The Homilies of the Anglo-Saxon Church/X

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DOMINICA IN QUINQUAGESIMA.

SHROVE SUNDAY.

 :Adsumpsit Iesus XII. discipulos suos: et reliqua.  :Adsumpsit Jesus XII. discipulos suos: et reliqua.
Her is geræd on þissum godspelle, þe we nu gehyrdon of ðæs diacones muðe, þæt "se Hælend gename onsundron his twelf leorning-cnihtas, and cwæð to him, Efne we sceolon faran to ðære byrig Hierusalem, and þonne beoð gefyllede ealle ða ðing þe wæron be me awritene þurh witegan. Ic sceal beon belǽwed ðeodum, and hí doð me to bysmore, and beswingað, and syððan ofsleað, and ic arise of deaðe on þam ðriddan dæge. Þa nyston his leorning-cnihtas nan andgit þyssera worda. Ða gelámp hit þæt hí genealæhton anre byrig þe is gehaten Hiericho, and ða sæt þær sum blind man be ðam wege; and þaþa he gehyrde þæs folces fær mid þam Hælende, ða acsode he hwa þær ferde. Hi cwædon him to, þæt þæt wære ðæs Hælendes fær. Þa begann he to hrymenne, and cwæð, Hælend, Dauides Bearn, gemiltsa mín. Ða men, þe beforan þam Hælende ferdon, ciddon ongean ðone blindan, þæt he suwian sceolde. He clypode þa miccle swiðor, Hælend, Dauides Bearn, gemiltsa mín. Þa stód se Hælend, and het lædan þone blindan to him. Þaða he genealæhte, þa acsode se Hælend hine, Hwæt wylt ðu þæt ic þe dó? He cwæð, Drihten, þæt ic mage geseon. And se Hælend him cwæð to, Loca nu: þin geleafa hæfð ðe gehæled. And he ðærrihte geseah, and fyligde þam Hælende, and hine mærsode. Þa eal þæt folc, þe þæt wundor geseh, herede God mid micelre onbryrdnysse." It is here read in this gospel, which we now have heard from the deacon's mouth, that "Jesus took his twelve disciples apart, and said to them, Behold, we shall go to the city of Jerusalem, and then shall be fulfilled all the things that have been written of me by the prophets. I shall be betrayed to the Gentiles, and they shall mock and scourge me, and afterwards slay me, and I shall arise from death on the third day. But his disciples knew not the meaning of these words. Then it came to pass that they came near to a city which is called Jericho, and there sat a certain blind man by the way; and when he heard the passing of the people with Jesus, he asked who was passing there. They said to him that Jesus was passing. Then he began to cry, and said, Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me. The men, who were going before Jesus, chided the blind man, that he might be silent. He cried then much louder, Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me. Jesus then stood, and bade them lead the blind man to him. When he came near Jesus asked him, What wilt thou that I shall do unto thee? He said, Lord, that I may see. And Jesus said to him, Look now: thy faith hath healed thee. And he immediately saw, and followed Jesus, and glorified him. Then all the people who saw that miracle glorified God with great fervour."
Ðyses godspelles anginn hrepode ures Hælendes þrowunge, þeah-hwæðere ne ðrowade hé na on ðysne timan; ac hé wolde feorran and lange ær cyðan his ðrowunge his leorning-cnihtum, þæt hí ne sceoldon beon to swiðe afyrhte þurh ða þrowunge, þonne se tima come þæt hé ðrowian wolde. Heora mód wearð afyrht þurh Crístes segene, ac hé hí eft gehyrte mid þam worde þe hé cwæð, "Ic arise of deaðe on þam ðriddan dæge." Þa wolde he heora geleafan gestrangian and getrymman mid wundrum. And hí ða comon to ðære stowe þær se blinda man sæt be ðam wege, and Crist hine gehælde ætforan gesihðe ealles þæs werodes, to ði þæt he wolde mid þam wundre hí to geleafan gebringan. Þeah-hwæðere þa wundra þe Crist worhte, oðer ðing hí æteowdon þurh mihte, and oðre ðing hí getacnodon þurh geryno. He worhte þa wundra soðlice þurh godcunde mihte, and mid þam wundrum þæs folces geleafan getrymde; ac hwæðre þær wæs oðer ðing digle on ðam wundrum, æfter gastlicum andgite. Þes án blinda man getacnode eall mancynn, þe wearð ablend þurh Adames gylt, and asceofen of myrhðe neoxena-wanges, and gebroht to ðissum life þe is wiðmeten cwearterne. Nu sind we ute belocene fram ðam heofenlican leohte, and we ne magon on ðissum life þæs ecan leohtes brucan; ne we his na mare ne cunnon buton swa micel swa we ðurh Cristes lare on bocum rædað. Þeos woruld, þeah ðe heo myrige hwíltidum geðuht sy, nis heo hwæðere ðe gelicere ðære ecan worulde, þe is sum cweartern leohtum dæge. Eal mancyn wæs, swa we ær cwædon, ablend mid geleaflæste and gedwylde; ac þurh Cristes to-cyme we wurdon abrodene of urum gedwyldum, and onlihte þurh geleafan. Nu hæbbe we þæt leoht on urum mode, þæt is Cristes geleafa; and we habbað þone hiht þæs ecan lifes myrhðe, þeah ðe we gyt lichamlice on urum cwearterne wunian. The beginning of this gospel touched our Saviour's passion, though he did not suffer at this time; but he would from afar and long before make known his passion to his disciples, that they might not be too much terrified by his passion, when the time came that he would suffer. Their mind was terrified by Christ's saying, but he again cheered them by the words which he spake, "I will arise from death on the third day." He would then strengthen and confirm their faith with miracles. And they came then to the place where the blind man sat by the way, and Christ healed him before the sight of all the multitude, to the end that, with that miracle, he might bring them to belief. But the miracles which Christ wrought manifested one thing by power, and another thing they betokened by mystery. He wrought those miracles indeed through divine power, and with those miracles confirmed the people's faith; but yet there was another hidden thing in those miracles, in a spiritual sense. The one blind man betokened all mankind, who were blinded through Adam's sin, and thrust from the joy of Paradise, and brought to this life, which is compared to a prison. Now we are shut out from the heavenly light, and we may not, in this life, enjoy the light eternal; nor know we of it more than so much as, through Christ's teaching, we read in books. This world, though it may sometimes seem gay, yet is no more like the world eternal, than is some prison to the light day. All mankind, as we before said, was blinded with lack of faith and error; but through Christ's advent we were drawn from our errors, and enlightened by faith. We have now the light in our mind, that is Christ's faith; and we have a hope of the joy of everlasting life, though we yet bodily dwell in our prison.
Se blinda man sæt æt þære byrig þe is geháten Hiericho. Hiericho is gereht and geháten 'mona.' Se mona deð ægðer ge wycxð ge wanað: healfum monðe he bið weaxende, healfum he bið wanigende. Nu getacnað se mona ure deadlice lif, and ateorunge ure deadlicnysse. On oðerne ende men beoð acennede, on oþerne ende hí forðfarað. Þaða Crist com to ðære byrig Hiericho, þe ðone monan getacnað, þa underfeng se blinda man gesihðe. Þæt is, ðaða Crist com to ure deadlicnysse, and ure menniscnysse underfeng, þa wearð mancyn onliht, and gesihðe underfeng. He sæt wið ðone weig; and Crist cwæð on his godspelle, "Ic eom weig, and soðfæstnys, and líf." Se man þe nan ðing ne cann ðæs ecan leohtes, he is blind; ac gif he gelyfð on þone Hælend, þonne sitt he wið þone weig. Gif he nele biddan þæs ecan leohtes, he sitt ðonne blind be ðam wege unbiddende. Se ðe rihtlice gelyfð on Críst, and geornlice bitt his sawle onlihtinge, he sitt be ðam wege biddende. Swa hwa swa oncnæwð þa blindnysse his modes, clypige he mid inweardre heortan, swá swá se blinda cleopode, "Hælend, Dauides Bearn, gemiltsa mín." The blind man sat at the city which is called Jericho. Jericho is interpreted and called moon. The moon both waxes and wanes: for a half month it is waxing, for a half it is waning. Now the moon betokeneth our mortal life and the decay of our mortality. At the one end men are born, at the other they depart. When Christ came to the city of Jericho, which betokeneth the moon, the blind man received sight. That is, when Christ came to our mortality, and assumed our human nature, mankind was enlightened, and received sight. He sat by the way; and Christ said in his gospel, "I am the way, and truth, and life." The man who knows nothing of the eternal light is blind; but if he believes in Jesus, then sits he by the way. If he will not pray for the light eternal, then sits he blind by the way, without prayer. He who rightly believes in Christ, and fervently prays for his soul's enlightening, he sits by the way praying. Whosoever is sensible of his mind's blindness, let him cry with inward heart, as the blind man cried, "Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me."
Seo menigu þe eode beforan ðam Hælende ciddon ðam blindan, and heton þæt he stille wære. Seo menigu getacnað ure unlustas and leahtras þe us hremað, and ure heortan ofsittað, þæt we ne magon us swa geornlice gebiddan, swa we behofedon. Hit gelimpð gelomlice, þonne se man wile yfeles geswican, and his synna gebetan, and mid eallum mode to Gode gecyrran, ðonne cumað þa ealdan leahtras þe hé ær geworhte, and hí gedrefað his mod, and willað gestillan his stemne, þæt he to Gode ne clypige. Ac hwæt dyde se blinda, þaþa þæt folc hine wolde gestyllan? He hrymde ðæs ðe swiðor, oð þæt se Hælend his stemne gehyrde, and hine gehælde. Swa we sceolon eac dón, gif us deofol drecce mid menigfealdum geðohtum and costnungum: we sceolon hryman swiðor and swiðor to ðam Hælende, þæt he todræfe ða yfelan costnunga fram ure heortan, and þæt he onlihte ure mod mid his gife. Gif we ðonne þurhwuniað on urum gebedum, þonne mage we gedon mid urum hreame þæt se Hælend stent, seðe ær eode, and wile gehyran ure clypunge, and ure heortan onlihtan mid godum and mid clænum geðohtum. Ne magon ða yfelan geðohtas ús derian, gif hi ús ne liciað; ac swa ús swiðor deofol bregð mid yfelum geðohtum, swa we beteran beoð, and Gode leofran, gif we ðone deofol forseoð and ealle his costnunga, ðurh Godes fultum. The multitude that went before Jesus chided the blind man, and bade him be still. The multitude betokens our evil desires and vices, which call to us and occupy our hearts, so that we cannot pray so fervently as we ought. It happens frequently when a man is desirous to withdraw from evil and atone for his sins, and with his whole mind turn to God, that his old misdeeds, which he had previously committed, will then come and afflict his mind, and will still his voice, that he may not cry to God. But what did the blind man, when the people would still him? He called so much the louder, until Jesus heard his voice and healed him. So should we do also, if the devil trouble us with manifold thoughts and temptations: we should call louder and louder to Jesus, that he drive the evil temptations from our hearts, and that he enlighten our mind with his grace. But if we continue praying, then may we with our cry incline Jesus to stand, who was before passing on, and to hear our cry, and enlighten our hearts with good and pure thoughts. Evil thoughts cannot harm us, if they are not pleasing to us; but the more the devil terrifies us with evil thoughts, so much the better shall we be, and dearer to God, if we despise the devil and all his temptations through God's assistance.
Hwæt is þæs Hælendes stede, oððe hwæt is his fær? He ferde ðurh his menniscnysse, and he stod þurh þa godcundnysse. He ferde ðurh ða menniscnysse, swa þæt he wæs acenned, and ferde fram stowe to stowe, and deað þrowade, and of deaðe arás, and astah to heofenum. Þis is his fær. He stent ðurh ða godcundnysse; forðon ðe hé is ðurh his mihte æghwær andweard, and ne ðearf na faran fram stowe to stowe; forðon ðe hé is on ælcere stowe þurh his godcundnysse. Þaða he ferde, þa gehyrde he þæs blindan clypunge; and þaþa he stod, þa forgeaf he him gesihðe; forðan þurh ða menniscnysse he besargað ures modes blindnysse, and ðurh ða godcundnysse he forgifð us leoht, and ure blindnysse onliht. He cwæð to ðam blindan men, "Hwæt wilt ðu þæt ic ðe do?" Wenst ðu þæt hé nyste hwæt se blinda wolde, seðe hine gehælan mihte? Ac he wolde þæt se blinda bæde; forðon þe hé tiht ælcne swiðe gemaglice to gebedum: ac hwæðere he cwyð on oðre stowe, "Eower heofenlica Fæder wat hwæs ge behofiað, ærðan ðe ge hine æniges ðinges biddan," þeah-hwæðere wile se goda God þæt we hine georne biddon; forðan þurh ða gebedu bið ure heorte onbryrd and gewend to Gode. What is Jesus's standing, or what is his passing? He passed through his human nature, and he stood through the divine nature. He passed through human nature, so that he was born, and passed from place to place, and suffered death, and from death arose, and ascended to heaven. This is his passing. He stands through his divine nature; because he is, by his power, everywhere present, and needs not go from place to place; because he is in every place through his divine nature. When he was passing he heard the blind man's cry; and when he stood he gave him sight; because through his human nature he bewails the blindness of our minds, and through his divine nature he gives us light, and enlightens our blindness. He said to the blind man, "What wilt thou that I do to thee?" Thinkest thou that he knew not what the blind man desired, he who could heal him? But he would that the blind man should pray; for he exhorts everyone very urgently to prayers: for though he says, in another place, "Your heavenly Father knoweth what ye require, before ye pray to him for anything," yet the good God desires that we should fervently pray to him; because by prayers is our heart stimulated and turned to God.
Ða cwæð se blinda, "La leof, do þæt ic mæge geseon." Ne bæd se blinda naðor ne goldes, ne seolfres, ne nane woruldlice ðing, ac bæd his gesihðe. For nahte he tealde ænig ðing to biddenne buton gesihðe; forðan ðeah se blinda sum ðing hæbbe, he ne mæg butan leohte geseon þæt he hæfð. Uton forði geefenlæcan þisum men, þe wæs gehæled fram Criste, ægðer ge on lichaman ge on sawle: ne bidde we na lease welan, ne gewitenlice wurðmyntas; ac uton biddan leoht æt urum Drihtne: na þæt leoht ðe bið geendod, þe bið mid þære nihte todræfed, þæt ðe is gemæne ús and nytenum; ac uton biddan þæs leohtes þe we magon mid englum anum geseon, þæt ðe næfre ne bið geendod. To ðam leohte soðlice ure geleafa us sceal gebringan, swa swa Crist cwæð to ðam blindan menn, "Lóca nu, þin geleafa ðe gehælde." Then said the blind man, "Sir, do that I may see." The blind man prayed neither for gold, nor silver, nor any worldly things, but prayed for his sight. For naught he accounted it to pray for anything but sight; because, though the blind may have something, he cannot without light see that which he has. Let us then imitate this man who was healed by Christ, both in body and in soul: let us pray, not for deceitful riches, nor transitory honours; but let us pray to our Lord for light: not for that light which will be ended, which will be driven away by the night, that which is common to us and to the brutes; but let us pray for that light which we can see with angels only, which shall never be ended. To that light verily our faith shall bring us, as Christ said to the blind man, "Look now: thy faith hath healed thee."
Nu smeað sum ungeleafful man, Hu mæg ic gewilnian ðæs gastlican leohtes, þæt þæt ic geseon ne mæg? Nu cweðe ic to ðam menn, þæt ða ðing þe hé understynt and undergytan mæg, ne undergyt he ná ða ðing þurh his lichaman, ac þurh his sawle; þeah-hwæðere ne gesihð nan man his sawle on ðisum life. Heo is ungesewenlic, ac ðeah-hwæðere heo wissað þone gesewenlican lichaman. Se lichama, ðe is gesewenlic, hæfð lif of ðære sawle, þe is ungesewenlic. Gewíte þæt ungesewenlice ut, þonne fylð adune þæt gesewenlice; forðan þe hit ne stod na ær ðurh hit sylf. Þæs lichoman lif is seo sawul, and þære sawle lif is God. Gewite seo sawul ut, ne mæg se muð clypian, þeah ðe hé gynige; ne eage geseon, þeah ðe hit open sy; ne nán limn ne deð nan ðing, gif se lichama bið sawulleas. Swa eac seo sawul, gif God hí forlæt for synnum, ne deð heo nan ðing to góde. Ne mæg nan man nan ðing to góde gedon, butan Godes fultume. Ne bið seo synfulle sawul na mid ealle to nahte awend, ðeah ðe heo gode adeadod sy; ac heo bið dead ælcere duguðe and gesælðe, and bið gehealden to ðam ecan deaðe, þær þær heo æfre bið on pinungum wunigende, and þeah-hwæðere næfre ne ateorað. Now some unbelieving man will ask, How may I desire the spiritual light which I cannot see? Now to that man I say, that the things which he understands and may comprehend, he understands those things not through his body, but through his soul; yet no man sees his soul in this life. It is invisible, but, nevertheless, it guides the visible body. The body, which is visible, has life from the soul, which is invisible. If that which is invisible depart, then will the visible fall down; because it before stood not of itself. The life of the body is the soul, and the life of the soul is God. If the soul depart, the mouth cannot cry, though it gape; nor the eye see, though it be open; nor will any limb do anything, if the body be soulless. So also the soul, if God, for its sins, forsake it, it will do nothing good. No man may do anything good without God's support. The sinful soul will not be wholly turned to naught, though it be rendered dead to good; but it will be dead to every excellence and happiness, and will be preserved to eternal death, where it will be ever continuing in torments, and yet will never perish.
Hu mæg þe nú twynian þæs ecan leohtes, ðeah hit ungesewenlic sy, þonne þu hæfst líf of ungesewenlicre sawle, and þe ne twynað nan ðing þæt þu sawle hæbbe, ðeah ðu hí geseon ne mage? Se blinda, ðaða hé geseon mihte, þa fyligde hé ðam Hælende. Se man gesihð and fylið Gode, seðe cann understandan God, and gód weorc wyrcð. Se man gesihð and nele Gode fylian, seðe understent God, and nele gód wyrcan. Ac uton understandan God and gód weorc wyrcean: uton behealdan hwíder Crist gange, and him fylian; þæt is þæt we sceolon smeagan hwæt hé tæce, and hwæt him licige, and þæt mid weorcum gefyllan, swa swa hé sylf cwæð, "Se ðe me þenige, fylige hé me;" þæt is, geefenlæce hé me, and onscunige ælc yfel, and lufige ælc gód, swa swa ic do. Ne teah Crist him na to on ðisum life land ne welan, swa swa he be him sylfum cwæð, "Deor habbað hola, and fugelas habbað nest, hwær hí restað, and ic næbbe hwider ic ahylde min heafod." Swa micel he hæfde swa he rohte, and leofode be oðra manna æhtum, se ðe ealle ðing áh. How canst thou now doubt of the eternal light, though it be invisible, when thou hast life from an invisible soul, and thou doubtest not that thou hast a soul, though thou canst not see it? The blind man, when he could see, followed Jesus. That man sees and follows God, who can understand God, and does good works. That man sees and will not follow God, who understands God, and will not do good works. But let us understand God, and do good works: let us behold whither Christ goes, and follow him; that is, that we should meditate on what he teaches, and what is pleasing to him, and that with works fulfil, as he himself said, "He who will serve me, let him follow me;" that is, let him imitate me, and shun every evil, and love every good, as I do. Christ gained for himself in this life neither land nor riches, as he of himself said, "The beasts have holes, and the birds have nests, where they rest, and I have not where I may lay down my head." He had as much as he recked of, and lived on the possessions of other men, he who owned all things.
We rædað on Cristes bec þæt þæt folc rædde be him, þæt hí woldon hine gelæccan, and ahebban to cyninge, þæt he wære heora heafod for worulde, swa swa he wæs godcundlice. Þaþa Crist ongeat ðæs folces willan, ða fleah hé anstandende to anre dúne, and his geferan gewendon to sǽ, and se Hælend wæs up on lande. Ða on niht eode se Hælend up on ðam wætere mid drium fotum, oðþæt he com to his leorning-cnihtum, ðær ðær hí wæron on rewute. He forfleah þone woruldlican wurðmynt, þaþa he wæs to cyninge gecoren; ac he ne forfleah na þæt edwit and ðone hosp, þaþa ða Iudeiscan hine woldon on rode ahón. He nolde his heafod befon mid gyldenum cynehelme, ac mid þyrnenum, swa swa hit gedon wæs on his þrowunge. He nolde on ðissum life rixian hwilwendlice, seðe ecelice rixað on heofonum. Nis ðeos woruld na ure eðel, ac is ure wræcsið; forði ne sceole we na besettan urne hiht on þissum swicelum life, ac sceolon efstan mid godum geearnungum to urum eðele, þær we to gesceapene wæron, þæt is to heofenan rice. We read in the book of Christ that the people resolved concerning him, that they would seize him, and set him up for king, that he might be their temporal head, as he was divinely. When Christ perceived the people's will he fled alone to a mountain, and his companions went to the sea, and Jesus was up on land. Then by night Jesus went on the water with dry feet, until he came to his disciples, where they were in a ship. He fled from worldly honour, when he was chosen king; but he fled not from reproach and scorn, when the Jews would hang him on a cross. He would not encircle his head with a golden crown, but with one of thorns, as it was done at his passion. He would not reign for a while in this life, who rules eternally in heaven. This world is not our country, but is our place of exile; therefore should we not set our hope in this deceitful life, but should hasten with good deserts to our country, for which we were created, that is, to the kingdom of heaven.
Soðlice hit is awriten, "Swa hwa swa wile beon freond þisre worulde, se bið geteald Godes feond." Crist cwæð on sumere stowe, þæt "Se weig is swiðe nearu and sticol, seðe læt to heofonan rice; and se is swiðe rúm and smeðe, seðe læt to helle-wite." Se weig, seðe læt to heofenan rice, is forði nearu and sticol, forði þæt we sceolon mid earfoðnysse geearnian urne eðel. Gif we hine habban willað, we sceolon lufian mildheortnysse, and clænnysse, and soðfæstnysse, and rihtwisnysse, and eadmodnysse, and habban soðe lufe to Gode and to mannum, and dón ælmessan be ure mæðe, and habban gemet on urum bigleofan, and gehwilce oðere halige ðing began. Þas ðing we ne magon dón butan earfoðnyssum; ac gif we hí doð, þonne mage we mid þam geswincum, ðurh Godes fultum, astigan ðone sticolan weg þe us gelæt to ðam ecan life. Se weg seðe læt to forwyrde is forði brad and smeðe, forði þe únlustas gebringað þone man to forwyrde. Him bið swiðe softe, and nan geswinc þæt he fylle his galnysse, and druncennysse, and gytsunge begange and modignysse, and ða unstrangan berype, and dón swa hwæt swa hine lyst: ac ðas unðeawas and oðre swilce gelædað hine butan geswince to ecum tintregum, buton he ær his ende yfeles geswice and gód wyrce. Dysig bið se wegferenda man seðe nimð þone smeðan weg þe hine mislæt, and forlæt ðone sticolan þe hine gebrincð to ðære byrig. Swa eac we beoð soðlice ungerade, gif we lufiað þa sceortan softnysse and ða hwilwendlican lustas to ðan swiðe, þæt hi us gebringan to ðam ecan pinungum. Ac uton niman þone earfoðran weg, þæt we her sume hwile swincon, to ðy þæt we ecelice beon butan geswince. Eaðe mihte Crist, gif he wolde, on þisum life wunian butan earfoðnyssum, and faran to his ecan rice butan ðrowunge, and butan deaðe; ac he nolde. Be ðam cwæð Petrus se apostol, "Crist ðrowode for us, and sealde us bysne, þæt we sceolon fyligan his fotswaðum;" þæt is, þæt we sceolon sum ðing þrowian for Cristes lufon, and for urum synnum. Wel ðrowað se man, and Gode gecwemlice, seðe winð ongean leahtras, and godnysse gefremað, swa swa he fyrmest mæg. Se ðe nan ðing nele on ðissum life ðrowian, he sceal ðrowian unþances wyrsan ðrowunga on þam toweardan life. Verily it is written, "Whosoever will be a friend of this world, he shall be accounted a foe of God." Christ said in some place, that "The way is very narrow and steep which leads to the kingdom of heaven; and it is very wide and smooth which leads to hell-torment." The way which leads to the kingdom of heaven is narrow and steep, in order that we should with difficulty gain our country. If we desire to obtain it, we should love mercy, and chastity, and truth, and righteousness, and humility, and have true love to God and to men, and give alms according to our means, and be moderate in our food, and observe all other holy things. These things we cannot do without difficulties; but if we do them, then may we with those labours, through God's support, ascend the steep way which leads us to eternal life. The way which leads to perdition is broad and smooth, because wicked lusts bring a man to perdition. It is very soft to him and no labour to satiate his libidinousness and drunkenness, and practise covetousness and pride, and rob the weak, and do whatsoever he lists: but those evil practices and others such lead him without labour to eternal torments, unless before his end he desist from evil and do good. Foolish is the wayfaring man who takes the smooth way that misleads him, and forsakes the steep which brings him to the city. So also shall we be truly inconsiderate, if we love brief voluptuousness and transitory pleasures so greatly that they bring us to eternal torments. But let us take the more difficult way, that we may here for some time labour, in order to be eternally without labour. Easily might Christ, had he been willing, have continued in this life without hardships, and gone to his everlasting kingdom without suffering, and without death; but he would not. Concerning which Peter the apostle said, "Christ suffered for us, and gave us an example, that we should follow his footsteps;" that is, that we should suffer something for love of Christ, and for our sins. Well suffers the man, and acceptably to God, who strives against wickedness, and promotes goodness, as he best may. He who will suffer nothing in this life, shall suffer against his will in the life to come.
Nu genealæcð clæne tid and halig, on þære we sceolon ure gimeleaste gebetan: cume forði gehwa cristenra manna to his scrifte, and his diglan gyltas geandette, and be his láreowes tæcunge gebete; and tihte ælc oðerne to góde mid godre gebysnunge, þæt eal folc cweðe be ús, swa swa be ðam blindan gecweden wæs, ðaða his eagan wæron onlihte; þæt is, Eall folc þe þæt wundor geseah, herede God, seðe leofað and rixað á butan ende. Amen. Now is a pure and holy time drawing nigh, in which we should atone for our remissness: let, therefore, every christian man come to his confessor, and confess his secret sins, and amend by the teaching of his instructor; and let everyone stimulate another to good by good example, that all people may say of us, as was said of the blind man when his eyes were enlightened; that is, All people who saw that miracle praised God, who liveth and reigneth ever without end. Amen.