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place, which God had chosen, “ to let his name dwell there" (Deut. 12 ch. 11 v.); but on no account, was it permitted to bring them beyond the precincts of the temple. But since our temple is now destroyed, and the Israelites are dispersed in every land, the sacrifices have ceased of necessity; for, to offer them now, would be in direct contradiction to the will of God. And then, even when we were yet in Palestine, private sacrifices were not necessary, and a man was not considered as sinning, if he never brought a single voluntary offering in all his life; as a virtuous and religious life is more agreeable to the Deity, than any presents we can bring.
132. Does this view agree with the doctrines of the prophets and our wise men?
Entirely; all the prophets and doctors of our nation agree in this respect; they repeat it often and on every occasion:
-For I said nothing to your fore » כי לא דברתי את אבותיכם ולא צויתים
fathers , and I commanded ביום הוציאי אותם מארץ מצרים על
•nan hiy927 · them nothing, at the time I brought them out of the land of Egypt, in relation to burnt or peace offerings, &c.” (Jer. 7 ch. 22 v.)
Behold , attention to the * הנה שמע מזבח טוב להקשיב מחלב אילים
word of God is better than sacrifice, and obeying preferable to the fat of rams.” (1 Sam. 15 ch. 22 v.) obryon nina D'JIX ngon xb omapi “ Thou desirest not offerings
nhau TIXOni nor presents, ears thou hast given me (to be obedient)—burnt and sin offerings thou didst not ask.” (Ps. 40, v. 7.)
2. OF THE DUTIES TOWARDS OURSELVES.
133. Which is the first duty, a man has to observe in relation to himself?
That he always remember his dignity and high destination, and act accordingly.
is nytia non non obxa x310 078 JUN “ Man is dear to God, nvy On768 Obra y opov obx2 873) therefore did he
07877 AN create him after his own likeness (§ 26); but a peculiar love has been shown to him, that God made it known to him, that he was created so, for it is written : in the likeness of God did he create man.” (Aboth, iii.)
134. What are we therefore to learn from the first part of that verse (Gen. 1 ch. 26 v.), where it is said : 10482 07nvy " we will make a man after our LIKENESS” ?
We have here an indication of the will of God; that we should strive most sedulously to perfect, to the best of our abilities, those powers of body and mind, which the Eternal has imparted to us, and to use them for good purposes, and like him, always to unite wisdom and goodness with power ; so that man should do every thing from pure motives and with rational views.
135. What other duties does the knowledge of our high destination demand of us?
That we should endeavour to keep both our body and mind in a healthy condition, to be always cheerful, and to avoid every thing which might injure our health ; that we should
view our body as a temple of the Deity, and to take care, not to injure it wilfully, much less weaken and contaminate it through excesses and sin
ונשמרתם מאד לנפשתיכם •
Take especial care of your body and' *
136. What inference are we to draw from the second part of the above verse :
And they shall rule over the fishes of * וירדו בדגת הים ובעוף השמים
.'121 y 87 5221 707331 the sea, and the birds of heaven, over the cattle, and over all the earth, &c.”?
This must be another proof to us, that man was intended by God for a social life ; for in no other manner can he alone, and without the assistance of others, subject to himself either the animals of the earth or the sea ; in such a situation he appears rather as a very weak creature, scarcely able to satisfy those reasonable desires, which God has implanted in him for his preservation. It is therefore said, 1779 (in the plural number), they shall govern, that is to say, men united in society.
137. What is therefore the duty of every member of the human family?
Every man, to be able to fulfil all the duties, for which the will of God has destined him, must so conduct himself in all his transactions and in his behaviour towards other i, that he may acquire and deserve the good will and friendship of his fellow-men. 'g'ya 10 bavi in x891 yarp 48 TONI TON " Let virtue and honesty
•D98 d'ab never forsake thee : and thou wilt find grace and good will in the eyes of God and men.” (Prov. 3 ch. 3—4 v.)
138. What do our wise men say in relation to the duty, of observing in our outward conduct also a civil and mild behaviour towards others ?
He , who is liked by men * כל שרוח הבריות נוחה הימנו רוח המקום , ;must be pleasing to God נוחה הימנו וכל שאין כוח הבריות נוחה -but he who is disagree הימנו אין רוח המקום נוחה הימנו •
able to men, can neither be agreeable to God.” (Aboth, iii.)
For the object of all learning and virtue is partly unattained, if we do not endeavour to introduce ourselves into the hearts of men, through a pleasing and amiable deportment.
139. Through what means can we best preserve our health, and render ourselves beloved by God and men ?
By temperance and by moderating our desires ; by industry, activity, and a judicious application of our time and mental energy; but all this must be accompanied by a quietness and hilarity of the soul, which derive their origin from a joyous confidence in God.
on va'n 7833 nini ana g'o" now as “ A glad heart causes good health, but a depressed spirit consumes the bones.” (Prov. 17 ch. 22 v.)
140. Which are the faults we must avoid, as the origin of corruption, and the promoters of sin and vice ?
'The most prominent are the following seven, which are alike destructive to body and soul, and against which the Holy Scriptures caution us most earnestly; to wit, pride, avarice, envy, anger, intemperance in eating and drinking, laziness, and the keeping of bad company.
141. Make this more intelligible to me, and show me, at the same time, the opposite virtues, which we ought to cultivate.
1. The proud thinks himself great, despises his fellow-men, and is hated by them in return ; he is easily offended and excited to revenge, and therefore makes himself and others unhappy. His pride will also prevent him from receiving admonition and instruction, which wiser men even may offer him. • OXON D'YO nas nn D'hy 017 - Proud looks and a seinptuous heart, are fields of sin for the wicked.” (Prov. 21 ch. 4 v.)
:35.72 na 'n nayin - A proud heart is an abomination to the Lord.” (Prov. 15 ch. 5 v.)
142. Meekness and modesty, however, are pleasing to God and men, preserve their possessor always serene and tranquil, and are accordingly no less useful to the body than to the soul.
It is for this reason, that of all the virtues of our teacher (Moses), his meekness is particularly praised by God. We read : V8 07877 423 780 1'3y yun 0877 " And Moses was a very meek
1.70787 30 by man, more so, than any other man, on the face of the earth.” (Numb. 12 ch 3 v.).
•7122 9n' nin Sovi 12290n 078 7187 “ Pride will lower a man, but the modest will obtain honour.” (Prov. 29 ch. 23 v.)
143. 2. The avaricious is only desirous of accumulating money; and viewing the means as the real object of his existence, he denies himself every enjoyment, though it might even tend to invigorate his body and mind-neglects the observance of many duties, because they must cost him moneyand is led away to commit many sins, from his desire to possess. sans pou nipi 8977 o'yntha 19 The avaricious employs the
. .po ONI Only worst means ; he invents fraudulent pretexts, to deceive with lying words the innocent, and to oppress the lowly.” (Is. 32 ch. 7 v.)