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Chapter 98 - The innkeeper and Judas Iscariot.
98,1. The innkeeper said (nota bene: I will tell this to you, new Salemites, somewhat more extensively): “Friend, you are a disciple of the Lord and your profession is nothing else than a potter, this as far as I very well know you from your pottery products that were always of the most bad quality. But how you were able to come into the companionship of this Lord and Master – thus practically in the most perfect company of God the Lord – not even the archangel Michael could answer us.”
98,2. Judas Iscariot said: “Yes friend, you are right that you directed such words to me. I am a potter indeed, but truly not inexperienced in the Scripture. I have Moses and the prophets in my little finger, thanks to a scribe, and I know very well in whose company I am. I really do not travel along with Him to earn something worldly – which should be allowed to everyone anyway, considering the worldly conditions – but only to see if the prophet Isaiah did not speak or write any untruth in his predictions. For although my profession is a potter, I am also learned in the Scripture, and from my always quiet observations I have seen everything truly accomplished to this true God-Man that the named prophet and also the other prophets have predicted of Him.
98,3. And I also have a good memory, and I know every word that the Lord has predicted on several occasions to my disadvantage. In short: I am a devil in the company of the disciples of the Lord, whom I, despite everything, also acknowledge as such, because the signs that He does, no natural human being has ever done. But if I acknowledge this just like all the others, and belief it firmly, I ask: then why am I a devil?
98,4. Good, if I am one, then I am one, and I must to be one. But if you must be something that you actually never wanted to be, then can I be blamed for everything? In short: suddenly this matter becomes too much for me. I am now just like all the others almost 2 ½ years one of the first disciples of the Lord, and I must become a devil of Hell. No, this will absolutely not happen because I surely know now what in the whole world I have to do in order not to become a devil.
98,5. Yes, during the time when the Lord gave me such statement I also was like that in His eyes, for He alone examines the heart and the kidneys of man. So He also knew my condition, and He also will know my condition now. If I do not fit in His company, then He has more than enough power to remove me on the spot. He alone is the Lord and can do whatever He wants, and no one can say to Him: ‘Lord, why are You doing this?’ But by someone who is completely equal to me I really do not like to be rebuked. Because every person has his weaknesses and has enough work with himself to come into the right order, and as long as he still has to fight against his own weaknesses, he should leave his fellowman in peace and should not rejoice over his faults – not belittle him in front of everyone.
98,6. I know Moses and the prophets and I also know now the teaching of the Lord in which everything is confirmed what all the prophets since Adam, Sehel and Enoch have predicted about the One who is sitting among us now. And so I know also what I should do and leave out. I only would like to know why I, among us, disciples of the Lord, am always looked at with unfriendly eyes as being the least, as if I would be a devil among them in the fullest meaning of the word.”
98,7. Now the innkeeper said: “Friend, you got angry now, only because I asked you in my joy how it came to pass that you also became a permanent disciple of the Lord. In no way I wanted to rebuke you by that, and did also not know anything about the fact that the Lord has called you once with a name that I myself do not wish to pronounce anymore. I only expressed my surprise about you because I knew all too well your way of living as a citizen before, and I have seen that, despite your knowledge of the Scripture, you never kept God’s commandments too seriously or too strictly.
98,8. When people talked to you, you always knew everything much better than no matter who, but when they asked you if you believed it yourself as an unquestionable truth – because your way of acting was often not very praiseworthy – then you said: ‘no one has ever seen God or heard the voice of His mouth, but at all times there were men with different talents and capabilities, and Moses and all the prophets were only men with whom we ourselves never talked. What they have learned and written down was good for their time, but since then the times have changed tremendously, and so we and our necessities have also completely changed, and therefore Moses and the prophets are no more useful to us in many respects. And whoever does not realize that from his own experiences, is deceiving himself, because he offences against his earthly happiness of life for the sake of attaining Heaven, which is our destiny, but about which we do not have the least of certainty.’ You see, friend, that I also still have a good memory.
98,9. So I know you very well, and your principles of life were not unknown to me, and that is now exactly why I was surprised about the fact that you are staying with this most highly honored company, because for what concerns your belief you were entirely a Sadducee and you also adhered to the dog’s wisdom of the Greeks about which you often said that these were the closest to the nature of man if already as a child we were educated in that.
98,10. Now you yourself, tell me why I should not be surprised that also you became a permanent disciple of the Lord, and that you gave up your former business with which you made a lot of money, although your pottery products were never the best. Why you have done that, you as the expert will know best. But here it clearly shows that I never had the intention to belittle you and still less to rebuke you.
98,11. But why you always consider yourself as the least among the disciples of the Lord, that is your business. However, compared with the other disciples, I do not notice that you were given a lower rank.
98,12. However, I am of the opinion that such thought can only come up in someone’s mind who – out of a certain opinion of pride about himself in what he practices – always prefers to be the first and the most famous one than to be the least and subordinate in what he performs. But someone who is already extremely happy to be the least of the least in such company, and who can be the servant of the servants of the Lord will never complain about that, and will not be secretly hurt because of the fact that he considers himself as the least among that company.
98,13. As far as I know now the meaning of the teaching of the Lord – about which I talked a lot with Kisjonah and with Philopold of the neighboring village Kane that is located in the land that is sticking out and which goes from Samaria deeply into our land, but also only a couple of weeks ago with 2 disciples whom I met in Capernaum and who were send out from Jerusalem – the meaning of that teaching is the greatest humility, meekness and self-denial, without which such qualities of the mind no true and pure love for God and fellowman are imaginable.
98,14. But someone who can still be hurt or offended by the weaknesses of his fellowmen has still not penetrated to the true point of life, where the Lord wants to say or could say about him: ‘Look, this is a man after My heart.’
98,15. I have told you now honestly my opinion, and this because you forced me to it. Now you can again make your remarks, if you can make some against it.”
98,16. Judas Iscariot felt very hurt because of those very clever words of the innkeeper and did at first not know what he should answer him.
98,17. Only after a while he said (Judas Iscariot): “Yes, yes, you will be right, for you have really penetrated deeply in the spirit of the teaching. But if the Lord would now say to you: ‘You are a devil’, how would such testimony from His mouth taste to you?”
98,18. The innkeeper said: “Friend, if the Lord would give such testimony to me, I would say to Him in my heart: ‘O Lord and Master of life, I thank You, completely crushed by Your glory, that You have shown me what kind of great sinner I still am in Your eyes. But I ask You: be merciful and forgiving to me, and drive the devil of pride, lie and deception and miserable selfishness out of me, and fill me with the spirit of true humility, meekness, self-denial, true love for You and unselfish love for my fellowman.’ And I belief that the Lord will certainly not refuse to give me such mercy if out of my fullest life’s earnest I would ask Him for it.
98,19. And now I turn to You, o Lord and Master, and I ask You to rebuke me mercifully if I have said something wrong in the course of my words.”
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