LVI. (303) But, nevertheless, he selected out of the whole race of mankind those who were really men for their superior excellence; and he elected them and thought them worthy of the highest possible honour, calling them to the service of himself, to that everlasting fountain of all that is good; from which he has showered forth other virtues, drawing forth, at the same time, for our enjoyment, combined with the greatest possible advantage, a drink contributing more than ever nectar, or at all events not less, to make those who drink of it immortal. (304) But those men are to be pitied, and are altogether miserable, who have never banquetted on the labours of virtue; and they have remained to the end the most miserable of all men who have been always ignorant of the taste of moral excellence, when it was in their power to have feasted on and luxuriated among justice and equality. But these men are uncircumcised in their hearts, as the law expresses it, and by reason of the hardness of their hearts they are stubborn, resisting and breaking their traces in a restive manner; (305) whom the Lord reproves, saying, “Be ye circumcised as to your hard-Heartedness;”{43}{#de 10:16.} that means, “do ye eradicate the overbearing character of your dominant part, which the immoderate impulses of the passing hour have sown and caused to grow within you, and which the wicked husbandman of the soul, folly, planted. (306) Again, it says, “Let not your necks be Stiff,”{44}{#de 10:18.} that is to say, let not your mind be unbending and self-willed, and let it not admit into itself that most blameable ignorance of excessive perverseness. But discarding obstinacy and moroseness of nature as an enemy, let it change so as to become gentle, and inclined to obey the laws of nature. (307) Do you not see that the most important and greatest of all the powers of the living God are his beneficent and his punishing power? And his beneficent power is called God, since it is by means of this that he made and arranged the universe. And the other, or punishing power, is called Lord, on which his sovereignty over the universe depends. And God is God, not only of men, but also of gods; and he is mighty, being truly strong and truly Powerful.{45}{#de 10:17.}