Charity and Good Works (pt. 53)

Selection from True Christian Religion ~ Emanuel Swedenborg
Charity and Good Works (pt. 53)
v Doctrinal Series v
XVI. THERE IS SPURIOUS CHARITY, HYPOCRITICAL CHARITY, AND DEAD CHARITY

Dead charity is the charity of those whose faith is dead; since the charity is such as the faith is. … That the faith of those who are without works is dead, appears from the Epistle of James (2:17, 20).

Furthermore, faith is dead in those who do not believe in God; but believe in living and dead men, and who worship images as holy in themselves, as the gentiles formerly did. The offerings of those who are in such a faith, which for the sake of salvation they bestow upon their miracle-working images, as they call them, including these offerings among works of charity, are precisely like the gold and silver that are put in the urns and monuments of the dead; they are even like the meat given to Cerberus, or the fee paid to Charon for ferriage to the Elysian fields.

But the charity of those who believe that there is no God, but only nature instead, is neither spurious, hypocritical, nor dead; it is no charity at all, because it is not joined to any faith, and cannot be called charity, since the quality of charity is determined by faith. Such charity, viewed from heaven, is like bread made of ashes, a cake made of fishes’ scales, or fruit made of wax.

(True Christian Religion 453)

To be continued . . .

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About mike

The Lord is the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last, and from the human race, an angelic heaven would be formed. The reason for my creation was to perform Divine uses - The Divine Providence looks to eternal ends. My gain, honor or reputation no longer could be the focal point of what drives the engine. One day I will lay aside this material body and will wake up in the spiritual world never to return; there will be a continuation of life, and my ruling love will be what guides me to my final situation. 'Where a tree falls, there will it lay' (Ecc 11:3) We only have a few years in these bodies compared to eternity. What is fossilized on our souls in this short period is important to how we spend eternity. We are not left to blind faith, The Lord has come in His Word to reveal rationally how we can be made 'a vessel of honor, able for the master's use.' I truly hope the post create a thirst. If I can be of service, please do not hesitate to email me. --Mike
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