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Of the asylum of Juno in Troy, wJdch saved no one from the Greeks; and of the churches of the apostles, ichkh protected from the barbarians all who fled to them. Troy itself, tlie mother of the Pioman people, was not able, as I have said, to protect its own citizens in the sacred places of their gods from the fire and sword of the Greeks, though the Greeks worshipped the same gods. In long array were stamling mar. Into it were collected the spoils rescued from the blazing temples and snatched from the gods, not that they might be restored to the vanquished, but divided among the victors ; while into these was carried back, with the most religious observance and respect, everything which belonged to them, even though found elsewhere.

There liberty was lost; here preserved. There bondage was strict; here strictly excluded. Into that temple men were driven to become the chattels of their enemies, now lording it over them ; into these churches men were led by their relenting foes, that they might be at liberty. But perhaps, after all, the Greeks did in that victory of theirs spare the temples of those gods whom they worshipped in common with the Trojans, and did not dare to put to the sword or make captive the wretched and vanquished Trojans who fled thither ; and perhaps Virgil, in the manner of poets, has depicted what never really happened?

But there is no question that he depicted the usual custom of an enemy when sacking a city. Caesar s statement regarding the universal custom oj an enemy when sacking a city. And tlie Eoman temples were in danger of these disasters, not from foreign foes, but from Catiline and liis associates, the most noble senators and citizens of Piome.

But these, it may be said, were abandoned men, and the parricides of their fatherland. Tltat not even the Homans, lohen they took cities, spared the conquered in their temples. Why, then, need our argument take note of the many nations who have waged wars with one another, and have nowhere spared the conquered in the temples of their gods? Or have they reaUy done this, and has the fact been suppressed by the historians of these events? Marcus Marcellus, a distinguished Roman, who took Syracuse, a most splendidly adorned city, is reported to have bewailed its coming ruin, and to have shed liis own tears over it before he spilt its blood.

He took steps also to preserve the chastity even of his enemy. For before he gave orders for the storming of the city, he issued an edict forbidding the violation of any free person. Yet the city was sacked according to the custom of war ; nor do we anywhere read, that even by so chaste and gentle a commander orders were given that no one should be injured who had lied to this or that temple. Fabius, the conqueror of the city of Tarentum, is praised for abstaining from making booty of the images.


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For when his secretary proposed the question to him, what he wished done with the statues of the gods, which had been taken in large numbers, he veiled his moderation under a joke. For he asked of what sort they were ; and when they reported to him that there were not only many large images, but some of them armed, " Oh," says he, " let us leave with the Tarentines their angry gods. That the cruelties which occurred in the sach of Rome were in accordance with the custom of war, whereas the acts of clemency resulted Jrom the influence of Christ s name.

All the spoiling, then, which Eome was exposed to in the recent calamity—all the slaughter, plundering, burning, and misery—was the result of the custom of war. But what was novel, was that savage barbarians showed themselves in so gentle a guise, that the largest churches were chosen and set apart for the purpose of being filled with the people to whom quarter was given, and that in them none were slain, from them none forcibly dragged ; that into them many were led by their relenting enemies to be set at liberty, and that from them none were led into slavery by merciless foes.

Whoever does not see that this is to be attributed to the name of Christ, and to the Christian temper, is blind; whoever sees this, and gives no praise, is ungrateful ; whoever hinders any one from praising it, is mad. Far be it from any prudent man to impute this clemency to the barbarians. Their fierce and bloody minds were awed, and bridled, and marvellously tempered by Him who so long before said by His prophet, " I.

Of the advantages and disadvantages which often indiscriminately accrue to good and wicked men. Will some one say, "Wliy, then, was this divine compassion extended even to the ungodly and ungrateful? Wiy, but because it was the mercy of Him who daily " maketh His sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.

And so, too, does the mercy of God embrace the good that it may cherish them, as the severity of God arrests the wicked to punish them. To the divine providence it has seemed good to prepare in the world to come for the righteous good things, which the unrighteous shall not enjoy ; and for the wicked evil things, by which the good shall not be tormented. But as for the good things of this life, and its ills, God has willed that these should be common to both ; that we might not too eagerly covet the things which wicked men are seen equally to enjoy, nor shrink with an unseemly fear from the ills which even good men often suffer.

There is, too, a very great difference in the purpose served both by those events which we caU adverse and those called prosperous. For the good man is neither uplifted with the good things of time, nor broken by its ills ; but the wicked man, because he is corrupted by this world s happiness, feels himself punished by its unhappiness. For if every sin were now visited with manifest punishment, nothing would seem to be reserved for the final judgment ; on the other hand, if no sin received now a plainly divine punishment, it would be concluded that there is no divine providence at all.

And so of the good things of this life : if God did not by a very visible liberality confer these on some of those persons who ask for them, we should say that these good things were not at His disposal ; and if He gave them to all who sought them, we should suppose that such were the only rewards of His service ; and such a service would make us not godly, but greedy rather, and covetous. Wherefore, though good and bad men suffer alike, we must not suppose that there is no difference between the men themselves, because there is no difference in what they both suffer.

For even in the likeness of the sufferings, there remains an unlikeness in the sufferers ; and though exposed to the same anguish, virtue and vice are not the same thing. For as the same fire causes gold to glow brightly, and chaff to smoke ; and under the same flail the straw is beaten small, while the grain is cleansed ; and as the lees are not mixed with the oil, though squeezed out of the vat by the same pressure, so the same violence of affliction proves, purges, clarifies the good, but damns, ruins, exterminates the wicked.

And thus it is that in the same affliction the wicked detest God and blaspheme, while the good pray and praise. So material a difference does it make, not what ills are suffered, but what kind of man suffers them. For, stirred up with the same movement, mud exhales a horrible stench, and ointment emits a fragrant odour.

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Of the reasons for administering correction to had and good together. What, then, have the Christians suffered in that calamitous period, which would not profit every one who duly and faithfully considered the following circumstances?

First of all, tliey must humbly consider those very sins which have provoked God to fill the world with such terrible disasters; for although they be far from the excesses of wicked, immoral, and ungodly men, yet they do not judge themselves so clean removed from all faults as to be too good to suffer for these even temporal ills. Though he do not fall into gross enormity of wickedness, and abandoned viciousness, and abominable profanity, yet he slips into some sins, either rarely or so much the more frequently as the sins seem of less account.

But not to mention this, where can we readily find a man who holds in fit and just estimation those persons on account of whose revolting pride, luxury, and avarice, and cursed iniquities and impiety, God now smites the earth as His predictions threatened? Where is the man who lives with them in the style in which it becomes us to live with them? For often we wickedly blind ourselves to the occasions of teaching and admonishing them, sometimes even of reprimanding and chiding them, either because we shrink from the labour or are ashamed to offend them, or because we fear to lose good friendships, lest this should stand in the way of our advancement, or injure us in some worldly matter, which either our covetous disposition desires to obtain, or our weakness shrinks from losing.

So that, although the conduct of wicked men is distasteful to the good, and therefore they do not fall with them into that damnation which in the next life awaits such persons, yet, because they spare their damnable sins through fear, therefore, even though their own sins be slight and venial, they are justly scourged with the wicked in this world, though in eternity they quite escape punishment.

Justly, when God afflicts them in common with the wicked, do they find this life bitter, through love of whose sweetness they declined to be bitter to these sinners. If any one forbears to reprove and find fault with those who are doing wrong, because he seeks a more seasonable opportunity, or because he fears they may be made worse by his rebuke, or that other weak persons may be disheartened from endeavouring to lead a good and pious life, and may be driven from the faith ; this man s omission seems to be occasioned not by covctousness, but by a charitable consideration.

But what is blameworthy is, that they who themselves revolt from the conduct of the wicked, and live in quite another fashion, yet spare those faults in other men whicli tliey ouglit to reprehend and wean them from ; and spare tliem because.

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The Mahabharata, Volume I., Book by Kisari Mohan Ganguli

For not only the weaker brethren, who enjoy married life, and have children or desire to have them , and own houses and establishments, whom the apostle addresses in the churches, warning and instructing them how they should live, both the wives with their husbands, and the husbands with their wives, the children with their parents, and parents with their children, and servants with their masters, and masters with their servants,—not only do these weaker brethren gladly obtain and grudgingly lose many earthly and temporal things on account of which they dare not offend men whose polluted and wicked life greatly displeases them ; but those also who live at a higher level, who are not entangled in the meshes of married life, but use meagre food and raiment, do often take thought of their own safety and good name, and abstain from finding fault with the wicked, because they fear their wiles and violence.

And although they do not fear them to such an extent as to be drawn to the commission of like iniquities, nay, not by any threats or violence soever; yet those very deeds which they refuse to share in the commission of, they often decline to find fault with, when possibly they might by finding fault prevent their commission. They abstain from interference, because they fear that, if it fail of good effect, their own safety or reputation may be damaged or destroyed ; not because they see that their preservation and good name are needful, that they may be able to influence those who need their instruction, but rather because they weakly relish the flattery and respect of men, and fear the judgments of the people, and the pain or death of the body ; tliat is to say, their non-intervention is the result of selfishness, and not of love.

Accordingly, this seems to me to be one principal reason why the good are chastised along with the wicked, when God is pleased to visit with temporal punishments the profligate manners of a community. They are punished together, not because they have spent an equally corrupt life, but because. And if they will not be the companions of the good in seeking life everlasting, they should be loved as enemies, and be dealt with patiently.

For so long as they live, it remains uncertain whether they may not come to a better mind. These selfish persons have more cause to fear than those to whom it was said through the prophet, " lie is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood will I require at the watclunan s hand. Nor is that man guiltless of the sin we speak of, who, though he be not a watchman, yet sees in the conduct of those with whom the relationships of this life bring him into contact, many things that should be blamed, and yet overlooks them, fearing to give offence, and lose such worldly blessings as may legitimately be desired, but which he too eagerly grasps.

Then, lastly, there is another reason why the good are afflicted with temporal calamities—the reason which Job s case exemplifies : that the human spirit may be proved, and that it may be manifested with what fortitude of pious trust, and with how unmercenary a love, it cleaves to God. That the saints lose nothing in losing temporal goods. These are the considerations which one must keep in view, that he may answer the question whether any evil happens to the faithful and godly wliich cannot be turned to profit.

Or shall we say tliat the question is needless, and tliat the apostle is vapouring when he says, " We know that all things work together for good to them that love God? Their faith? Their godliness? The possessions of the hidden man of the heart, which in tlie sight of God arc of great price?

For we brought nothing into tliis world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.

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And having food and raiment, let us be therewith content. But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil ; which, while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves tlirough with many sorrows.