankind. If it be baked by the sun, it becometh dead, for nothing groweth from a potsherd. And again, if it be soaked overmuch, it rotteth, fruit and all. It is trodden under foot of men and the residue of the beasts: it is polluted with the blood of the murdered, it is digged and made a grave for dead bodies. This being so, Earth can in no wise be a goddess, but only the work of God for the use of men.
"They that think that Water is a god have gone astray. It also hath been made for the use of men. It is under their lordship: it is polluted, and perisheth: it is altered by boiling, by dyeing, by congealment, or by being brought to the cleansing of all defilements. Wherefore Water cannot be a god, but only the work of God.
"They that think that Fire is a god are in error. It too was made for the use of men. It is subject to their lordship, being carried about from place to place, for the seething and roasting of all manner of meats, yea, and for the burning of dead corpses. Moreover, it perisheth in divers ways, when it is quenched by mankind. Wherefore Fire cannot be a god, but only the work of God.
"They that think that the breath of the Winds is a goddess are in error. This, as is evident, is subject to another, and hath been prepared by God, for the sake of mankind, for the carriage of ships, and the conveyance of victuals, and for other uses of men, it riseth and falleth according to the ordinance of God. Wherefore it is not to be supposed that the breath of the Winds is a goddess, but only the work of God.
"They that think that the Sun is a god are in error. We see him moving and turning by law, and passing from Sign to Sign, setting and rising, to warm herbs and trees for the use of men, sharing power with the other stars, being much less than the heaven, and falling into eclipse and possessed of no sovranty of his own. Wherefore we may not consider that the Sun is a god, but only the work of God.
"They that think that the Moon is a goddess are in error. We behold her moving and turning by law, and passing from Sign to Sign, setting and rising for the use of men, lesser than the sun, waxing and waning, suffering eclipse. Wherefore we do not consider that the Moon is a goddess, but only the work of God.
"They that think that Man is a god are in error. We see man moving by law, growing up, and waxing old, even against his will. Now he rejoiceth, now he grieveth, requiring meat and drink and raiment. Besides he is passionate, envious, lustful, fickle, and full of failings: and he perisheth in many a way, by the elements, by wild beasts, and by the death that ever awaiteth him. So Man cannot be a god, but only the work of God. Great then is the error that the Chaldeans have erred in following their own lusts; for they worship corruptible elements and dead images, neither do they perceive that they are making gods of these.