(23) Why does Sarah as it were repent of what she has done, saying to Abraham, I am receiving injury from you: I gave my handmaid into your bosom, and now, because she sees that she has conceived, I am despised before her? (#Ge 16:5). This language indicates her anxiety and hesitation; displaying them first in the expression, “since,” that is to say from the time that I gave my handmaiden, and in the second place it betokens a regard to the person of whom complaint is made, for she says, “I am receiving injury from you,” a statement which in fact is a reproof, since she thinks that her husband ought always to be preserved without any stain, or any liability to blame, always virtuous and true, and in no respect forgetful of her, for she always introduces him, honouring him with all possible veneration, and calling him lord. Nevertheless, the first fact stated by her is true; for from the time that she gave her handmaiden to him to be his concubine, she herself was looked upon as despised. This is the literal meaning of her words. But if we look to their inner sense, when any one bestows on another the handmaid of wisdom, she being influenced by the counsels of sophistry, will, because she is ignorant of propriety, despise her mistress; for as she herself possesses encyclical knowledge, and is delighted with its brilliancy, where every one of the separate branches of education is by itself very attractive to the soul, as if it possesses the power of drawing it by force to itself, then she, the handmaiden, can no longer agree with her mistress, that is to say, with the image of wisdom and its glorious and admirable beauty, until that acute judge of all things, the word of God, coming in, separates and distinguishes what is probable from what is true, and the middle from the extremities, and what is second from what is placed in the first rank. On which account Sarah says, at the end of her remonstrance, “Let God judge between me and thee.”