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disparage the work of Celsus as a contemptible tissue of sophistry and slander: to what extent this is a true representation, every reader of this book may judge for himself. According to the view here presented, the key to the philosophical and religious position of Celsus may be found in the similarity of his attack to that of Julian. Both revered the same theological master, both held the same theory of the national religions, the same philosophy of polytheism ; and, as a consequence, both adopted the same attitude towards Christianity. Celsus was not the first of the Greek thinkers who believed, or professed to believe, in the reconciliation of philosophical theism with the worship of the gods of the people; but he was the first who had, at the same time, a competent knowledge of Christianity, and saw clearly that between that view and Christianity no compromise was possible. In this consists the importance of Celsus in the history of religious thought.
The work, it may be added, was almost wholly written before the publication of Hatch’s * Hibbert Lecture’; but indirectly it may serve to throw some light on the question raised in that fascinating book.
I desire to acknowledge my obligations to the Rev. William Patrick, B.D., Kirkintilloch, and the Rev. George Gardiner, B.D., Kirknewton, who have read the proofs and made many valuable suggestions.