God Enthroned Shows Himself to Hildegard

I saw a great mountain the color of iron, and enthroned on it One of such great glory that it blinded my sight. On each side of him there extended a soft shadow, like a wing of wondrous breadth and length. Before him, at the foot of the mountain, stood an image full of eyes on all sides, in which, because of those eyes, I could discern no human form. In front of this image stood another, a child wearing a tunic of subdued color but white shoes, upon whose head such glory descended from the One enthroned upon that mountain that I could not look at its face. But from the One who sat enthroned upon that mountain many living sparks sprang forth, which flew very sweetly around the images. Also, I perceived in this mountain many little windows, in which appeared human heads, some of subdued colors and some white.

And behold, He Who was enthroned upon that mountain cried out in a strong, loud voice saying, "O human, who are fragile dust of the earth and ashes of ashes! Cry out and speak of the origin of pure salvation until those people are instructed, who, though they see the inmost contents of the Scriptures, do not wish to tell them or preach them, because they are lukewarm and sluggish in serving God's justice. Unlock for them the enclosure of mysteries that they, timid as they are, conceal in a hidden and fruitless field. Burst forth into a fountain of abundance and overflow with mystical knowledge, until they who now think you contemptible because of Eve's transgression are stirred up by the flood of your irrigation. For you have received your profound insight not from humans, but from the lofty and tremendous Judge on high, where this calmness will shine strongly with glorious light among the shining ones.
"Arise therefore, cry out and tell what is shown to you by the strong power of God's help, for He Who rules every creature in might and kindness floods those who fear Him and serve Him in sweet love and humility with the glory of heavenly enlightenment and leads those who persevere in the way of justice to the joys of the Eternal Vision."

1. The strength and stability of God's eternal Kingdom

As you see, therefore, the great mountain the color of iron symbolizes the strength and stability of the eternal Kingdom of God, which no fluctuation of mutability can destroy; and the One enthroned upon it of such great glory that it blinds your sight is the One in the kingdom of beatitude Who rules the whole world with celestial divinity in the brilliance of unfading serenity, but is incomprehensible to human minds. But that on each side of him there extends a soft shadow like a wing of wonderful breadth and length shows that both in admonition and in punishment ineffable justice displays sweet and gentle protection and perseveres in true equity.

2. Concerning fear of the Lord

And before him at the foot of the mountain stands an image full of eyes on all sides. For the Fear of the Lord stands in God's presence with humility and gazes on the Kingdom of God, surrounded by the clarity of a good and just intention, exercising her zeal and stability among humans. And thus you can discern no human form in her on account of those eyes. For by the acute sight of her contemplation she counters all forgetfulness of God's justice, which people often feel in their mental tedium, so no inquiry by weak mortals eludes her vigilance.

3. Concerning those who are poor in spirit

And so before this image appears another image, that of a child, wearing a tunic of subdued color but white shoes. For when the Fear of the Lord leads, they who are poor in spirit follow; for the Fear of the Lord holds fast in humble devotion to the blessedness of poverty of spirit, which does not seek boasting or elation of heart, bur loves simplicity and sobriety of mind, attributing its just works not to itself but to God in pale subjection, wearing, as it were, a tunic of subdued color and faithfully following the serene footsteps of the Son of God. Upon her head descends such glory from the One enthroned upon that mountain that you cannot look at her face; because He Who rules every created being imparts the power and strength of this blessedness by the great clarity of His visitation, and weak, mortal thought cannot grasp His purpose, since He Who possesses celestial riches submitted himself humbly to poverty.

4. They who fear God and love poverty of spirit are the guardians of virtues

But from the One Who is enthroned upon that mountain many living sparks go forth, which fly about those images with great sweetness. This means that many exceedingly strong virtues come forth from Almighty God, darting fire in divine glory; these ardently embrace and captivate those who truly fear God and who faithfully love poverty of spirit, surrounding them with their help and protection.

5. The aims of human acts cannot be hidden from God's knowledge

Wherefore in this mountain you see many little windows, in which appear human heads, some of subdued color and some white. For in the most high and profound and perspicuous knowledge of God the aims of human acts cannot be concealed or hidden. Most often they display both lukewarmness and purity, since people now slumber in guilt, weary in their hearts and in their deeds, and now awaken and keep watch in honor. Solomon bears witness to this for Me, saying:

6. Solomon on this subject

"The slothful hand has brought about poverty, but the hand of the industrious man prepares riches" [Proverbs 10:4]; which means, a person makes himself weak and poor when he will not work justice, or avoid wickedness, or pay a debt, remaining idle in the face of the wonders of the works of beatitude. But one who does strong works of salvation, running in the way of truth, obtains the upwelling fountain of glory, by which he prepares himself most precious riches on earth and in Heaven.
Therefore, whoever has knowledge in the Holy Spirit and wings of faith, let this one not ignore My admonition but taste it, embrace it and receive it in his soul.


Creation and the Fall

Then I saw as it were a great multitude of very bright living lamps, which received fiery brilliance and acquired an unclouded splendor. And behold! A pit of great breadth and depth appeared, with a mouth like the mouth of a well, emitting fiery smoke with great stench, .from which a loathsome cloud spread out and touched a deceitful, vein-shaped form. And, in a region of bright- ness, it blew upon a white cloud that had come forth .from a beautijill human form and contained within itself many and many stars, and so doing, cast out both the white cloud and the human form .from that region. When this was done, a luminous splendor surrounded that region, and all the elements of the world, which before had existed in great calm, were turned to the greatest agitation and displayed horrible terrors.
And again I heard Him Who had spoken to me before, saying:

1. No unjust impulse takes the blessed angels from the love and praise of God

No impulse of injustice makes those withdraw in terror who follow God with faithful devotion and burn with worthy love through affection for Him, from the glory of heavenly beatitude; while they who serve God merely in pretence not only fail to advance to greater things but, by just judgment, are cast out from the things they erroneously suppose they possess. This is shown by the great multitude of very bright living lamps; they are the vast army of heavenly spirits, shining in the blessed life and living in great beauty and adornment, because when they were created by God they did not grasp at proud exaltation but strongly persisted in divine love. For, receiving fiery brilliance, they acquired an unclouded splendor, because when Lucifer and his followers attempted to rebel against the supreme Creator, they, with zeal for God in his and his followers' downfall, clothed themselves in the vigilance of divine love, while the others, not wishing to know God, embraced the torpor of ignorance. In what way? At the fall of the Devil great praise burst forth from these angelic spirits who persevered in rectitude with God, because with keenest sight they knew that God continues immovable, without any change of any mutability in His power, so that no warrior can ever conquer Him. And thus, burning in His love and persevering in righteousness, they despised all the dust of injustice.

2. Lucifer, for pride in his beauty and power, was cast forth from Heaven

But Lucifer, who because of his pride was cast forth from celestial glory, was so great at the moment of his creation that he felt no defect either in his beauty or in his strength. Hence when he contemplated his beauty, and when he considered in himself the power of his strength, he discovered pride, which promised him that he might begin what he wished, because he could achieve what he had begun. And, seeing a place where he thought he could live, wanting to display his beauty and power there, he spoke thus within himself about God: "I wish to shine there as He does here!" And all his army assented, saying, "What you wish we also wish." And when, elated with pride, he tried to achieve what he had conceived, the jealousy of the Lord, reaching out in fiery blackness, cast him down with all his retinue, so that they were made burning instead of shining and black instead of fair. Why did this happen?

3. God would have been unjust if He had not cast them down

If God had not cast down their presumption, He would have been unjust, since He would have cherished those who wished to divide the wholeness of divinity. But He cast them down and reduced their impiety to nothing, as He removes from the sight of His glory all who try to oppose themselves to Him, as My servant Job shows when he says:

4. Words of Job on this subject

"The lamp of the wicked shall be put out and a deluge shall come upon them; and He shall distribute the sorrows of His wrath. They shall be chaff before the face of the wind, and sparks scattered by the whirlwind" [Job 11:17-18]. This means the flagrant filth of wanton wickedness that emerges from false prosperity, like a distinguishing mark on the carnal will of those who do not fear God but spurn Him in perverse rage, disdaining to know that anyone can conquer them, while in the fire of their ferocity they want to consume whatever they oppose. In the hour of God's vengeance this filth will be trodden underfoot like dirt; and by the supreme judgment these impious ones will be cast down in wrath by all who are under heaven, because they are harmful both to God and to humans. Therefore, since God does not allow them to have what they want, they are scattered everywhere among people, tormented by pain in the rage of their madness, because they burn to possess what God does not allow them to devour. And since they withdraw in this way from God, they become entirely useless, able to do nothing good for either God or humanity, cut off from the seed of life by the foreseeing eye of God's contemplation. For which reason they are given over to misery, wasting themselves in the flat taste of evil fame, since they do not receive the downpouring rain of the Holy Spirit.

5. On Hell, which in its voracity keeps souls swallowed up

But the pit of great breadth and depth that appeared to you is Hell, having within it, as you see, the breadth of vices and the depth of losses. It has a mouth indeed like the mouth of a well, emitting a fiery smoke with great stench, because in its voracity to swallow up souls, it shows them sweetness and gentleness, and with perverse deception leads them to the torments of perdition, where rises a burning fire with black smoke pouring out and a boiling, deadly stench; these dire torments were prepared for the Devil and his followers, who turned away from the Supreme Good, not wishing to know or understand it. Therefore they are outcast from all good, not because they did not know it, but because in their great pride they despised it. What does this mean?

6. In the casting down of the Devil Hell was created

In the casting down of the Devil this exterior darkness, full of all kinds of pains, was created; for these evil spirits, in contrast to the glory that had been prepared for them, were subject to the misery of many punishments, and in contrast to the brightness they had had, endured the thickest darkness. How? When the proud angel raised himself on high like a snake, he received the prison of Hell, because it could not be that anyone should prevail over God. For how could two hearts possibly exist in one breast? Likewise, there could not be two gods in Heaven. But since the Devil and his followers chose proud presumption, therefore he found the pit of Hell prepared for him. So also the people who imitate them in their actions become sharers of their pains, according to their deserts.

7. Gehenna is for the impenitent, other torments for those who can be saved

Some souls, having reached the point of damnation, are rejected from the knowledge of God, and therefore they shall have the pains of Hell without the consolation of deliverance. But some, whom God has not consigned to oblivion, experience a higher process and undergo purgation of the sins into which they have fallen, and at last feel the loosing of their bonds and are delivered into rest. How is this? Gehenna is ready for those who have impenitently forgotten God in their hearts, but other torments for those who, though they perform bad works, do not persevere in them to the end, but at last, groaning, look back to God. For this reason let the faithful flee from the Devil and love God, casting away evil works and adorning good works with the beauty of penitence; as My servant Ezekiel, inspired by Me, urges, saying:

8. Words of Ezekiel on this subject

"Be converted, and do penance for all your iniquities; and iniquity shall not be your ruin" [Ezekiel 18:30]. That is to say: O you people! who till now have wallowed in sin, remember your name of Christians, be converted to the way of salvation, and perform all your works in a gush of penitence, who previously had innumerable vices and committed many crimes. Thus as you rise from your evil habits, that iniquity by which you had been soiled will not sink you deep in the ruin of death, since you cast it off in the day of your salvation. Therefore the angels will rejoice over you, because you have abandoned the Devil and run to God, knowing Him better in your good actions than you did when you endured the mockery of the ancient seducer.

9. The Devil's fraud, which deceived Adam through the serpent

That a loathsome cloud spread out from the pit and touched a deceitful, vein-shaped form means that from the bottom of perdition the Devil's fraud came forth and invaded the serpent, who already bore within itself the crime of fraudulent intention, in order to deceive humanity. In what way? Because, when the Devil saw Man in paradise, he cried out with great aversion, saying, "Oh! who touches me in the mansion of true beatitude?" And so he knew that he had not yet perfected in any creature the malice he had within himself, but seeing Adam and Eve walk with childlike innocence in the garden of delight, with great wonder he rose up to deceive them through the serpent. Why? Because he understood that the serpent more than any other animal resembled him and was eager to accomplish by its deceitfulness what he could not do openly in his own form. So when he saw Adam and Eve turn away in soul and body from the forbidden tree, he understood that they were obeying a divine precept, and that in the first work they began he could very easily throw them down.

10. Only from Eve's reply did the Devil know the tree was forbidden

For he would not have known that this tree was forbidden them unless he had proved it by guileful questioning and by their answers. Wherefore in that bright region he blew upon a white cloud; which had come forth from a beautiful human form and contained within itself many and many stars because, in that place of delight, Eve -- whose soul was innocent, for she had been raised out of innocent Adam, bearing in her body the whole multitude of the human race, shining with God's preordination -- was invaded by the Devil through the seduction of the serpent for her own downfall. Why was this? Because he knew that the susceptibility of the woman would be more easily conquered than the strength of the man; and he saw that Adam burned so vehemently in his holy love for Eve that if he, the Devil, conquered Eve, Adam would do whatever she said to him. Hence the Devil cast out both the cloud and the human form from that region because that ancient seducer cast out Eve and Adam by his deception from the seat of blessedness and thrust them into the darkness of destruction. How? By first misleading Eve, so that she might flatter and caress Adam and thus win his assent, since she more than any other creature could lead Adam to disobedience, having been made from his rib. Thus woman very quickly overthrows man, if he does not hate her and easily accepts her words.

11. What things are to be observed and avoided in marriage

Because a mature woman was given not to a little boy but to a mature man, namely Adam, so now a mature woman must be married to a man when he has reached the full age of fertility, just as due cultivation is given to a tree when it begins to put forth flowers. For Eve was formed from a rib by Adam's ingrafted heat and vigor, and therefore now it is by the strength and heat of a man that a woman receives the semen to bring a child into the world. For the man is the sower, but the woman is the recipient of the seed. Wherefore a wife is under the power of her husband because the strength of the man is to the susceptibility of the woman as the hardness of stone is to the softness of earth.
But the first woman's being formed from man means the joining of wife to husband. And thus it is to be understood: This union must not be vain or done in forgetfulness of God, because He Who brought forth the woman from the man instituted this union honorably and virtuously, forming flesh from flesh. Wherefore, as Adam and Eve were one flesh, so now also a man and woman become one flesh in a union of holy love for the multiplication of the human race. And therefore there should be perfect love in these two as there was in those first two. For Adam could have blamed his wife because by her advice she brought him death, but nonetheless he did not dismiss her as long as he lived in this world, because he knew she had been given to him by divine power. Therefore, because of perfect love, let a man not leave his wife except for the reason the faithful Church allows. And let them never separate, unless both with one mind want to contemplate My Son, and say with burning love for Him: "We want to renounce the world and follow Him Who suffered for our sake!" But if these two disagree as to whether they should renounce the world for one devotion, then let them by no means separate from each other, since, just as the blood cannot be separated from the flesh as long as the spirit remains in the flesh, so the husband and wife cannot be divided from each other but must walk together in one will.
But if either husband or wife breaks the law by fornication, and it is made public either by themselves or by their priests, they shall undergo the just censure of the spiritual magisterium. For the husband shall complain of the wife, or the wife of the husband, about the sin against their union before the Church and its prelates, according to the justice of God; but not so that the husband or wife can seek another marriage; either they shall stay together in righteous union, or they shall both abstain from such unions, as the discipline of church practice shows. And they shall not tear each ocher to pieces by viperous rending, but they shall love with pure love, since both man and woman could not exist without having been conceived in such a bond, as My friend Paul witnesses when he says:

12. Words of the apostle on this subject

"As the woman is of the man, so is the man for the woman; but all are from God" (1 Corinthians 11:12.]. Which is to say: Woman was created for the sake of man, and man for the sake of woman. As she is from the man, the man is also from her, lest they dissent from each other in the unity of making their children; for they should work as one in one work, as the air and the wind intermingle in their labor. In what way? The air is moved by the wind, and the wind is mingled with the air, so that in their movement all verdant things are subject to their influence. What does this mean? The wife must cooperate with the husband and the husband with the wife in making children. Therefore the greatest crime and wickedest act is to make by fornication a division in the days of creating children, since the husband and wife cut off their own blood from its rightful place, sending it to an alien place. They will certainly incur the deceit of the Devil and the wrath of God, because they have transgressed that bond God ordained for them. Woe to them, therefore, if their sins are not forgiven! But although, as has been shown, the husband and wife work together in their children, nevertheless the husband and the wife and all other creatures come from the divine disposition and ordination, since God made them according to His will.

13. Why before the Incarnation some men had several wives

Before the Incarnation of My Son, however, certain men among the ancient people had several wives at once, as they wished; they had not yet heard the open prohibition of My Son, Who when He came into the world showed that the right fruit of this union of husband and wife as long as they live is the fruit manifest in the union of Adam and Eve, a union to be exercised not by the will of Man but by the fear of God. For it is better to have this right union, by the arrangement of the prudence of the Church, than to crave fornication; but you humans ignore this, and pursue your lusts not only like humans but like beasts.
But let there be right faith and pure love of the knowledge of God between husband and wife lest their seed be polluted by the Devil's art and divine vengeance strike them because they are biting and tearing each other to pieces and sowing their seed inhumanly with the wantonness of beasts. In such a case jealousy will torture them like a viper, and without the fear of God and without human discipline a defiled excess of seed will be stored up in them, and often, by the just judgment of God, this perversity of theirs will be chastised by having those born of them deprived of limbs and of health in their lives; unless I receive their penitence and show Myself propitious to them. For if any shall call upon Me in penitence for their sins, I will accept their penitence for the love of My Son; for if anyone lifts a finger to Me in penitence, that is, reaches out to Me in penitence and groaning in his heart, saying, "I have sinned, Lord, before you!" My Son, Who is the Priest of priests, will show Me that penitence; for penitence which is offered to priests for the love of My Son obtains the purgation of the sinners. Therefore, people who worthily do penance escape from the jaws of the Devil, Who, trying to swallow the hook of divine power, has grievously wounded his jaw; and now, therefore, faithful souls pass out of perdition and arrive at salvation. How?
Because the priests at the altar, invoking My name, will receive the confession of the peoples and show them the remedy of salvation. So, in order to find God propitious, let them not contaminate their seed by various vices, since those who emit their semen in fornication or adultery render their children, born of them thus, unsound. How? Can he who mixes mud or ordure with pure clay make a lasting vessel? Likewise, will he who contaminates his semen in fornication or adultery ever beget strong sons? But many work in different ways in their inmost being, and many of these become prudent toward the world and toward God. And with these the heavenly Jerusalem is filled; deserting vice and loving virtue, they imitate My Son in chastity and in great works, carrying in their bodies, as much as they are able, His martyrdom.
But when I do not wish a person to have children, I take away the virile power of the semen, that it may not coagulate in the mother's womb; So also I deny the earth the power to bear fruit when by My just judgment I will to do So. But do you wonder, O human, why I let children be born in adultery and similar crimes? My judgment is just. For, since the fall of Adam, I have not found in human seed the justice that should have been in it, for the Devil drove out this justice by the taste of the fruit. Therefore I sent My Son into the world born of a virgin, so that by His blood, in which there was no carnal pollution, He might take away from the Devil those spoils that he had carried off from humanity.

14. No human or angel but only the Son of God could deliver Man

For neither a human being, conceived in sin, nor an angel, who has no covering of flesh, could save Man, wallowing in sins and laboring under the heaviness of the flesh, from the power of the Devil; but only He Who, coming without sin, with a pure and sinless body, delivered him by His Passion. Therefore, though human beings are born in sin, I nevertheless gather them into My heavenly kingdom when they faithfully seek it. For no wickedness can take My elect from me, as Wisdom testifies, saying:

15. Words of Wisdom on this subject

"The souls of the just are in the hand of God; and the torment of death shall not touch them" [Wisdom 3:1]. Which is to say: The souls of those who embrace the path of rectitude with devout affection are aided by the celestial Helper; so that, because of the good works by which in the height of justice they strive for Heaven, the torment of perdition does not break them, for the true Light strengthens them in the fear and love of God. But after Adam and Eve were driven out of the place of delight, they knew in themselves the work of conceiving and bearing children. And falling thus from disobedience into death, when they knew they could sin, they discovered sin's sweetness. And in this way, turning My rightful institution into sinful lust, although they should have known that the commotion in their veins was not for the sweetness of sin but for the love of children, by the Devil's suggestion they changed it to lechery; and, losing the innocence of the act of begetting, they yielded it to sin. This was not accomplished without the Devil's persuasion; for that purpose he sent forth his darts, and it did not come to pass without his suggestion; as he said, "My strength is in human conception, and therefore humanity is mine!" And, seeing that if Man consented to him he would become a sharer in his punishment, he said again within himself: "All iniquities are against Most Powerful God, since He is certainly not unjust." And that deceiver put this as a great seal on his heart, that Man, who had consented to him of his own accord, could not be taken away from him.
Therefore I took secret counsel within Myself, to send My Son for the redemption of humanity, that Man might be restored to the heavenly Jerusalem. And no iniquity could withstand this counsel, for My Son, coming into the world, gathered unto himself all who, forsaking sin, chose to hear and imitate Him. I am just and righteous, not willing the iniquity that you, O human, embrace when you know you can do evil. For Lucifer and Man each tried at the beginning of their creation to rebel against Me and could not stand firm, but fell away from good and chose evil. But Lucifer laid hold of total evil and rejected all good, and did not taste the good at all, but fell into death. Adam, however, tasted the good when he accepted obedience, but he longed for evil, and in his desire accomplished it by his disobedience to God, Why this happened is not for you, O human, to investigate; mortal cannot know what there was before the creation of the world or what may happen after the last day, but God alone knows this, except insofar as He permits His elect to know it.
But that fornication, which is commonly done by people, is abominable in My sight, for I created male and female from the beginning in integrity and not in wickedness. Therefore those hypocrites who say it is lawful for them to commit fornication, with animal appetites, with whomever they wish, are unworthy of My eyes, because, despising the honor and loftiness of their rationality, they look to the beasts and make themselves like them. Woe to those who live so and persevere in this wickedness!

16. Blood relatives may not be united in marriage

I also do not wish the blood of relatives to be mingled in marriage, where the ardor of family love is not yet weakened, lest there arise shameless love in the relation of consanguinity; but let the blood of different families flow together, which feels no blood relationship burning within it, so that human custom may work there.

17. Example of milk

Milk that is cooked once or twice has not yet lost its flavor, but by the time it is coagulated and cooked the seventh or eighth time, it loses its qualities and does not have a pleasant taste except in case of necessity. And as one must not have sexual relations with a relative who is one's own spouse, so also one must abhor a sexual relationship with a relative related not to one but to one's spouse; let no human being join in such a coupling, which the Church by its Doctors, who established it in great responsibility and honor, has forbidden.

18. Blood relatives could marry in the Old, but not in the New Testament

Under the Old Testament people married their blood relatives by the precept of the Law, but that was allowed because of their hardheartedness, so that they might be at peace among themselves and charity be strengthened in them; so that these tribes would not break My Covenant by dividing and mixing with the pagans in marriage, until the time came when My Son brought the fullness of charity, changing the joining of relatives in carnal bonds into marriages with different people in bashful modesty. Thus, since the Bride of My Son [the Church] now possesses in holy baptism a bond of My fear and righteous justice, let such joinings of relatives be far from her; for the embraces of a man and woman related by blood would be wickedly enkindled into shameless fornication and ceaseless lust much more than those of unrelated people. I am explaining this by this person [Hildegard], to whom this human operation is unknown; she is receiving this explanation not from human knowledge, but from God. What next?

19 A man should be adult to marry and take only a wife of marriageable age

When a male is at the age of strength, so that his veins are full of blood, then he is fertile in his semen; then let him take in lawfully instituted marriage a woman who is also at the age of heat, that she may modestly receive his seed and bear him children in the path of rectitude.

20 On the avoidance of illicit and lustful pollution

But let not a man emit his semen in excessive lust before the years of his strength; for if he tries to sow his seed in the eagerness of lust before that seed has enough heat to coagulate properly, it is proof that he is sinning at the Devil's suggestion. And when a man is already strong in his desire, let him not exercise his strength in that work as much as he can; because if he thus pays attention to the Devil, he is doing a devilish work, making his body contemptible, which is entirely unlawful. But let the man do as human nature teaches him, and seek the right way with his wife in the strength of his heat and the vigor of his seed; and let him do this with human knowledge, out of desire for children.
But I do not want this work done during the wife's menses, when she is already suffering the flow of her blood, the opening of the hidden parts of her womb, lest the flow of her blood carry with it the mature seed after its reception, and the seed, thus carried forth, perish; at this time the woman is in pain and in prison, suffering a small portion of the pain of childbirth. I do not remit this time of pain for women, because I gave it to Eve when she conceived sin in the taste of the fruit; but therefore the woman should be cherished in this time with a great and healing tenderness. Let her contain herself in hidden knowledge; she should not, however, restrain herself from going into My temple, but faith allows her to enter in the service of humility for her salvation. But because the Bride of My Son is always whole, a man who has open wounds because the wholeness of his members has been divided by the impact of a blow shall not enter My Temple, except under the fear of great necessity, lest it be violated, as the intact members of Abel, who was a temple of God, were cruelly broken by his brother Cain.

21. A woman shall not enter the temple after birth or defloration by a man

So a woman, too, when she bears offspring, may not enter My Temple except in accordance with the law I give her, because her hidden members have been broken, that the holy sacraments of My Temple may be unviolated by any masculine or feminine pain or pollution; because the most pure Virgin bore My Son, and she was whole without any wound of sin. For the place that is consecrated in honor of my Only-Begotten should be untouched by any corruption of bruise or wound, because My Only-Begotten knew in himself the integrity of the Virgin Birth. Therefore, let a woman who breaks the wholeness of her virginity with a man also refrain from entering My Temple while injured by the bruise of her corruption, until the injury of that wound is healed, in accordance with the sure instruction of church teaching. For when His Bride was wedded to My Son on the wood of the cross, she kept herself hidden until My Son commanded His disciples to teach the truth of the Gospel throughout the whole world; but afterward she arose openly and publicly preached the glory of her Bridegroom in the regeneration of the Spirit and water. So let a virgin who is joined to a husband do the same, namely remain hidden with modest shame until the time which church opinion appoints for her; and when she has given herself over to the love of her husband in her concealment, let her come forth openly.

22. Those who have intercourse with the pregnant are murderers

I do not want that work of man and woman to take place from the time when the root of a little child has already been placed in the woman, lest the development of that little child be polluted by excessive and wasted semen, until her purification after childbirth. After that it may be done again, in rectitude and not in wantonness, for the love of children. Thus the human race may procreate by honest human custom, and not as foolish people babble when they claim it is lawful to satisfy their lust at will, saying, "How can we contain ourselves so cruelly?" O humans, if you pay attention to the Devil, he will incite you to evil and destroy you with his deadly poison; but if you raise your eyes to God, He will help you and make you chaste. Do you not desire chastity in your works rather than lust? The woman is subject to the man in that he sows his seed in her, as he works the earth to make it bear fruit. Does a man work the earth that it may bring forth thorns and thistles? Never, but that it may give worthy fruit. So also this endeavor should be for the love of children and not for the wantonness of lust.
Therefore, O humans, weep and howl to your God, Whom you so, often despise in your sinning, when you sow your seed in the worst fornication and thereby become not only fornicators but murderers; for you cast aside the mirror of God and sate your lust at will. Therefore the Devil always incites you to this work, knowing that you desire your lustfulness more than the joy of children. Hear, then, you who are among the towers of the Church! In your fornication do not accuse Me, but consider yourselves; for when you despise Me and run to the Devil you do unlawful things, and therefore you do not wish to be chaste; as My servant Hosea says, speaking of the corrupted people:

23. Hosea on this subject

"They will not set their thoughts to return to their God; for the spirit of fornication is in the midst of them, and they have not known God" [Hosea 5:4]. Which is to say: Evil people who do not know God hide the countenance of their heart, and do not do the various things that would bring it back to true brightness; that is, they do not see with clear eyes the things that are of God, but nurture evil in themselves; for, by the Devil's persuasion, the breath of wanton impurity weakens the virile strength they should have, and they cannot put good faith in God because the Devil turns them away from the life of felicity.

24. Commendation of charity

But now I will turn to My most loving sheep who are securely placed in My heart, the seed of chastity. Virginity was made by Me, for My Son was born of a virgin. And therefore virginity is the most beautiful fruit of all the fruits of the valleys, and the greatest of all the persons in the palace of the unfailing King; for it was not subject to the precept of the law, since it brought My Only-Begotten into the world. Therefore, listen, all those who wish to follow My Son, in the innocence of free chastity or in the solitude of mourning widowhood: Virginity unspotted from the beginning is nobler than widowhood oppressed under the yoke of a husband, even though widowhood, after the grief of the loss of a husband, would imitate virginity.
For My Son bore many pains in His body and underwent the death of the cross; therefore you also, in His love, will suffer much anguish when you conquer in yourselves what was sown in the lust of sin by the taste of the fruit. But though you will endure in your seed flowing rivulets from the conflagration of lust, since you cannot be so chaste as to prevent human weakness from appearing in you secretly, you should in that labor imitate the Passion of My Son and resist yourselves; that is, extinguish within yourselves the burning flame of lust and other things of this world, casting out anger, pride, wantonness and other vices of that son and attaining this victory by a great struggle. These battles are to Me full of great beauty and much fruit, brighter than the sun and sweeter than the love of spices; for when you trample under foot the burning lust within you, you imitate My Only-Begotten in His pains. And when you persevere in this, you will attain much glory for it in the celestial kingdom.
O sweetest flowers! My angels marvel at your struggle, for you escape from death, so as not to be polluted by the poisonous mud of the world; you have a carnal body, but you tread it under foot, and so you will be glorious in their company since you will appear unpolluted in their likeness. Therefore rejoice that you thus persevere, for I am with you when you receive Me faithfully and with joy in your hearts receive My voice; as I show in a secret vision of My beloved John, saying:

25. John on this subject

"Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any shall hear My voice and open the door, I will come in to him and will sup with him, and he with Me" [Apocalypse 3:10]. That is to say: O you who faithfully love Me, your Savior, look and see how, wishing to aid you, I wait at the tabernacle of your heart, seeing what you have in the self-knowledge of your conscience, and with the breath of your memory I knock at your spirit, that its goodwill may open and grant admission. And if then the faithful heart, which fears Me, hears My knock, I join Myself to him, embracing him and taking with him the unfailing food, since he offers Me that sweet taste, himself, in his good works; therefore he too shall have that food of life in Me, because he loves what brings life to those who desire justice.

26. After Adam was expelled, God closed Paradise in

But, as you see, after Adam and Eve were expelled from Paradise, a luminous splendor surrounded that region, since when they went forth from the place of delight because of their transgression, the Power of the Divine Majesty took away every stain of contagion from the place and fortified it with His Glory, so that from then on it would be touched by no encroachment; which also showed that the transgression which had taken place there would one day be abolished by His clemency and mercy.

27. Creation opposed Man because he rebelled against God

And so all the elements of the world, which before had existed in great calm, were turned to the greatest agitation and displayed horrible terrors, because when Man chose disobedience, rebelling against God and forsaking tranquillity for disquiet, that Creation, which had been created for the service of humanity, turned against humans in great and various ways so that Man, having lowered himself, might be held in check by it. What does this mean? That Man showed himself a rebel against God in the place of delights, and therefore that Creation, which had been subjected to him in service, now opposed itself to him.

28. On the delightfulness of Paradise

But Paradise is the place of delight, which blooms with the freshness of flowers and grass and the charms of spices, full of fine odors and dowered with the joy of blessed souls, giving invigorating moisture to the dry ground; it supplies strong force to the earth, as the soul gives strength to the body, for Paradise is not darkened by shadow or the perdition of sinners.

29. Why God made Man such that he could sin

Therefore listen and understand me, you who say in your hearts, "What are these things and why?" Oh, why are you so foolish in your hearts, you who have been made in the image and likeness of God? How can such great glory and honor, which is given to you, exist without testing, as if it were an empty case of nothing? Gold must be tested in the fire, and precious stones, to smooth them, must be polished, and all things of this kind must be diligently scrutinized. Hence, O foolish humans, how can that which was made in the image and likeness of God exist without testing? For Man must be examined more than any other creature, and therefore he must be tested through every other creature. How?
Spirit is to be tested by spirit, flesh by flesh, earth by water, fire by cold, fight by resistance, good by evil, beauty by deformity, poverty by riches, sweetness by bitterness, health by sickness, long by short, hard by soft, height by depth, light by darkness, life by death, Paradise by punishments, the Heavenly Kingdom by Gehenna, earthly things by earthly things and heavenly things by heavenly things. Hence Man is tested by every creature, in Paradise, on earth and in Hell; and then he is placed in Heaven. You see clearly only a few things among many that are hidden from your eyes. So why do you deride what is right, plain and just, and good among all good things in the sight of God? Why do you think these things unjust? God is just, but the human race is unjust in transgressing God's precepts when it claims to be wiser than God.

30. Man should not examine the highest things since he cannot the lowest ones

Now tell me, O human: What do you think you were when you were not yet in soul and body? Truly you do not know how you were created. But now, O human, you wish to investigate Heaven and earth, and to judge of their justice in God's disposition, and to know the highest things though you are not able to examine the lowest; for you do not know how you live in the body, or how you may be divested of the body. He Who created you in the first human foresaw all these things; but that same most gentle Father sent His Only-Begotten to die for the people, to deliver humanity from the power of the Devil.

31. Man now shines brighter in Heaven than before

And thus Man, having been delivered, shines in God, and God in Man; Man, having community in God, has in Heaven more radiant brightness than he had before. This would not have been so if the Son of God had not put on flesh, for if Man had remained in Paradise, the Son of God would not have suffered on the cross. But when Man was deceived by the wily serpent, God was touched by true mercy and ordained that His Only-Begotten would become incarnate in the most pure Virgin. And thus after Man's ruin many shining virtues were lifted up in Heaven, like humility, the queen of virtues, which flowered in the virgin birth, and other virtues, which lead God's elect to the heavenly places. For when a field with great labor is cultivated, it brings forth much fruit, and the same is shown in the human race, for after humanity's ruin many virtues arose to raise it up again. But you, O humans, oppressed by the heaviness of the flesh, do not see that great glory God's full justice has prepared for you, without stain or unworthiness, so that no one can throw it down. For before the structure of the world was made, God in true justice had foreseen all these things. Therefore, O human, consider this comparison:

32. Man's condition symbolized by a garden, a sheep and a pearl

The master who seeks to set out a garden without being wearied first chooses a suitable site, and then, deciding on a place for each planting, reflects on the fruit of good trees and the utility, taste, fragrance and high esteem of various spices. And so this master, if he is a great philosopher and expert contriver, lays out each of the plantings where he sees that it will be most useful; and then he thinks of enclosing it with great walls, so that none of his enemies can destroy his planting. Then he appoints his experts, who know how to water the garden and who collect its fruit and make from it many fragrant things. Therefore consider well, O human: If that master foresaw that his garden, bringing forth no fruit or any kind of use, was to be destroyed, why would so great a philosopher and contriver have made, planted, watered and fortified it so eagerly and with so much labor?
Hear, therefore, and understand! God, Who is the Sun of Justice, made His splendor rise over the filth that is Man's wickedness; and that splendor shone with great brightness, as that filth stank exceedingly. The sun gleamed forth in its brightness, and the filth putrefied in its foulness; and therefore the sun was embraced by those beholding it with much greater love than if the filth had not been there opposite it. But as foul as the filth is compared to the sun, so evil is Man's wickedness compared to God's justice. Hence justice, being beautiful, must be loved, and iniquity, being foul, must be rejected.
Into this foulness fell a sheep belonging to the master who had planted this garden. But this sheep was separated from its master by its own consent, not by his negligence; afterward the master sought it again with great zeal and justice. Therefore the choir of angels shone with great honor, for the angels saw a human in Heaven. What does this mean?
When the innocent Lamb was suspended on the cross, the elements trembled, because the most noble Son of the Virgin was slain in the body by the hands of murderers; by His death the lost sheep was brought back to the pastures of life. For the ancient persecutor saw that because of the blood of (he innocent Lamb, which the Lamb had poured out in remission of the sins of humanity, he must lose that sheep, and only then first recognized who that Lamb was; previously he had not been able to understand how the Celestial Bread, without a man's semen and without any desire for sin, had become incarnate of the Virgin by the overshadowing of the Holy Spirit.
For that persecutor, when first he was created, raised himself up in the haughtiness of pride, throwing himself into death and expelling Man from (he glory of Paradise; but God did not will to resist him by His power, but conquered him by humility through His Son. And because Lucifer derided God's justice, by God's just judgment he was unable to know the incarnation of God's Only-Begotten. For by this hidden decision the lost sheep was brought back to life. Therefore, O rebellious humans, why are you so hardhearted? God did not will to forsake humanity, but sent His Son for its salvation; thus God crushed the head of pride in the ancient serpent. For when Man was snatched from death, Hell opened its gates, and Satan cried, "Alas, alas, who will help me?" And the Devil's whole band was torn with great agitation, marvelling that there was a power so great they and their prince could not resist it, since they saw the souls of the faithful being taken away from them. Thus Man was lifted up above the heavens because through (he Son of God God appeared in Man and Man in God. Likewise, that master who lost the sheep but brought it so gloriously back to life had, like (hat sheep, a precious pearl that slipped from him and fell into the mud. But he, not allowing it to lie in the dirt, mercifully drew it forth and purified it of (he filth in which it had lain, as gold is purified in the furnace, and restored it to its former honor with even greater glory. For God created Man, but the latter at the Devil's instigation fell into death, from which the Son of God saved him by His blood and brought him gloriously to the glory of Heaven. And how? By humility and charity.

33. Commendation of humility and charity above all other virtues

For humility caused the Son of God to be born of the Virgin, in whom was found humility, not eager embraces or beauty of flesh or earthly riches or gold ornaments or earthly honors. But the Son of God lay in a manger, because His Mother was a poor maiden. Humility always groans, weeps and destroys all offenses, for this is its work. So let anyone who wishes to conquer the Devil arm himself with humility, since Lucifer fervently flees it and hides in its presence like a snake in a hole; for wherever it finds him, it quickly snaps him like a fragile thread.
And charity took the Only-Begotten of God, who was in the bosom of the Father in Heaven, and placed Him in the womb of a mother on earth, for it does not spurn sinners or publicans but seeks to save all. Therefore it often brings forth a fountain of tears from the eyes of the faithful, thus softening hardness of heart. In this, humility and charity are brighter than the other virtues, since humility and charity are like a soul and body that possess stronger powers than the other powers of soul and bodily members. How? Humility is like the soul and charity like the body, and they cannot be separated from each other but work together, just as soul and body cannot be disjoined but work together as long as a person lives in the body. And as the various members of the body are subject, according to their powers, to the soul and to the body, so also the other virtues cooperate, according to their justice, with humility and charity. And therefore, O humans, for the glory of God and for your salvation, pursue humility and charity; armed with them, you shall not fear the Devil's snares but shall have everlasting life.
Therefore whoever has knowledge in the Holy Spirit and wings of faith, let this one not ignore My admonition, but taste it, embrace it and receive it in his soul.



The Redeemer

And I, a person not glowing with the strength of strong lions or taught by their inspiration, but a tender and fragile rib imbued with a mystical breath, saw a blazing fire, incomprehensible, inextinguishable, wholly living and wholly Life, with a flame in it the color of the sky, which burned ardently with a gentle breath, and which was as inseparably within the blazing fire as the viscera are within a human being. And I saw that the flame sparked and blazed up. And behold! The atmosphere suddenly rose up in a dark sphere of great magnitude, and that flame hovered over it and gave it one blow after another, which struck sparks from it, until that atmosphere was perfected and so Heaven and earth stood fully formed and resplendent. Then the some flame was in that fire, and that burning extended itself to a little clod of mud which lay at the bottom of the atmosphere, and warmed it so that it was made flesh and blood, and blew upon it until it rose up a living human. When this was done, the blazing fire, by means of that flame which burned ardently with a gentle breath, offered to the human a white flower, which hung in that flame as dew hangs on the grass . Its scent came to the human's nostrils, but he did not taste it with his mouth or touch it with his hands, and thus he turned away and fell into the thickest darkness, out of which he could not pull himself. And that darkness grew and expanded more and more in the atmosphere. But then three great stars, crowding together in their brilliance, appeared in the darkness, and then many others, both small and large, shining with great splendor, and then a gigantic star, radiant with wonderful brightness, which shot its rays toward the flame. And in the earth too appeared a radiance like the down, into which the flame was miraculously absorbed without being separated from the blazing fire. And thus in the radiance of that dawn the Supreme Will was enkindled.

And as I was trying to ponder this--enkindling of the Will more carefully, I was stopped by a secret seal on this vision, and I heard the voice from on high saying to me, "You may not see anything further regarding this mystery unless it is granted you by a miracle of faith."
And I saw a serene Man coming forth from this radiant dawn, Who poured out His brightness into the darkness; and it drove Him back with great force, so that He poured out the redness of blood and the whiteness of pallor into it, and struck the darkness such a strong blow that the person who was lying in it was touched by Him, took on a shining appearance and walked out of it upright. And so the serene Man Who had come out of that dawn shone more brightly than human tongue can tell, and made His way into the greatest height of inestimable glory, where He radiated in the plenitude of wonderful fruitfulness and fragrance. And I heard the voice saying to me from the aforementioned living fire: "O you who are wretched earth and, as a woman, untaught in all learning of earthly teaches and unable to read literature with philosophical understanding, you are nonetheless touched by My light, which kindles in you an inner fire like a burning sun; cry out and relate and write these My mysteries that you see and hear in mystical visions. So do not be timid, but say these things you understand in the Spirit as I speak them through you; so that these who should have shown My people righteousness, but who in their perversity refuse to speak openly of the justice they know, unwilling to abstain from the evil desires that cling to them like their masters and make them fly from the face of the Lord and blush to speak the truth, may be ashamed. Therefore, O diffident mind, who are taught inwardly by mystical inspiration, though because of Eve's transgression you are trodden on by the masculine sex, speak of that fiery work this sure vision has shown you."
The Living God, then, Who created all things through His Word, by the Word's Incarnation brought back the miserable human who had sunk himself in darkness to certain salvation. What does this mean?

1. On God's omnipotence

This blazing fire that you see symbolizes the Omnipotent and Living God, Who in His most glorious serenity was never darkened by any iniquity; incomprehensible, because He cannot be divided by any division or known as He is by any part of any of His creatures' knowledge; inextinguishable, because He is that Fullness that no limit ever touched; wholly living, for there is nothing that is hidden from Him or that He does not know; and wholly Life, for everything that lives takes its life from Him, as Job shows, inspired by Me, when he says:

2 .Words of Job on this subject

"Who is ignorant that the hand of the Lord has made all these things? In His hand is the soul of every living thing and the spirit of all human flesh" [Job 12:9-10]. What does this mean? No creature is so dull of nature as not to know what changes in the things that make it fruitful cause it to attain its full growth. The sky holds light, light air, and air the birds; the earth nourishes plants, plants fruit and fruit animals; which all testify that they were put there by a strong hand, the supreme power of the Ruler of All, Who in His strength has provided so for them all that nothing is lacking to them for their use. And in the omnipotence of the same Maker is the motion of all living things that seek the earth for earthly things like the animals and are not inspired by God with reason, as well as the awakening of those who dwell in human flesh and have reason, discernment and wisdom. How?
The soul goes about in earthly affairs, laboring through many changes as fleshly behavior demands. But the spirit raises itself in two ways: sighing, groaning and desiring God; and choosing among options in various matters as if by some rule, for the soul has discernment in reason. Hence Man contains in himself the likeness of heaven and earth. In what way? He has a circle, which contains his clarity, breath and reason, as the sky has its lights, air and birds; and he has a receptacle containing humidity, germination and birth, as the earth contains fertility, fruition and animals. What is this? O human, you are wholly in every creature, and you forget your Creator; you are subject to Him as was ordained, and you go against His commands?

3. That the Word was and is indivisibly and eternally in the Father

You see that that fire has a flame in it the color of the sky, which burns ardently with a gentle breath, and which is as inseparably within the blazing fire as the viscera are within a human being; which is to say that before any creatures were made the Infinite Word was indivisibly in the Father; Which in course of time was to become incarnate in the ardor of charity, miraculously and without the stain or weight of sin, by the Holy Spirit's sweet freshness in the dawn of blessed virginity. But after He assumed flesh, the Word also remained inseparably in the Father; for as a person does not exist without the vital movements within his viscera, so the only Word of the Father could in no way be separated from Him.

4. Why the Son of God is called the Word

And why is He called the Word? Because, just as a word of command uttered by an instructor among local and transitory human dust is understood by people who know and foresee the reason he gave it, so also the power of the Father is known among the creatures of the world, who perceive and understand in Him the source of their creation, through the Word Who is independent of place and imperishable in His inextinguishable eternal life; and as the power and honor of a human being are known by his official words, so the holiness and goodness of the Father shines through the Supreme Word.

5. By the power of the Word of God every creature was raised up

And you see that the flame sparks and blazes up. This is to say that when every creature was raised through Him, the Word of God showed His power like a flash of flame; and when He became incarnate in the dawn and purity of virginity, it was as if He blazed up, so that from Him trickled every virtue of the knowledge of God, and Man lived again in the salvation of his soul.

6. God's incomprehensible power made the world and the different species

And the atmasphere suddenly rises up in a dark sphere of great magnitude. This is the material of Creation while still formless and imperfect, not yet full of creatures; it is a sphere, for it is under the incomprehensible power of God, which is never absent from it, and by the Supernal Will it rises up in God's great power in the twinkling of an eye. And that flame hovers over it like a workman and gives it one blow after another, which strike sparks from it, until that atmosphere is perfected and so Heaven and earth stand fully formed and resplendent. For the Supernal Word, Who excels every creature, showed that they all are subject to Him and draw their strength from His power, when He brought forth from the universe the different kinds of creatures, shining in their miraculous awakening, as a smith makes forms out of bronze; until each creature was radiant with the loveliness of perfection, beautiful in the fullness of their arrangement in higher and lower ranks, the higher made radiant by the lower and the lower by the higher.

7. After the other creatures Man was created from earthly mud

But then the same flame that is in that fire and that burning extends itself to a little clod of mud, which lies at the bottom of the atmosphere; this is to say that after the other creatures were created, the Word of God, in the strong will of the Father and supernal love, considered the poor fragile matter from which the weak frailty of the human race, both bad and good, was to be produced, now lying in heavy unconsciousness and not yet roused by the breath of life; and warms it so that it is made flesh and blood, that is, poured fresh warmth into it, for the earth is the fleshly material of humans, and nourished it with moisture, as a mother gives milk to her children; and blows upon it until it rises up a living human, for He aroused it by supernal power and miraculously raised up a human being with intelligence of body and mind.

8. Adam accepted obedience, but by the Devil's counsel did not obey

When this is done, the blazing fire, by means of that flame which burns ardently with a gentle breath, offers to the human a white flower, which hangs in that flame as dew hangs on the grass. For, after Adam was created, the Father in His lucid serenity gave to Adam through His Word in the Holy Spirit the sweet precept of obedience, which in fresh "fruitfulness hung upon the Word; for the sweet odor of sanctity trickled from the Father in the Holy Spirit through the Word and brought forth fruit in greatest abundance, as the dew falling on the grass makes it grow. Its scent comes to the human's nostrils, but he does not taste it with his mouth or touch it with his hands; for he tried to know the wisdom of the Law with his intelligence, as if with his nose, but did not perfectly digest it by putting it in his mouth, or fulfil it in full blessedness by the work of his hands. And thus he turns away and falls into the thickest darkness, out of which he cannot pull himself. For, by the Devil's counsel, he turned his back on the divine command and sank into the gaping mouth of death, so that he did not seek God either by faith or by works; and therefore, weighed down by sin, he could not rise to true knowledge of God, until He came Who obeyed His Father sinlessly and fully.
And that darkness grows and expands more and more in the atmosphere; for the power of death in the world was constantly increased by the spread of wickedness, and human knowledge entangled itself in many vices in the horror of bursting and stinking sin.

9. Abraham and Isaac and J acob and the other prophets drove back the darkness

But then three great stars, crowding together in their brilliance, appear in the darkness, and then many others, both small and large, shining with great splendor. These are the three great luminaries Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, symbolizing the Heavenly Trinity, embracing one another both by their works of faith and by their relationship in the flesh, and by their signs driving back the darkness in the world; and, following them, the many other prophets both minor and major, radiant with many wanders.

10. The prophet John, glittering with miracles, foretold the Son of God

And then a gigantic star appears, radiant with wonderful brightness, which shoots its rays toward the flame. This is the greatest prophet, John the Baptist, who glittered with miracles in his faithful and serene deeds, and pointed out by their means the true Word, the true Son of God; for he did not yield to wickedness, but vigorously and forcefully cast it out by works of justice.

11. At the Incarnation of the Word of God the great counsel was seen

And in the earth too appears a radiance like the dawn, into which the flame is miraculously absorbed, without being separated from the blazing fire. This is to say that God set a great splendor of light in the place where He would bring forth His Word and, fully willing it, sent Him there, yet not so as to be divided from Him; but He gave that profitable fruit and brought Him forth as a great fountain, so that every faithful throat could drink and never more be dry. And thus in the radiance of that dawn the Supreme Will is enkindled; for in the bright and roseate serenity was seen the fruitfulness of the great and venerable counsel, so that all the forerunners marvelled at it with bright joy.

12. Humans must not scrutinize God's secrets beyond what He wishes to show

But you, O human, who seek in the way of humans to know more fully the loftiness of this counsel, are opposed by a concealing barrier; for you must not search into the secrets of God beyond those things the Divine Majesty wills to be revealed for love of those who trust in Him.

13. Christ by His death brought back His elect to their inheritance

And you see a serene Man coming forth from this radiant dawn, Who pours out His brightness into the darkness; and it drives Him back with great force, so that He pours out the redness of blood and the whiteness of pallor into it, and strikes the darkness such a strong blow that the person who is lying in it is touched by Him, takes on a shining appearance and walks out of it upright. This is the Word of God, imperishably incarnate in the purity of unstained virginity and born without pain, and yet not separated from the Father. How? While the Son of God was being born in the world from a mother, He was still in Heaven in the Father; and at this the angels suddenly trembled and sang the sweetest praises of rejoicing. And, living in the world without stain of sin, He sent out into the darkness of unbelief His clear and blessed teachings and salvation; but, rejected by the unbelieving people and led to His Passion, He poured out His beautiful blood and knew in His body the darkness of death. And thus conquering the Devil, he delivered from Hell his elect, who were held prostrate there, and by His redeeming touch brought them back to the inheritance they had last in Adam. As they were returning to their inheritance timbrels and harps and all kinds of music burst forth, because Man, Who had lain in perdition but now Stood upright in blessedness, had been freed by heavenly power and escaped from death, as through My servant Hosea I have stated thus:

14. Words of Hosea on this subject

"The iniquity of Ephraim is bound up; his sin is hidden. The sorrows of a woman in labor shall come upon him; he is an unwise son; for now he shall not stand in the contrition of the sons. I will deliver them out of the hand of death, from death I will redeem them. I will be your death, O Death; I will be your destruction, O Hell!" [Hosea 13:11-14]. What does this mean? The Devil's perverse iniquity is bound by heavy fetters, since he does not deserve that God's zeal should release him; for he has never rightfully acknowledged Him as do those Who faithfully fear Him. For the Devil always raises himself against God, saying, "I am God!"; and he always goes astray over the Blessed One of the Lord, opposing the name of Christians because of Him. Thus his malice is so ingrained that his sin, cruelly committed in filthy pride, can never deserve by any reparation to be covered by salvation. Therefore he will be in perpetual pain, as a Woman in labor is afflicted by despair when she doubts she can survive the opening of her womb. For this misery will remain with him, that he is forsaken by beatitude because the wisdom of the sons flees from him, and he does not come to himself, as that man came to himself Who returned to his father from his wickedness.
Thus he will never stand trusting in that action by which the children of salvation in the Heavenly Son crush death in its hardened iniquity, which the cunning serpent brought forth when he suggested deceit to the guileless first man. But since those children despise the poison of that unclean advice and look to their salvation, I will deliver them from slavery to idols; for idols are by their deceptiveness in the power of perdition, and for them the unfaithful forsake the honor of their Creator, entangling themselves in the Devil's snare and doing his works at his will.
And so I will redeem the souls of those who love and worship Me, the Holy and the Just, from the pain of Hell; for no one can be released from the Devil's fetters, which bind him with bitterest death by his transgression of God's precepts, except by the redemption of Him Who will redeem His elect with His own blood. This is how I will slay you, O Death, with utter destruction, for I will take from you the thing you think to live by, and you will be called a useless corpse; at the height of your strength you will lie prostrate, as a corpse without the soul lies prostrate awaiting decay. For when the happy souls are mercifully raised up (O celestial bliss through the new Man, Who will not be a party to poisonous deception, the fountain of living water will drown you. Thus also to your confusion I will be your destruction, O Hell!, when My strong power will take from you your ill-gotten spoils, so that you too, justly despoiled, will never again appear whole and laden with riches, but will lie prostrate and confounded forever, bearing wounds and decay.

15. The Son of God rising from the dead showed Man the way from death to life

And, as you see, the serene Man Who has come out of that dawn shines more brightly than human tongue can tell, which shows that the noble body of the Son of God, born of the sweet Virgin and three days in the tomb (to confirm that there are three Persons in one Divinity}, was touched by the glory of the Father, received the Spirit and rose again to serene immortality, which no one can explain by thought or word. And the Father showed Him with His open wounds to the celestial choirs, saying, "This is My beloved Son, Whom I sent to die for the people." And so joy unmeasurable by the human mind arose in them, for criminal forgetfulness of God was brought low, and human reason, which had lain prostrate under the Devil's persuasion, was uplifted to the knowledge of God; for the way to truth was shown to Man by the Supreme Beatitude, and in it he was led from death to life.

16. The risen Christ appeared frequently to His disciples

But just as the children of Israel, after being liberated from Egypt, wandered in the desert for forty years before coming into the land flowing with milk and honey, so too the Son of God, rising from the dead, showed Himself for forty days to His disciples and the blessed women who wept and had a great desire to see Him. This He did to encourage them, lest they should waver in faith and say, "We did not see Him, so we cannot believe that He is our salvation!" He showed Himself to them frequently, to strengthen them that they might not fall.

17. When Christ ascended to the Father His Bride was given many ornaments

And He makes His way into the greatest height of inestimable glory, where he radiates in the plenitude of wonderful fruitfulness and fragrance. This is to say that the Son of God ascended to the Father , Who with the Son and the Holy Spirit is the height of lofty and excelling joy and gladness unspeakable; where that same Son gloriously appears to His faithful in the abundance of sanctity and blessedness, so that they believe with pure and simple hearts that He is true God and Man. And then indeed the new Bride of the Lamb was set up with many ornaments, for she had to be ornamented with every kind of virtue for the mighty struggle of all the faithful people, who are to fight against the crafty serpent.
But let the one who sees with watchful eyes and hears with attentive ears welcome with a kiss My mystical words, which proceed from Me Who am life.


Christ's Sacrifice and the Church

And after these things I saw the Son of God hanging on the cross, and the aforementioned image of a woman coming forth like a bright radiance from the ancient counsel. By divine power she was led to Him, and raised herself upward so that she was sprinkled by the blood from His side; and thus, by the will of the Heavenly Father, she was joined with Him in happy betrothal and nobly dowered with His body and blood.

And I heard the voice from Heaven saying to Him: "May she, O Son, be your Bride for the restoration of My people; may she be a mother to them, regenerating souls through the salvation of the Spirit and water."
And as that image grew in strength, I saw an altar, which she frequently approached, and there each time looked devotedly at her dowry and modestly showed it to the Heavenly Father and His angels. Hence when a priest clad in sacred vestments approached that altar to celebrate the divine mysteries, I saw that a great calm light was brought to it from Heaven by angels and shone around the altar until the sacred rite was ended and the priest had withdrawn from it. And when the Gospel of peace had been recited and the offering to be consecrated had been placed upon the altar, and the priest sang the praise of Almighty God, "Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Hosts," which began the mystery of the sacred rites, Heaven was suddenly opened and a fiery and inestimable brilliance descended over that offering and irradiated it completely with light, as the sun illumines anything its rays shine through. And, thus illuminating it, the brilliance bore it on high into the secret places of Heaven and then replaced it on the altar, as a person draws in a breath and lets it out again; and thus the offering was made true flesh and true blood, although in human sight it looked like bread and wine.
And while I looked at these things, suddenly there appeared before my eyes as if in a mirror the symbols of the Nativity, Passion and burial, Resurrection and Ascension of our Savior, God's Only-Begotten, as they had happened to the Son of God while He was on earth. But when the priest sang the song of the innocent Lamb, "O Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world;" and prepared to take the Holy Communion himself, the fiery brilliance withdrew into Heaven; and as it closed I heard the voice from thence saying, "Eat and drink the body and blood of My Son to wipe out Eve's transgression, so that you may be restored to the noble inheritance." And as other people approached the priest to receive the sacrament, I noticed five modes of being in them. For some were bright of body and fiery of soul, and others seemed pale of body and shadowed of soul; some were hairy of body and seemed dirty in soul, because it was pervaded with unclean human pollution; others were surrounded in body by sharp thorns and leprous of soul; and others appeared bloody of body and foul as a decayed corpse in soul. And all these received the same sacraments; and as they did, some were bathed in fiery brilliance, but the others were overshadowed by a dark cloud.
And when these mysteries were finished, as the priest withdrew from the altar the calm light from Heaven, which, as said, had shone round the whole altar, was drawn up again into the secret places of Heaven. And again I heard the voice from the supernal heavens, saying to me:

1. The Church was joined to Christ in His Passion and dowered with His blood

When Jesus Christ, the true Son of God, hung on the tree of His Passion, the Church, joined to Him in the secret mysteries of Heaven, was dowered with His crimson blood; as she herself shows when she often, approaches the altar and reclaims her wedding gift, carefully noting with what degree of devotion her children receive it when they come to the divine mysteries. Therefore you see the Son of God hanging on the cross, and the aforementioned image of a woman coming forth like a bright radiance from the ancient counsel; and by divine power she is led to Him. For when the innocent Lamb was lifted up on the altar of the cross for human salvation, the Church suddenly appeared in Heaven by a profound mystery, in purity of faith and all the other virtues; and by the Supreme Majesty she was joined to the Only-Begotten of God. What does this mean? That when blood flowed from the wounded side of My Son, at once salvation of souls came into being; for the glory from which the Devil and his followers were driven out was given to humanity when My Only-Begotten suffered temporal death on the cross, despoiled Hell and led the faithful souls to Heaven. Therefore, in His disciples and their sincere followers faith began to increase and strengthen, so that they became heirs of the celestial Kingdom. Hence that image raises herself upward so that she is sprinkled by the blood from His side; and thus, by the will of the Heavenly Father, she is joined with Him in happy betrothal. For when the strength of the Passion of the Son of God flows burningly forth and rises to the height of the celestial mysteries, as the perfume of spices diffuses itself upward, the Church, fortified by that strength in the pure heirs of the eternal Kingdom, is faithfully joined by the high Father's decision to the Only-Begotten of God. How? As a bride, subjected to her bridegroom in her offering of subordination and obedience, receives from him a gift of fertility and a pact of love for procreating children, and educates them as to their inheritance. So too the Church, joined to the Son of God in the exercise of humility and charity, receives from Him the regeneration of the Spirit and water to save souls and restore life, and sends those souls to Heaven.
Therefore she is nobly dowered with His body and blood; for the Only-Begotten of God conferred His body and blood in surpassing glory on His faithful, who are the Church and her children, that through Him they may have life in the celestial city. How?

2. God conquered the ancient serpent by His Son's humility, not His power

By giving His body and blood to sanctify those who believe; and so the Heavenly Father delivered Him up to the Passion for the redemption of the peoples and conquered the ancient serpent through Him in humility and justice. He did not want His Son to conquer by His power and strength, for God is just and does not will iniquity, as the Psalmist declares, saying:

3. Words of the Psalmist

"Blessed is the man who has not walked in the counsel of the ungodly, or stood in the way of sinners, or sat in the seat of the pernicious" [Psalm 1:1]. What does this mean?
God is the Father of all the bliss and happiness of His creatures and shows many and various signs in them; and the Incarnation of His Son dripped with the sweet taste of delight, for in Him the heavenly virtues built many mansions through which humanity can return to the supernal Kingdom, which is darkened by no shadow of death. And thus the strongest powers of virtue were shown to be in the Heavenly Father, for it was He through His Only-Begotten who slew death and broke Hell; and on the last day He will make the world anew and better.
Therefore, He has not, through any wavering of His heart, wandered away into the paths of the evil spirits, who forsook the truth and seized on the lie. How? They wanted to use the lie to divide the truth. How? By trying to overthrow the Ancient of Days, Who was before days and hours began; and by yearning to make a partner for Him of the ancient serpent, who before time began was not. But that could not and should not be, for there is one God. And therefore the Devil is a liar, for he withdrew from God and forsook life to find death. And so, indeed, God did not stand in the path that sinners walk; He condemned Adam's choice and did not love his sin, but when he was seduced by the Devil He drove him from Paradise. And He did not reign in any seat of wicked power, as does the whole human race, which is bound up with death and sits in its shadow because it arrogantly deserted


blood shall groan in that person because the flesh and blood of My Son have been carelessly treated by that person, as the earth quaked and people were shaken by fear when My Son gave up His spirit on the cross.

60. The mystical secrets of the Lord's body and blood must not be looked into

But if you, O human, say to yourself in your vacillating heart, "How did the oblation on the altar become the body and blood of God's Son?" I will answer you: Why, O human, do you ask this, and for what purpose do you inquire about it? Do I require you to know it? Why do you peer into My secrets about the body and blood of My Son? You should not seek out these things, but only keep them diligently and accept them in fear and veneration. Do not pause at this mystery any longer, for you must not tempt Me so rashly. What are these things to you? Only seek after Me by sure faith. For when I look into all your faith, I do not ask you to know what is the nature of the body and blood of My Son, or how this mystery is consecrated on the altar. And who asks you, O human, to stand in fire and not feel its burning? No one. So do not rashly peer into My secrets, lest you be wounded thereby. But if in your devout mind you wish to seek them, do so in diligent prayer and weeping and fasting, as your early Fathers certainly sought and often found them. And when you have thus sought and found, you will give what is left to the Holy Spirit.
But let those who approach those sacraments come not by devious paths but by the right way, lest they be cast out from them and suffer ruin in soul. How?

61. Churchmen who go in by wrong ways imitate the Devil, Baal and crucifiers

The evil deceiver who wrongly usurps the chair of the episcopal office without being elected or properly anointed, and the wicked robber who expels his pastor by the whispers of his henchmen and violently invades his throne, will either undergo grave expiation by their own will or incur serious condemnation by My wrath. For they are in the worst possible state of bitterness, imitating the one who wanted the highest honor for himself and was cast out of glorious happiness into death, and following Baal, who so deluded himself that he wrongly named himself a god and was given over to destruction. And if in their lying and presumptuous wickedness they pretend to confer My holy orders, those who receive from them ordure rather than orders are accounted in My sight no more than those who are jestingly appointed by children in their games to be laughed at by people. As this kind of thing is nonsense among people, so what these intruders pretend to do in their deceit is mockery to Me.
Thus their edifice is wicked and cannot stand, for it is a void. And if they appeared to set up anything in My temple in holy orders, it must be abolished, for it has no righteousness and is thus worthless. Let them, therefore, turn back from their temerity, lest they share the punishment of him who sought more than he should have and was thrown from the summit into the abyss. And the butcher who insanely approaches My altar without the anointing of the priestly office, as if I were as great an impostor as he is a jester, and rashly touches the table consecrated to My name to offer the sacred oblation without having the qualifications, does not fear to wound My Son with dire torment. How? As the unbeliever assails God with his incredulity, and the madman in his insanity runs into burning fire, so this one, not knowing that I am God or feeling My burning fire, casts off his fear of Me and does not love My mercy; but, with unanointed lips, he dismembers those words My Only-Begotten gave His bride when He dowered her with His body and blood, and thus wounds My Son. And it will be said to this rash attacker: "Who touches My Son, so arrogant and unanointed?"
But he who thus approaches My altar and presumes to invoke My Son with the secret words tries to wound Him not because he can put him to any pain, but because he fearlessly and presumptuously touches Him. If he persists without penitence in this contempt, he will stand in the place of punishment among those who causelessly wounded My Son. Lest he feel these torments, then, let him adopt as his own the lamentation of affliction and never again presume to approach the ministry of My altar. And let those who hold some church office that involves serving under a priest never presume to usurp his ministry unjustly, for if they wrongfully claim that righteousness for themselves, they may justly be judged unformed and rough and rejected for the construction of the edifice of the Church. For I will that My ministers shall be pure in My sight, without deceit and without stain. How? They should be duly chosen to approach My altar, and once there they should serve Me without impurity. How?

62. Priests should observe chastity like the apostles

Let them not look to an earthly marriage, for they have chosen a spiritual one. How? By entering upon My service. And if any of them suffers from the burning lust of the flesh, let him subdue his body with abstinence and fasting and chastise himself with cold and scourging. And if after all he defiles himself with a woman, let him fly from that contamination as from a burning fire or a deadly poison and cleanse his wounds with bitter penance; for I wish to be served in chastity. How? Because My Son was the height of chastity, and He represented in Himself all ecclesiastical ranks. How? Those that serve, proclaim, preach and offer. How? He touched service in His circumcision, proclaimed by His prophecies, preached Himself to humanity, and at last offered Himself as a living sacrifice on the altar of the cross. And He gave Himself as a burnt-offering in chastity; so let those who seek to offer a burnt-offering to Him on the altar imitate His chastity,
They must not only guard chastity in others but preserve it in themselves. How? As a priest should keep himself from contamination with a woman, let him also keep himself from himself; let him take care not to arouse defilement in himself by the touch of his hands, so that the clamor of lust may not make a sinful tumult within him, For the crime of Adam, which brought death to Man, aroused his senses to fornication; so let people restrain their flesh so as not to undergo a shameful death. How? My Son conquered death and gave them life; and since He assumed flesh in the integrity of virginal chastity, those who desire to serve Him ought also to be chaste, as is written in the divine command:

63. Words of Moses on this subject

"Be ready against the third day, and come not near your wives" [Exodus 19:15]. What does this mean? You who wish to serve God alone, be prepared with willing hearts for the day of His serenity, when the holy and ineffable Trinity will truly appear and show Its wonders in a great miracle, And if you wish to be worthy to draw near to Him, take care not to join in carnal unions of physical love, so as not to mingle your blood with blood that is deemed weaker. You, O My priests and other ministers, who fight under a spiritual name, beware of this, for the apostles to whom you have succeeded did not divide themselves between opposites or leave you such an example.

64. A priest should not have two marriages

For I do not want priests to have two unions, one of spiritual and one of carnal desire; the priest should be married to the justice of God, and treat it as his wife, with which to nourish and teach the rest of the people as a father brings up and teaches his children, How is it appropriate for a priest to maintain in the right proportions two different and opposing marriages? How? One carnal and the other spiritual:

65. How the Devil may be the priest of bad priests

The priest is the pastor and father of the people who have physical marriages; so if he has one to the same extent, who will be his priest? No other priest could be his superior, since all priests are ministers of a single office, except the Devil, who is appropriate as his priest because he has imitated the Devil in hiding poison under honey. How? As the Devil hides evil under good, so do such priests, who love their own dishonor better than chastity, try to hide a carnal union under a spiritual marriage, like poison under honey. But, since My Son is wholly chaste, those who touch His body and blood on the altar should also love chastity, as it is written:

66. Words of the Law on this subject

"A priest shall not take to wife a harlot or a base prostitute or a woman repudiated by her husband; for he is sacred to his God and offers the bread of God" [Leviticus 21:7-8]. What does this mean? Let one who is appointed to offer sacrifice to God not love the Devil, the common author of all filth and wickedness, or degrade his senses in such a way that when he tries to bear My yoke he will instead have to follow the will of his flesh, contrary to the justice of God and the examples of the ancient saints; lest he come by bad deeds to the impurity that was spurned by those ancient fathers, who knew it to proceed from the breath of the ancient serpent. Let him therefore leave this filth and become a lover of the righteousness of God; for he is sacred to God in holiness, and thus removed from carnal desire and the deeds that bring children into the world. And so, sober and unpolluted, he may offer that bread which is placed on the table of consecration for human salvation. What does this mean? That sacrifice, which is the life of the living and the refreshment of souls and the mirror of all the virtues, which shine in holy innocence through chastity, is free from every stain; and therefore those who offer the sacrifice should be free of filthy pollution and hold themselves back from feasts and drunkenness, jesting and laughing, and light and undisciplined behavior. Let them be held in the reverence that becomes successors of the ancient fathers who set them up and in the dignity proper to their honorable patrons. So let them not live doubly in two roles, and walk at the same time in the secular and the spiritual way; for it is hard to serve two masters at once, as My Son testifies in the Gospel, saying:

67. Words of the Gospel on this subject

"No one can serve two masters" [Matthew 6:24]. What does this mean? No one who is clothed in mortal flesh can offer two masters similar and equal service, because of the weakness of his senses and his body. What does this mean? He cannot serve at once the Lord of Righteousness and the lord of injustice. Why? Because righteousness casts out Injustice, and injustice assails righteousness. And so too a priest cannot at once and with equal devotion have the handmaid and the mistress, carnal marriage and spiritual companionship, for these two cannot exist side by side in perfection; for the carnal assails the spiritual, and the spiritual bears down the carnal. Thus My friend Paul, knowing this to be so, shows My will when he says:

68. Words of the Apostle on this subject

"A bishop therefore should be blameless, the husband of one wife" [1 Timothy 3:2]. What does this mean? One who is superior to others in a spiritual office must regulate his life so that no scandal of offense or reproach will be found in it. How? A priest should not have two roles and be at the same time the husband of a physical wife and of a spiritual spouse; but he should be the husband of one wife, namely the holy Church, which is one in My Son because she arose as one Church in Him. But though the Church is one, she has many husbands, entering into marriage with the priests of My Son who are daily in His service; yet she remains an intact virgin, for in her the faith is uncorrupted. And therefore Paul, My vessel, did not say she was the wife of one husband; for she is joined in marriage to all those priests who will arise in My Only-Begotten till the last day, when the immortal and unfailing nuptials will take place. And those who minister to the altar under the priests are also husbands of the same wife, as Paul said, offering My faithful doctrine to humanity:

69. Again Paul on this subject

"Let deacons be the husbands of one wife, who rule well their children and their houses" [1 Timothy 3:12]. What does this mean? Let those who render service to the priests and assist them be the husbands of one wife by faithful marriage. And who is this wife? The chaste Bride who can be injured by no corruption, as a woman is corrupted when she loses the flower and innocence of virginity, which she had at the beginning of her marriage when not yet corrupted by her husband. So let these bridegrooms live so faithfully with this righteous wife as to offer good examples of virtue to those regenerated by their help in the Spirit and water; let them live to labor in their office, which lies within the rampart of the Church, with faithful care, as a secular man devotes his care to maintaining his children and his house.
For My friend Paul displays that Bride to the priests and the other ministers of My altar so that they will choose her as their wife and not seek a carnal spouse. For neither Paul nor My Son's other disciples nor the rest of the Fathers who were their followers ever served as an example to them that they should take a carnal spouse and desert the spiritual wife, who had been their first choice. For a priest who is so stubborn in sin that he does the will of his flesh and illicitly takes a wife commits adultery; for he deserts his true wife, the Church, who was betrothed to him by his spiritual office, and as his will pleases unchastely marries another. It may be difficult for him to restrain his ardor, but let him restrain himself from these desires for the sake of heavenly love, as My Son shows in the Gospel, saying:

70. The three kinds of eunuchs
"There are eunuchs who were born so from their mothers' wombs; and there are eunuchs who were made so by other people; and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the Kingdom of Heaven's sake. He that can receive this, let him receive it" [Matthew 19:12]. What does this I mean? There are some men who have come forth from their mothers' wombs: with a bodily coldness or impotence, which makes them unable to have wives; and so they will receive no reward for this continence, except in suffering no penalties for the deeds of sin they did not do. And there are some men who are maimed in body by the will of others, and so cannot give pleasure to their flesh in the deeds of marriage; but they also do not deserve praise for containing themselves, for although they cannot do the burning deed they often burn with wickedness in their wills. And there are other men, those who take the spiritual way, who deprive themselves of what their bodies might easily accomplish, because they scorn and reject carnal bands for the glory of the celestial inheritance; and these shall have the greatest praise and the blessed reward.
And My priests and all who do service to My altar should imitate these last with all their hearts, that they may receive the crown of continence amid the rapture of celestial joy. So if a person can follow this example in his heart, desiring beatitude enough to conquer the body and cast out carnal desire, let him with ardent devotion repress his flesh and abandon the idea of carnal union; and so he will capture heavenly companionship.

71. He who cannot contain himself must not become a priest or minister

But he who cannot contain himself, and burns with carnal desire, should not become a priest or any other kind of minister for the sake of pride or avarice, lest he then fall into carnal delights and so sustain great damage. For those who approach My altar as ministers shall keep their bodies from contamination with women, and never for any reason enter into marriage, but voluntarily keep themselves chaste in My righteous service. If they are otherwise, they should avoid the holy service of My altar.

72. Why the primitive Church let married men become priests but does not now

It is true that certain people who had previously subjected themselves to the world were at one time allowed to minister. But these were people who had received the carnal yoke before and not after entering My service; and afterward they cast off this yoke, and then the Holy Spirit by His miracles brought about in them praise and celebration. This was granted as an unusual measure at the beginning of the Church's rise, because there were so few priests; but now the Church is adult and strong, and her ministers are many. This is like Church opinion on another prohibition of the same sort: At the beginning of the world it was granted to men to marry women most closely related to them, because there were so few people, whereas now that people are so multiplied it is forbidden. For the shapeless and rough stones customarily laid in the foundation of a building, and afterward the beautiful and well-formed stones are chosen for the walls. And so in the ChurchÕs infancy the priests who were available were installed in office, but now the whole complement can be obtained among the spiritual people who are fitted for the priesthood, not being occupied with the secular burden of earthly bonds. For it is not fitting that the father of a family, following the rules for earthly marriage, should be called as My messenger in the priesthood. Therefore hear this comparison:

73. Analogy of the king

A certain very powerful king gathered a small army and carefully observed its performance. Seeing that it was untrained in an army's business, he chose out of it some men of the common people whom he perceived as suitable for leadership, and set them over the army, for the offspring of the nobles had not yet matured. But later, when the army was larger and there were adult noblemen in it, the king set that army in order and promoted dukes and counts from the nobler classes to command it, as justice required. What does this mean?
The King of Heaven, Whose power is over all, started the Church by gathering a little army of believers. Scrutinizing it most closely, He saw that it was as yet infirm and weak with regard to suffering in body for His name so He set Peter over it to bind and loose, who had been one of those who had lived an earthly life. And after Peter, He cleansed others who had imbibed the taste of the earthly and been stained by temporal things, and set them up in the office of judgment and mercy; for He knew that, having embraced the Catholic faith, they were wise and faithful both in caring for souls and in sustaining bodies. For the glowing dawn that burns up human contagions in the fire of love for chastity had not yet diffused its flowers of sweetness widely among people. But now the churchly race has been multiplied and widely disseminated through the whole length of the world, and the glory of the Church's honor has been nobly strengthened; and so the supernal King has benignly and fittingly bestowed both secular and spiritual gifts on people, and chosen those who most honorably preserved their sobriety and chastity by Church law and God's justice to be priests and other ministers of the divine offices.
Wherefore, O human, many spiritual people have now arisen who want to fight the world and the Devil, and who hasten to approach My altar in chastity and bodily restraint; and so I will that My priests should appear in My sight uncontaminated by earthly marriage. For in the Old Testament priests were commanded to keep themselves from contamination with women when they approached My altar; and in the New Testament that command was brought to full perfection for My priests, so that whereas the ancient priests observed chastity for an hour, these new ones will fulfil it from the beginning of their boyhood to the end of their old age. And as I refused to receive the sacrifice from the ancients when polluted by connection with women, much more do I want My Son to be handled by the new priests only in a state of chastity.

74. Immature and unconsecrated men must not receive churches

Let no one who is immature and unconsecrated receive a church; and let him not presume to seek several churches. For if one who is young in years and without priestly consecration dares to take a church or, having one, tries to subjugate several, he is a transgressor against justice and a destroyer of strict judgment; he is like one who dares to commit fornication before the lawful time and without lawful marriage, or who has a legitimate wife but hastens to defile himself in adultery with other women.

75. Priests should be elected by Christian people from the good and healthy

Priests of wise thoughts and manly minds are to be chosen from every people that calls itself Christian, such that they will come to My service in right order with proper anointing and willing mind. Those who are crippled in any of their members should not approach the office of My altar, for in the Kingdom of Heaven there will be no trace of disabilities in human souls; and therefore I do not want anyone defective in limb to stand at My altar. But these will not be separated from the Kingdom of Heaven because they are weak in body and defective in members, as long as their souls are healthy and they seek Me in the purity of good works. I do not wish, however, that they should take part in the ministry of My altar, but that they should humbly fulfil their virtue in good works.

76. Women should not approach the office of the altar

So too those of female sex should not approach the office of My altar; for they are an infirm and weak habitation, appointed to bear children and diligently nurture them. A woman conceives a child not by herself but through a man, as the ground is plowed not by itself but by a farmer, Therefore, just as the earth cannot plow itself, a woman must not be a priest and do the work of consecrating the body and blood of My Son; though she can sing the praise of her creator, as the earth can receive rain to water its fruits. And as the earth brings forth all fruits, so in Woman the fruit of all good works is perfected. How? Because she can receive the High Priest as Bridegroom. How? A virgin betrothed to My Son will receive Him as Bridegroom, for she has shut her body away from a physical husband; and in her Bridegroom she has the priesthood and all the ministry of My altar, and with Him possesses all its riches. And a widow too can be called a bride of My Son when she rejects a physical husband and flees beneath the wings of My Son's protection. And as a bridegroom loves his bride with exceeding love, so does My Son sweetly embrace His brides, who for love of chastity eagerly run to Him.

77. Men and women should not wear each other's clothes except in necessity

A man should never put on feminine dress or a woman use male attire, so that their roles may remain distinct, the man displaying manly strength and the woman womanly weakness; for this was so ordered by Me when the human race began. Unless a man's life or a woman's chastity is in danger; in such an hour a man may change his dress for a woman's or a woman for a man's, if they do it humbly in fear of death. And when they seek My mercy for this deed they shall find it, because they did it not in boldness but in danger of their safety, But as a woman should not wear a man's clothes, she should also not approach the office of My altar, for she should not take on a masculine role either in her hair or in her attire.

78. God will judge all perpetrators of fornication, sodomy and bestiality

Let those who approach My altar appear in My sight in chastity, as also should those who desire to receive the sacrament of the body and blood of My Son, lest they should fall into ruin. For many are found among both spiritual and secular people who not only pollute themselves in fornication with women but also assume a heavy burden of condemnation by contaminating themselves in perverted forms. How? A man who sins with another man as if with a woman sins bitterly against God and against the union with I which God united male and female. Hence both in God's sight are polluted, black and wanton, horrible and harmful to God and humanity, and guilty of death; for they go against their Creator and His creature, which is in them. How?
God united man and woman, thus joining the strong to the weak, that each might sustain the other. But these perverted adulterers change their virile strength into perverse weakness, rejecting the proper male and female roles, and in their wickedness they shamefully follow Satan, who in his pride sought to split and divide Him Who is indivisible. They create in themselves
by their wicked deeds a strange and perverse adultery , and so appear polluted; and shameful in My sight.
And a man who sins with a woman by this same method of perverted fornication is a voracious wolf of wickedness. How? A person would seem perverted and harmful to other people if he threw away beautiful clean food and ate the ordure that comes out of the body in digestion; and these are in My sight equally unworthy and unclean, since they forsake the proper way of uniting with a woman and seek in her an alien sin. And a woman who takes up devilish ways and plays a male role in coupling with another woman is most vile in My sight, and so is she who subjects herself to such a one in this evil deed. For they should have been ashamed of their passion, and instead they impudently usurped a right that was not theirs. And, having put themselves into alien ways, they are to Me transformed and contemptible.
And men who .touch their own genital organ and emit their semen seriously imperil their souls, for they excite themselves to distraction; they I appear to Me as impure animals devouring their own whelps, for they wickedly produce their semen only for abusive pollution. And women who imitate them in this unchaste touching, and excite themselves to bodily convulsions by provoking their burning lust, are extremely guilty , for they pollute themselves with uncleanness when they should be keeping themselves in chastity. Hence both women and men who elicit their own seed by touching themselves in the body do a filthy deed and inflict ulcers and wounds on their souls; for they will not keep themselves in a state of chastity for love of Me. What does this mean? When a person feels himself disturbed by bodily stimulation, let him run to the refuge of continence, and seize the shield of chastity, and thus defend himself from uncleanness. How? Let him cast out the tares from the wheat, which is to say, let him separate the clamor of lust from the sweetness of chastity.
And whoever thus casts out of himself the taste for lust is very sweet and lovable to Me. But, O humans, you cast away chastity and love lust when you fornicate not only with other people but even with animals; thus you send your seed not into what lives but into what is dead, and you forsake what is equal to you and desire what is subject to you and serves you. Therefore the elements cry out against you, saying, "Alas, alas! our rulers join with us in the mingling of their seed!" And thus they show their grief at My anger against your deeds. Why then do you, knowing yourselves human, convert your intelligence into bestial stupidity? Did I create you to join with animals? Never. And when you unite with them, the guilt of the most bitter crimes falls upon you, because you scorn the plan I made for the joining of male and female. For whoever transforms himself by his deeds into a depraved follower of his own desires, and pours out his semen with an animal, brings on himself great ruin, as Satan cast himself down by his perversity when he tried to be like God.
Therefore, all you who contaminate yourselves with perverted pollutions, resist your desires; chastise your bodies, and give yourselves over to true and bitter penance with weeping and fasting and torture of your flesh and severe blows, lest you send yourselves impenitent into an excess of cruel guilt.

79. Pollution that occurs in sleep

I want men not only to keep themselves clean of impurity while awake, but also to purify themselves properly from the pollution that happens to them in sleep. For if the semen of a man who sleeps and dreams is stirred up unawares, I do not want him to approach the sacramental office of My altar in that condition of ardent heat; he should first calm that ardor in himself, as it is written:

80. Words of Moses on this subject

"If any man among you is defiled in a dream by night, he shall go forth out of the camp, and not return until he washes himself with water in the evening, and then he shall return into the camp after sunset" [Deuteronomy 13:10-11]. What does this mean? If among the laborers in My service there is anyone who is defiled in a dream while he sleeps at night, he should separate himself from the company of those who serve My altar and not presume to join in the mystery until his injurious heat has passed and he has cleansed himself from the fire of his lust in the bath of penance, with confession and compunction of heart. And after that penance has done its work and illumined his heart, let him return in love of chastity among those who faithfully defend themselves against impurity, and worthily and honorably approach that sacrament, which is wholly in sanctity.

81. One who burns strongly should not add flame to his fire

But one who burns strongly in lust either asleep or awake should take care not to add flame to his fire. How? Let him not inflame himself by those foods that stir up lust. He should humbly abstain from the flesh of animals that come forth from their mothers naked and without covering, that is, beasts; for there is a fire of heat in them that is not as great in the flesh of birds, which are not born uncovered but as an egg covered with a shell, and therefore have less inflammatory power. And he should also abstain from excessive wine, lest by too much drinking his veins become filled with noxious blood and wickedly heated with ardent fire.

82. One who is weighed down by vices should seek God's mercy in confession

But if anyone labors under too great a number of these tendencies and is not able to resist them by himself, let him with devoted purpose seek Me and humbly uncover to Me the wounds of his heart. How? Let him lay bare these wounds to Me by making a humble confession to a priest. And why this? Because true confession is a second resurrection. How? The human race was slain by the fall of the old Adam; the new Adam by His death raised it up. And so the resurrection of souls arose in the death of the new Adam. And so a person should confess his sins, as the old Adam did not; for he concealed his transgression instead of confessing it. How? He did not confess it by repenting, but concealed it by accusing the woman. Hence confession was instituted, to raise people up after they fall. And so anyone who confesses his sins to a priest for love of Me rises again from death to life; as the woman who purged herself from her impurity with tears at the banquet in the presence of My Son was snatched away from uncleanness.

83. The remedy of purgation was long prefigured in the ancient fathers

This remedy of purgation was long prefigured in the ancient fathers. How? Before the Law the patriarchs and prophets were the consolation of humanity; under the Law the high priests and the ordinary priests were its instruction; and then the apostles came and brought true righteousness in My Son, so that many people hastened to them and devoutly implored their help. And thus from the time of Adam to the time of the apostles there were always some who by celestial inspiration consoled and instructed people and helped them in their miseries. And the apostles also showed people, by their preaching and many miracles, that Man had fallen by the Devil's tempting into death and could never rise again by himself, but was snatched from death by My Son. How? By His being in the world and performing many labors in the body, and at last being nailed to the cross for the world's redemption.
So faithful people, to gain salvation, should follow this pattern with their priests. How? They should seek the help of My Son, because when they repeat the ancient crime of Adam after baptism they cannot rise from their fall by themselves. And therefore they should seek counsel as if from the patriarchs and prophets, and derive instruction as if from the high priests and the ordinary priests, and accept help as if from the apostles, laying bare their wounds and displaying their sins truly and purely. How?
They should confess their sins to the priest, who is the minister of My Son, with devoted heart and mouth. And then the priest will give them a remedy of penance and bury their sins in the death of My Only-Begotten. And then they will rise again to life and glorify the Resurrection of My Son.

84. One who refuses to confess his sin deceives himself

But one who refuses to lay bare the wounds of sin, and follows his own wishes by trying to cure them himself in silence without the help of another, is deceiving himself. For he wishes to be his own priest, but without the help of another he cannot rise; as Man did not rise up and stand by himself but was saved by My Son. Hence let one who desires to be saved never despair of confessing his sins, even at the end of his life.

85. A dying man without a priest may confess to another person or to God only

And if someone in the hour of death seeks a remedy for his wounds of sin but does not have a priest near to whom to confess them, let him show them to any other person who is there at the time; or, if he is dying so suddenly that there is no one there, let him lay them open to Me with his heart's utmost affection, while he is still in the body with which he did them and I will regard the devotion of his heart and not reject his penitence.

86. No one should despair at the weight of his sins

Therefore, let no one despair because of the weight of his iniquity; for if he despairs of My mercy, he shall not rise again to life. One who struggles with despair and at last reduces it to nothing has delivered himself; he has been strong, and manfully conquered. But one whose mind is so inflamed that he does not seek the remedy of salvation is not to be helped; for when he could have found Me, he refused to seek Me. And so, let each person not neglect himself while he has time, but seek the refuge of pure confession, as My Son commanded the leper in the Gospel, saying:

87. Words of the Gospel

"Go, show yourself to the priest, and offer your gift, which Moses commanded for a testimony to them" [Matthew 8:4]. What does this mean? You who are foul with sins and want to cleanse yourself of them, go with good intention and show them to the priest, My minister, by pure confession; and offer with devout heart the gift of true penitence, which by God's will was foreshadowed by the man who was removed by divine power from the many floods of earthly iniquity. And thus those who formerly saw you befouled with evil deeds may now testify that you are purged from them by bitter penitence as in the furnace of trial. But, O human, if a sinner conceals his deeds in his secret heart, who will be a witness to his penitence? No one. Therefore let each person manifest his sins, that he may have a witness to his penitence.

88. Sins should be blotted out by alms and by bodily satisfaction

And let one who desires to practice penitence for his sins turn to alms as a source of help. How? When a person's weak body falters in the work of penitence, his alms will hasten to help him. And because it is hard for a person to practice penitence with just and proper harshness, let him take alms as his mother, so as to accomplish with her what is so laborious for his body. For a mother does not cease to help her child in time of need, even when he has been brought up already; and so too alms give aid to a weak body when a person is penitent, even if he seems to be strong in doing penance and punishing his body. So let a person punish in his body the evil works he has done in his body through the lust of the flesh, so as to wash away from his body by bitter penance the deeds that were dear and sweet to his flesh. For bitter penance, with its helpmeet alms, heals in people the deadly wounds Of sin. How? A person represses himself by castigation, but he can refresh himself by alms. How? Because alms represent My mercy. How? When a faithful person helps the poor with his substance for love of Me, he keeps My commandments, because he devotes his mercy to the needy for the honor of My name; just as I do not withdraw My grace from those who seek me in purity of heart. And whoever helps the poor in this way, refreshing them with alms for mercy's sake, is exceedingly lovable to Me, for he has a merciful heart; which fulfils what is written:

89. Words of the Book of Wisdom

"Place your treasure in the commandments of the Most High, and your alms shall bring you more profit than gold" [Ecclesiastes 29:14]. What does this mean?
Think justly and rightly, and take some of your material wealth, which you hold in your bosom and embrace in your heart; as the One Who is above all people commands, divide it, for God has ordered you to turn aside from evil and do good. Let your heart's good will overflow, so that you will not be among the last sheep; sanctify yourself before God by giving of your substance to refresh those in want, and God will give you His mercy in your misery. And if you do this, the compassion you have on one without treasure will be worth more to you than if you could ascend a high mountain and in your pride possess its gold. How? Because it is better for you to give a little to the little ones in humility than to possess and enjoy the kingdom of the world; if you did the latter, God's reward of mercy could never be yours because of the weight of your pride, for you would not have had pity for the poor in your heart.

90. The elements of the world are the pit of human pleasures

Hence the elements are the pit of human pleasures, as they show by their ways. How? By bringing God's vengeance upon those who are sinning. Therefore, O human, renounce the empty avarice which will wreck you, for your true inheritance is eternal life; leave evil and do good, and so renounce harsh malevolence. And, to follow the way of mercy, give of your substance to the poor, and thereby imitate God Who is merciful.

91. One who gives or receives alms must not do so in vain

Therefore, O human, no liar can deny that you who thus help the poor are fulfilling My will. How?
You should give your alms to the poor as I mete out My grace to you. But let not those who receive alms take them vainly or avariciously. What does this mean? There are many who love laziness and do not want to labor with their bodies to feed themselves, or to do good works with their spirits to help their souls; they are like the beasts, who understand justice neither with their souls nor with their bodies. And if they persevere in this, without correction and without penitence for their apathetic wickedness, they are unworthy in My sight. But there are also many who suffer bodily necessity and receive alms in fear of Me, and pray and work for those who weigh out mercy to them, and avoid filthy and evil deeds. And among these are many from whom I have withdrawn earthly riches in order to give them celestial wealth.

92. Seekers of poverty, riches and honor are rewarded by their intention

Those who gladly suffer poverty for My name's sake are extremely lovable to Me; but those who are greedy and would gladly possess earthly riches but cannot lose the reward of this labor. And one who seeks riches in order to satisfy not his greed but My will has a good intention, and I will reward him with honor. One who desires the power of an office for his own boastful pride and not for the glory of My name is to Me like a putrid corpse; but one who seeks it desiring from it not his pride but My honor will be glorious in My kingdom. And so priests should take on the office of spiritual government not for their own sakes but for Mine, that they may rule more surely and devoutly over My people. How?

93. Priests should admonish the people about confession

They should teach, admonish, exhort and urge My people to keep the law of God worthily and fittingly. And pastors should always be thinking this over; and they should warn and exhort the people not to continue in their sins without confession and without penitence, but to tread evil deeds underfoot and do good ones. And if the people do not obey their priests when they so admonish, the people will incur the guilt and the priests will not be blamed for negligence.

94. Priests who do not use their office's authority are not priests but wolves

But if priests do not show the people the authority of their office, they are not priests but ravenous wolves, for they hold their office by robbery as a wolf cruelly snatches a sheep, doing their own will instead of caring for the sheep. And, because they live perversely, they are afraid to teach true doctrine to the people; they consent to iniquity as to a lord, for they harbor carnal desires, and they close the door of their heart to a helper as if to a stranger; for justice is of God.

95. The elements wail to God at the iniquity of priests and Heaven notes it

Therefore, O ye pastors, wail and lament your crimes, which proclaim your iniquity in dire tones, so that the very elements hear their clamor and join in their wailing before My presence. How do you dare to do your office and touch your Lord with bloody hands, in perverse filth and adulterous wickedness? By your uncleanness you shake the foundations of the earth. How? Because you do not fear to touch your Lord while foul with such crimes, I bring great griefs and oppressions upon the earth; and so I avenge the flesh and blood of My Son, for in this horror you not only cruelly shake the earth but by your filth contaminate Heaven. How?
When you touch your Lord in the stench of uncleanness, as a swine tramples pearls into the mire, the heavens receive your iniquity and shower upon the earth the sentence of My judgment. You should have gone before the people in true justice and with divine law, shining for them with good works, so that when they followed you they would avoid tripping on any stumbling-block; and instead you stain My people with greater iniquity than that with which they stain themselves, giving them a bad and evil example. You should have been a shining jewel, by whose light they could have perceived and entered the path of rectitude; but your example is death to them, and they can find no measure in your iniquity. How can you be their shepherd when you seduce them so? And how will you answer for them, when you cannot give an answer for yourselves? Therefore weep and howl, before Death carries you off. For why do you not consider your own honor, which is given you for the sake of other people? What does this mean?

96. Priests have the power of binding and loosing

That you, rather than others, have received in My Son the keys of Heaven; which are righteous decisions of just judgment made in the knowledge of the Scriptures, as long as you consider rightly what it is you should bind. What does this mean?
When people stubbornly oppose themselves to My Law, you must inspire them with fear of My judgment. And if they do not then correct themselves, extend over them your power of binding. How? You will bind these rebels in My words with a clear voice, and show them the power of the binding; for their stubbornness they are bound in My sight, as My Son showed to the Church's first pastor, saying:

97. Words of the Gospel

"I will give you the keys of the kingdom of Heaven. And whatsoever you shall bind on earth, it will be bound also in Heaven; and whatsoever you shall loose on earth, it will be loosed also in Heaven" [Matthew 16:19]. What does this mean? I, Who have all power in Heaven and earth, by My grace give to you, My devout imitators, those judgments that touch the dignity of the Kingdom of Heaven. As you see people sin on earth, you will bind the wicked deed on earth with just judgment, and it will be entangled in its wickedness and bound in Heaven; it will be separated and driven out from Heaven, for in the heavenly mansions there is no freedom and no place for iniquity. But after I withdraw a person's soul from his body, you will not extend your judgment over him, for that judgment is Mine. Likewise, if a transgressor is penitent, you will loose on earth the chain you fastened on him in his rebellion, and it will be loosed in the secret places of Heaven, for God does not reject the groans of a devout heart. But after the person's death you will pray for his soul, but you cannot then absolve it from being bound.

98. No one is to be bound without a grievous fault

But, O priests, who have received this power thus from My Son, you shall not in anger of heart bind any person in My words unless he has committed a grievous fault; you will consider most carefully before you bind anyone. You will use My words of ecclesiastical censure to separate from My church anyone who cannot be restrained by shame before other people, or by fear of Me, or by your prayers and precepts, but seeks to persevere in his iniquity. But you shall not bind an innocent person; for when you bind such a one you bind yourselves in bands of dire guilt.

99. One who is bound when innocent must ask to be loosed for God's honor

And if anyone has been bound while innocent, contrary to right, he must ask to be loosed for the honor of My Name; yet humbly and submissively, for if he is stubborn he might incur the guilt of pride. But this is the purpose of that binding: that one who perversely refuses to obey Me or the precepts of his superiors may be separated by My word from celestial things. Thus Adam, when he disobeyed Me, was by My command cast out of Paradise. And until he repents and obeys, he shall not be received into the company of the faithful; as the human race was recalled to the celestial country by the martyrdom of My obedient Son.

100. Rebels who refuse to return to Christ and ask mercy imitate the Devil

But one who rebels and refuses to return to Christ in humility, and continues in this arrogance, will join the company of those who keep a stone for a heart and remain in infidelity; and such people refuse to know the glory of the Church's beatitude. For one who is so obdurate that in his wickedness he will seek no mercy imitates the ancient serpent, who, when he deceived the first man in Paradise, was saying within himself:

101. Words of the Devil

"I was thrown out of Heaven when I tried to fight with my angels against the army of the Most High; I could not resist Him, and He conquered me. But now I have found Man on earth, and I will avenge myself mightily by working my wrath on him. For I will accomplish in Man on earth that which I tried to do in Heaven, and make myself like the Most High. And if God is just, that power will not be taken from me, for Man will consent to me and disobey God."
Saying these things to himself, the Devil arrayed all his arts against Man, and Man withdrew from God and adhered to the Devil; and the Devil bound him so closely to himself that Man worshipped him instead of God and denied God, his Creator.

102. By the Son of God's Incarnation humanity was led out of the darkness

But when humanity was lying in a great darkness of infidelity and could not raise itself, I sent My Son for its salvation, miraculously incarnate of the Virgin, true God and true man. What does this mean? That His Divinit truly came forth from Me, the Father, and His Humanity truly took flesh from, the Virgin Mother. What does this mean? O human, you are soft and delicate of body, but hard and inflexible in your incredulity. For a stone can be smoothed for a building, but you are unwilling to be soothed by the faith Yet listen. As a person who has a beautiful jewel in a box puts it in a metal setting to show it to people, so I, Who had My Son in My heart, willed him to be incarnate of the Virgin to save the lives of those who believe. But if I had given Him a physical father, who would He be then? Not My Son, but My servant; and that could not be. He, born of the Virgin, ate, drank, lay down to sleep and experienced bodily miseries, but He never felt the taste of sin in His flesh, for He had assumed flesh not through a lie but through truth. What does this mean? Other people, because of Adam and Eve's transgression, are born from the taste of delight, which is to say through a lie and not the truth. But My Son did not originate so, but was born in sanctity from the most chaste Virgin to redeem humanity. For like cannot loose like from a chain; a greater one must come who can save him. What does this mean? That no person born in sin could deliver sinful humanity from the perdition of death. Therefore My Son came, without sin; He conquered death and mercifully delivered humanity therefrom.
But let the one who sees with watchful eyes and hears with attentive ears welcome with a kiss My mystical words, which proceed from Me Who am life.


The Last Days and the Fall of the Antichrist

Then I looked to the North, and behold! five beasts stood there. One was like a dog, fiery but not burning; another was like a yellow lion; another was like a pale horse; another like a black pig; and the last like a gray wolf. And they were facing the West. And in the West, before those beasts, a hill with five peaks appeared; and from the mouth of each beast one rope stretched to one of the peaks of the hill. All the ropes were black except the one that came from the mouth of the wolf, which was partly black and partly white. And lo, in the East I saw again that youth whom I had first seen on the corner of the wall of the building where the shining and stone parts came together, clad in a purple tunic. I now saw him on the same corner, but now I could see him from the waist down. And from the waist down to the place that denotes the male he glowed like the dawn, and there a harp was lying with its strings across his body; and from there to the width of two fingers above his heel he was in shadow, but from there down to the bottom of the feet he was whiter than milk. And I saw again the figure of a woman whom I had previously seen in front of the altar that stands before the eyes of God; she stood in the same place, but now I saw her from the waist down. And from her waist to the place that denotes the female, she had various scaly blemishes; and in that latter place was a black and monstrous head. It had fiery eyes, and ears like an ass', and nostrils and mouth like a lion's; it opened wide its jowls and terribly clashed its horrible iron-colored teeth. And from this head down to her knees, the figure was white and red, as if bruised by many beatings; and from her knees to her tendons where they joined her heels, which appeared white, she was covered with blood. And behold! That monstrous head moved from its place with such a great shock that the figure of the woman was shaken through all her limbs. And a great mass of excrement adhered to the head; and it raised itself up upon a mountain and tried to ascend the height of Heaven. And behold, there came suddenly a thunderbolt, which struck that head with such great force that it fell from the mountain and yielded up its spirit in death. And a reeking cloud enveloped the whole mountain, which wrapped the head in such filth that the people who stood by were thrown into the greatest terror. And that cloud remained around the mountain for a while longer. The people who stood there, perceiving this, were shaken with great fear, and said to one another: "Alas, alas! What is this? What do you think this was? Alas, wretches that we are! Who will help us, and who will deliver us? For we know not how we were deceived. O Almighty God, have mercy on us! Let us return, let us return; let us hasten to the covenant of Christ's Gaspel; for ah, ah, ah! we have been bitterly deceived!" And lo, the feet of the figure of the woman glowed white, shining with a splendor greater than the sun's.
And I heard the voice from Heaven saying to me:

1. The five ferocious epochs of temporal rule

All things that are on earth hasten to their end, and the world droops toward its end, oppressed by the weakening of its forces and its many tribulations and calamities. But the Bride of My Son, very troubled for her children both by the forerunners of the son of perdition and by the destroyer himself, will never be crushed, no matter how much they attack her. But at the end of time she will rise up stronger than ever, and become more beautiful and more glorious; and so she will move sweetly and delightfully to the embraces of her Beloved. And this is mystically signified by the vision you are seeing. For you look to the North, and behold! five beasts stand there. These are the five ferocious epochs of temporal rule, brought about by the desires of the flesh from which the taint of sin is never absent, and they savagely rage against each other.

2. The fiery dog

One is like a dog, fiery but not burning; for that era will produce people with a biting temperament, who seem fiery in their own estimation, but do not burn with the justice of God.

3. The yellow lion

Another is like a yellow lion; for this era will endure martial people, who instigate many wars but do not think of the righteousness of God in them; for those kingdoms will begin to weaken and tire, as the yellow color shows.

4. The pale horse

Another is like a pale horse; for those times will produce people who drown themselves in sin, and in their licentious and swift-moving pleasures neglect all virtuous activities. And then these kingdoms will lose their ruddy strength and grow pale with the fear of ruin, and their hearts will be broken.

5. The black pig

And another is like a black pig; for this epoch will have leaders who blacken themselves with misery and wallow in the mud of impurity. They will infringe the divine law by fornication and other like evils, and will plot to diverge from the holiness of God's commands.

6. The gray wolf

And the last is like a gray wolf. For those times will have people who plunder each other, robbing the powerful and the fortunate; and in these conflicts they will show themselves to be neither black nor white, but gray in their cunning. And they will divide and conquer the rulers of those realms; and then the time will come when many will be ensnared, and the error of errors will rise from Hell to Heaven. And then the children of light will be pressed in the winepress of martyrdom; and they will not deny the Son of God, but reject the son of perdition who tries to do his will with the Devil's arts.
And these beasts are facing the West; for these fleeting times will vanish with the setting sun. For people rise and set like the sun, and some are born, and some die.

7. The five peaks and the five ropes

And in the West, before those beasts, a hill with five peaks appears; for in these peaks is symbolized the power of carnal desire. And from the mouth of each beast one rope stretches to one of the peaks of the hill; for each of those powers will extend throughout the period in question. All the ropes are black except the one that comes from the mouth of the wolf, which is partly black and partly white. For the length of the ropes indicates how far people are willing to go in their stubborn pleasures; but though the one that symbolizes greed is partly black and puts forth many evils, yet some will come from that direction who are white with justice. And these latter will hasten to resist the son of perdition by ardent wanders, as My servant Job indicates about the righteous doer of justice, when he says:

8. Words of Job

"The innocent shall be raised up against the hypocrite, and the just shall hold to his path; and to clean hands he shall add strength" [Job 17:8-9]. Which is to say:
One who is innocent of bloody deeds, murder and fornication and the like, will be aroused like a burning coal against one who deceives in his works. How? This latter speaks of honey but deals in poison, and calls a man friend but stifles him like an enemy; he speaks sweet words but has malice within him, and talks blandly to his friend and then slays him from ambush. But one who has a rod with which to drive away vile brutes from himself walks in the light of the shining sun on the righteous path of his heart; he is raised up in the sight of God as a bright spark and a clear light and a flaming torch. And so, bearing in himself the strongest and purest works, he puts them on like a strong breastplate and a sharp sword, and drives away vice and wins virtue.

9. The Church will shine in her justice until the time of Antichrist

And therefore, in the East you see again that youth whom you first saw on the corner of the wall of the building where the shining and stone parts come together, clad in a purple tunic, now standing on the same corner. For here is the Sunrise of Justice, the Son of Man, manifest to you to confirm the truth afresh through His mysteries and miracles; still presiding over the union of reflective knowledge and human deeds, having shed His blood by the will and goodness of the Father for the salvation of the world. So now you can see him from the waist down; for now you see Him in the strength of His members who are His elect, and He will flourish as Bridegroom of the Church, with many obscure signs and wonders, until their number is complete. And from the waist down to the place that denotes the male he glows like the dawn; for until the time of the son of perdition, who will pretend to be the man of strength, His faithful members will be perfected in fortitude and He will be splendid in the justice of His righteous worshippers. So, in the same place, a harp is lying with its strings across his body; which signifies the joyful songs of those who will suffer dire torments in the persecution that the son of iniquity will inflict upon the chosen, torturing their bodies so much that they are released from them and pass over into rest.

10. The Church's faith will be in doubt until the witness of Enoch and Elijah

And from there to the width of two fingers above his heel he is in shadow. For, from the time of the persecution the faithful will suffer from the son of the Devil until the testimony of the two witnesses, Enoch and Elijah, who spurned the earthly and worked toward heavenly desires, faith in the doctrines of the Church will be in doubt. People will say to each other with great sadness, "What is this they say about Jesus? Is it true or not?"

11. Before the end of the world the Devil will perish and the truth be known

But from there down to the bottom of the feet he is whiter than milk. That is to say that, by the testimony of those same witnesses who await the eternal reward when the son of perdition is defeated, before the world ends the Son of Man will be brilliantly and beautifully seen in the Catholic faith. The truth will be plainly shown in Him, and the falsity of the son of iniquity rejected in every way, as My servant David testifies when he says:

12. Words of David

"The king shall rejoice in God; all they that swear by Him shall be praised; for the mouth of them that speak wicked things is stopped" [Psalm 62.:12.]. Which is to say: The profound knowledge of the beautiful human language that gives voice to the will and disposition of God is a great measure of human stature; and it makes music at the altar of God, for it knows Him. And when the hissing and gaping of the Devil, which taints human minds with shame, is forsaken in the time of desperation, the blessed will be praised in minds that sing, and they will make a flowing path of words to the pure fountain of the mighty Ruler.

13 When justice grows cold the Church will undergo suffering and persecution

And you see again the figure of a woman whom you previously saw in front of the altar that stands before the eyes of God, standing in the same place. For the Bride of the Son of God is shown to you again, to reveal the truth, always present to the pure prayers of the saints and, as was said before, offering them up devotedly to the eyes of Heaven. But now you see her from the waist down; for you see her in her full dignity as the Church, replete with the full number of her children, in the mysteries and wonders by which she has saved so many. And from her waist to the place that denotes the female, she has various scaly blemishes. This is to say that, though she is now flourishing worthily and laudably in her children, before the time in which the son of perdition will try to perfect the trick he played on the first woman, the Church will be harshly reproached for many vices, fornication and murder and rapine. How? Because those who should love her will violently persecute her.

14. Antichrist will horribly rend the faithful and cruelly tear humanity

And thus in the place where the female is recognized is a black and monstrous head. For the son of perdition will come raging with the arts he first used to seduce, in monstrous shamefulness and blackest wickedness. It has fiery eyes, and ears like an ass', and nostrils and mouth like a lion's; for he runs wild in acts of vile lust and shameful blasphemy, causing people to deny God and tainting their minds and tearing the Church with the greed of rapine. It opens wide its jowls and terribly clashes its horrible iron-colored teeth; for with his voracious and gaping jaws he evilly infuses those who consent to him with his strong vices and mordant madness.

15. The son of perdition, unable to be gentle, will try to persecute

And from this head down to her knees, the figure is white and red, as if bruised by many beatings; for the son of perdition will try to seduce people by evil deceptions, and at first speak to them flatteringly and gently, but then try cruelly to pervert and force them. And then the Church will know purity of faith in her children, but anguished and bloody terror and the tribulations of many sufferings for herself.

16. The Church near the end of the world will be bathed in righteous blood

And from her knees to her tendons where they join her heels, which appear white, she is covered with blood. For at the time near the end of the world when she must endure assault, until the coming of the two witnesses of Truth who will keep the Church together by their strength, she will suffer most terrible persecutions, and the blood of those who despise the Destroyer will be most cruelly shed. What does this mean? When the son of perdition is strengthened through deceit, and derives confidence from his perverse teachings, the Church, as she hastens on, will be bathed in the noblest blood; and then she will be fully constructed as the celestial dwelling. For you, O streets of Jerusalem, will then shine with the purest gold which is the blood of the saints; the Devil will be extinguished for persecuting the members of the Supernal King, and his great terror will be reduced to naught.

17. We are now in the seventh millennium

But, O ye people who desire to dwell in those streets, flee from the Devil and adore God, Who created you! For in six days God completed His works, and on the seventh day He rested. What does this mean? The six days are the six numbered epochs; and in the sixth epoch the latest miracles were brought forth in the world, as God finished His work on the sixth day. But now the world is in the seventh epoch, approaching the end of time, as on the seventh day. How? The prophets have completed their utterances, My Son has accomplished His will in the world, and the Gospel has been preached openly throughout all lands; and throughout the times of this full number and more years after it, despite the diversity of human customs, the world has remained as it was well-established by Me.

18. Why God now utters new mysteries by the mouth of an unlearned person

But now the Catholic faith wavers among the nations and the Gospel limps among the people; and the mighty books in which the excelling doctors had summed up knowledge with great care go unread from shameful apathy, and the food of life, which is the divine Scriptures, cools to tepidity. For this reason, I now speak through a person who is not eloquent in the Scriptures or taught by an earthly teacher; I Who Am speak through her of new secrets and mystical truths, heretofore hidden in books, like one who mixes clay and then shapes it to any form he wishes.

19. God's warning to the learned not to spurn these words but exalt them

O fruitful and rewarding teachers! Redeem your souls and loudly proclaim these words, and do not disbelieve them; for if you spurn them, you condemn not them but Me Who am Truth. For you should nurture My people under My law, and care for them until the time for their supervision is past, and all cares and labors cease. But from now on the predestined epoch is approaching, and you are hastening toward the time when the son of perdition will appear. Grow therefore in vigor and fortitude, My elect! Be on your guard, lest you fall into the snare of death; raise the victorious banner of these words, and rush upon the son of iniquity. For those who forerun and follow , the son of perdition whom you call Antichrist are in the way of error; but as for you, follow the footsteps of Him Who taught you the way of truth, when He appeared with humility and not with pride in the world in the body. Hear therefore and understand.