the wickedness and pollution of his own sinful heart, and thus longs and strives for forgiveness and cleansing.
Reflection does not of itself produce pardon and salvation, as some of the heathen think. Instead of this, it convicts
man of sin, and thus makes it possible for him to realize his lost state and need of a Saviour.
In short, it is perfectly evident that the pardon of sin and salvation of the soul
(روح) are not to be obtained by the
means of which we have spoken. How, indeed, is it possible that idolaters, who know not the true God, should discover
means of pleasing Him and of gaining salvation by any efforts of their own? How can God be pleased with what they do in
the name of their false gods? On the contrary, such deeds are sinful and displeasing to God Most Holy, not a means of
salvation. It is evident that salvation is not the gift of idols but only that of the true God. The idols are themselves
false; how can anything good result from that which is false and evil?
It should be known that in the religions of other heathen peoples besides those we have mentioned the same methods of
pardon and salvation are taught, in some more and in others fewer. Moreover, their doctrines and religious rites and
ceremonies are either in the main similar to those we have dealt with or even worse. Some people have gone astray so far
that they actually worship evil spirits. From the miserable state of idolaters,