23. The most important part of the revelation of Christ, the primary source, the cornerstone of his whole doctrine, is the entirely new character he ascribes to divinity. God is no more the vindictive, jealous, and terrible God of Moses, the cruel and unmerciful God who bathes the Earth with human blood, who orders massacre and extermination of nations, without excepting women, children, and the aged; who chastises those who spare the victims. He is no more the unjust God who punishes a whole community for the faults of its chief, even punishing the innocent instead of the guilty, visiting the sins of the fathers upon the children, but a merciful God, sovereignly just and good, full of tenderness and mercy, who pardons the repentant sinner, and rewards everyone according to his works. He is no more the God of a favored people, the God of armies, presiding at combats in order to sustain his own cause against the gods of other nations, but the common Father of humanity, who extends his protection over all his children, and calls them all his own. He is no more the God who recompenses or punishes by giving or withholding earthly goods, who makes glory and good fortune to consist in conquering rival nations, and placing them in a state of slavery, or in the multiplicity of progeny; but he is the God who says to men: “Your true country is not of this world; it is in the celestial kingdom; it is there that the lowly in heart shall be elevated, and the proud abased.” He is no more the God who makes a virtue of vengeance, ordering us to exact “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth,” but the God of mercy, who says, “Forgive if you would be forgiven; return good for evil; do to others what you would have them do to you.” He is no more the exacting and tyrannical God who imposes the most rigorous laws upon us in regard to the ceremonies by which he desires to be adored, who is offended with the inobservance of a formula, but the great and good God who is honored not by the form or ceremony, but by the sincere, heartfelt thought. He is no more the God to be feared, but the God to be loved.