Chapter XXIII.—Evil Not in Substance.
“But if any one, proceeding more curiously, inquire: What then was the use of Gods making these evil things, which should have so great a tendency to subvert the minds of men? 737 To one proposing such a question, we answer that we must first of all inquire whether there is any p. 140 evil in substance. And although it would be sufficient to say to him that it is not suitable that the creature judge the Creator, but that to judge the work of another belongs to him who is either of equal skill or equal power; yet, to come directly to the point, we say absolutely that there is no evil in substance. But if this be so, then the Creator of substance is vainly blamed.
[Chaps. 23–26 have no exact parallel in the Homilies; comp. book iii. 16–26. The questions of the origin of evil and of free-will are more fully treated in the Recognitions.—R.]