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457. The case is otherwise with those who are occupied only in the worship of God, and not at the same time in good works from a principle of charity; these are like persons who break a covenant: and the case is otherwise again with those who divide God into three, and worship each separately; and with those again who do not approach God in His Humanity; these are they "who do not enter by the door, but climb up some other way," John x. 9: it is otherwise also with those who have confirmed themselves in a denial of the Lord's Divinity: in all these cases there can be no conjunction with God, and consequently no salvation; and the charity of such persons is no other than spurious charity, whose property it is not to effect a conjunction in front, or face to face, but a conjunction on the side, or on the back. The manner in which conjunction is effected, shall be explained in a few words. God entereth by influx into every man, with an acknowledgment of Himself, which He infuseth into the knowledges of Him which the man pos
The author here speaks of man's conjunction with the Lord, and the Lord's conjunction with man, in front, or face to face, and also on the side or back. This may be illustrated by what is said in Holy Scripture of the wicked, that they turn their backs on the Lord, and the Lord also turneth his back on them, as in Jeremiah, “They have turned to me the back, and not the face," chap. xxxiii. 33; and again, “I will shew them the back, and not the face," chap. xviii. 17; and accordingly the Lord is represented as hiding His face from the wicked; whereas the good are represented as seeking the Lord's face, and the Lord as shewing his face to them; thus the Psalmist exclaims, Thy face, Lord, will I seek; and thus it is written of Moses, that the Lord talked with him face to face, &c, &c. Now the Lord, it hath been often shewn, hath connection both with the wicked and with the good, inasmuch as He is the life of all; but then with the wicked, in consequence of their turning their backs upon Him, by not directing their governing love and affection towards Him, (for the face and the love are always turned in the same direction in the spiritual world,) it is a connection on that part which is so turned; whereas with the good the case is reversed, and the Lord is joined with them in front, or face to face, because they direct their governing love and affections constantly towards the Lord, by virtue whereof they have their internal faces constantly turned towards Him.
sesseth, and at the same time with an influx of His own love towards mankind: the man who receiveth only the former influx, and not the latter, receiveth it in his understanding, and not in his will, and resteth in knowledges without an interior acknowledgment of God; and the state of such a person is like that of a garden in the time of winter: but the man who receiveth both the former and latter influx, receiveth it in his will, and by derivation thence in his understanding, consequently in his whole mind, and such a person hath an interior acknowledgment of God, which gives life to the knowledges which he hath concerning God, and his state is like that of a garden in the time of spring. The reason why the conjunction is effected by means of charity, is, because God loveth every man, and as He cannot do good to every man immediately, but mediately by the instrumentality of men, therefore he inspires men with His love, as He inspires parents with love towards their children; and the man who receiveth that love is conjoined with God, and loveth his neighbour by virtue of the love of God: with such a person, the love of God hath its abode within his love towards his neighbour, operating in him both the will and the power to love and to do good. And whereas man doth nothing that is good, unless it appear to him as if the power, the will, and the deed, are of himself, therefore this appearance is granted him, and when he doth good from a free principle as of himself, such good is imputed to him, and accepted as that reciprocal operation by which conjunction is effected. This case is like that of active and passive, and the co-operation of the latter, which is effected by the operation of the active in the passive: it is also like the case of the will in its influence upon actions, and of thought in its influence upon speech, and of the soul, from its inmost residence, in its operation upon both it is also like the case of the endeavour to move in the act of motion; and like the prolific principle of a seed, which acts from
within, upon the juices, by which the tree grows to the production of fruit, and by fruit to the production of new seeds: it is also like light in its action upon precious stones, which is reflected according to the texture of their parts, whence various colours are generated, which seem to belong to the several stones, when in reality they belong to thei light.
458. Hence may appear the true ground and nature of the conjunction of love to God and love towards our neighbour; it is an effect of the influx of the love of God towards mankind, the reception of which by man, and his cooperation, is love towards our neighbour; in short, it is fitly expressed by these words of the Lord: "In that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me, and 1 in you," John xiv. 20; and also by these: "He that hath My commandments, and doeth them, he it is that loveth Me; and I will love him, and will manifest Myself unto him, and will make My abode with him," John xiv. 21, 22, 23. All the Lord's commandments have relation to love towards our neighbour, and consist in these two general precepts, not to do evil to him, but good: and it is agreeable to the above words of the Lord, that they who observe these precepts, love God, and God loveth them. Inasmuch as the love of God and the love of our neighbour are thus conjoined together, therefore John saith, "He that keepeth the commandments of Jesus Christ, dwelleth in Him, and He in him; if a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar; for he that loveth not his brother, whom he hath seen, how can he love God, whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from Him, that he who loveth God, love his brother also," 1st Epistle, chap. iii. 24, chap. iv. 20, 21.
459. To the above shall be subjoined the following MEMORABLE RELATIONS.
FIRST.-I once saw at a distance five gymnasia, which were overspread with light of various colours; the first with a flame-coloured light, the second with a yellow light, the third with a clear white light, the fourth with a light of a middle tint betwixt that of mid-day and that of evening, and the fifth scarce appeared, for it stood as in the dusk of evening. And I saw in the ways leading to them, some persons on horseback, some in chariots, and some on foot; and of the last some were running, and making all the haste they could: these were going to the first gymnasium, which was overspread with flame-coloured light. Hereupon I was seized and impelled with a strong desire of going thither myself, and of hearing what subjects were there discussed; so I quickly made myself ready, and joined in company with those who where hastening to the first gymnasium, and entered along with them. And lo! there was a large assembly collected, part of whom collected themselves together on the right side, and part on the left, in order to take their places on the benches, which were close to the walls: in front I saw a low pulpit, in which there stood a person who acted in character of president; he had a wand in his hand, a cap on his head, and was clothed in a garment tinged with the same flame-coloured light as the gymnasium. This person, when the congregation were all gathered together, raised his voice, and said, “Brethren, let the subject of your discussion to-day be the nature and meaning of CHARITY; ye all of you may know, that charity is spiritual in its essence, and natural in its exercises." Immediately there rose up a person, from the first row of benches towards the left, on which those sat who had the reputation of wisdom; and he declared his sentiments in the following words: "My opinion is, THAT MORALITY INSPIRED BY FAITH IS CHARITY;" which position he confirmed
thus: "Who can be ignorant that charity followeth faith, as an attendant maid her mistress, and that a man who has faith fulfilleth the law, and consequently exerciseth charity, so spontaneously, that he doth not know that the law and charity influence his life, since if he knew it, and kept the law and practised charity knowingly, and at the same time entertained thoughts of salvation on that account, he would defile the holiness of faith with his own selfhood, and so would weaken its efficacy: is not this agreeable to the tenets of our church? Here he looked towards those who sat on each side of him, amongst whom were some orthodox writers, who gave tokens of assent: "But what," continued he, "is spontaneous charity, but morality, which every one is taught to practise from his infancy, and which therefore in itself is natural, but is rendered spiritual under the inspiration of faith? Who can distinguish men, by their moral lives, whether they have faith or not, for every one liveth morally? but God alone, who is the giver and sealer of faith, knoweth and distinguisheth those who are in possession of it; wherefore I assert, that charity is morality inspired by faith, and that such morality is of a saving nature, by virtue of the faith which lieth in its bosom, but that all other morality is of no help to salvation, because it is meritorious. They therefore, who mix charity and faith together, that is, who conjoin them from within, instead of adjoining them from without, only lose their labour; for to mix them together, and to conjoin them, would be like admitting the servant, who stands behind an archbishop's carriage, to ride in it with his master, or like introducing a porter to sit at table with a grandee of the first rank." After he had sat down, there rose up a person from the first row of benches on the right, who delivered himself as follows: "My opinion is, THAT, PIETY INSPIRED WITH A SENSE OF OUR MISERABLE STATE IS CHARITY; and I confirm this opinion by the consideration, that nothing hath a greater tendency to engage the divine