by T. De Witt Talmage

T. DeWitt Talmage
Ezek. 21:21

Two modes of divination by which the King of
Babylon proposed to find out the will of God. He, took
a bundle of arrows, and put them together, mixed them
up, then pulled forth one, and by the inscription on
it decided which city he should first assault. Then an
animal was slain, and by the lighter or darker color
of the liver, the brighter or darker prospect of
success was inferred. That is the meaning of the text:
"He made his arrows bright, he consulted with images,
he looked in the liver." Stupid delusion! And yet, all
the ages have been filled with delusions. It seems as
if the world loves to be hoodwinked, the delusion of
the text only a specimen of a vast number of deceits
practiced upon the human race.

In the latter part of the last century, Johanna
Southcote came forth pretending to have divine power,
made prophecies, had chapels built in her honor, and
one hundred thousand disciples came forth to follow
her. About five years before the birth of Christ,
Apollonius was born, and he came forth, and after five
years being speechless, according to the tradition, he
healed the sick and raised the dead, and preached
virtue, and, according to the myth, having deceased,
was brought to resurrection. The Delphic Oracle
deceived vast multitudes of people; the Pythoness
seated in the Temple of Apollo uttering a crazy jargon
from which the people guessed their individual or
national fortunes or misfortunes. The utterances were
of such a nature that you could read them any way you
wanted to read them. A general coming forth to battle
consulted the Delphic Oracle, and he wanted to find
out whether he was going to be safe in the battle, or
killed in the battle, and the answer came forth from
the Delphic Oracle in such words that if you put the
comma before the word "never" it means one thing, and
if you put the comma after the word "never" ...

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