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that such a Service could not make men acceptable to God. On these points the Cause seems chiefly to have rested; and the Fathers thought that They had done enough to justify Themselves for embracing a Religion in which no Sacrifices were offered but the spiritual ones of Prayer, and Praise, and Thanksgiving, when they had cited the Authorities of the Wisest
and Ablest Heathens, who had expressly declared against all other Service or Worship but that of the Mind.
Thus, e.g. Because Porphyry had confessed, * * That you ought not to burn
Incense, or to sacrifice, to the God of “ all; nor ought you to imagine Those
to be Gods who take pleasure in the
Sacrifice of Animals”: That“ it is " the most unrighteous thing in the world “to Sacrifice Living Creatures : ” That “ it is impious, and detestable, and preju
dicial, and therefore it cannot be pleahng
* Ομολογει μη δείν το καθόλα μηδέν μήτε θυμιάν, μήτε θύειν τώ επί πάσι θεώ· –μη κρήνουι-θεές υπολαμβάνειν τους ταις διά ζώων θυσίαις χαίροντας. Ειναι γάς φησι παντων αδικώτατον το ζωοθυτειν, και ανόσιον, και μυσαρών, και βλαEspòv, xão da isto pindi Trois w porques. Euseb. Præp. Evang. l. iv. c. 10.
" to the Gods” to offer Sacrifice
3 Because, I say, He had made this Confeffion, The Christian Apologist readily laid hold of This to justify the WorThip of the One God and Father of all * " with a Mind free from all Malice; and “ with a Body adorned with the Orna
ment of Chastity and Temperance ; and “ with the holding of right Notions, wor“ thy of God and suitable to his Nature « and above all these,” says he, “ we
pray that we may with a right Dispohtion keep up and maintain that Godliness which our Saviour commanded, unto Death.”
And no doubt so far he reasoned right from his Adversary's confessions,- That if it was detestable and impious to sacrifice living creatures, it could not be blameable to abstain from such a Worship, or to use That only of an upright Heart and a pure Mind.
Eusebius goes on to cite from Porphyry
Να πάσης κεκαθαρμένων κακίας, και σώματι τον εξ αγνείας και σωφροσύνης κόσμον -- σεριβεβλημένω, δόγμασι τε ορθούς και θεοπρεπέσι, και επί πάσι τέτοις, διαθέσει γνησία την υπό το Σωτήρος ημών παραδοθείσαν ευσέβειαν μεχρι και θα νάτε φυλάττειν ευχόμεθα. Ιbid.
å paffage in which he says, that * « no
thing material can be otherwise than « impure to an immaterial Being.” And at length he concludes, that fince Porpbyrý acknowledges, of " that They are « no Gods who take pleasure in Sacri
fices, therefore neither the Aerial, nor “ Cæleftial, nor Ætherial, nor Subterres“ trial Deities, were Gods ; no nór Apollo
himself, who had by his Oracle coms manded Sacrifice.” Porphyry, who hađ pleaded for all these Sorts of Deities, could not with any prerence evade the force of this reasoning : And the Christians could not but triumph over their Adversaries and Calumniators.
But still à difficulty remained, which Eusebius did not meddle with ; and That was in relation to the Jewish Sacrifices. Porphyry's Arguments were levelled against all Animal Sacrifices': and consequently They might be arged very justly by Chrif * Ουδέν νυλον ο μη το αύλω ευθύς εσιν ακαθαρίoν. C. ΙΙ.
* Ουκ ήν άρα Θεός, έδε τις αψευδής και αγαθος δαίμων, και τας δι' αιματων λοιδας τε και κνίσας μικρώ πρόσθεν εισ. πραττόμενος χρήσ μουδος: ουδ' εκείνοι πάντες, οις ο κρησμός θυειν ζώα παρεκελεύσατο. Πλάνο, άρα και απατεώναπροσταξαντα μη μόνον τοϊς χθονίοις, αλλά και τους ουρανίοιςLicture. c. 14
tians in Juftification of themfelyes, who used no Sacrifices. But then, if His reafoning was good, " That they to whom
the Heathen facrificed were not Gods, “ because They commanded Animal Sa
crifices”, must it not follow, that He that commanded the Jews to offer up Animal Sacrifices could not be God? But Eufebius entered not into this Quertion, but only answered ad hominem; and justified Himself, and refuted his Adverfary's Arguments so far only as Christians were immediately concerned, without speaking to the Reason of this mode of Worship.
In the following Papers I have endeavoured to fhew what I take to have been the ground of this Practice. It may appear to Us very disagreeable, and odd, to offer up Animal Sacrifices unto God : But the universal practice of the world Thews that it did not appear so to them of old. If one can assign a rational ground of this way of worship, that is all I aim at : And since all agree, that there is no express Affertion in the Sacred Writings, that this Mode of Religious
Worship was instituted or appointed by God at the beginning, I cannot think that They argue right, who infer from the Disagreeableness, or the Oddness, or
our not being able to understand the Reason or Usefulness of Sacrificing, that therefore it must have been originally a Divine Institution. But as the Rationale of Sacrifices is dark, and has never been duly considered as it deserves, (at least it does not appear to me to have been so) I have endeavoured to throw fome Light upon this Subject; and I shall only add,
Si quid novisti rectius iftis Candidus imperti : , Si nove his utere mecum.
Maimonides mentions fome that argued – Si ratio et Utilitas illarum (Legum] non poffit intelligi, tum extra omne dubium esse, quod a Deo Originem fuam trahant, cum ratione humana non poffint intelligi. More Nevoc.
1.ïi. C. 31.
56. I. 16. for, Woman, r.Women.