Tuesday, 25 October 2016

The Catholic Church Alone. The One True Church of Christ. Part 165.

SIX VOLUMES IN ONE BY THE DISTINGUISHED EXPONENTS OF CATHOLICISM

REV. HENRY DODRIDGE, D. D.REV. HENRY EDWARD MANNING, D. D.REV. F. LEWIS, of Granada REV. STEPHEN KEENAN REV. BERNARD VAUGHAN, S. J. REV. THOMAS N. BURKE, O. P. 


HOW TO SHUN EVIL; OR, THE SINNER'S GUIDE

CHAPTER III. OF THE THIRD MOTIVE THAT OBLIGES US TO SERVE GOD, WHICH IS THE BENEFIT OF OUR PRESERVATION AND DIRECTION.

ANOTHER obligation man has to God, besides that of his creation, is the care he takes to preserve him. He it is who gave you your being, and who still continues the same to you. So that you depend now as much upon his power, for the preserving of it, as you did, before he gave it to you, for the receiving it; and it is as impossible for you to subsist without him, as it was before you were created, to create yourself. Nor is the second obligation less than the first, but rather greater, for that was laid upon you but once; whereas this is conferred on you every moment of your life. For, to be continually preserving you after your creation, requires no less love nor power than it did to create you. If, therefore, your obligation to him, for having created you in an instant, be so great; what do you not owe him for preserving you so many moments, so many hours, nay, so many years? You cannot go a step unless he gives you power to move. You cannot so much as open or shut your eyes without his will and assistance. For, if you do not believe it is he who moves every joint and member of your body, you are no Christian; but if you believe it is from him you receive this favor, and yet, after all, are so impudent as to offend him, I cannot tell what name to give you. If a man were standing on the top of a high tower with a small cord in his hand, and another man hanging at the end of it, do you think that he who should be so near falling down headlong, would dare to give abusive language to the person that held the cord ? Imagine yourself to be in such a condition. You depend on the will of God as it were on a thread; so that, should he forsake you but for one moment, you would be instantly reduced to your first nothing. With what insolence, then, can you dare provoke so dreadful a Majesty, who is so merciful as to support you, even when you sin against him ? For, as St. Denis says, such is the virtue of the sovereign Good, as to give creatures power to disobey and rebel at the very moment they are rebelling against it Since there is no denying this truth, how dare you presume to make use of those senses and members, as instruments to offend him who preserves them? O incredible blindness and folly! O unheard-of rebellion and disobedience I Was there ever so horrid a conspiracy as this is, that the members should rise up against their Head, for which they ought to die a thousand times ? The day will come when this affront shall be most severely punished. It is then that God will hear those complaints, which his own honor, trampled under foot by you, shall make to his divine justice. Disloyal and ungrateful man! is it not just, since you have conspired against your God, that the whole world should rise up and exclaim against you ? that God should arm all his creatures to revenge the injuries you have offered him? and that the whole earth should fight for him against the ungrateful ? Without doubt, there is no greater justice than that they, who would not open their eyes to so many mercies, when they might have done it, should be forced to it now by severity and rigor, without finding any remedy or comfort.