XXVIII. (96) But a thing which is sacred is proved to be so by three witnesses, the middle number, education, and perfect number. On which account it is said, “Of everything which cometh in the number under the rod, the tenth is sacred,” for that which is not accounted worthy of being comprehended under number is profane, not sacred; but that which is according to number is approved, as having been already tested. Accordingly the law says, that the corn which was collected in Egypt by Joseph could not be Counted,”{41}{#ge 41:49.} and adds, “for it was without number,” since the things which nourish the body and the Egyptian passions, are utterly unworthy to be included in any calculation. (97) But the rod is the symbol of education, for without being looked at sternly, and chastised for some causes, it is impossible for any one to be admonished and corrected to any good purpose; but the number ten is a confirmation of that perfection which takes place in accordance with improvement, with which he must begin who having brought forth an offspring educated it, and brought the wished-for fruit to maturity.

XXIX. (98) Thus much it may be sufficient to say concerning him who changes and adulterates the ancient coinage, whom Moses also calls the father “of those that dwell in the tents of those who fed cattle.” Now by cattle here he means the irrational and outward senses, and by those who feed cattle he means the worshippers of pleasure and indulgences of the passions, who supply these senses with their external objects by way of food, and are a long way removed from shepherds. For some, like rulers, chastise those of their flocks who are unruly; but others, like entertainers or masters of a feast, supply them with unlimited food, and give them fearlessness as to the consequences of their sins; for it follows of necessity that such men are at once victims of insatiable appetite, and of insolence, the daughter of satiety; (99) accordingly, he who re-fashions and changes all honourable things in a seemly and natural manner, is the father of those who pursue every object of the outward sense, and all other inanimate objects; for if he had pursued the incorporeal natures which are accessible only to the intellect, he would have preserved those boundaries marked out by his elders, which they established as a defence to virtue, stamping each appearance of virtue with its own appropriate Image.{42}{#de 27:2.}

XXX. (100) And Jacob’s brother, he says, was Jubal, {43}{#ge 4:21.} and the interpretation of this latter name is “inclining,” being symbolically speech according to utterance; for this is naturally the brother of intellect; and it is with extraordinary propriety that he called the conversation of that intellect which changes affairs, “inclining,” for it agrees after a fashion and harmonizes with both, as the equivalent weight does in a scale, or as a vessel which is tossed by the sea inclines first to one side and then to the other, from the violence of the waves; for the foolish man has not learnt how to say anything firm or stable. (101) But Moses does not think it right to incline either to the right or to the left, or in short to any part of the earthly Edom; but rather to proceed along the middle way, which he with great propriety calls the royal road, {44}{#nu 20:17.} for since God is the first and only God of the universe, so also the road to him, as being the king’s road, is very properly denominated royal; and this royal road you must consider to be philosophy, not that philosophy which the existing sophistical crowd of men pursues (for they, studying the art of words in opposition to truth, have called crafty wickedness, wisdom, assigning a divine name to wicked action), but that which the ancient company of those men who practised virtue studied, rejecting the persuasive juggleries of pleasure, and adopting a virtuous and austere study of the honourable–(102) this royal road, which we have stated to be true and genuine philosophy, the law calls the word and reason of God; for it is written, “Thou shalt not turn aside from the word which I command thee this day, to the right hand nor to the left,” So that it is shown most manifestly that the word of God is identical with the royal road, since Moses’ words are not to depart either from the royal road, or from this word, as if the two were synonymous, but to proceed with an upright mind along the middle and level road, which leads one aright.