Contents – Book XII
The Discovery of Truth is Difficult, but God Has promised that he who seeks shall find.
Of the double heaven,—the visible, and the heaven of heavens.
Of the Darkness upon the deep, and of the invisible and formless earth.
From the Formlessness of matter, the beautiful world has arisen.
What may have been the form of matter.
He confesses that at one time he himself thought erroneously of matter.
Out of nothing God made heaven and earth.
Heaven and Earth were made “In the beginning;” afterwards the world, during six days, from shapeless matter.
That the Heaven of Heavens was an Intellectual creature, but that the Earth was invisible and formless before the days that it was made.
He begs of God that he may live in the true light, and may be instructed as to the mysteries of the sacred books.
What may be discovered to him by God.
From the formless Earth God created another Heaven and a visible and formed Earth.
Of the intellectual Heaven and formless Earth, out of which, on another day, the firmament was formed.
Of the depth of the Sacred Scripture, and itS enemies.
He argues against adversaries concerning the Heaven of Heavens.
He wishes to have no intercourse with those who deny divine truth.
He mentions five explanations of the words of Genesis I.
What error is harmless in sacred scripture.
He enumerates the things concerning which all agree.
Of the words, “in the beginning,” Variously understood.
Of the explanation of the words, “The Earth was invisible.”
He discusses whether matter was from eternity, or was made by God.
Two kinds of disagreements in the books to be explained.
Out of the many true things, it is not asserted confidently that Moses understood this or that.
It behoves interpreters, when disagreeing concerning obscure places, to regard God the author of truth, and the rule of charity.
What he might have asked of God had he been enjoined to write the Book of Genesis.
The style of speaking in the Book of Genesis is simple and clear.
The words, “In the beginning,” and, “The Heaven and the Earth,” are differently understood.
Concerning the opinion of those who explain it “At first he made.”
In the great diversity of opinions, it becomes all to unite charity and divine truth.
Moses is supposed to have perceived whatever of truth can be discovered in his words.
First, the sense of the writer is to be discovered, then that is to be brought out which divine truth intended.