Published on Monday, 31 March 2008 15:27
erily I say unto you, that if Satan shall try whether ye be friends of God- because no one assaileth his own cities- if Satan should have his will over you he would suffer you
to glide at your own pleasure; but because he knoweth that ye be enemies to him he will do every violence to make you perish. But fear not ye, for he will be against you as a dog that is chained, because God hath heard my prayer.'
John answered: 'O master, not only for us, but for them that shall believe the gospel, tell us how the ancient tempter layeth wait for man.'
Jesus answered: 'In four ways tempteth that wicked one. The first is when he tempteth by himself, with thoughts. The second is when he tempteth with words and deeds by means of his servants; the third is when he tempteth with false doctrine; the fourth is when he tempteth with false visions. Now how cautious ought men to be, and all the more according as he hath in his favour the flesh of man, which loveth sin as he who hath fever loveth water. Verily I say unto you, that if a man fear God he shall have victory over all, as saith David his prophet: "God shall give his angels charge over thee, who shall keep thy ways, so that the devil shall not cause thee to stumble. A thousand shall fall on thy left hand, and ten thousand on thy right hand, so that they shall not come nigh thee."
'Furthermore, our God with great love promised to us by the same David to keep us, saying: "I give unto thee understanding, which shall teach thee; and in thy ways wherein thou shalt walk I will cause Mine eye to rest upon thee."
'But what shall I say? He hath said by Isaiah: "Can a mother forget the child of her womb? But I say unto thee, that when she forget, I will not forget thee."
'Tell me, then, who shall fear Satan, having for guard the angels and for protection the living God? Nevertheless, it is necessary, as saith the prophet Solomon, that "Thou, my son, that art come to fear the Lord, prepare thy soul for temptations." Verily I say unto you, that a man ought to do as the banker who examineth money, examining his thoughts, that he sin not against God his creator.'