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"Was not such a gesture [of the act] already that of Abraham, commanded by God to sacrifice Isaac, his only son, that which mattered more to him than himself? In his case, of course, an angel intervened at the last moment, staying Abraham's hand. (In the Christian reading, one could claim that the actual killing was unnecessary, since the only thing that mattered was inner intention, just as one has already committed a sign if one simply covets one's neighbour's wife.)"


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