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The Spiritual Declension of the Soul by Michael Durham
"A believer may pass through much affliction, and yet secure very little blessing from it all. Abiding in Christ is the secret of securing all that the Father meant the chastisement to bring us." -
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: Ad Nationes
Chapter I. --The Hatred Felt by the Heathen Against the Christians is Unjust, Because Based on Culpable Ignorance.
Chapter II. --The Heathen Perverted Judgment in the Trial of Christians
Chapter III. --The Great Offence in the Christians Lies in Their Very Name. The Name Vindicated.
Chapter IV. --The Truth Hated in the Christians; So in Measure Was It, of Old, in Socrates. The Virtues of the Christians.
Chapter V. --The Inconsistent Life of Any False Christian No More Condemns True Disciples of Christ, Than a Passing Cloud Obscures a Summer Sky.
Chapter VI. --The Innocence of the Christians Not Compromised by the Iniquitous Laws Which Were Made Against Them.
Chapter VII. --The Christians Defamed A Sarcastic Description of Fame; Its Deception and Atrocious Slanders of the Christians Lengthily Described.
Chapter VIII. --The Calumny Against the Christians Illustrated in the Discovery of Psammetichus Refutation of the Story.
Chapter IX. --The Christians are Not the Cause of Public Calamities: There Were Such Troubles Before Christianity.
Chapter X. --The Christians are Not the Only Contemners of the Gods Contempt of Them Often Displayed by Heathen Official Persons. Homer Made the Gods Contemptible.
Chapter XI. --The Absurd Cavil of the Ass's Head Disposed of.
Chapter XII. --The Charge of Worshipping a Cross The Heathens Themselves Made Much of Crosses in Sacred Things; Nay, Their Very Idols Were Formed on a Crucial Frame.
Chapter XIII. --The Charge of Worshipping the Sun Met by a Retort.
Chapter XIV. --The Vile Calumny About Onocoetes Retorted on the Heathen by Tertullian.
Chapter XV. --The Charge of Infanticide Retorted on the Heathen.
Chapter XVI. --Other Charges Repelled by the Same Method The Story of the Noble Roman Youth and His Parents.
Chapter XVII. --The Christian Refusal to Swear by the Genius of Cæsar Flippancy and Irreverence Retorted on the Heathen.
Chapter XVIII. --Christians Charged with an Obstinate Contempt of Death Instances of the Same are Found Amongst the Heathen.
Chapter XIX. --If Christians and the Heathen Thus Resemble Each Other, There is Great Difference in the Grounds and Nature of Their Apparently Similar Conduct.
Chapter XX.--Truth and Reality Pertain to Christians Alone The Heathen Counselled to Examine and Embrace It.
Chapter I.--The Heathen Gods from Heathen Authorities
Chapter II.--Philosophers Had Not Succeeded in Discovering God The Uncertainty and Confusion of Their Speculations.
Chapter III.--The Physical Philosophers Maintained the Divinity of the Elements; The Absurdity of the Tenet Exposed.
Chapter IV.--Wrong Derivation of the Word Theos The Name Indicative of the True Deity. God Without Shape and Immaterial. Anecdote of Thales.
Chapter V.--The Physical Theory Continued Further Reasons Advanced Against the Divinity of the Elements.
Chapter VI.--The Changes of the Heavenly Bodies, Proof that They are Not Divine. Transition from the Physical to the Mythic Class of Gods.
Chapter VII.--The Gods of the Mythic Class The Poets a Very Poor Authority in Such Matters. Homer and the Mythic Poets. Why Irreligious.
Chapter VIII.--The Gods of the Different Nations Varro's Gentile Class. Their Inferiority. A Good Deal of This Perverse Theology Taken from Scripture. Serapis a Perversion of Joseph.
Chapter IX.--The Power of Rome Romanized Aspect of All the Heathen Mythology. Varro's Threefold Distribution Criticised. Roman Heroes (Æneas Included,) Unfavourably Reviewed.
Chapter X.--A Disgraceful Feature of the Roman Mythology It Honours Such Infamous Characters as Larentina.
Chapter XI.--The Romans Provided Gods for Birth, Nay, Even Before Birth, to Death Much Indelicacy in This System.
Chapter XII. --The Original Deities Were Human--With Some Very Questionable Characteristics Saturn or Time Was Human. Inconsistencies of Opinion About Him.
Chapter XIII. --The Gods Human at First. Who Had the Authority to Make Them Divine? Jupiter Not Only Human, But Immoral.
Chapter XIV.--Gods, Those Which Were Confessedly Elevated to the Divine Condition, What Pre-Eminent Right Had They to Such Honour? Hercules an Inferior Character.
Chapter XV.--The Constellations and the Genii Very Indifferent Gods The Roman Monopoly of Gods Unsatisfactory. Other Nations Require Deities Quite as Much.
Chapter XVI.--Inventors of Useful Arts Unworthy of Deification They Would Be the First to Acknowledge a Creator. The Arts Changeable from Time to Time, and Some Become Obsolete.
Chapter XVII. --Conclusion, the Romans Owe Not Their Imperial Power to Their Gods The Great God Alone Dispenses Kingdoms, He is the God of the Christians.
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