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BISHOP MARTIN'S REMARKS ABOUT THE ESSENCE OF EVIL. - BOREM'S EDUCATIONAL WORDS ABOUT THE DIVINE ORDER. - "GOOD" AND "EVIL" AS THE TWO OPPOSITE POLES IN GOD AND CREATION.
74,1. (Bishop Martin): "Oh, yes, of course you are right! But you must admit that the sinners are God's creatures, just as we are, and so is the devil! We all come from God. But who will, for that reason, call a sinner or the devil good?
74,2. As I see it, God has, among His countless creatures, created also free beings. He has acquainted them with His unchanging order and has shown the ways they have to walk to remain within His order. But since they are free beings, they are quite capable of turning their backs on the wellknown divine order and act contrary to it. If this happens, the following question then arises:
74,3. If evil is only thinkable as opposed to the divine goodness, then only an action against the known divine goodness can be called evil. If, however, this action is also good, what then is evil? It must exist, otherwise hell would be the vainest imaginable concept.
74,4. But if hell is a reality and an action which is contrary to the positive, immutable divine order must be described as evil, then these ladies are evil and ready for hell!
74,5. Sin and sinners, as adherents of the devil, are, consequently, evil, and their reward, as expressed by the Lord Himself, is hell - as a collecting center for everything evil. The manifestations in connection with these ladies proved that they were evil all the way through. They stabbed each other like furies and now they are on fire! Could that be anything but the image of hell?"
74,6. (Borem): "Friend, you are still speaking like a short-sighted mortal from the prison of his flesh. Naturally, on the part of a free being, any action which is contrary to the known divine order is sin, and thus evil! But can you determine the bounds between one and the same man's actual free being and that part of it which is under compulsion?
74,7. Do you know where in the flesh the soul begins and where in the soul the spirit? Do you know exactly where a man's actions under compulsion end and his free actions commence? Do you know how far spirituality and freedom extend into the natural and compulsive being of man?
74,8. When you filled new wine into a cask and it began to ferment audibly, a pungent smell from the bung hole would knock you back if you put your nose near it. Do you know what it was that caused the wine to ferment? No, you don't! Then the fermentation ended, the new wine had calmed down, cleared and then changed to matured wine. Do you know how this could happen?
74,9. Soon after a fruit tree had blossomed, you could already see the fruit. If you tasted it before it was ready, you found it sour and unpleasant, contrary to the order of your taste; consequently, it was bad and evil. But how did you find the fruit when it was ripe? Then it suited your taste and was no longer bad and evil.
74,10. To the senses surely winter must be a sin; for it is not in the order of warm-blooded men and beasts. But what about the fruit-bearing soil of the earth and man's physical strength, if winter did not exist?
74,11. In the whole of infinity you will always find two poles, both of which are within the order of God although they are complete opposites, like day and night, or yes and no. Tell me - which of them is the evil one? Don't you see that the Lord directs and guides everything on its proper way? Where then could there be a bad way?
74,12. The Lord knows exactly what free scope He apportions to a being. Within this scope, every being that has a free will may please itself in the practice of its freedom. However, no being is capable of any action outside this scope.
74,13. A drop of water usually contains countless freely-moving infusoria. Could they live and be active outside that drop of water?
74,14. Thus, mortals may undermine the moral order of then-earth through wars and other evils. Could they impede the change of night and day, or could they hold back the rain and winds, or empty the sea?
74,15. If you want to talk about the great order of God, you will have to look farther than the narrow space of your scope of activity.
74,16. What is not possible in the drop of water will surely be possible in the sea, which cannot be poisoned by the most poisonous drop. Where an equation cannot be found in the orbit of earth, it will surely be found in the vast orbit of the sun. And should this still be too small, then there are orbits of central suns of endless expansions and depths.
74,17. If a number is indivisible in another number, does that already mean that there does not exist a number in which it would be divisible? Or, if in music a wrong note is used which is out of harmony with the key of the tune - therefore bad - does it follow that this note should be banned from music altogether?
74,18. Behold, although God has given every human being on earth a certain order to observe with His 'Thou shalt,' He has also given him all the other things. He knows best how to guide one or the other with a view to attaining to the great goal in due course. Therefore, He has also demanded us not to judge anybody, just as the greatest angel of heaven, Michael, was not allowed to condemn Satan as he fought with him for the body of Moses.
74,19. If we want to be wise and true children of God, we must watch what the Lord is doing and adapt our judgment accordingly, for we can move freely only within our own scope. The movement in the countless, infinite scopes of God's order is none of our business, but the Lord's alone wherefore it is written that a person should sweep in front of his own door and not that of his neighbor.
74,20. Make sure you comprehend this, and then continue to look at the scene. I hope before God the Lord that you will now begin to see things in a different light, and value them accordingly. May the Lord give you the honest will and true insight to this end soon! Now look again - the scene has changed!"
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