Page:Auerbach-Spinozanovel.djvu/71

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CHAPTER V.

FATHER AND SON.

AT the door the throng was great. Every one congratulated Baruch and his father on the honor that had befallen them.

"Certainly," said the father to his son on their homeward way, "the discourses have lasted over long to-day; the preachers should consider that they preach to empty stomachs (for no one must taste food before morning service). Let it be a warning to you never to preach too long. Are you pleased?"

"I am confused," answered Baruch, "with my rise to such a height; I am too weak."

"God keep you in that mind," said his father approvingly. "Well-balanced natures are easily abashed at the honors assigned to them. Trust in God who has chosen you out; he will give you strength to fulfil your vocation; only say to yourself you are chosen for it, because you have the strength to fulfil it."

On the threshold of their home, the father, as on the previous evening, laid his hands on his son's