CHRIST. My son, stand firm and trust in Me. What are words but words only? They fly to and fro but hurt not so much as a stone. If you are guilty, consider how you should willingly amend; if you have nothing on your conscience, resolve to endure this willingly for God's sake. It is a small thing to endure hard words from time to time, if you are not yet able to bear hard blows. The reason why you take such trifles to heart is that you are still worldly and pay greater regard to men's opinions than you ought. Because you fear their contempt, you do not like to be corrected for your faults and you take refuge in excuses.
If you examine yourself more carefully, you will find your heart still full of worldly desires and a foolish anxiety to please men. For when you shrink from the humiliation and reproof that your faults deserve, it is clear that you are not truly humble, neither are you dead to the world, nor the world crucifued to you. (I Gal. 6:14) Listen only to My words and you will care nothing for ten thousand words of men. Even if you were charged with every crime that could be maliciously invented, how could it harm you if you let it pass, and paid absolutely no attention to it? Could such a torrent of words harm a single hair of your head?(Luke 21:18; Acts 27:34)
But the man who keeps no guard over his heart, and does not regard God, is easily unsettled by a word of reproof; whereas he who trusts in Me and does not cling to his own judgement will fear no man. For I am the judge and discerner of secrets; I understand the motives of every action ;I know both him who inflicts the wrong and him who suffers it. It is by My will and permission that events happen, in order that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.(Luke 2:35) I will judge the guilty and the innocent, but firstly I wish to test them in secret judgement.
The witness of men is often false, but my judgement is true : it shall stand, and shall not be set aside. It is hidden from many, and revealed in its fullness only to few. Nevertheless, even though it may appear unjust to the foolish, it does not and cannot err. Therefore, always come to Me for justice, and put no trust in personal opinions.
The just man will not be anxious, whatever God allows to happen to him.(Prov.12:21) Even if a groundless accusation is laid against him, he will not greatly care. Nor will he be unduly elated if he is fairly acquitted by others, for he knows very well that it is I who examine both the heart and the senses, and do not judge according to outward appearances(John 7:24) For those things which men regard as commendable are often blameworthy in My sight.
THE DISCIPLE. 0 Lord God, most just judge, strong and patient, who know the weakness and wickedness of man, be my strength and all my trust, for my own conscience is not sufficient. You know what is unknown to me, and I should therefore have been humble when blamed, and borne it meekly. Be gracious, and pardon the occasions when I have not done this, and once again give me grace to endure more patiently. Your abundant mercy will better obtain my pardon, than will my fancied innocence satisfy my inmost conscience. For although I may not be conscious of any fault, yet this does not absolve me(I Cor.4:4) If You withhold mercy, no man living can be absolved.(Ps.143:2)
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