|100||THE APOLOGY OF AL KINDY.|
are but examples. And so, my Friend, thou wilt find in history mention of no teacher, true or false, who did not advance some kind of proof, to be weighed in the scales of right and wrong, excepting only thy Master; for he used no other argument that I can see, but the sword. Nor wilt thou hear of any other but he, standing up and saying,Whoever doth not accept me as a Prophet and the Apostle of God, the same shall be slain, his goods seized, and his women and children carried off captive;and all this without a tittle of evidence!
"As for the ministry of our blessed Saviour, it is too sacred and excellent to be brought into comparison here. Thou knowest it all. Now say, my Friend, doth it become a man of thine intelligence and culture to ask one like me, who hath devoted my life to the study of men and things, to embrace a faith like this,I who read the words of the Saviour,he that is my garment and my righteousness, by night and by day? Hearken unto His gracious voice:'Be tender unto all mankind, and merciful; that ye may be like unto your Father in Heaven, for He causeth His sun to shine on the good and on the bad, and sendeth down His rain upon the righteous and upon the wicked.' How should I, with these words ringing in my ears,I who have been nurtured in this blessed faith of Grace and Mercy,so that it hath become part of my flesh, my bones, my blood, my very life,God forbid that I should harden my heart and become rebellious, changed into the image of Iblis, the Enemy of mankind and Murderer: and should smite with the
|RELIGIOUS WAR CONTRARY TO DIVINE LAW.||101|
sword, and slay children of mine own species, the seed of Adam formed by the hand of the Almighty, and in the likeness of the Most High:He that saith, 'I desire not the death of the sinner, who is to-day in his sins, and on the morrow, if he repent, I will receive him as a tender Father doth.'" Upon this there follows a glowing description of the glory and honour bestowed on humanity by the Son of God having taken our nature, and as such being worshipped by angels and endowed with all power in heaven and earth,our Brother, seated at the right hand of the Majesty on high, and who will come hereafter as the judge of men, angels, and devils. "Wilt thou, my Friend, that I, rejecting His grace and favour, should destroy and enslave mine own species, ennobled thus and allied with the Divine nature? God forbid? I flee at the impious suggestion unto the Lord for refuge, from His wrath and indignation!"1
Should his Friend urge, as an analogy, that God sends death, famine, and such like calamities on mankind, our Apologist would reply (not with the childish answer his Friend once made, in a former discussion held with him "On the soul," that God made it so) as follows:"The Lord sendeth death and calamities upon His servants not because He hateth and seeketh to injure them, for then why should He ever have created mankind, and why seek (as we know He doth) to fulfil them with His grace and mercy, and take them from this transitory and imperfect
war as a