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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 Wiseft and Ableft Heathens, who had expressly declared against all other Service or Worship but that of the Mind.
Thus, e.g. Because Porphyry had confeffed, * " 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 pleasing
* Ομολογει μη δεν το καθόλα μυηδέν μήτε θυμιάν, μήτε θύειν τώ επί πάσι θεώ - μη χρήναι-- θεές υπολαμβάνειν τους ταις διά ζώων θυσίαις χαίροντας. Ειναι γάρ φησι παντων άδικώτατον το ζωοθυτειν, και ανόσιον, και μυοσαρόν, και βλαGépèr, xão cice IŠTo Mendes Secco wpoo Qands. Eufeb. Præp. Evang. I. iv. c. 10.
le to the God's to offer Sacrifice; Because, I say, He had made this Con feflion, The Christian Apologis readily laid hold of This to justify the Worship 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 fuitable to his Nature ; « and above all these,” fays he,“ we
pray that we may with a right Disposition keep up and maintain that Godlinefs which our Saviour commanded,
even unto Death." And no doubt fo far he reasoned right from his Adverfary'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.
Eufebius goes on to cite from Porphyry
* Να πάσης κεκαθαρμένω κακίας, και σώματι τον εξ αγδείας και σωφροσύνης κόσμου - περιβεβλημένη, δόγμασί τα ορθούς και θεοπρεπέσι, και επί πάσι τέτοις, διαθέσει γνησία την υπό τη Σωτήρος ημών παραδοθείσαν ευσέβειαν μεχρι και θα ναύτε φυλάττειν ευχόμεθος, Ιbid,
a passage in which he says, that * "
nothing material can be otherwise than
impure to an immaterial Being.”. And at length he concludes, that since Porphyry acknowledges, of " that They are
no Gods who take pleasure in Sacrifices, therefore neither the Aerial, nor
Cælestial, nor Ætherial, nor Subterref“ trial Deities, were Gods; no nor Apollo “ himself, who had by his Oracle com« manded Sacrifice.” Porphyry, who had pleaded for all these Sorts of Deities, could pot with any pretence evade the force of this reasoning : And the Christians could not but triumph over their Adversaries and Calumniators.
But still a difficulty remained, which Eufebius 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 urged very justly by Chrif
* Ουδέν ένυλον και μη το αύλω ευθύς εςιν ακάθαρον. C. .
ή Ουκ ήν άρα Θεός, έδε τις αψευδής και αγαθός δαίμων, ο τάς δι' αιμάτων λοιδάς τε και κνίτσας μικρώ πρόσθεν εισ. πραττόμενος χρήσμωδος: ουδ' εκείνοι πάντες, οις ο χρησμός θύειν ζώα παρεκελεύσατο. Πλένον άρα και απατεώναπροσταξοντα μή μόνον τοϊς χθονίοις, αλλά και τους ουρανίοιςLactutsiv. C. 14.
tians in Juftification of themselves; who used no Sacrifices. But then, if His reasoning 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 Queltion, but only answered ad bominem; and justified Himself, and refuted his Adversary'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 Thew 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 shews 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 deseryes, (at least it does not appear to me to have been so) I have endeavoured to throw some Light upon this Subject; and I shall only add,
Si quid novisti rectius iftis Candidus imperti : Si norr 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 suam trahant, cum ratione humana non poflint intelligi. More Nevoca
1. Pi. c. 31.
ERRA T A.
56. l. 16. for, Woman, r. Women.