Jesus attends a feast in Persepolis. Speaks to the people, reviewing the Magian philosophy. Explains the origin of evil*. Spends the night in prayer.
2 And on the great day of the feast the ruling Magian master said, Within these sacred walls is liberty; whoever wills to speak may speak.
3 And Jesus standing in the midst of all the people, said, My brothers, sisters, children of our Father-God:
4 Most blest are you among the sons of men today, because you have such just conceptions of the Holy One and man.
5 Your purity in worship and in life is pleasing unto God; and to your master, Zarathustra, praise is due.
6 Well say you all, There is one God from whose great being there came forth the seven Spirits that created heaven and earth; and manifest unto the sons of men are these great Spirits in the sun, and moon, and stars.
7 But in your sacred books we read that two among these seven are of superior strength; that one of these created all the good; the other one created all that evil is.
8 * I pray you, honoured masters, tell me how that evil can be born of that which is all good?
9 A Magus rose and said, If you will answer me, your problem will be solved.
10 * We all do recognize the fact that evil is. Whatever is, must have a cause, If God, the One, made not this evil, then, where is the God who did?
11 * And Jesus said, Whatever God, the One, has made is good, and like the great first Cause, the seven Spirits all are good, and everthing that comes from their creative hands is good.
12 * Now, all created things have colours, tones and forms their own; but certain tones, though good and pure themselves, when mixed, produce inharmonies, discordant tones.
13 * And certain things, though good and pure, when mixed, produce discordant things, yea, poisonous things, that men call evil things.
14 * So evil is the inharmonious blending of the colours, tones, or forms of good.
15 * Now, man is not all-wise, and yet has will his own. He has the power, and he uses it, to mix God's good things in a multitude of ways, and every day he makes discordant sounds, and evil things.
16 * And every tone and form, be it of good, or ill, becomes a living thing, a demon, sprite, or spirit of a good or vicious kind.
17 * Man makes his evil thus; and then becomes afraid of him and flees; his devil is emboldened, follows him away and casts him into torturing fires.
18 * The devil and the burning fires are both the works of man, and none can put the fires out and dissipate the evil one, but man who made them both.
19 Then Jesus stood aside, and not a Magus answered him.
20 And he departed from the throng and went into a secret place to pray.