78: Value of Learning

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'Verily I say unto you, that God had not compassion on the fall of Satan, but yet [had compassion] on the fall of Adam. And let this suffice you to know the unhappy condition of him who knoweth good and doeth evil.'

   Then said Andrew: 'O master, it is a good thing to leave learning aside, so as not to fall into such condition.'

   Jesus answered: 'If the world is good without the sun, man without eyes, and the soul without understanding, then is it good not to know. Verily I say unto you, that bread is not so good for the temporal life as is learning for the eternal life. Know ye not that it is a precept of God to learn? For thus saith God: "Ask of thine elders, and they shall teach thee. ' And of the law saith God: "See that my precept be before thine eyes, and when thou sittest down, and when thou walkest, and at all times meditate thereon." Whether, then, it is good not to learn, ye may now know. Oh, unhappy he who despiseth wisdom, for he is sure to lose eternal life.'

   James answered: 'O master, we know that Job learned not from a master, nor Abraham; nevertheless they became holy ones and prophets.'

   Jesus answered: 'Verily I say unto you, that he who is of the bridegroom's house needeth not to be invited to the marriage, because he dwelleth in the house where the marriage is held; but they that are far from the house. Now know ye not that the prophets of God are in the house of God's grace and mercy, and so have the law of God manifest in them: as David our father saith on this matter: "The law of his God is in his heart; therefore his path shall not be digged up." Verily I say unto you that our God in creating man not only created him righteous, but inserted in his heart a light that should show to him that it is fitting to serve God. Wherefore, even if this light be darkened after sin, yet is it not extinguished. For every nation hath this desire to serve God, though they have lost God and serve false and lying gods. Accordingly it is necessary that a man be taught of the prophets of God, for they have clear the light to teach the way to go to paradise, our country, by serving God well: just as it is necessary that he who hath his eyes diseased should be guided and helped.'

 

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