XLV. (261) Virtue, therefore, will bring thee forth a legitimate male child, far removed from all effeminate passions; and thou shalt call the name of thy son by the name of the passion which thou feelest in regard to him; and thou wilt by all means feel joy; so that thou shalt give him a name which is an emblem of joy, namely, Laughter. (262) As grief and fear have their appropriate expressions which the passion, when more than usually violent and predominant, gives utterance to; so also, good counsels and happiness compel a man to employ a natural expression of them, for which no one could find out more appropriate and felicitous names, even if he were very skilful in the imposition of names. (263) On which account God says, “I have blessed him, I will increase him, I will multiply him, he shall beget twelve Nations;”{89}{#ge 17:20.} that is to say, he shall beget the whole circle and ring of the sophistical preliminary branches of education; but I will make my covenant with Israel, that the race of mankind may receive each kind of virtue, the weaker part of them receiving both that which is taught by others, and that which is learnt by one’s self, and the stronger part that which is ready and prepared.

XLVI. (264) “And at that time,” says he, “she shall bring forth a son to Thee;”{90}{#ge 15:10.} that is to say, wisdom shall bring forth joy. What time, O most marvellous being, are you pointing out? Is it that which cannot be indicated by the thing brought forth? For that must be the real time, the rising of the universe, the prosperity and happiness of the whole earth, and of heaven, and of all intermediate natures, and of all animals, and of all plants. (265) On which account Moses also took courage to say to those who had run away, and who did not dare to enter upon a war in the cause of virtue against those who were arrayed against it, “The Lord has departed from them, but the Lord is in Us;”{91}{#nu 14:9.} for he here almost confesses in express words that God is time, who stands aloof and at a distance from every impious person, but walks among those souls which cultivate virtue. (266) “For,” says he, “I will walk among you, and I will be your God.”{92}{leviticus 26:12.} But those who say that what is meant by time is only the seasons of the year are misapplying the names with great inaccuracy, like men who have not studied the nature of things with any care, but have gone on to a great degree at random.