Page:Suppressed Gospels and Epistles.djvu/227

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more to be the servant of righteousness.

172 And does not he then seem to thee to sin more who ought to follow goodness, if he shall prefer the part of sin; than he who offends without knowing the power of God?

173 Wherefore these are indeed ordained unto death; but they who have known the Lord, and have seen his wonderful works, if they shall live wickedly, they shall be doubly punished, and shall die for ever.

174 As therefore thou hast seen that after the stones were cast out of the tower, which had been rejected, they were delivered to wicked and cruel spirits; and thou beheldest the tower so cleansed, as if it had all been made of one stone:

175 So the church of God, when it shall be purified: (the wicked and counterfeits, the mischievous and doubtful, and all that have behaved themselves wickedly in it, and committed divers kinds of sin, being cast out) shall become one body, and there shall be one understanding, one opinion, one faith, and the same charity.

176 And then shall the Son of God rejoice among them, and shall receive his people with a pure will.

177 And I said; Sir, all these things are great and honourable; but now show unto me the effect and force of every mountain: that every soul which trusteth in the Lord, when it shall hear these things may honour his great, and wonderful, and holy name.

178 Hear, said he, the variety of these mountains, that is, of the twelve nations.

179 They who have believed of the first mountain, which is black, are those who have revolted from the faith, and spoken wicked things against the Lord; and betrayed the servants of God.

180 These are condemned to death; there is no repentance for them: and therefore they are black, because their kind is wicked.

181 Of the second mountain which was smooth, are the hypocrites, who have believed, and the teachers of naughtiness: and these are next to the foregoing, which have not in them the fruit of righteousness.

182 For as their mountain is barren and without fruit so also such kind of men have indeed the name of Christians, but are empty of faith; nor is there any fruit of the truth in them.

183 Nevertheless there is room left to them of repentance, if they shall speedily pursue it; but if they shall delay, they also shall be partakers of death with the foregoing kind.

184 I said, air, why is there room left to those for repentance, and not to the foregoing kind, seeing their sins are well nigh the same?

185 There is therefore, said he, to these a return unto life by repentance, because they have not blasphemed against their Lord, nor betrayed the servants of God: but by their desire of gain have deceived men, leading them according to the lusts of sinners; wherefore they shall suffer for this thing.

186 Howbeit there is still left them room for repentance, because they have not spoken any thing wickedly against the Lord.

187 They who are of the third mountain which had thorns and brambles, are those who believed, but were some of them rich; others taken up with many affairs: the brambles are their riches; the thorns, those affairs in which they were engaged.

188 Now they who are entangled in much business, and in diversity of affairs, join not themselves to the servants of God, but wander,