238. The same natural man confirms himself against the Divine Providence when he regards the religious conditions of the various peoples. He sees, for example,
1. That there are some who are totally ignorant of God; that some worship the sun and moon; also that some worship idols and even monstrous graven images; and also that some worship the dead.
2. He sees especially that the Mohammedan religion is accepted by so many empires and kingdoms.
3. He sees that the Christian religion is accepted only in the very small part of the habitable globe called Europe, and is in a state of division there.
4. That some there claim for themselves Divine power, and desire to be worshipped as gods, and that they invoke the dead.
5. That there are some who place salvation in certain phrases which they must think and say, and not at all in good works which they must do; and that few live their religion.
6. Moreover, he sees the heresies, of which there have been many, some of which exist at this day, as those of the Quakers, the Moravians, the Anabaptists, and others.
7. Also that Judaism still continues.
From these things he who denies the Divine Providence concludes that religion in itself is nothing, but still that it is necessary because it serves as a restraining influence.