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Proæmium ORACLES;

Before the

Containing the true Notion of God, who 'made and governs the World, and will reward those that serve him, and punish Idolaters.'

Mortal, carnal, and vile Men! why are

you so proud, not considering that you

muft die? Neither do you tremble, and fear the supreám GOD, who governs you; He This is quoted knows, fees, and observes all things ; He is the by Laftan. li. 4. Creator, and preserves all things; He sent his pleasant Spirit into all things, and by that governs all Mankind. ...,

There is one God, who alone reigns; he is feltin cites this very great, unbegotten, omnipotent, invisible: He in his Oration to alone sees all things, but cannot be seen by any the Gentiles, Mortal ; for, what mortal Flesh can behold the Cæleftial, True, and Immortal GOD with his Eyes, who lives in Heaven, fince Men, who are born Mortals, of Bones, Flesh, and Veins, cannot ftedfastly behold the shining Beams of the Sun.

Worship Him, who is the only Governour of the World, who alone -hach continu'd from Age

to

boren who lirue, and mortal Flemot be lechble : Heppelin

to Age; He exifts from Himself, is unbegotten; he governs all things, at all Times, and He has ordain'd a Judgment for all Men, in one common Day; but punishes juftly all evil Counsels, when we leave the true GOD, and do nor honour Him as eternal, by offering holy Hecatombs to him, bur make Sacrifices to the Infernal Manes.

These Men are proud, and mad, leaving the straic way, they err through rocky and thorny Paths.

vain Men! cease to wander in Darkness and

a black obscure Night, but leave this Darkness, stem.Alexandi. and enter into Light : He is manifeft to all, and Cices this.

no Deceiver, therefore do not pursue this dark and tempestuous way any longer, bur behold the pleasant Light of the Sun, which shines gloriouly.

Know, and wisely consider it, there is one GOD, who gives Rain and Winds; He causes Earthquakes, Thunders, Famines, Plagues, Snow, Ice, and all other grievous Calamities, all which I can express thus : He commands in Heaven, and governs in the Earch, and in Hades.

He exists of himself, for that which is born will be corrupted; GOD cannot be generated of the parts of Men and Women, bur there is one only supream GOD, who hath creared Heaven, the Sun, Moon, and Stars, and the fruitful Earth, and the swelling Waves of the Sea, the Mountains full of Woods, and the eternal Streams of the Fountains; He produces an innumerable quantity of Fish in the Waters, and He nourisheth the creeping Creatures with a cool Diet (or in a cool place) and he gives to the Birds of various kinds thrill Voices, harsh or pleasant Notes, and to cut the Air with their noisy Wings ; and he hath put the wild Beafts in the Hills, cover'd with Wood, and hath subjected all Beasts to Mankind, but

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hath made his Son, who is begotten of GOD, Governour of all things; and He hath subjected to Man many various things, which he cannot comprehend; for, what mortal Man can know all things ? but He only knows those that made 'em in the beginning: He is the incorruprible and eternal Creator, living in Heaven, who gives to all good Men a very great Reward, but is angry with the Unjust and Wicked, and punishes them by Wars, Plagues, and extraordinary Calamities.

O Men! why do you vainly rebel against GOD, and are therefore utterly destroy'd š Are not you atham'd to esteem as Gods, Cats and Brutes? Is it not Madness, Fury, or Stupidity in your Minds to think Gods steal Cattle, and make a Prey of Cups, who ought to inhabit the rich and glorious Heavens ; they appear to be eaten with Worms, and cover'd with Spiders Webs.

O you Fools! you worship Serpents, Dogs, and Cats, and you adore Birds, and the creeping Creatures in the Earth, and Images of polith'd Stone, and Statues made with Hands and adorned, and also heaps of Earth or Sepulchres, which are made in the ways; and you worship, besides chefe, many other vain things, of which it is a shame to make any mention.

These are the false Gods of foolish Men, from whose Mouth this deadly Poison diftils ; but co Him we ought to fubmit our selves, and follow the way of eternal Righteousness, who has the Power of giving Life, and incorruptible and eternal Light, and can give to Men Joys exceeding all pleasant things of this Life.

But you have forsaken all these, you have drank a Cup full of the unmixt Winé of GOD's Vengeance, which is very ftrong and chick, you being mad and foolish in your Minds ; neither would you become sober and sound in your

Minds, Mind, to know the true God and King, whose Providence is over all things; there the burning of a fervent Fire shall seize on you, and you Mall burn in Flames continually, for ever, being alham'd of your unprofitable false Idols : But they who worship the true: GOD Thall inherit Eternal Life for ever; they shall possess the fruitful Gardens of Paradise, and there feast on the sweet Bread which comes from the Starry Skies.'

Note, This Proæmium is to be found in Theophilus's fecond Oracion co Autolicus ; he was Bilhop of Antioch in 171; and Clemens Alexandrinus quotes fome Verses of it, Av. Dom. 193. Latt satius quotes them, An. Dom. 320 ; and Eufebius repears them. Justin Martyr cites some of these Verses. Some impuce them to the Chaldean Sibyl Sambethe, but Lan&tantiss says they must belong to the Ærythrean Sibyl ; and 'tis probable the two Sibyls Names belong to one of the Sibyls. Thefe Quotations are sufficient to prove che Antiquity of this Procemium, and its original from the Sibyls, which Lactantino says were collected by the Romans,

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In this Book the Creation is describ'd, and Adam and

Eve in Paradise : Their Temptation by the Serpent, and Ejectment out of Paradile. Five Generation's of Men before the Flood; and their Destruction by the Flood. The Golden Age fucceeds the Flood, which is call'd the Siśth Generation: The Tirans are in the Seventh Generation. The Computation of the Numeral Letters in God's Name is 1911, by which Noah knew the duration of the Antediluvian World, but none of the Greek Names of God will make this number : The Name must contain four Sylables. Jehovah is calld the Tetragrammaton, but the Letters must be nine, and five of them Confonant s. This must be some Chaldee Name, in which the Oracles were penn'd. :: The next thing declar'd is the coming of Christ ; his

Numeral Letters will make 888. St. John's beheading. Christ's Miracles are described, and his

B

Cruci. .

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