St. Bridget | Saint Bridget of Sweden and her Revelations
The Prophecies and Revelations of Saint Bridget (Birgitta) of Sweden and Her Life – With various Prayers – It is now possible to buy The Revelations of Saint Bridget of Sweden in English (Book 1) from for those who are interested.
ContentsBook 1: The Book of Revelations……………………………………………… page 3-113
-The Life of Saint Bridget by Prior Peter and Master Peter…………. page 114-141
-Prayers and Novenas…………………………………………………………….. page 142-172 The Prophecies and Revelations of Saint Bridget (Birgitta) of Sweden – Book 1
The words of our Lord Jesus Christ to His chosen and dearly beloved bride, Saint Bridget, about the proclamation of His most holy Incarnation and the rejection, desecration and abandonment of our faith and baptism, and how He bids His beloved bride and all Christian people to love Him.
“I am the Creator of the heavens and the earth, one in Divinity with the Father and the Holy Spirit. I am the one who spoke to the patriarchs and the prophets and the one whom they awaited. For the sake of their longing and in agreement with my promise, I assumed flesh without sin and concupiscence, by entering the womb of the Virgin like the sun shining through the clearest gem. For just as the sun does not damage the glass by entering it, likewise the virginity of the Virgin was not lost when I assumed Manhood. I assumed flesh in such a way that I did not have to forsake my Divinity, and I was no less God – with the Father and the Holy Spirit, governing and upholding all things – although I was in the womb of the Virgin in my human nature. Just as brightness is never separated from fire, so too, my Divinity was never separated from my Humanity, not even in death.
Thereafter I allowed my pure and sinless body to be wounded from the foot to the head, and to be crucified for all the sins of mankind. That same body is now offered each day on the altar so that mankind might love me more and remember my great deeds more often. But now I am totally forgotten, neglected, despised, and expelled as a king is from his own kingdom and in whose place the most wicked robber has been elected and honored.
I have indeed wanted my kingdom to be within man, and by right I should be King and Lord over him, for I made him and redeemed him. However, now he has broken and desecrated the faith which he promised me in his baptism, and he has broken and spurned my laws and commandments which I prescribed and revealed to him. He loves his own will and refuses to hear me. In addition, he exalts the most wicked robber, the devil, above me and has given him his faith. The devil really is a robber, since he steals for himself, by way of evil temptations, bad councils, and false promises, the human soul that I redeemed with my blood. But he does not do this because he is mightier than me; for I am so mighty that I can do all things with a word, and so just, that even if all the saints asked me, I would not do the least thing against justice.
But, since man, who has been given free will, willfully rejects my commandments and obeys the devil, it is only right that he also experiences his tyranny and malice. This devil was created good by me, but fell by his own wicked will, and has become, so to speak, my servant for inflicting vengeance on the workers of evil.
Yet, even though I am now so despised, I am still so merciful that whoever prays for my mercy and humbles himself in amendment shall be forgiven his sins, and I shall save him from the evil robber – the devil. But to those who continue despising me, I shall visit my justice upon them, so that those hearing it will tremble, and those who feel it will say: “Woe, that we were ever conceived or born! Woe, that we ever provoked the Lord of majesty to wrath!”
But you, my daughter, whom I have chosen for myself, and with whom I now speak in spirit: love me with all your heart – not as you love your son or daughter or parents, but more than anything in the world – since I, who created you, did not spare any of my limbs in suffering for your sake! Yet, I love your soul so dearly that, rather than losing you, I would let myself be crucified again, if it were possible. Imitate my humility; for I, the King of glory and of angels, was clothed in ugly, wretched rags and stood naked at the pillar and heard all kinds of insults and ridicule with my own ears. Always prefer my will before your own, because my Mother, your Lady, has, from the beginning to the end, never wanted anything but what I wanted.
If you do this, then your heart shall be with my heart, and it will be inflamed by my love in the same way that anything dry becomes rapidly inflamed by fire. Your soul shall be so inflamed and filled with me, and I will be in you, so that everything worldly becomes bitter to you and all fleshly lusts like poison. You will rest in the arms of my Divinity, where no fleshly desires exist, but only spiritual delight and joy which fill the delighted soul with happiness – inwardly and outwardly – so that it thinks of nothing and desires nothing but the joy which it possesses. So love me alone, and you will have all the things you want, and you will have them in abundance. Is it not written that the oil of the widow did not decrease until the day the rain was sent to earth by God according to the words of the prophet? I am the true prophet! If you believe my words and follow and fulfill them, the oil – joy and jubilation – shall never decrease for you for all eternity.”
Our Lord Jesus Christ’s words to his daughter – whom He now had taken as His bride – about the articles of the true faith, and about what kind of adornments, tokens and desires the bride must have in order to please the Bridegroom.
“I am the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and the sea and of all the things that are in them. I am one with the Father and the Holy Spirit – not like the gods of stone nor the gods of gold, as were used by people of old, and not several gods, as people once thought – but one God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, three persons but one in divine nature, the Creator of all but created by none, unchangeable and almighty, everlasting – without beginning or end. I am the one who was born of the Virgin, without losing my Divinity but joining it to my Manhood, so that I, in one person, should be the true Son of God and the Son of the Virgin. I am the one who hung on the cross and died and was buried, yet my Divinity remained unharmed. For even though I died in the Manhood and flesh that I, the only Son, had assumed, yet I lived on in my Divinity, being one God with the Father and the Holy Spirit. I am the same one who rose from the dead and ascended into Heaven, and who now speaks with you in my Spirit. I have chosen you and taken you to myself as my bride in order to show you the ways of the world and my divine secrets, for this pleases me. You are also mine by right; for when your husband died, you entrusted all your will into my hands and, after his death, you also thought and prayed about how you should become poor and abandon all things for my sake. For this reason, you are mine by right because of this great love of yours, and I will provide for you because of this.
Therefore, I take you to myself as my bride and for my own pleasure, the kind that is becoming for God to have with a chaste soul. It is the obligation of the bride to be ready when the bridegroom wants to celebrate the wedding so that she will be properly dressed and pure. You purify yourself well if your thoughts are always on your sins, on how I cleansed you in baptism from the sin of Adam, and how often I have been patient and supported you when you fell into sin. The bride should also have the insignia of her bridegroom on her chest, which means that you should observe and take heed of the favors and good deeds which I have done for you: such as how nobly I created you by giving you a soul and body, how nobly I enriched you by giving you health and temporal things, how lovingly and sweetly I redeemed you when I died for you and restored your heavenly inheritance to you – if you want to have it. The bride should also do the will of the Bridegroom. But what is my will, except that you should want to love me above all things and not desire anything but me?
I created all things for the sake of mankind, and placed all things under his authority, but he loves all things except me, and hates nothing but me. I bought back the inheritance for him which he had lost because of his sin. But he is so foolish and without reason that he prefers this passing glory – which is like the foam of the sea that rises up for a moment like a mountain, and then quickly falls down to nothing – instead of eternal glory in which there is everlasting good.
But if you, my bride, desire nothing but me, if you despise all things for my sake – not only your children and relatives, but also honor and riches – I will give you the most precious and lovely reward! I will not give you gold or silver, but myself, to be your Bridegroom and reward – I, who am the King of Glory. But if you are ashamed of being poor and despised, then consider how I, your God, walked before you, when my servants and friends abandoned me in the world; for I was not seeking earthly friends, but heavenly friends. And if you now are troubled and afraid about the burden and difficulty of work and sickness, then consider how difficult and painful it is to burn in hell! What would you not deserve if you had offended an earthly master as you have me? For even though I love you with all my heart, still I do not act against justice in the least point.
Therefore, as you have sinned in all your limbs, so shall you also make satisfaction and penance in every limb. But, because of your good will and your purpose of atoning for your sins, I shall change my justice into mercy by foregoing painful punishment for but a little penance. Therefore, embrace and take upon yourself a little work, so that you may be made clean of sin and reach the great reward sooner. For the bride should grow tired working alongside her bridegroom so that she may all the more confidently take her rest with him.”
Our Lord Jesus Christ’s words of wisdom to His bride about how she should love and honor Him, the Bridegroom, and about how the evil love the world and hate God.
“I am your God and Lord, whom you worship and honor. I am the one who upholds heaven and earth with my power; they are not upheld by any pillars or anything else. I am the one who is handled and offered up each day on the altar under the appearance of bread as true God and true man. I am the same one who has chosen you. Honor my Father! Love me! Obey my Spirit! Honor my Mother as your Lady! Honor all my saints! Keep the true faith which you shall learn by him who experienced within himself the battle of the two spirits – the spirit of falsehood and the spirit of truth – and with my help won. Maintain true humility. What is true humility if not to behave as one really is, and to give praise to God for the good things he has given us?
But now, there are many who hate me and my deeds, and who account my words as sorrow and vanity, but instead, with affection and love, embrace the whoremonger: the devil. Whatever they do for my sake is done with grumbling and bitterness. They would not even confess my name or serve me, if they did not fear the opinion of other men. They love the world with such fervor that they never tire of working for it night and day, always burning with their love for it. Their service is as pleasing to me as that of someone who gives his enemy money to kill his own son! This is what they do to me. They give me some alms and honor me with their lips in order to gain worldly success and to remain in their honor and in their sin. The good spirit is therefore hindered in them and they are prevented from making any progress in doing good.
However, if you want to love me with all your heart and to desire nothing but me, I will draw you to myself through love, just as a magnet draws iron to itself. I will place you on my arm, which is so strong that no one can stretch it out, and so firm that, once outstretched, no one is able to bend it back, and is so sweet that it surpasses every fragrance and is beyond comparison to any sweet thing or delight of this world.
This man, who was the teacher of the bride of Christ, was the holy theologian and canon of Linkoping, named Master Mathias of Sweden. He wrote an excellent commentary on the whole Bible. He was ingenuously tempted by the devil with many heresies against the Catholic faith. However, he overcame all of them with the help of Christ and could not be conquered by the devil, as is shown in the written biography of Saint Bridget. It was this Master Mathias who composed the prologue to these books which begins thus: “Stupor et mirabilia,” etc. He was a holy man with great spiritual power in both word and deed. When he died in Sweden, the bride of Christ was living in Rome. While she was praying, she heard a voice saying to her in spirit: “Happy are you, Master Mathias, for the crown that has been prepared for you in heaven! Come now to the wisdom that will never end!”
One may also read more about Master Mathias in this Book (in chapter 52), in Book V (in the answer to question 3 in the last interrogation), and in Book VI (chapters 75 and 89).
Our Lord Jesus Christ’s words to His bride about how she should not fear or think that the revelations told to her by Him come from an evil spirit, and about how to discern an evil spirit from a good one.
“I am your Creator and Redeemer. Why did you fear and doubt my words? Why did you wonder whether they came from a good or an evil spirit? Tell me, what have you found in my words that your conscience did not tell you to do? Or have I ever commanded you anything against reason?
The bride answered: “No, all you told me was completely true and reasonable and I was badly mistaken.” The Bridegroom, Jesus, answered her: “I showed you three things from which you could recognize the good spirit: I invited you to honor your God, who made you and gave you all the good things you have; your reason also tells you to honor him above all things. I further invited you to keep the true faith, that is, to believe that nothing has been created without God nor may be made without God. I also invited you to love reasonable work and continence in all things, for the world was created for man’s sake, in order that he may use it according to his reasonable needs, and not in excess.
In the same way, you may also recognize the unclean spirit, the devil, from three opposing things: He tempts and advises you to seek and desire your own praise, and to be proud of the things given you. He also tempts you into unbelief and intemperance in all your limbs and in all things, and makes your heart inflamed by them. Sometimes he also deceives men under the guise of a good spirit. This is why I commanded you to always examine your conscience and reveal it to spiritual men of wisdom!
Therefore, do not doubt that the good spirit of God is with you when you desire nothing but God and are completely inflamed by him! Only I can do this, and it is impossible for the devil to come near you then. He also cannot come near to any evil man unless I allow it, either because of his sins, or some secret judgment that is known only to me. For he is my creature like all other things – he was created good by me, but made himself evil by his own malice – therefore, I am Lord over him.
Therefore, those who accuse me do so falsely when they say that those who serve me with great and godly devotion are insane and possessed by the devil. They consider me to be like a man who gives his chaste and trusting wife over to adultery. Such a one should I be, if I allowed a righteous and God-loving man to be handed over to the devil! But because I am faithful, the devil will never rule over the soul of any man who devoutly serves me. Although my friends sometimes seem to be insane or senseless, it is not because the devil is tormenting them, or because they serve me with fervent and godly devotion. It is rather because of some defect or weakness in the brain, or some other hidden reason, which serves to humble them. It may also happen, sometimes, that the devil receives power from me over the bodies of good men for the sake of their future reward, or that he darkens their consciences. But he can never rule the souls of those who have faith in me and who love me.
The loving words of Christ to His bride in the wonderful parable of a lovely castle, which signifies the holy Church militant, and about how the Church of God will be rebuilt by the prayers of the glorious Virgin and of the saints.
“I am the Creator of all things – I, the King of Glory and the Lord of Angels! I built for myself a lovely castle and placed my chosen men in it, but my enemies undermined the foundation and overpowered my friends so much so that the marrow is violently forced out of my friends’ feet as they sit chained to the wooden stocks. Their mouth is beaten by stones, and they are tortured by hunger and thirst. Moreover, enemies are persecuting their Lord! My friends are now praying with tears and groans for help, and justice is calling for vengeance, but mercy says to forgive.
Then God said to his heavenly host that stood around him: “What do you think about these who have conquered my castle?” They all answered as with one voice: “O Lord, all justice is in you, and in you we see all things. You are without beginning and without end, the Son of God, and all judgment is given to you. You are their judge.” He answered: “Although you know and see all things in me, still for the sake of my bride who stands here, tell me the just sentence.” They said: “This is justice: that those who undermined the wall should be punished as thieves, that those who persist in evil should be punished as intruders and violent criminals, and that those who are captive should be freed and the hungry be filled.”
Then Mary, the Mother of God (who until now had remained silent) spoke: “Oh, my Lord and most dear Son, You were in my womb as true God and man. By your grace you sanctified me, who was but an earthen vessel. I beg you, have mercy on them once more!” Then the Lord answered His Mother: “Blessed be the words of your mouth that ascend like a sweet fragrance to God. You are the Queen and glory of angels and all saints because, by you, God and all the saints are made happy! Because your will was as my own from the beginning of your youth, I will do as you wish once more.”
Then He said to the host of saints: “Because you have fought manfully, and for the sake of your love, I will let myself be appeased for now. Behold, I will rebuild my wall because of your prayers. I will liberate and heal those who were oppressed by force, and honor them a hundredfold for the indignity they have endured. But if the violators and wrong-doers pray for my mercy, I will give them peace and mercy. However, those who despise my mercy will feel my justice.”
Then he said to his bride: “My bride, I have chosen you and brought you into my Spirit. You hear my words and those of my saints. Although the saints see all things in me, nevertheless, they have spoken for your sake so that you might understand, since you, who are still in the flesh, cannot see all things in me in the same way as they who are spirits. I will now also show you what all these things signify.
The castle I spoke about previously is the Holy Church and the souls of Christians, which I built with my own blood and that of the saints. I cemented and joined it with my love and placed my friends and chosen men in it. The foundation is true faith, that is, to believe that I am a righteous and merciful judge.
Now, however, this foundation is undermined because all believe and preach that I am merciful, but almost no one preaches or believes me to be a righteous judge. They view me as an unjust judge! Unjust and unrighteous, indeed, would the judge be who, out of mercy, allowed the unrighteous to go unpunished, so that they could oppress the righteous even more! But I am a righteous and merciful judge; for I do not let even the least sin go unpunished, nor the least good go unrewarded. By the undermining of this wall’s foundation, there entered into the Holy Church people who sin without fear, who deny that I am a righteous judge, and who torment my friends as severely as those who are placed in the stocks. My friends have no joy or consolation given to them but, instead, every kind of mockery and torment are inflicted upon them as if they were possessed by the devil. When they tell the truth about me, they are rejected and accused of lying. They have a fervent desire to hear or speak the truth about me, but there is no one who listens to them or speaks the truth to them. And I, the Lord and Creator of all things, am being blasphemed and rejected, for they say: ‘We do not know if he is God and, if he is God, we do not care!’ They overthrow my banner and trample it under their feet calling out: ‘Why did he suffer? What benefit is it to us? If he wants to satisfy our lust and will, it is enough for us. He may keep his kingdom and heaven!’ I want to go into them, but they say: ‘We would rather die before giving up our own will!’
Behold, my bride, what kind of people they are! I made them, and could destroy and damn them with a word if I wanted to. How bold and arrogant they are toward me! But because of the prayers of my Mother and of all the saints, I am still so merciful and patient that I will send them the words of my mouth and offer them my mercy. If they want to accept it, I will be appeased. Otherwise, they will come to know my justice and be publicly humiliated like thieves in front of all angels and men, and be judged by every one of them. For just as the men who are hanged on gallows are devoured by ravens, they will also be devoured by demons, yet not die. Just as those who are punished in the stocks have no rest, they too, will have pain and bitterness all around them. The most burning river will flow into their mouths, but their bellies will not be filled, and their punishment will be renewed each day.
But my friends will be redeemed and consoled by the words that come from my mouth. They will see my justice joined with my mercy. I will clothe them in the weapons of my love and make them so strong that the adversaries of the faith will fall back like filth and feel ashamed for all eternity when they see my justice. Yes, they will surely be ashamed for having abused my patience.”
The words of Christ to His bride about how His Spirit cannot remain with the unrighteous, and about the separation of the unrighteous from the good, and how good men, armed with spiritual weapons, are sent to war against the world.
“My enemies are like the most violent beasts that can never be filled or have rest. Their heart is so empty of my love that they never allow the thought of my suffering into it; and not once has a word like this been uttered by their inmost heart: “O Lord, you have redeemed us, may you be praised for your bitter suffering!” How could my Spirit remain with the people who have no divine love for me, and who willingly betray others in order to satisfy their own will? Their heart is full of vile worms, that is, full of worldly desires. The devil has left his filth in their mouths, and that is why my words do not please them.
Therefore, I will sever them from my friends with my saw, and just as there is no more bitter way to die than to be sawn asunder, so there will not be a punishment in which they will not partake. They will be sawn in two by the devil and separated from me! They are so abhorrent to me that all who cling to them and agree with them will also be severed from me.
Therefore, I send out my friends in order that they might separate the devils from my members, for they are truly my enemies. I send my friends like knights to war. Anyone who mortifies and subdues his flesh and abstains from forbidden things is my true knight. For their lance, they will have the words that I spoke with my own mouth and, in their hands, the sword of the true faith. Their breasts will be covered with the armor of love, so that no matter what happens to them, they will love me no less. They shall have the shield of patience at their side, so that they may suffer and endure all things patiently. I have enclosed them like gold in a vessel; they should now go forth and walk in my ways.
According to the ways of justice, I could not enter into the glory of majesty without suffering tribulation in my human nature, so then, how else will they enter into it? If their Lord endured pain and suffering, it is not surprising that they also suffer. If their Lord endured beatings and torture, it is not too much for them to endure words and contradictions. They should not fear, for I will never abandon them. Just as it is impossible for the devil to touch and divide the heart of God, so it is impossible for the devil to separate them from me. And since they are like the purest gold in my sight, I will never abandon them, even though they are tested with a little fire, for the fire is given to them for their greater reward and happiness.
The words of the glorious Virgin to Saint Bridget about how to dress and with what kind of clothes and ornaments her daughter should be adorned and clothed.
“I am Mary who gave birth to the Son of God, true God and true man. I am the Queen of Angels. My son loves you with all of his heart. Therefore, you should love him. You should be adorned with the most proper clothes, and I will show you how and what kind they should be. Just as before you had an undershirt, a shirt, shoes, a cloak, and a brooch on your chest, so now you shall have spiritual clothes.
The undershirt you shall have is contrition for your sins; for just as an undershirt is closest to the body, so contrition and confession are the first way of conversion to God. Through these the mind, which once enjoyed sin, is purified, and the unchaste flesh restrained from evil lusts. The two shoes are two intentions: namely, the will to make amendment for your past sins, and the will to do good and refrain from evil. Your shirt is hope in God; and just as a shirt has two sleeves, so may justice and mercy be paired with your hope, so that you will hope for the mercy of God, yet not forget his justice. Think about his justice and harsh judgment in such a way that you do not forget his mercy, for he does not work justice without mercy, or mercy without justice. The cloak is faith, for just as the cloak covers everything and everything is enclosed in it, man can likewise comprehend and attain all things by faith. This cloak should be decorated with the tokens of your Bridegroom’s love – namely, how he created you, how he redeemed you, how he raised you and led you into his spirit and opened your spiritual eyes. The brooch, which should always be on your chest, is the frequent consideration of his suffering: how he was mocked and scourged, how he stood alive on the cross, bloody and wounded in all his limbs, how in death his whole body shook from the most bitter pain and anguish, and how he commended his spirit into the hands of his Father. May this brooch always be on your chest! There should also be a crown on your head, which means that you should be chaste in your desires, so much so, that you would rather endure a beating and pain than to be further stained.
Therefore, be modest and polite and do not think about or desire anything but your God and Creator – for when you have him, you have everything! Adorned in this way, you shall await your Bridegroom.”
The words of the Queen of Heaven to her beloved daughter, Saint Bridget, teaching her how she should love and praise the Son of God together with his blessed Mother.
“I am the Queen of Heaven. You are concerned about how you should praise and honor me. Know and be certain that all praise of my Son also is praise of me, and those who dishonor him also dishonor me. This is so because I loved him and he loved me so ardently that both of us were like one heart. He so magnificently honored me, who was an earthen vessel, that he raised me above all the angels. Therefore, you should praise me like this: “Blessed be you, God, Creator of all things, who deigned to descend into the womb of the Virgin Mary! Blessed be you, God, who wished to be within the Virgin Mary without burdening her, and deigned to take immaculate flesh from her without sin! Blessed be you, God, who came to the Virgin, bringing joy to her soul and her whole body, and who went out of her without sin, to the joy of her whole body! Blessed be you, God, who after your heavenly ascension gladdened the Virgin Mary, your Mother, with continuous comforts and visited her with your consolation! Blessed be you, God, who assumed the body and soul of the Virgin Mary, your Mother, into heaven and honorably placed her above all the angels next to your Divinity! Have mercy on me for the sake of all her prayers!”
The words of the Queen of Heaven to her beloved daughter about the wonderful love the Son had for His Virgin Mother, and about how the Mother of Christ was conceived within the most chaste marriage and sanctified in the womb. She tells how she was assumed, body and soul, into Heaven, and about the power of her name, and about the good and evil angels assigned to men for their protection or trial.
“I am the Queen of Heaven. Love my Son, for he is most worthy; when you have him, you have all that is worthwhile. He is also most desirable; when you have him, you have all that is desirable. Love him, too, for he is most virtuous; when you have him, you have every virtue. I want to tell you how wonderful his love for my body and soul was and how much he honored my name. My Son loved me before I loved him, since he is my Creator.
He united my father and mother in a marriage so chaste that there could not be found a more chaste marriage at that time. They never wanted to come together except in accordance with the Law, and only then with the intention to bring forth offspring.
When an angel revealed to them that they would give birth to the Virgin from whom the salvation of the world would come, they would rather have died than to come together in carnal love; lust was dead in them. I assure you that when they did come together, it was because of divine love and because of the angel’s message, not out of carnal desire, but against their will and out of a holy love for God. In this way, my flesh was put together by their seed and through divine love. Then, when my body had been made and formed, God infused the created soul into it from his divinity, and the soul was immediately sanctified along with the body, and the angels guarded and served it day and night. When my soul was sanctified and joined to its body, my mother felt such great joy that it would have been impossible to describe it!
Afterwards, when my lifetime had been accomplished, my Son first raised up my soul – for it was the mistress of the body – to a more excellent place than others in heaven, right next to his Divinity. Later, he also raised up my body in such a manner that no other creature’s body is so close to God as mine. See how much my Son loved my soul and body! Yet, there are some people with a malevolent spirit who deny that I was assumed into Heaven, body and soul, and also others who simply do not know any better. But this is a most certain truth: I, with body and soul, was assumed to the Divinity!
Hear now how much my Son honored my name! My name is Mary, as it is said in the Gospel. When the angels hear this name, they rejoice in their mind and thank God for the great mercy that he worked through me and with me and because they see my Son’s Humanity glorified in his Divinity. Those within the fire of purgatory rejoice exceedingly, just like a sick and bedridden man does if he receives a word of comfort that pleases his soul: he is suddenly overjoyed! When the good angels hear my name, they immediately move closer to the righteous for whom they are guardians, and rejoice over their progress in good deeds and virtues.
All humans have been given both good angels for their protection, and bad angels to test them. The good angels are not separated from God; they serve the soul without leaving God. They are constantly in his sight. Yet they work to inflame and incite the soul to do good. All the demons, however, shudder with fear at the name of Mary! When they hear the name, “Mary”, they immediately release a soul out of the claws with which they had held her. Just as a bird or hawk, with its claws and beak embedded into its prey, releases it immediately if it hears a sound, but soon returns when it sees that no action follows, so do the demons – frightened when they hear my name – release the soul. But they return and fly back as fast as an arrow if no improvement follows.
No one is so cold in his love of God (unless he is damned) that he will not experience the devil releasing him from his habitual sins if only he invokes my name with the true intention of never returning to his evil deeds. The devil will never return to him unless he resumes the will to commit mortal sins. Sometimes, though, the devil is allowed to trouble him for the sake of his greater reward. However, the devil shall never own him.
The words of Virgin Mary to her daughter, presenting a useful lesson about how she should live, and describing many wonderful things about the suffering of Christ.
“I am the Queen of Heaven, the Mother of God. I told you to wear a brooch on your chest. I will now show you more fully how, from the beginning, when I first heard and understood that God existed, I always, and with fear, was concerned about my salvation and my observance of his commandments. But when I learned more about God – that he was my Creator and the judge of all my actions – I loved him more dearly, and I was constantly fearful and watchful so as to not offend him by word or deed.
Later, when I heard that he had given the Law and the commandments to the people and worked such great miracles through them, I made a firm decision in my soul to never love anything but him, and all worldly things became most bitter to me. When still later I heard that God himself would redeem the world and be born of a Virgin, I was seized by such great love for him that I thought of nothing but God and desired nothing but him. I withdrew myself, as much as I was able, from the conversation and presence of parents and friends, and I gave away all my possessions to the poor, and kept nothing for myself but meager food and clothing.
Nothing was pleasing to me but God! I always wished in my heart to live until the time of his birth, and perhaps, deserve to become the unworthy handmaid of the Mother of God. I also promised in my heart to keep my virginity, if this was acceptable to him, and to have no possessions in the world. However, if God wanted otherwise, my will was that his will, not mine, be done; for I believed that he could do all things and wanted nothing but what was beneficial and best for me. Therefore, I entrusted all my will to him.
When the time approached for the virgins to be presented in the temple of the Lord, I was also among them due to the devout compliance of my parents to the Law. I thought to myself that nothing was impossible for God, and since he knew that I wanted and desired nothing but him, I knew that he could protect my virginity, if it pleased him. However, if not, I wanted his will to be done. After I had heard all the commandments in the temple, I returned home, burning even more now than ever before with the love of God, being inflamed daily with new fires and desires of love.
For this reason, I withdrew myself even more from everyone, and was alone day and night, fearing greatly, and most of all, that my mouth should say anything, or my ears hear anything against the will of my God, or that my eyes see anything alluring or harmful. I was also afraid in the silence, and very worried that I might be silent about things of which I should, instead, have spoken.
While I was worried in my heart like this, alone by myself and placing all my hope in God, an inspiration about God’s great power came over me, and I recalled how the angels and everything created serve him, and how his glory is indescribable and unlimited. While I was thus fascinated by this thought, I saw three wonderful things: I saw a star, but not the kind that shines in the sky; I saw a light, but not the kind that shines in this world; I smelled a fragrance, but not of herbs or anything else of this world. It was most delightful and truly indescribable, and it filled me up so completely that I jubilated with joy!
After this, I immediately heard a voice – but not from a human mouth – and when I heard it, I shuddered with the great fear that it might be an illusion, or a mockery by an evil spirit. But shortly after this, an angel of God appeared before me; he was like the most handsome of men, but not in the flesh as is the body of a created man, and he said to me: ‘Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with thee!’ When I heard this, I wondered what he meant and why he had come to me with such a greeting, for I knew and believed that I was unworthy of any such thing – or any good thing! However, I also knew that nothing is impossible for God, if he desires it.
Then the angel spoke again: ‘The child to be born in you is holy and will be called the Son of God. May his will be done as it pleases him.’ But, not even then did I consider myself worthy, and I did not ask the angel why, or when, this would happen. Instead I asked him how it could be that I, an unworthy maiden, who did not know any man, should become the Mother of God. The angel answered me (as I have just said): ‘Nothing is impossible for God, for whatever he wants to do will be done.’
When I had heard these words of the angel, I felt the most fervent desire to become the Mother of God, and my soul spoke out of love and desire, saying: ‘See, here I am; your will be done in me!’ With these words, my Son was conceived in my womb to the indescribable joy of my soul and my every limb! While I had him in my womb, I bore him without any pain, without any heaviness or discomfort. I humbled myself in all things, knowing that he whom I bore was the Almighty!
When I gave birth to him, it was also without any pain or sin, just as I had conceived him, but with such exaltation and joy of soul and body that my feet did not feel the ground where they had been standing because of this indescribable joy! Just as he had entered my limbs to the joy of all my soul, he left my body, leaving my virginity intact, and my soul and whole body in a state of indescribable joy and jubilation.
When I gazed upon and contemplated his beauty, joy seeped through my soul like dewdrops and I knew myself to be unworthy of such a son. But when I considered the places where (as I had learned from the predictions of the prophets) nails would be pierced through his hands and feet at the crucifixion, my eyes filled with tears and my heart was almost torn apart by sorrow.
When my Son saw my weeping eyes, he became almost deathly saddened. However, when I considered his divine power, I was consoled again in knowing that this was what he wanted and that it should happen in this way, and I joined all my will to his. So my joy was always mixed with sorrow.
When the time of my Son’s suffering arrived, his enemies seized him and struck him on the cheek and neck, spat at him and ridiculed him. Then he was led to the pillar of torture where he voluntarily removed his clothes and placed his hands around the pillar, and his enemies then mercilessly bound them. When he stood bound at the pillar, he had no covering at all, but stood naked as he had been born, suffering the shame of his nakedness.
Then all my Son’s friends fled from him, and his enemies came together from all directions and stood there, scourging his body, which was pure from every stain and sin. I was standing nearby, and at the very first lashing, I fell down as if I were dead. When I regained consciousness, I saw his body whipped and scourged so badly that the ribs were visible! What was even more terrible – when the whip was pulled out, his flesh was furrowed and torn by it, just as the earth is by a plough! As my Son was standing there, all bloody and wounded, so that no place could be found on him that was still intact and no sound spot could be scourged, then someone present there, aroused in spirit, asked: ‘Are you going to kill him before he is even judged?’ And he cut off his bonds immediately.
Then my Son put his clothes back on, and I saw that the place where he had been standing was filled with blood! By observing my Son’s footprints, I could see where he had walked because the ground was bloody there as well. They did not even wait for him to get dressed, but pushed and dragged him to make him hurry up. While my Son was being led away like a robber, he wiped the blood from his eyes. When he had been sentenced to death, they placed the cross on him so that he could carry it to the place of suffering. When he had carried it for a while, a man came along and took the cross to carry it for him. As my Son was going to the place of suffering, some people hit him on the neck, while others hit him in the face. He was so brutally and forcefully beaten that, although I did not see who hit him, I heard the sound of the blow clearly. When I reached the place of suffering with him, I saw all the instruments of his death lying there ready. When my Son got there, he took off his clothes by himself.
The executioners and the crucifiers said to each other: ‘These are our clothes! He will not get them back because he is condemned to death!’ As my Son was standing there, naked as he had been born, a man came running up and handed him a cloth with which he joyfully covered his private parts. Then the cruel executioners seized him and stretched him out on the cross. First, they fastened his right hand to the wooden beam (which was fashioned with holes for the nails), piercing the hand at the place where the bone was most solid and firm. Then they pulled out his other hand with a rope and fastened it, in a similar way, to the beam. Next they crucified the right foot – with the left foot on top of it – with two nails, so that all his sinews and veins were stretched so much that they burst. After they had done this, they put the crown of thorns on his head. It cut into my Son’s venerable head so deeply that his eyes were filled with blood as it flowed down, his ears were blocked by it, and his beard was totally soaked with it. As he stood there, so bloody and pierced, he felt sorry for me, for I was standing nearby and crying. Looking with his blood-filled eyes upon my nephew, John, he commended me to his care. At that moment I heard some people saying that my Son was a robber! Others said that he was a liar, and others that no one deserved to die more than did my Son!
My sorrow was renewed from hearing all this. And, as I said before, when the first nail was driven into him, I became overwhelmed by the sound of the first strike and fell down as if dead with darkened eyes, trembling hands, and faltering legs. In my bitter pain and great sorrow, I was not able to look up again until he had been completely nailed to the cross. But when I got up, I saw my Son hanging pitifully, and I, his most sorrowful Mother, was so grieved and heartbroken that I could barely stand up because of my great and bitter sorrow. When my Son saw me and his friends in inconsolable tears, he called out with a loud and sorrowful voice to his Father, saying: ‘Father, why have you forsaken me?’ It was as if he wanted to say: ‘There is no one who pities me but you, Father.’
By this time, his eyes seemed half-dead. His cheeks were sunken, his face was sorrowful, his mouth open, and his tongue was bloody. His stomach was pressed in towards his back because of all the liquid that had been lost. It was as if he had no intestines. All of his body was pale and languid because of the loss of blood. His hands and feet were very rigidly outstretched, for they had been extended and made to conform to the shape of the cross. His beard and hair were completely soaked with blood. When my Son stood there so bruised and pale blue, only his heart was still vigorous, for it was of the best and strongest nature. He had taken from my flesh the most pure and well-wrought body. His skin was so thin and tender that blood flowed out of it instantly if he was scourged even slightly. His blood was so fresh that it could be seen inside the pure skin. And because he had the very best constitution, life contended with death in his pierced body. Sometimes the pain from his pierced limbs and sinews rose up to his heart, which was still completely vigorous and unhurt and tormented it with the most unendurable pain and suffering. Sometimes the pain descended from his heart into his wounded limbs and, in so doing, prolonged his bitter death.
Surrounded by these pains, my Son beheld his weeping friends who, with his help, would rather have suffered his pain themselves or have burned in hell for all time than to see him tortured in this way. His sorrow over his friends’ sorrow exceeded all the bitterness and grief which he had endured in body and heart, for he loved them so tenderly. Then, out of the exceedingly great suffering and anguish of his body, he cried out on account of his Manhood to the Father: ‘Father, into your hands I commend my spirit.’ When I, his most sorrowful Mother heard his voice, my whole body trembled in the bitter pain of my heart. As often as I later thought on this cry, it was as if still present and fresh in my ears.
When his death drew near, his heart burst because of the violence of the pain. His whole body convulsed, and his head raised itself a little, and then dropped down again. His mouth was open and his tongue was completely bloody. His hands retracted a little from the place of the nail holes, and his feet were made to bear more of the weight of his body. His fingers and arms were stretched out somewhat, and his back was tightly pressed against the cross.
Then some people said to me: ‘Your Son is dead, Mary!’ But others said: ‘He is dead, but he will rise again.’ When everyone was going away, a man came and thrust his spear into his side so forcefully that it almost went out the other side! When the spear was pulled out, its point appeared to be red with blood. It seemed to me then, when I saw my beloved Son’s heart pierced, that my own heart had been pierced as well!
Then he was taken down from the cross and I received his body onto my lap. He looked like a leper, and was completely covered with bruises and blood. His eyes were lifeless and filled with blood, his mouth as cold as ice, his beard like string, his face paralyzed, and his hands were so stiffened that they could not be bent over his chest, but only over his stomach, near the navel. I had him on my knee just as he had been on the cross: stiffened in all his limbs.
After this, they laid him in a clean linen cloth and I dried his limbs with my own linen cloth and closed his eyes and mouth, which he had opened when he died. Then they laid him in the grave. I would willingly have been placed alive in the grave with my Son if it had been his will! When these things were done, good John came and brought me home. Behold, my daughter, what my Son has endured for you, and love him with all your heart!
 Explanation from Book 7 – Chapter 15: “Then the crown of thorns, which they had removed from his head when he was being crucified, they now put back, fitting it onto his most holy head. It pricked his awesome head with such force that then and there his eyes were filled with flowing blood and his ears were obstructed.”
Our Lord Jesus Christ’s words to His bride about how He willingly delivered himself up to be crucified by His enemies, and about the way to be abstinent in all members of the body from all illicit movements after His most sweet example of suffering.
The Son of God spoke to his bride, saying: “I am the Creator of the heavens and the earth and all the things that are in them, and it is my true body that is consecrated on the altar. Love me with all your heart, for I have loved you, and I delivered myself up to my enemies willingly, while my friends and my Mother remained in the most bitter sorrow and weeping. When I saw the spear, the nails, the whips, and the other instruments of torture there ready, I still went on, no less joyful, to suffer. And when my head was bleeding on all sides from the crown of thorns, and the blood was flowing on all sides, then, even if my enemies had gotten hold of my heart, I would have, still, rather allowed it to be wounded and torn asunder than lose you. For that reason, you are extremely ungrateful, if you do not love me for such a great love.
For if my head was pierced and bent down on the cross for your sake, your head should be bent down toward humility. Since my eyes were filled with blood and tears, your eyes should abstain from pleasurable sights. Since my ears were filled with blood and had to hear blasphemous and scornful words, your ears should be turned away from frivolous and foolish talk. Since my mouth was given the most bitter drink and was denied the good one, you should keep closed your mouth from all evil and open it for good. Since my hands were outstretched and pierced by nails, your deeds, which are symbolized by the hands, should be stretched out to the poor and to my commandments. Your feet, in other words, the desire with which you should walk to me, should be crucified and abstain from all evil lusts. As I have suffered in all my limbs, so may all your limbs be ready for my service. For I demand more service of you than of other people, since I have granted more mercy to you.”
About how an angel prays for the bride of God, and how Christ asks the angel what it is that he prays for the bride and what is good for her.
The good angel that was the guardian of the bride appeared praying to Christ for her. Our Lord answered the angel and said: “One who wants to pray for another should pray for the other’s health and salvation. You are like a fire that is never extinguished, constantly burning with my love. You see and know all things when you see me. You want nothing but what I want. Therefore tell me, what is good for this new bride of mine?” The angel answered: “Lord, you know all things.” The Lord said to him: “In truth, all that has been or will be is eternally in me. I know and understand all things in heaven and on earth and there is no change in me. But so that the bride may understand my will, tell me now while she is listening what is good for her.” The angel said: “She has a proud and arrogant heart and therefore a cane is needed for her so that she may be tamed.” Then our Lord said: “What then do you ask for her, my friend?” The angel said: “My Lord, I beg for your mercy with the rod.” Our Lord said: “For your sake, I will do so with her, that I never practice justice without mercy. Therefore, my bride should love me with all her heart and with a good will.”
About how the enemy of God has three devils in himself and about the terrifying judgment passed on him by Christ.
“My enemy has three devils in himself. The first sits in his sexual organ, the second in his heart, the third in his mouth. The first is like a skipper who lets water in through the keel; the water, rises by increasing gradually, and then fills up all of the ship. Then the water floods over and the ship sinks down. This ship is his body that is harassed by the temptations of devils and by his own lusts as though by tempestuous waves.
First, the evil lust entered into his body through the keel, that is, through the evil desire with which he took delight in bad thoughts. And since he did not resist through repentance and penance and did not repair his body’s ship with the nails of abstinence, the water of lust increased daily while he gave his consent to evil. Then the belly of the ship filled with evil desires, and the water flooded over and drowned the ship with lust so that it was unable to reach the haven of salvation.
The second devil sits in his heart and is like a worm lying inside an apple. The worm first eats the core of the apple and then leaves its filth there and crawls around inside the whole apple until it is completely useless. This is what the devil does: First, he destroys the man’s will and good desires, which are like the core where all the soul’s strength and all goodness reside, and when the heart has been emptied of these goods, the devil then leaves in their place in his heart worldly thoughts and desires that he had loved more. The devil now drives his body to what pleases him, and for this reason, his strength and understanding are diminished and he begins to hate life. This man is indeed an apple without a core, that is to say, a man without a heart, for he enters my church without a heart since he has no love of God.
The third devil is like an archer who looks out through the windows and shoots at the careless. How can the devil not be in him who never speaks without mentioning the devil? That which is loved more is mentioned more often. His bitter words, with which he hurts others, are like arrows shot through as many windows as the number of times the devil is mentioned, and innocent people take offense at his words.
Therefore do I, who am the Truth, swear by my truth that I shall condemn him like a whore to the sulfurous fire, like a deceitful traitor to the mutilation of all his limbs and like a scoffer of the Lord to eternal shame! However, as long as his soul and body are united, my mercy stands ready for him. What I demand of him is that he should attend the divine services and prayers more often, not to fear any humiliation or desire any honor, and that evil or bad words will never be mentioned by his mouth.
This man was an abbot of the Cistercian order. He buried an excommunicated person. When he had read the last funeral prayer over him, Saint Bridget heard in ecstasy of spirit the following words of our Lord: “This man did as he should not have done and buried an excommunicated man. But now you should know and be sure that he is the one that is going to be buried first after the departed. For he sinned against the Father, who told us to never show respect to persons against justice or to honor the rich unjustly. But he honored the unworthy for a small perishable thing and laid him among the worthy, as he should not have done. He also sinned against the Holy Spirit, who is the communion and fellowship of the righteous, when he buried an unrighteous man with the good and righteous. He also sinned against me, the Son, for I have said: “The one who rejects me shall be rejected.” But this man honored and exalted the one whom my church and my Vicar had rejected.” When the abbot heard these words, he was stricken with remorse and repented from his sins and then died on the fourth day.
The words of Christ to his bride about the method and the veneration she should maintain in prayer, and about the three kinds of people who serve God in this world.
“I am your God who was crucified on the cross; true God and true man in one person who is present everyday in the hands of the priest. When you pray any prayer to me, always end your prayer with the intention that my will always shall be done and not yours. For when you pray for the already condemned, I do not hear you. Sometimes you also pray for some things that are against your own welfare and that is why it is necessary for you to entrust your will to me, for I know all things and do not provide you with anything but what is beneficial. Many pray without the right intention and that is why they do not deserve to be heard.
There are three kinds of people who serve me in this world: The first are those who believe me to be God, the Creator and giver of all things and mighty ruler over everything. They serve me with the intention of gaining honor and worldly things, but the things of heaven are considered as nothing to them so that they would gladly do without it if they, instead, could gain the perishable and present things. According to their desire, worldly pleasure falls to them in everything and so they lose the eternal things, but I recompense them with worldly benefits for all the good things they have done for my sake right down to the last farthing and the very last moment.
The second are those who believe me to be God almighty and a strict judge, and these serve me because of fear of punishment but not out of love for the heavenly glory. If they were not afraid of suffering, they would not serve me.
The third are those who believe me to be the Creator of all things and true God and who believe me to be just and merciful. These do not serve me because of any fear of punishment but because of divine love and charity. Rather, they would prefer and endure every punishment, if they could bear it, than to even once provoke me to wrath. These truly deserve to be heard in their prayers, for their will is according to my will.
But the ones who belong to the first kind shall never escape from the place of punishment and torment or get to see my face. The ones who belong to the second kind shall not be punished and tormented as much, but will still be unable to see my face, unless he corrects his fear through penitence and amendment.
The words of Christ to his bride wherein he describes himself as a great king, and about the two treasuries symbolizing the love of God and the love of the world, and a teaching about how to proceed and improve in this life.
“I am like a great and mighty king. Four things belong to a king: First, he must be rich; second, generous; third, wise and fourth, charitable. I am in truth the King of the angels and of all Humanity. I also have those four qualities that I mentioned: First, I am the richest of all, for I give to everyone according to their needs but possess after this donation not less than before. Second, I am the most generous, since I am ready to give to anyone who prays with love for my mercy. Third, I am the wisest of all, since I know what is best for each and everyone. And fourth, I am charitable, since I am more ready to give than anyone is to ask.
I have, as it were, two treasuries. The first treasury stores heavy things as lead, and the house where they are stored is surrounded with sharp and stinging spikes. But to the one who first begins to turn and roll these heavy things, and then learns how to carry them, they seem as light as feathers. And so the things that before looked heavy, become very light, and the things that before were thought to be bitter and stinging, become sweet. The second treasury stores things that seem to be like shining gold with precious stones and delicious drinks. But the gold is really filth and the drinks are poison. There are two ways into these treasuries, even though there used to be only one way.
At the crossroads, that is, at the beginning of these two ways, there stood a man who cried out to three men who were walking on a different way, and he said: ‘Hear, hear my words! But if you do not want to hear with your ears, then at least see with your eyes that what I say is true. But if you do not want hear or see, then at least use your hands to touch and prove that my words are true and not false.’ Then the first of them said: ‘Let us hear and see if his words are true.’ The second man said: ‘All he says is false.’ The third said: ‘I know that everything he says is true, but I do not care about what he says.’
What are these two treasuries if not my love and the love of the world? There are two ways into these two treasuries: privation and a complete denial of one’s own will lead to my love, while the fleshly lust and a man’s own will lead to the love of the world. To some people, my love appears to be a heavy burden of lead, for when they should be fasting or keeping vigil in my service or restrain their flesh from sinful desires, they feel as if they are carrying heavy lead. And if they have to hear words or insults, they think it is heavy and hard, or if they must spend time in purity or prayer, it is as if they were sitting between spikes or thorns and they worry every moment.
The one who wants to remain in my love should first begin to lift and turn the burden over, that is, he should attempt to do the good through his good will and constant desire. Then he should gradually lift the burden a little, that is, do the good he can do, thinking thus to himself: ‘This I can do well if God gives me his help and grace.’ Then he may persevere in the undertaken task and with great joy bear that which before seemed heavy to him so that every trouble in fasts and vigils or any other trouble will seem to be as light as feathers to him.
My friends rest in such a place, which, to the wicked and lazy, seems to be surrounded with things like spikes and thorns, but to my friends it is as the highest peace and soft as roses. The right way into this treasury is to deny and despise your own will, which happens when a man contemplates my suffering and my love, and does not care about his own will or lust but resists it with all his power and might and constantly strives for the things that are higher and better. And although this way is somewhat heavy in the beginning, it pleases so much in the continuation of it that the things that before seemed impossible to bear later become very light, so that he can rightfully say to himself: ‘The yoke and work of God is good and sweet.’
The second treasury is the world. In it there are gold, precious stones, and drinks that seem delicious and pleasant-smelling but are bitter as poison when they are tasted. Each and everyone who carries and owns this gold, must – when his body is weakened and his limbs lose their strength, when his marrow is wasted and his body falls dead to the ground – leave the gold and the precious stones behind for they are of no more use to him than filth. And the drinks of the world, that is, her delights, seem delicious, but once in the stomach, they make the heart heavy and the head weak and ruin the body, and then man dries and withers away like grass, and when the pangs of death approach, all these pleasures become as bitter as poison. The way leading to this treasury is his self-will and lust, whenever a man does not care about resisting his evil desires and does not contemplate on what I have commanded or done, but immediately does whatever comes to mind, whether it may be licit or not.
Three men are walking on this way, and by these I mean all evil and unrighteous men who love the world and all their self-will. I cried out to these three men as I stood at the crossroads or the beginning of the ways, for when I came to the world in human flesh and body, I showed mankind two ways, as it were, namely, the one to follow and the one to avoid, in other words, the way leading to life and the one to death. For before my coming in the flesh, there was only one way, and on it, all men – good and bad – wandered toward hell.
I am the one who cried out, and my cry was this: ‘People, hear my words that lead to the way of life, for they are true! Use your senses to understand that what I say is true. If you do not want to hear my words or cannot listen to them, then at least see them, that is, with faith and reason, see that my words are true. For just as something visible can be discerned with the eyes of the flesh, so too can invisible things be discerned and believed by the eyes of faith. There are many simple men in the Church and Christendom who do few good deeds but still are saved through their faith wherein they believe me to be the Creator of all things and the Redeemer of souls. There is no one who cannot understand and believe that I am God, if he considers how the earth bears fruit and how the heavens give rain, how the trees bloom, how each and every animal exists in its own kind, how the stars serve man, and how troubles and sorrows come and often happen against the will of man. From all these things, man can see that he is mortal and that it is God who arranges and directs all these things. For if God did not exist, everything would be disorganized. Thus, all things are of God, and everything is rationally arranged for the use and knowledge of mankind. And there is not the least little thing that is created or exists in the world without reasonable cause.
So, if a man cannot understand or comprehend my virtues and powers as they are because of his weakness, he can still see them with faith and believe. But if you people in the world do not want to use your reason to consider my power, you can still use your hands to touch and sense the deeds that I and my saints have done. They are namely so obvious that no one can doubt them to be the deeds of God. Who raised the dead and gave sight to the blind if not God? Who cast out the evil devils from men if not God? What have I taught if not things beneficial for the prosperity of soul and body and easy to bear?
But what the first man said means that some people say: ‘Let us listen and test if what he says is true!’ They stand a while in my service, not for the sake of love or charity but as an experiment and to imitate others; and they do not give up their own will but exercise it along with my will. They are in a dangerous position, for they want to serve two masters, even though they can serve neither one well. When they are called, they shall be rewarded by the master that they have loved the most.
What the second man said means that some people say: ‘All his words are false and the Scripture is false.’ I am God and the Creator of all things and without me nothing has been made. I laid down the New and the Old Laws; they came out of my mouth, and there is no falsehood in them because I am the Truth. Therefore, those who say that I have spoken falsely and that the Holy Scripture is false shall never see my face; for their conscience tells them that I am truly God, since all things happen according to my will and ordination. The sky gives them light, nor can they give any light to themselves. The earth bears fruit, the air makes the earth fertile, all the animals have a specific ordinance, the devils fear and confess me to be God and righteous men suffer incredible things for their love of me. All these things they see, and yet they do not see me. They could also see me and understand my justice, if they considered and thought on how the earth swallowed the ungodly and how the fire consumed the unrighteous. So could they likewise see me in my mercy when the water flowed for the righteous out of the rock or the water of the ocean parted for them, when the fire avoided harming them or when heaven gave them food like the earth. Because they see all these things and still say I am a liar, they shall never see my face.
What the third man said means that some people say: ‘We know full well that he is the true God, but we do not care about it.’ These people will suffer and be tormented for all eternity, because they despise me, who am their God and Lord. Is it not a great contempt of them to use my good gifts but nonetheless refuse to serve me? For if they had earned these things by their own diligence and not wholly and entirely from me, their contempt would be small.
But I will give my grace to those who begin to turn over my burden, that is, to those who voluntarily and with a passionate desire attempt to do the little good they can. I will work with the people who lift my weights, that is, those who advance in good deeds day by day for the sake of my love, and I will be their strength and enlighten them so that they will want to do more good. But those who sit in the place that seems to sting them, but really is most peaceful, they work patiently day and night without tiring, increasing more and more in the ardent fire for my honor, thinking that what they do for my sake is very little. These are my most dear friends, and they are very few, since the drinks found in the other treasury are more pleasing to the others.
About how the bride perceived a saint speaking to God about a woman who was being horribly tormented by the devil and who was later delivered from him through the prayers of the glorious Virgin Mary.
The bride saw a saint speaking to God, saying: “Why is the soul of this woman so afflicted by the devil when you have redeemed her by your blood?” The devil replied instantly and said: “Because she is mine by right.” Then our Lord said: “With what right is she yours?” The devil answered: “There are two ways; one leads to the kingdom of Heaven and the other to hell. When she saw these two ways, her conscience and reason told her that she should choose my way. And since she had a free will for choosing the way that she wanted, it seemed to her more beneficial to turn her will toward committing sin, and so she began to walk on my way.
Thereafter, I deceived her with three sins: namely, gluttony, love of money, and sensuality. Consequently, I now dwell in her belly and in her nature, and I hold her with five hands. With the first hand I hold her eyes, so she will not see spiritual things. With my second hand I hold her hands, so she will not do any good deeds. With the third hand I hold her feet, so she will not walk to that which is good. With the fourth hand I hold her reason and understanding, so she will not be ashamed to sin. And with the fifth hand I hold her heart, so she will not return to the right way through remorse and penance.”
Then the Blessed Virgin Mary said to her dear Son: “My beloved Son, compel him to tell the truth about the things I want to ask him.” The Son said: “You are my Mother, you are the Queen of Heaven and the Mother of mercy, you are the consolation of the souls in purgatory and the joy of those who make their way in the world; you are the Mistress of the angels and the most Holy before God, and you are also in authority over the devil. Therefore, command this devil what you want, and he will answer you.”
Then the Holy Virgin Mary asked the devil, saying: “Tell me, devil, what intention had this woman before she entered the church?” The devil answered her: “She had an intention to abstain from sin.” Then the Virgin Mary said to the devil: “Since the will that she previously had led her to hell, tell me now, where does the will that she presently has lead her – namely, her will to abstain from sin?” The devil answered reluctantly: “This will of abstaining from sin leads her toward Heaven.”
Then the Virgin Mary said: “Because you accepted that it was your just right to lead her away from the way of the Holy Church because of her former will to sin, then it is now right and just that her present will shall lead her back to the Church and to the mercy of God. But now, devil, I will ask you another question. Tell me, what intention does she have in her present state of conscience?” The devil answered: “She has remorse in her mind for the things she has done, and great sadness, and resolves to never again commit such sins but wants to amend as much as she is able.”
Then the Virgin Mary asked the devil: “Tell me, could these three sins, namely, sensuality, gluttony, and greed, exist together in a heart at the same time as the three good deeds of remorse, sorrow, and the resolution to improve oneself?” The devil answered: “No.” The Holy Virgin Mary then said: “Therefore, tell me, which of these should flee and vanish from her heart, the three virtues or the three vices and sins; for you are saying that they cannot occupy the same heart or place together.” The devil said: “I say that the sins must give way.”
Then the Virgin Mary answered: “Therefore, the way to hell is closed to her and the way to the kingdom of Heaven is open.” Now the Holy Virgin Mary asked the devil further: “Tell me, if a robber was waiting outside the house of the bride and wanted to rob and rape her, what should the bridegroom do?” The devil answered: “If the bridegroom is good and noble-minded, he should defend her and risk his life for her life.” The Virgin Mary then said: “You are the wicked robber, and the soul is my Son’s bride, for he redeemed her with his own blood. You violated and seized her by force. But since my Son is the Bridegroom of the soul and Lord over you, then it is right for you to flee from him.”
This woman was a harlot. She wanted to return to the world because the devil tormented her day and night, so much so that he visibly pressed down her eyes, and in the sight of many, dragged her out of bed. Saint Bridget then said openly in the presence and hearing of many trustworthy men: “Move away, devil, for you have troubled and occupied this creature of God enough!” After she had said this, the woman laid a half hour as if dead with her eyes to the ground, and then she got up and said: “In truth, I saw the devil going out through the window in the most hideous of shapes, and I heard a voice saying to me: ‘You are in truth liberated from the devil, woman!’” From that moment on, this woman was delivered from all impatience and suffering and was no longer tormented by impure thoughts, and then she died a good death.
The words of our Lord Jesus Christ to his bride wherein he compares a sinner to three things: namely, an eagle, a fowler, and a fighting man.
“I am Jesus Christ who am speaking with you. I was in the womb of the Virgin as true God and true man but was, nonetheless, with the Father and controlled and ruled all things, although I was in the Virgin. This most wretched enemy of mine is like three things: First, he is like an eagle that flies in the air while other birds fly under it. Second, he is like a fowler that gently blows and plays on a pipe plastered with glue, causing the birds to be enchanted by his tunes so that they fly toward the pipe and get stuck in the glue. Third, he is like a fighting man who is first in every battle.
He is like an eagle, because in his pride he cannot tolerate anyone being over him, and he injures everyone he can reach with his claws of malice. Therefore, I will cut off the wings of his violence and pride. I will remove his malice from the earth and give him over to the unquenchable boiling kettle, which is the suffering of hell, where he will be tormented without end, if he does not better himself.
He is also like a fowler because he attracts everyone to himself with sweet words and promises, so that anyone who comes to him gets caught in damnation and perdition and can never escape from it. Therefore, the birds of hell shall destroy his eyes so that he will never see my glory but only the eternal darkness of hell. They shall cut off his ears so that he will not hear the words of my mouth. They shall inflict him with pain and bitterness from the feet to the head so that he will endure as many torments as the number of men he led to damnation.
He is also like a fighting man who is first in all evil, not willing to give way to anybody but determined to press everyone down. Therefore, he shall be first in every torment; his suffering shall always be renewed and his lament will never end. However, my mercy stands ready for him as long as his soul is with the body.
This man was a very powerful knight who hated the church and the priesthood greatly and inflicted it with insulting words. The previous revelation is about him as well as the following. The Son of God says: “O worldly knight, ask the wise about what happened to prideful Haman who despised my people. Did he not die shamefully and with great disgrace? Likewise does this man scoff at me and my friends. Just as the people of Israel did not mourn Haman’s death, so will my friends not mourn this man’s death, but he will die a most bitter death if he does not better himself.” This is what happened to him.
The words of Christ to his bride about how there should be humility in the house of God, and about how such a house signifies purity of life, and about how buildings and alms should be donated only from goods that are righteously acquired, and about how to restore wrongly acquired goods.
“In my house should all humility be, which now is completely rejected. There should be a strong wall between the men and the women, because even though I am able to defend everyone and hold them all without a wall, still, for the sake of precaution and because of the devil’s cunning, I want that a wall should separate the two dwelling-houses. It should be strong, and not very high but moderate. The windows should be very simple and clear, and the roof moderately high, so that nothing can be seen there that does not belong to humility. For those who now build houses for me are like master builders, who, when the lord or the master of the house enters into them, grab him by the hair and trample him under their feet; they raise the filth up high and trample the gold underfoot. This is what many do to me now.
They build up the filth, that is, they build up perishable and worldly things to the sky, but the souls that are more precious than all gold, they could not care any less about. If I want to go in to them through my preachers or through good thoughts, they grab me by the hair and trample me under their feet, that is, they insult me and consider my deeds and my words to be as despicable as filth. They consider themselves to be much wiser. But if they wanted to build up things for me and for my honor, they should first build up the souls to the kingdom of Heaven.
The one who wants to build my house should, with the utmost precision, take care about not letting a penny that has not been properly and justly acquired, go to the building. There are indeed many who know full well that they have wrongly acquired goods and yet are not sorry for it nor have the will of making restitution or giving it back to the people they have cheated and plundered, although they could give it back and make restitution for the injustice if they wanted. But since they know and think to themselves that they cannot keep these things forever, they give a part of their wrongly acquired goods to the churches or monasteries, as if they wanted to appease me by their gift. But the other goods that are properly acquired, they keep for their descendants. In truth, this does not please me.
The one who wants to please me with his gifts should first have the will to better and correct himself and then do the good deeds he is able to do. He should also cry and mourn over the evil things and deeds he has done and then make restitution if he can; and if he cannot, he should have the will of making restitution for the deceitfully acquired goods. Thereafter, he should take great care to never again commit such things. But if it is not possible to find anyone to give back the unlawfully acquired goods to, then he could give it to me, for I am able to pay back everyone what is theirs. If he cannot give it back but has the intention of humbling and improving himself before me with a broken heart, then I am rich enough to give it back and I can restore the property of all those who have been cheated, either now in this world or in the next to come.
I want to explain to you the meaning of the house that I want to build. This house is the life of purity, and I myself, who created all things and through whom all has been made and exists, am its foundation. There are four walls in this house. The first is my justice, by which I will judge those who are adversarial to this house. The second wall is the wisdom by which I will enlighten the builders of this house with my knowledge and understanding. The third wall is my power, by which I will strengthen them against the temptations of the devil. The fourth wall is my mercy, which receives everyone who prays for it. In this wall is the door of grace through which all, who pray for it, are accepted in. The roof of this house is the love with which I cover the sins of those who love me so that they will not be judged for their sins. The window of the roof, whereby the sun enters, is the thought and consideration of my mercy, and through it the warmth of my Divinity is let in to the builders of the house. But that the wall should be strong and big means that no one is able to undermine my words or overthrow them. That the wall should be moderately high means that my wisdom can be understood and perceived in part, but never fully. The simple but clear windows mean that my words are simple, yet through them the light of divine knowledge is let into the world. The moderately high roof means that my words shall be revealed, not in an incomprehensible way, but in an understandable way that one may easily perceive and comprehend.
The words of our God and Creator to his bride about the splendor of his power, wisdom, and virtue, and about how those who are now called powerful and wise, sin the most against him.
“I am the Creator of the heavens and the earth. I have three qualities: I am most mighty, most wise, and most virtuous. I am namely so mighty that all the angels in Heaven honor me, the demons in hell dare not look upon me, and all the elements obey my command. I am also so wise that no one can fathom or understand my wisdom, and I have so great insight that I know all that has been and will come to be. I am thereto so rational that not the least little worm or any other animal, no matter how ugly it may seem, has been made without a cause. I am also so virtuous that all good flows from me as from a good spring, and all sweetness emanates from me as from a good wine. Therefore, no one can be mighty, wise, or virtuous without me.
And therefore do the mighty men of the world sin against me very much, for I gave them strength and power so they could honor and glorify me; but they awarded the honor to themselves, as if they had it from themselves. These miserable wretches do not realize their own powerlessness: for if I were to send them the least sickness, they would immediately wither away and everything would become worthless to them. How then could they be able to withstand my strength and power or the eternal torments? But even more do those, who are now said to be wiser than others, sin against me. For I gave them mental powers, understanding, and wisdom so they would love me, but they do not want to understand anything other than that which is to their own temporal benefit and greed. They have their eyes in the back of their head and look only to their own lusts and pleasures, and they are so blind in serving me that they do not give thanks to me, who gave them everything. For no one, neither good nor bad, could feel and understand anything without me, although I allow the wicked to turn their will to their desires. Moreover, no one can be virtuous without me.
Therefore, I could now use the words of the proverb that everyone commonly cites: ‘The patient man is despised by everyone.’ So am I now considered by mankind to be utterly foolish for my patience, and that is why I am despised by everyone. But woe to them, when my time of patience is over and they will come to know my judgment! They will then be like mud before me that falls down to the deepest depths and does not stop until it comes down to the lowest part of hell.
The Virgin Mother’s and the Son’s pleasant dialogue with each other and with the bride, and about how the bride should prepare herself for the wedding.
The Mother of God, the Virgin Mary appeared saying to her Son: “O my Son, you are the King of glory. You are Lord over all lords. You created heaven and earth and all the things in them. Therefore, may your every desire be done, may all your will be done!”
The Son answered: “It is an ancient proverb that says that what a youth learns in his youth, he preserves in his old age. So have also you, my dear Mother, from your youth learned to follow my will and to surrender all your will for my sake. Therefore you did well to say: ‘May your will be done.’ You are like precious gold that is laid on a hard anvil and hammered, for you were hammered with every kind of tribulation, and through my suffering you endured more pain than anyone before. For when my heart burst from the violent pain and bitterness on the cross, your heart was also wounded as if by the sharpest steel, and you would have willingly let it be cut into pieces, had that been my will. But even if you had been able to stop my suffering and wished for my life, still you did not want to if it was not my will. Therefore you did well to say: ‘Your will be done.’
Thereafter, the Virgin Mary said to the bride of God: “My Son’s bride, love my Son, for he loves you, and honor his saints who stand in his presence, for they are like countless stars whose light and brilliance cannot be compared to any worldly light. Just like the light of the world differs from darkness, yet even more does the light of the saints differ from the light of this world. In truth, I tell you that if the saints were seen in their brightness as they really are, no human eye could set eyes on them or endure it without losing their sight and life.”
Thereafter, the Son of God spoke to his bride and said: “My bride, you should have four qualities: First, you should be ready for the wedding of my Divinity wherein no fleshly lusts are found, but only the most sweet spiritual desire, the one that is becoming for God to have with a chaste soul. The love for your children, your friends, or your temporal belongings should not draw you away from my love. May it not happen to you what happened to those foolish virgins who were not ready when the Lord wanted to call them to the wedding and were therefore excluded.
Second, you should believe my words, for I am the Truth, and from my mouth has never anything come but truth, and nobody can find anything other than truth in my words. Sometimes I have a spiritual meaning with what I am saying, and sometimes I expressly mean what the words say, and my words should then be understood as they are, without any interpretation. Therefore, no one can justly accuse me of lying.
Third, you should be obedient in order for you to do righteous penance and reparation in all the limbs with which you sinned; for even though I am merciful, I do not forego justice. Therefore, obey with humility and gladness those whom you are charged to obey, so that you do not do even the things which seem beneficial and reasonable to you if it goes against obedience. For it is better to surrender your own will for the sake of obedience, even if it is good, and to follow the will of your superior, as long as it does not go against the salvation of the soul or is unreasonable in any other way.
Fourth, you should be humble, for you are united in a spiritual marriage. Thus, you should be humble and modest at the arrival of your bridegroom. Your handmaid should be sober and restrained, which means that your body should be abstinent from all superfluous things and well disciplined. For you will become fruitful with spiritual offspring for the benefit and good of many, just as a shoot is grafted onto a dry stem and makes the stem begin to blossom; so through my grace you shall bear fruit and blossom. My grace will gladden and intoxicate you, and the whole host of Heaven will rejoice because of the sweet wine I will give you. You must not lack trust in my goodness.
I assure you that just as Zechariah and Elizabeth rejoiced in their souls with an unspeakable joy over the promise of a future child, you too, shall rejoice over my grace that I want to give you, and thereto, others will rejoice through you. With these two, Zechariah and Elizabeth, an angel spoke; but I, the God and Creator of the angels, want to speak to you. These two, Zechariah and Elizabeth, gave birth to my most dear friend John, but I want many sons to be born to me through you, not of the flesh but of the spirit. In truth, I tell you, John was like a tube or flower full of sweetness and honey, for never did anything unclean or superfluous enter his mouth, and he never received the necessities of life over the limits of what he needed. And semen never went out of his body and that is why he can rightly be called an angel and a virgin for the divine life that he lived.”
The Bridegroom’s words to his bride found in the most delightful parable about a sorcerer by which the devil is ingeniously signified and described.
The Bridegroom of the kingdom of Heaven, Jesus, spoke to his bride in a parable presenting the example of a frog and said: “Once there was a sorcerer who had the most shining gold. A simple and mild man came to him and wanted to buy this gold from him. The sorcerer said to the simple man: ‘You will not receive this gold, unless you give me better gold and in larger quantity.’ The man said: ‘I have such a great desire for your gold that I will give you what you want rather than losing it.’ He then gave the sorcerer better gold and in larger quantity and received the shining gold from him and put it in a casket, thinking of making himself a ring from it for his finger.
After a short time, the sorcerer approached that simple man and said: ‘The gold you bought from me and laid in your casket is not gold, as you thought, but the most ugly frog. It has been fostered in my chest and fed with my food. And in order for you to test and know that this is true, you may open the casket and you will see how the frog will jump to my chest where it was fostered.’ When the man wanted to open it and find out if it was true, the frog appeared in the casket. The cover of the casket was hanging on four hinges that were about to break and fall off soon. Immediately when the cover of the casket was opened, the frog saw the sorcerer and jumped into his chest.
When the servants and friends of the simple man saw this, they said to him: ‘Lord, this most fine gold is in the frog, and if you want, you can easily get the gold.’ The man said: ‘How can I get it?’ They replied: ‘If someone took a sharp and heated spear and thrust it into the hollow part of the frog’s back, he would quickly get the gold out. But if he cannot find any hollow in the frog, he should then, with the greatest force and effort, thrust his spear into it, and this is how you will get back the gold you bought.’
Who is this sorcerer if not the devil, inciting and counseling mankind to fleshly lusts and honor, which are nothing else but vanity and destruction? He promises that what is false is true and makes what is true seem to be false. He possesses this most precious gold, namely, the soul, who I, through my divine power, created more precious than all the stars and planets. I created it immortal and imperishable and more pleasing to me than everything else and I prepared for her an eternal resting place with me. I bought her from the violence of the devil with better and more valuable gold when I gave my own flesh for her, spotless from every sin, and suffered such a bitter torment that none of my limbs were without wounds or pain. I placed the redeemed soul in the body as in a casket, until the time when I would place her in the presence of my divine honor and glory in the kingdom of Heaven. But now, the redeemed soul of man has become like the most ugly and shameless frog, jumping in its arrogance and living in filth through its sensuality. She has taken my gold away from me, that is, all my justice.
That is why the devil rightly can say to me: ‘The gold you bought is not gold but a frog, fostered in the chest of my lust. Separate therefore the body from the soul and you shall see that she will jump directly to the chest of my lust where it was fostered.’ My answer is this: ‘Since the frog is hideous to look at, frightful to hear, and poisonous to touch, and does not bring me any good nor any pleasure or comfort but only does so for you, in whose chest she was fostered, you can have it, since she is yours by right. And when the door is opened, that is, when the soul is separated from the body, she will fly directly to you to remain with you for all eternity.’
Such is the soul of the man I am talking about to you. She is namely like the most vile frog, full of filthiness and lust, fostered in the chest of the devil. To the casket, that is, to his body, I am now coming closer through his coming death. The casket is hanging by four hinges that are about to fall off, for his body is supported by four things: namely, strength, beauty, wisdom, and sight, which are all now beginning to perish and fade for him. When his soul begins to separate from the body, she flies straightaway to the devil on whose milk it was fostered, that is, his lust, since she has forgotten my love with which I took upon myself the suffering and pain she deserved. She does not repay my love with love, and deprives me of my rightful possession, because she should love me more than anyone else since I redeemed her. But she finds a greater pleasure in the devil. The voice of her prayer is like the voice of the frog, and her appearance is abominable and hideous in my sight. Her ears will never hear my joy, and her poisoned senses will never feel my Divinity.
But, I am still merciful, and if anyone were to touch his soul, even though she is unclean, and examine her to see if there is any remorse or good will in it, and thrust a sharp and burning spear into his mind, which means the fear of my severe judgment, then he could still find my mercy, if he only would obey me. And if there is no remorse and love in him, still there is hope, if someone were to pierce him with a sharp and bitter correction and rebuked him strictly. For as long as the soul lives with the body, my mercy is open and ready for everyone.
Consider therefore how I died because of my love, and yet nobody repays me with love, but they even take from me what is mine by right; for it would be true justice if men improved their lives in proportion to the pain and suffering of their redemption. But now they want to live all the worse in proportion to the bitter pain and death I suffered when redeeming them; and the more I show them the hatefulness and ugliness of sin, the more boldly they want to sin. Behold, therefore, and consider that I do not get angry without cause, for they have changed my mercy into wrath. I redeemed them from sin, and they entangle themselves even more in sin.
But you, my bride, give me what you are obliged to give me, that is, may you keep your soul pure for me, because I died for you in order that you might keep her pure for me.”
The Mother’s most lovely question to the bride, the humble answer of the bride to the Mother, and the Mother’s useful answer to the bride, and about the improvement of good people among the evil.
The Mother of God spoke to her Son’s bride, saying: “You are my Son’s bride. Tell me what is on your mind and what you are praying for.” The bride answered: “My Lady, you know it very well, for you know all things.” Then the Holy Virgin said: “Even though I know all things, I would still like to hear you tell me while those standing here present are listening.” The bride said: “My Lady, I fear two things: First, for my sins, for which I do not cry and make amends for as I would like. Second, I am sad because your Son’s enemies are so many.”
Then the Virgin Mary answered: “In regard to the first one, I give you three cures: First, think about how all things that have spirit, such as frogs and other animals, have troubles sometimes, and yet their spirits do not live eternally but die with the body. But your soul and every human soul does live forever. Second, think about the mercy of God, because there is no man who is so sinful that his sin is not immediately forgiven, if he only prays for God’s forgiveness with an intention to better himself and with true repentance for his former sins. Third, think and visualize about how great the glory of the soul is when she lives forever with God and in God.
And regarding the second, namely, that the enemies of God are so many, I give you three cures also: First, consider that your God and your Creator and theirs is judge over them, and they will never judge him again, even though he patiently bears their malice for a time. Second, consider that they are the sons of damnation and how heavy and intolerable it will be for them to burn for all eternity in hell. They are like the most wicked servants who will lose the inheritance of the kingdom of Heaven, while the sons will partake of the inheritance. But now maybe you will say: ‘Should not one preach to them?’ Yes, of course one should preach to them! Consider how good people are often found among the evil, and that the sons of evil sometimes turn away from the good, just like the prodigal son who demanded his inheritance from his father and went away to a faraway kingdom and lived an evil life. But sometimes they are seized by remorse through the preaching and return to the Father, and they are more welcome to him then as if they had never been sinful before. Therefore, one should preach especially to them, because, even though the preacher almost only sees evil people, he, nonetheless, thinks to himself: ‘Perhaps there are some among them who will become the sons of my Lord; I will therefore preach to them.’ This kind of preacher will receive the greatest reward. Third, consider that the wicked are allowed to live as a trial for the good, so that, if they are sorrowful for the behavior of the wicked, they might be rewarded with the fruit of patience, as you will understand better by the following parable.
The rose smells sweet, is beautiful to look upon, is soft to the touch, and yet it only grows among thorns that are sharp to the touch, hideous to look upon, and do not have a pleasant scent. Similarly, good and righteous men, even though they are soft in their patience, beautiful in their virtues, and sweet smelling in their good example, still cannot become perfected or be put to the test except among the evil. Sometimes the thorn also protects the rose so that it will not be picked before it has bloomed; likewise, the evil give the good an occasion and a reason not to fall into sin, and sometimes the good are restrained by their malice so that they do not fall into immoderate cheerfulness or lust or any other sin. A wine will never become good unless it is stored in the dreg, and neither can the good and righteous remain and improve in virtues if they are not tested through afflictions and persecutions by the unrighteous. So tolerate willingly the enemies of my Son, and remember that he is their judge, and that he, if justice demanded to destroy them all, could easily exterminate them in a moment. Therefore, may you tolerate them as long as he tolerates them.”
The words of Christ to his bride about a false man, who is called an enemy of God, and about his hypocrisy and all his characteristics.
“This man appears to the people to be a well-dressed, strong, and attractive man, who is brave in his Lord’s battle, but when his helmet is removed from his head, he is ugly and disgusting to look at and is useless for work. His brain is seen to be bare. His ears are on his forehead and his eyes are in his neck. His nose is dissevered and his cheeks are altogether sunken like those of a dead man. On the right side, his chin and half of his lips have all fallen off, so that nothing is left on the right side except his throat which is seen to be all uncovered. His chest is full of swarming worms and his arms are like two snakes. The most poisonous scorpion lives in his heart. His back is like burnt coal. His intestines are stinking and rotting like pus-filled, unclean flesh. His feet are dead and useless to walk with.
I will tell you what all this signifies. On the outside he appears to people to be decorated with good habits, wisdom and bravery in the service and honor of me, but he is by no means like that. For if the helmet were removed from his head, that is, if it were shown to people how he really is spiritually in his soul, he would be uglier than all men. His brain is bare because his foolish customs and frivolity clearly demonstrate to good men that he is unworthy of such an honor. For if my wisdom pleased him, he would understand how much his honor is greater than others, thereby clothing himself in the most rigorous of conduct and divine virtues as compared to others.
The ears are on his forehead because, instead of having the humility due to his high dignity in being a light for others to teach them good things, he only wants to hear about his own praise and glory, thereby becoming so prideful that he only wants to be called great and good by everyone. He has eyes in his neck, because all his thoughts are turned to the present instead of the eternal. He thinks about how to please men and about the requirements for the needs of the flesh, but not about how he may please me and benefit souls. His nose is dissevered, since he has lost all rational discretion whereby he might see and distinguish between sin and virtue, between worldly honor and eternal honor, between worldly and eternal riches, between the short pleasures of the world and the eternal pleasures.
His cheeks are sunken, that is, all the veneration he should have for me, with the beauty of the virtues whereby he might please me, are entirely dead in the service of me: for he is ashamed to sin in front of men but not in front of me. One part of his cheekbone and lips has fallen off so that nothing remains except for his throat, for the imitation of my works and the preaching of my words, in addition to a divine and fervent prayer, have totally fallen off from him so that nothing remains in him except his gluttonous throat. But to imitate the wicked and to be involved in worldly affairs seems altogether healthy and beautiful to him.
His chest is full of worms, because in his chest, where the remembrance of my suffering and the thought and consideration of my deeds and commandments should be, there is only a care for the things of the world with the desire and greed of the world, which are like worms devouring his conscience so that he does not think of spiritual or divine things. In his heart, where I would wish to dwell and my love should be, there now sits the most evil scorpion with a stinging tail and an enticing face and tongue; because pleasing and reasonable words proceed from his mouth, but his heart is full of injustice and deceit, because he does not care if the church he is supervising gets destroyed, as long as he can fulfill his own will.
His arms are like two snakes, because in his malice he reaches out his arms to the simple-minded and calls them to himself with simplicity, but, when he gets a suitable opportunity, he causes them to fall pitifully. Like a snake, he coils himself into a ring, because he hides his malice and unrighteousness, so that barely anyone can understand his treacherous plans. He is like the most vile snake in my sight, for just as the snake is more detestable than any other animal, so is he more ugly in my sight than any other man, since he counts my justice as nothing and holds me to be as a man who is unwilling to judge righteously.
His back is like coal, but it should be like ivory since his deeds should be more mighty and pure than others in order to be able to better carry the weak through his patience and his example of a good life. But now he is like coal, because he is too impatient to endure a single word for my honor, unless he benefits from it. Yet he seems to be mighty to the world. Therefore, when he thinks he stands, he will fall, since he is as hideous and lifeless as coal before me and my saints.
His intestines stink, because his thoughts and desires smell like rotting flesh before me with a stench that no one can tolerate. Neither can any of my saints tolerate him, but everyone turns his face away from him and demands a judgment over him. His feet are dead. His two feet are his two dispositions towards me, that is, his will to make amends for the sins he has done and his will to do good deeds. But these feet are altogether dead in him, because all the marrow of love is consumed in him and nothing is left in him except the hardened bones. And in this way he stands before me. However, as long as the soul is with the body, he can find my mercy.
Saint Lawrence appeared and said: “When I was in the world, I had three things: self-purity, mercy to my neighbor, and love of God. Therefore I preached the word of God fervently, distributed the goods of the Church wisely, and suffered the scourging, fire, and death gladly. But this bishop tolerates and pretends not to notice the incontinence of the clergy, and he liberally distributes the goods of the Church to the rich and shows love only toward himself and his own friends. Therefore, I declare to him that the lightest cloud now has ascended into heaven, but dark smoke of fire overshadows it so that it cannot be seen by many. This cloud is the prayer of the Mother of God for the Holy Church. The fire of greed, ungodliness, and unrighteousness darken it so much that the mercy of the Mother of God cannot easily enter the hearts of the wretched. Therefore, let the bishop quickly turn to the divine love by correcting himself and his subordinates, admonishing them with his good example and word, and leading them to a better life. Otherwise, he will feel the hand of the judge which is his vengeance and justice, and his church will be purged by fire and the sword and afflicted by plundering and tribulation so that it will be a long time before anyone consoles her.”
God the Father’s words before the host of the kingdom of Heaven, and the answer of the Son and Mother to the Father asking for mercy for the daughter, that is, the Church.
God the Father spoke while the whole host of heaven was listening, and said: “Before you all, I complain over giving my daughter to a man who tortures her greatly and without measure, crushing her feet in the stocks so severely that all the marrow has gone out of her feet.” The Son answered him: “Father, she is the one I redeemed with my blood and espoused to myself, but now she has been brutally violated.” Then the Mother of God spoke and said: “You are my God and my Lord, and your blessed Son’s limbs were enclosed within my body, who is your true Son and my true Son. I refused you nothing on earth. Have mercy on your daughter for the sake of my prayers.”
Thereafter the angels spoke, saying: “You are our Lord and Creator; in you we possess every good thing, and we need nothing but you. We all rejoiced when your bride went forth from you, but now we are rightly sad, because she has been given into the hands of the worst man who insults her with all kinds of mocking and abuse. Have mercy on her for the sake of your great mercy, for her misery is very great, and there is no one to console and save her but you Lord, God Almighty.”
Then God the Father answered the Son, saying: “O my Son, your grievance is my grievance, your word my word, your deeds my deeds. You are in me and I am in you inseparably. Your will be done!” Then he said to the Mother of the Son: “Since you did not refuse me anything on earth, I will not refuse you anything in heaven, and your will shall be fulfilled.” Then he said to the angels: “You are my friends, and the flame of your love burns in my heart. Therefore, I shall have mercy on my daughter for the sake of your prayers.”
The words of the Creator to his bride about how His justice endures evil men for a threefold reason, and how His mercy spares the evil for a threefold reason.
“I am the Creator of the heavens and the earth. You wondered, my bride, why I am so patient with the evil. That is because I am merciful: for my justice endures and spares them for a threefold reason and my mercy spares them for a threefold reason. First, my justice endures them so that their time may be fully completed. For just as a righteous king might be asked, if he holds someone imprisoned, why he does not put them to death, and he answers: ‘Because it is not yet time for the inquisition of the court where they may be heard so that those who hear it can take greater warning.’ In this way do I tolerate the evil until the time comes for their malice to be made known to others as well. Did I not foretell the rejection of Saul and that he would be expelled from his kingdom and dethroned long before it was made known to men? And I tolerated him for a long time so that his malice would be shown and proven to others. Second, because of the few good deeds that the evil do for which they should be rewarded even down to the last farthing, there shall not be the least little good they have done for me that will go unrewarded; herein they will receive their wage for the good they have done. Third, in order to reveal God’s glory and patience. It was for this reason that I tolerated Pilate, Herod, and Judas, even though they were evil and damned. And if anyone questions why I tolerate this or that person, let him regard Judas and Pilate.
My mercy also spares the evil for a threefold reason: First, because of my great love, for their eternal torment will be long. For that reason, because of my great love, I tolerate them until the last moment so that their torment will be delayed by the long extension of time here in the world. Second, so that their nature will be consumed by the sins, because the human nature gets consumed by sin so that they would experience the bodily death more bitterly if their nature was healthier and stronger. For a healthy nature dies a more prolonged and bitter death. Third, for the improvement and strength of good people and the conversion of some of the evil. For when good and righteous people are tormented by the evil, it benefits the good and righteous since it helps them to abstain from sin or to gain greater merit.
Likewise, the evil sometimes live for the good of other evil persons. For when the evil reflect on the fall, wickedness, and heinous deeds of some people, they think to themselves and say: ‘What good does it do us to follow them or to live like them? While our Lord is so patient, it is better for us to repent.’ And in this way they sometimes return to me, because they fear to do the things those evil men did, and their conscience tells them they should not do these things. Therefore, it is said, that if someone has been stung by a scorpion, he can be cured by being anointed with the oil wherein another reptile has died. In the same way, sometimes an evil man, who sees another person who is also evil fall and beholds his unrighteousness and vanity, is struck by remorse for his sins and is cured by the mercy and grace of God.
The angelic host’s words of praise to God, and about how children would have been born if the first parents had not sinned, and about how God showed miracles to the people through Moses and also later through himself to us on his own coming; and about the breakdown of the bodily marriage in this time, and the conditions of a spiritual marriage.
The angelic host was seen standing before God, and the entire host said: “Praised and honored be you, Lord God, who are and were without end! We are your servants and we praise and honor you for a threefold reason: First, because you created us to rejoice with you and gave us an indescribable light in which to rejoice forever. Second, because all things are created and maintained by your goodness and constancy, and all things stand according to your will and remain through your word. Third, because you created mankind and took Manhood for their sake! We rejoice greatly for this Manhood, and also for your most chaste Mother who was worthy to bear you whom the heavens cannot comprehend and enclose. Therefore, your honor and blessing are above all things for the dignity of the angels that you have exalted greatly in honor. May your everlasting eternity and constancy be over all things that are and can be constant! May your love be over mankind whom you created! O Lord God, you alone should be feared for your great power, you alone should be desired for your great love, you alone should be loved for your constancy. May all praise and honor be to you forever without end. Amen!”
Then our Lord answered: “You honor me worthily for every created creature. But, tell me, why do you praise me for mankind which has provoked me to wrath more than any other creature? I created him more superior and dignified than all the lower creatures under the sky, and for none else did I suffer such indignities as for mankind and none was redeemed at so great a cost. Or what creature does not abide by its created order other than man? He inflicts me more with sorrow than any other creature. For just as I created you to praise and honor me, so I made man to honor me. I gave him a body like a spiritual temple, and I made and placed the soul in it like a beautiful angel, for the human soul has power and strength like an angel. In this temple, I, the God and Creator of mankind, wished to be like the third so that he would enjoy me and find delight in me. Then I made him another temple, similar to himself, out of his rib.
But now, my bride, for whose sake all these things are being said and shown, you might ask, how children would have been born by them if they had not sinned? I shall answer you: In truth, by the love of God and the mutual devotion and union of the flesh wherein they both would have been set on fire internally, love’s blood would have sown its seed in the woman’s body without any shameful lust, and so the woman would have become fertile. Once the child was conceived without sin and lustful desire, I would have sent a soul into the child from my divinity, and the woman would have carried the child and given birth to it without pain. When the child was born, it would have been perfect like Adam when he was first created. But this honor was despised by man when he obeyed the devil and coveted a greater honor than I had given to him. After the disobedience was enacted, my angel came over them and they were ashamed over their nakedness, and they immediately experienced the lust and desire of the flesh and suffered hunger and thirst. Then they also lost me, for when they had me, they did not feel any hunger or sinful fleshly lust or shame, but I alone was all their good and pleasure and perfect delight.
But when the devil rejoiced over their perdition and fall, I was moved with compassion for them and did not abandon them but showed them a threefold mercy: I clothed them when they were naked and gave them bread from the earth. And for the sensuality the devil had aroused in them after their disobedience, I gave and created souls in their seed through my Divinity. And all the evil the devil tempted them with, I turned to good for them entirely.
Thereafter, I showed them how to live and worship me, and I gave them permission to have relations, because before my permission and the enunciation of my will they were stricken with fear and were afraid to unite and have relations. Likewise, when Abel was killed and they were in mourning for a long time and observing abstinence, I was moved with compassion and comforted them. And when they understood my will, they began again to have relations and to procreate children, from which family I, their Creator, promised to be born. When the wickedness of the children of Adam grew, I showed my justice to the sinful, but mercy to my elect; of these I was appeased so that I kept them from destruction and raised them up, because they kept my commandments and believed in my promises.
When the time of mercy came, I showed my mighty miracles and works through Moses and saved my people according to my promise. I fed them with angel manna and went before them in a pillar of cloud and fire. I gave them my Law and revealed to them my secrets and the future through my prophets. Thereafter, I, the Creator of all things, chose for myself a virgin born of a father and mother; and from her did I take human nature and condescended to be born of her without sin. Just like the first children would have been born in paradise through the divine love of their father’s and mother’s mutual love and affection without any shameful lust, so my Divinity took Manhood from a virgin without any shameful lust and without hindering or damaging her virginity.
I came in the flesh as true God and man and fulfilled the Old Law and all the scriptures just as it earlier had been prophesied about me, and I initiated the New Law, for the Old Law was narrow and hard to bear and was nothing but a figure of future things to come. For in the Old Law it had been allowed for a man to have several wives, so that the people would not be left without any offspring or would have to intermarry with the gentiles. But in my New Law it is permitted for one man to have one wife, and it is forbidden for him during her lifetime to have several wives. Those who unite with divine love and fear for the sake of procreation and to raise children for the honor of God are my spiritual temple where I wish to dwell as the third with them.
But people in this age are joined in marriage for seven reasons: First, because of facial beauty. Second, because of wealth. Third, because of the despicable pleasure and indecent joy they get out of their impure intercourse. Fourth, because of feasts with friends and uncontrolled gluttony. Fifth, because of vanity in clothing and eating, in joking and entertainment and games and other vanities. Sixth, for the sake of procreating children but not to raise them for the honor of God or good works but for worldly riches and honor. Seventh, they come together for the sake of lust and they are like brute beasts in their lustful desires.
They come to the doors of my church with one mind and consent, but all their desires and inner thoughts are completely against me. They prefer their own will, which aims at pleasing the world, instead of my will. If all their thoughts and wishes were directed toward me, and if they entrusted their will into my hands and entered into wedlock in fear of me, then I would give them my consent and be as the third with them. But now is my consent, which should be their most precious thing, gone from them, because they have lust in their heart and not my love. Thereafter, they go up to my altar where they hear that they should be one heart and one soul, but then my heart flees from them because they have not the warmth of my heart and know not the taste of my body.
They seek the warmth and sexual lust that will perish and love the flesh that will be eaten by worms. Therefore do such people join in marriage without the bond and union of God the Father and without the Son’s love and without the Holy Spirit’s consolation. When the couple comes to the bed, my Spirit leaves them immediately and the spirit of impurity approaches instead because they only come together for the sake of lust and do not discuss or think about anything else with each other. But my mercy is still with them if they will be converted to me. Because of my great love, I place a living soul created by my power into their seed. Sometimes I let evil parents give birth to good children, but more often, evil children are born of evil parents, since these children imitate the evil and unrighteous deeds of their parents as much as they are able and would imitate it even more if my patience allowed them. Such a married couple will never see my face unless they repent. For there is no sin so heavy or grave that penitence and repentance does not wash it away.
For that reason, I wish to turn to the spiritual marriage, the kind that is appropriate for God to have with a chaste soul and chaste body. There are seven good things in it opposed to the evils mentioned above: First, there is no desire for beauty of form or bodily beauty or lustful sights, but only for the sight and love of God. Second, there is no desire to possess anything else than what is needed to survive, and just the necessities with nothing in excess. Third, they avoid vain and frivolous talk. Fourth, they do not care about seeing friends or relatives, but I am their love and desire. Fifth, they desire to keep the humility inwardly in their conscience and outwardly in the way they dress. Sixth, they never have any will of leading lustful lives. Seventh, they beget sons and daughters for their God through their good behavior and good example and through the preaching of spiritual words.
They preserve their faith undefiled when they stand outside the doors of my church where they give me their consent and I give them mine. They go up to my altar when they enjoy the spiritual delight of my Body and Blood in which delight they wish to be of one heart and one body and one will with me, and I, true God and man, mighty in heaven and on earth, shall be as the third with them and will fill their heart. The worldly spouses begin their marriage in lustful desires like brute beasts, and even worse than brute beasts! But these spiritual spouses begin in love and fear of God and do not bother to please anyone but me. The evil spirit fills and incites those in the worldly marriage to carnal lust where there is nothing but unclean stench, but those in the spiritual marriage are filled with my Spirit and inflamed with the fire of my love that will never fail them.
I am one God in three Persons, and one in Divinity with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Just as it is impossible for the Father to be separated from the Son and the Holy Spirit to be separated from them both, and as it is impossible for warmth to be separated from fire, so it is impossible for these spiritual spouses to be separated from me; I am always as the third with them. Once my body was ravaged and died in torments, but it will never more be hurt or die. Likewise, those who are incorporated into me with a true faith and a perfect will shall never die away from me; for wherever they stand or sit or walk, I am always as the third with them.”
 Natural Family Planning is sinful birth control (NFP)
Saint Caesar of Arles: “AS OFTEN AS HE KNOWS HIS WIFE WITHOUT A DESIRE FOR CHILDREN…WITHOUT A DOUBT HE COMMITS SIN.” (W. A. Jurgens, The Faith of The Early Fathers, Vol. 3: 2233)
Pope Pius XI, Casti Connubii (#’s 53-56), Dec. 31, 1930: “But no reason, however grave, may be put forward by which anything intrinsically against nature may become conformable to nature and morally good. Since, therefore, the conjugal act is destined primarily by nature for the begetting of children, those who in exercising it deliberately frustrate its natural powers and purpose sin against nature and commit a deed which is shameful and intrinsically vicious.
“Small wonder, therefore, if Holy Writ bears witness that the Divine Majesty regards with greatest detestation this horrible crime and at times has punished it with death. As St. Augustine notes, ‘Intercourse even with one’s legitimate wife is unlawful and wicked where the conception of offspring is prevented.’ Onan, the son of Judah, did this and the Lord killed him for it (Gen. 38:8-10).”
In reality, the argument against Natural Family Planning can be summed up very simply. Catholic dogma teaches us that the primary purpose of marriage (and the conjugal act) is the procreation and education of children.
Pope Pius XI, Casti Connubii (# 17), Dec. 31, 1930: “The primary end of marriage is the procreation and the education of children.”
Pope Pius XI, Casti Connubii (# 54), Dec. 31, 1930: “Since, therefore, the conjugal act is destined primarily by nature for the begetting of children, those who in exercising it deliberately frustrate its natural powers and purpose sin against nature and commit a deed which is shameful and intrinsically vicious.”
“Since, therefore, openly departing from the uninterrupted Christian tradition some recently have judged it possible solemnly to declare another doctrine regarding this question, the Catholic Church, to whom God has entrusted the defense of the integrity and purity of morals, standing erect in the midst of the moral ruin which surrounds her, in order that she may preserve the chastity of the nuptial union from being defiled by this foul stain, raises her voice in token of her divine ambassadorship and through Our mouth proclaims anew: any use whatsoever of matrimony exercised in such a way that the act is deliberately frustrated in its natural power to generate life is an offence against the law of God and of nature, and those who indulge in such are branded with the guilt of a grave sin.”
Therefore, even though NFP does not directly interfere with the marriage act itself, as its defenders love to stress, it makes no difference. NFP is condemned because it subordinates the primary end (or purpose) of marriage and the marriage act (the procreation and education of children) to the secondary ends.
NFP subordinates the primary end of marriage to other things, by deliberately attempting to avoid children (i.e., to avoid the primary end) while having marital relations. NFP therefore inverts the order established by God Himself. It does the very thing that Pope Pius XI solemnly teaches may not lawfully be done. And this point crushes all of the arguments made by those who defend NFP; because all of the arguments made by those who defend NFP focus on the marriage act itself, while they blindly ignore the fact that it makes no difference if a couple does not interfere with the act itself if they subordinate and thwart the primary PURPOSE of marriage.
Despite this Magisterial teaching which condemns Natural Family Planning, simple logic will tell Catholics that it is wrong. If the Church has condemned artificial contraception because it prevents the conception of offspring, why would it be permissible to do the same thing by means of a different method? It is as if the desire or thought to murder someone is not sinful according to NFP advocates, but only the act of murder.
In publications promoting NFP, the fertile period of the wife is sometimes classified as “not safe” and “dangerous,” as though generating new life were considered a serious breach of national security and a little infant a treacherous criminal! This is truly abominable.
Could it be more clear that those who subscribe to this type of behavior and this method shut God and children out and replace them with their own selfish agenda?
Tobias 6:17 – “The holy youth Tobias approaches his bride Sara after three days of prayer, not for fleshly lust but only for the love of posterity. Having been instructed by the Archangel Saint Raphael that to engage in the marital act he must be moved rather for love of children than for lust. For they who in such manner receive matrimony, as to shut out God from themselves, and from their mind, and to give themselves to their lust, as the horse and mule, which have not understanding, over them the Devil hath power.”
The word matrimony means “the office of motherhood.” Those who use NFP attempt to avoid matrimony (the office of motherhood) and shut out God from themselves.
Natural Family Planning also involves a lack of faith on the part of those who use and promote it. Do the couples who use NFP, or the priests who promote it, possess supernatural faith in the providence of God? Do they believe that God is the one who sends life? Does anyone have a right to have 3 children when God willed them to have 10? God is perfectly aware of each couple’s needs, and he knows precisely what they can handle. Those with the true Catholic Faith should be totally unconcerned with charts and calendars. These are all unnatural instruments which frustrate God’s will. Disregard this nonsense and accept the fact that God will not send you any children that you cannot handle. He will not burden you with anything too heavy, for His yoke is always easy and His burden always light. If NFP’ers had their way, there wouldn’t be any families with over 10 children, nor the many saints who came from these families (e.g., Saint Catherine of Siena, 23rd child of 25). Priests who promote “Natural” Family Limitation, and couples who use it, are guilty of serious sin. It is contrary to the teaching of the Church, and it is contrary to the natural law. It is an insult to the providence of God, and it is an utter lack of faith. Why will you not practice chastity instead of committing the mortal sin of NFP. True sanctification comes through the virtue of chastity! As you can read, no reason, however grave can be accepted which subordinates the primary end (or purpose) of marriage and the marriage act (the procreation and education of children) to the secondary ends.
Pope Pius XI, Casti Connubii (#’s 53-56), Dec. 31, 1930: “But no reason, however grave…”
Hell will be long for those who practice NFP against the natural law. We implore all priests and laymen to accept the Church’s teaching on this topic, and regain faith in God’s providence. If you have been convinced to believe in this abominable heresy that contradicts the natural law, repent and confess your sin immediately.
The Virgin Mary’s words to the bride about how there are three things in the dance and company of the world, and about how this world is symbolized by the dance, and about Mary’s suffering at her Son’s death.
The Virgin Mary, the Mother of God spoke to the bride and said: “My daughter, I want you to know that where there is a dance, there are three things: namely, empty joy, loud shouting, and useless and vain work. But when someone enters the dance house sorrowful or sad, then his friend, who attends in the joy of the dance sees his friend coming there sad and sorrowful, immediately leaves the joy of the dance and separates himself from the dance and mourns with his sorrowing friend.
This dance is this world that is always caught up in trouble, even though it seems like joy to foolish men. In this world there are three things: empty joy, frivolous words, and useless work, because everything that a man gathers by his work he must leave behind himself. The one who joins in this worldly dance should consider my labor and sorrow and then mourn with me, who was separated from all worldly joy, and then separate himself from the world.
At my Son’s death I was like a woman whose heart had been pierced by five spears. The first spear was his shameful and blameworthy nakedness, for I saw my most beloved and mighty Son stand naked at the pillar without any clothing to cover him at all. The second spear was the accusation against him, for they accused him of being a traitorous betrayer and liar, him, whom I knew to be righteous and true and never to have offended or wished to offend or injure anyone. The third spear was his crown of thorns that pierced his sacred head so violently that the blood flowed down into his mouth and his beard and ears. The fourth spear was his sorrowful voice on the cross with which he cried out to the Father, saying: ‘O Father, why have you abandoned me?’ It was as if he wanted to say: ‘O Father, there is no one who pities me but you.’ The fifth spear which pierced my heart, was his most bitter and cruel death. My heart was pierced with as many spears as the arteries from which his most precious blood flowed out of him. In truth, the pain in his pierced sinews, arteries, feet, hands and body went mercilessly to his heart and from the heart back to his sinews; for his heart was healthy and strong and of the finest nature, and life contended long with death; and thus his life was prolonged in the midst of the most bitter pain.
But when his death drew near and his heart burst from the unendurable pain, then his whole body shook and his head, which was bent backwards, raised itself a little. His half-closed eyes opened, and likewise his mouth was opened so that his bloodied tongue was seen. His fingers and arms, which were as if paralyzed, stretched themselves out. But when he had given up his spirit, his head sank toward his chest, his hands lowered themselves a little from the place of the wounds and his feet had to bear most of the weight of the body.
Then my hands became numb, my eyes were darkened, and my face became pale as a dead man. My ears could hear nothing, my mouth could not speak, my feet trembled, and my body fell to the ground. When I got up from the ground and saw my Son looking horribly disfigured and more miserable than a leper, I submitted my entire will to his knowing with certainty that everything had happened according to his will and could not have happened unless he had allowed it. I therefore thanked him for everything, and so there was always some joy mixed with my sadness, because I saw that he, who had never sinned, had, in his great love, wanted to suffer this much for the sins of mankind. Therefore, may all those who are in the world contemplate how I suffered when my Son died and always have it in front of their eyes and in their thoughts!”
The words of the Lord to the bride about how a man came to be judged before God’s tribunal, and about the fearsome and horrendous judgment passed on him by God and all the saints.
The bride of Christ saw God looking angry, and he said: “I am without beginning and without end. There is no change in me either of year or day, but all time in this world is like a single second or moment to me. Everyone who sees me, sees and knows and understands everything that is in me in a moment. But since you, my bride, are in a material body, you cannot perceive and understand like a spirit, and therefore, for your sake, I will explain to you what has happened.
I was seated as a judge, for all judgment has been given to me, and a man came before my judgment seat to be judged. The voice of the Father thundered and said to him: ‘Woe unto you that you ever were born!’ God did not say this because he had repented of having created him, but it was just like anyone mourning for another and feeling compassion for him. Thereafter, the voice of the Son answered saying: ‘I shed my blood for you and suffered the most bitter and harsh pain for you, but you have separated yourself entirely from it and will have nothing to do with it.’
The voice of the Holy Spirit said: ‘I have searched all the corners of his heart to see if I might find some tenderness or love in his heart, but he is as cold as ice and as hard as stone, and I have nothing to do with him.’ These three voices have not been heard audibly as if there were three gods, but they were heard for your sake, my bride, because you would not be able to understand these spiritual mysteries otherwise.
Thereafter, the three voices of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit were immediately transformed into a single voice, and this voice thundered and said: ‘By no means shall the kingdom of Heaven be given to you!’ The Mother of mercy, the Virgin Mary, was silent and did not open up her mercy, for he who was to be judged was unworthy to receive or enjoy her mercy; and all the saints cried out with one voice saying: ‘It is divine justice for him to be eternally exiled and separated from your kingdom and from your joy.’
All those who were in the fires of purgatory said: ‘No pain here is so bitter or harsh that it is enough to punish your sins; you deserve to endure much greater torments and you will therefore be severed from us.’ But then the wretched man himself cried out in a fearsome voice, saying: ‘Woe, woe for the seed that came together in my mother’s womb and from which I received my body!’ He called out a second time, saying: ‘Accursed be the moment when my soul was joined to my body and accursed be he who gave me a body and soul!’ He called out a third time: ‘Accursed be the moment when I came forth alive from the womb of my mother!’
Then came three horrendous voices against him from hell saying: ‘Come to us, accursed soul, like liquid copper draining down, to eternal death and life everlasting!’ They called out a second time: ‘Come, accursed soul, empty of all goodness, and receive our malice! For there will be none of us who will not fill you with his own malice and pain.’ They called out a third time: ‘Come, accursed soul, heavy like the stone that sinks down perpetually and never reaches the bottom where it can rest! You will sink deeper into the deep than we, so that you will not stop until you have reached the lowest part of hell.’
Then our Lord said: ‘Just like the man who had several wives who sees one of them fall away from him and turns away from her, and turns to the others who remain steadfast in his will and rejoices with them, so too have I turned my face and my mercy away from him, and I turn to my servants and rejoice with them. Therefore, when you have heard of his fall and misery, you shall serve me with so much greater sincerity and purity in proportion to the greater mercy I have shown to you. Flee the world and her desire! I did not accept such a bitter suffering for the sake of worldly glory or because I was unable to fulfill it more quickly or easily, – for I could have – but, justice demanded that because humanity sinned in every limb, so must also satisfaction be made in every limb. This was why the Divinity felt compassion for mankind, and in his burning and great love for the Virgin, assumed Manhood from her through which he would suffer all the punishment mankind was destined to suffer. Since I took your punishment upon me out of love, you should remain in true humility, just like my servants, so that you will not be ashamed before anyone and fear nothing but me. Guard your mouth in such a way that, if such were my will, you would never speak. Do not be saddened about worldly things, for they will perish, and I am able to make whomever I want rich or poor. Therefore, my bride, place all your hope in me and I will help you”
This man whose judgment is here proclaimed was a nobleman, canon and subdeacon, who received a false dispensation and married a rich virgin but was surprised by a sudden death and thus lost what he desired.
The words of the Virgin to the daughter about two wives, one of whom is called Pride and the other Humility (the latter signifying the most sweet Virgin Mary), and about how the Virgin Mary comes to meet those who love her at the moment of their death.
The Virgin Mary, the Mother of God spoke to the Son’s bride and said: “There are two wives. One of them has no special name, because she is too unworthy to have a name. The other wife is Humility, and she is called Mary. The devil himself is lord over the first wife because he has control over her. This wife’s knight said to her: ‘O my wife, I am ready to do anything I can for you, if only I can satisfy my sexual lust with you just once. I am mighty and strong and brave of heart, I fear nothing and am ready to go to my death for you.’ She answered him: ‘My servant, your love for me is great. But I am seated on a high throne, and I have only this one throne, and there are three gates between us.
The first gate is so narrow that all that a man is wearing on his body gets pulled off and torn to pieces if he enters by this gate. The second one is so sharp that it cuts through even to the very sinews of the man. The third gate is burning with such a fire that there is no escape or rest for him from its heat but, instead, anyone entering through this gate is immediately melted down like copper. In addition, I am seated so high up on my throne that anyone who wants to sit next to me – for I have only one throne – will fall down into the greatest depth under me.’ The knight answered her: ‘I will give my life for you and the fall does not bother me.’
This wife is Pride and the one who wants to come to her must go, as it were, through three gates. Through the first gate enters the one who gives all he has for human praise and for the sake of pride. And if he does not own anything, he uses all of his will to have a reason to be proud and win praise of men. Through the second gate enters the one who sacrifices all his work and everything he does, all his time and all his thoughts and all his strength so that he may fulfill his pride. And even if he could give his own flesh over to be wounded for the sake of pride and honor and riches, he would do so willingly. Through the third gate enters the one who never rests or has peace but entirely burns like fire with the thought of how he may attain some honor or something he may feel worldly pride over. But when he attains his desire, he cannot stay in the same state but falls painfully and miserably; however, pride still remains in the world.”
“But I,” Mary said, “am the one who is most humble. I am seated on a spacious throne and above me there is neither sun nor moon nor stars nor even a sky, but a wonderful and unimaginable clear light proceeding from the beauty of God’s majesty. Below me there is neither earth nor stone but only an incomparable sweet rest in God’s virtue. Around me there is neither barrier nor wall but only the glorious host of angels and holy souls. And although I am seated so high, I still hear my friends who are in the world, daily pouring out their sighs and tears to me. I view their work and their perfection to be greater than that of those who fight for their wife Pride.
I shall therefore visit them with my mercy and help and place them near me on my throne, for it is very spacious and can house everyone. But they cannot come to me or sit with me yet, for there are still two walls between us which I shall lead them securely over so that they may come to my throne. The first wall is the world, and it is narrow. Therefore, my servants in the world shall be consoled by me. The second wall is death. Therefore, I, their most dear Lady and Mother, shall come to meet them and run to them at their death, so that even in death they will feel encouraged and consoled! I will place them together with me on the throne of heavenly joy, so that they, in limitless joy, may rest eternally in the delight of God and in his sweet arms and love of eternal glory and unimaginable joy.”
The words of our loving Lord to his bride about how the many false Christians are being multiplied, and about how they are crucifying him again, and about how he is still prepared to suffer death once more for the sake of sinful people, if this were possible.
“I am the God who created all things for the benefit of man in order that all things should serve and help him. But mankind misuses all the things I created for his benefit unto his own damnation, and he cares less about God and loves him less than the created world. The Jews prepared three kinds of torture tools for my suffering: First, the wood on which I, scourged and crowned, was crucified. Second, the iron by which they pierced through my hands and feet. Third, the gall that they gave me to drink. Thereafter, they insulted me calling me a fool because of the death I gladly endured, and they called me a liar because of my teachings. Such men are now many in the world and there are very few who console me.
They crucify me on the wood through their will to sin, they scourge me through their impatience (no one can namely endure a single word for my sake) and they crown me with the thorns of their pride when they want to be raised higher and have more honor than I want them to have. They pierce my hands and feet with hardened iron when they praise their sin and harden themselves so that they should not have to fear me. As the drink of gall, they offer me sorrow. They call me a liar and a fool for the suffering which I went to and gladly endured.
I am powerful enough to kill and drown all my enemies and the entire world in one moment for the sake of their sins, if I wanted. But if I did drown them, the ones remaining would serve me out of fear, and that would not be right, because mankind should serve me out of love and not because of fear. If I myself came to them in a visible shape, their eyes would not endure to see me or their ears to hear me. For how could a mortal human endure to look upon an immortal? Truly, in my love, I would gladly die again for the sake of mankind, if it were possible.
Then the Holy Virgin Mary appeared and the Son of God said to her: “What do you wish, my chosen Mother?” And she said: “O my Son, have mercy on your creation for the sake of my love.” He answered: “I will show them my mercy once again, for your sake.” Thereafter, our Lord spoke to his bride and said: “I am your God and the Lord of the angels. I am Lord over life and death. I myself want to live in your heart. See what a great love I have for you! The heavens and the earth and all the things in them cannot contain me, and yet I want to live in your heart, which is only a little piece of flesh. Whom could you then fear or what could you need when you have inside you God Almighty in whom all good things are?
There should be three things in the heart where I live: First, there should be a bed where we may rest. Second, there should be a seat where we may sit. Third, there should be a lamp that gives us light. In your heart there should be a bed to rest in so that you can rest from evil thoughts and worldly desires and always remember and contemplate the joy of eternity. The seat should be your will of staying close to me, even if it sometimes happens that you have to go out. For it is against nature to be always standing or sitting. But the one who is always standing is the one who always has the will of being with the world and never to sit with me. The light shall be the faith by which you believe that I am able to do all things and am almighty over all things.”
About how the bride saw the most sweet Virgin Mary adorned with a crown and other adornments of indescribable beauty, and about how Saint John the Baptist explains to the bride the meaning of the crown and the other adornments.
The bride of God saw the Queen of Heaven, the Mother of God, wearing a priceless and beautiful crown on her head and her wonderfully shining and indescribably beautiful hair hanging down over her shoulders, with a golden tunic shining with an indescribable light, and a blue mantle of the color azure or a clear sky. When the bride of God, Saint Bridget, was full of wonder at such a lovely sight, and in her wonderment was standing there totally enraptured and amazed, then blessed John the Baptist appeared to her and said: “Listen closely to what all this signifies. The crown signifies that she is the Queen and Lady and Mother of the King of angels; the hair hanging down signifies that she is an unstained and pure virgin; the sky colored mantle signifies that all worldly things were as dead in her heart and will; the golden tunic signifies that she was fervent and burning in the love of God, both inwardly and outwardly. Her Son, Jesus Christ, placed seven lilies in her crown, and between the lilies he placed seven gems.
The first lily is her humility; the second lily is her fear; the third, her obedience; the fourth, her patience; the fifth, her steadfastness; the sixth, her kindness, for she is kind and gives to all who beg of her with love and a will to amend; the seventh, her mercy in difficulties, for in whatever difficulty a man may be in, if he calls on her with all his heart, he will receive mercy and help from her because she is full of compassion and mercy.
Between these shining lilies her Son placed seven precious gem stones. The first gem is her incomparable virtue, for there is no virtue in any other spirit or in any other body, which she does not have in a higher fashion. The second gem is her perfect purity, for the Queen of the kingdom of Heaven was so pure that from her first entrance into the world up to the final day of her death, not a single stain of sin was ever to be found in her; and none of all the devils could ever find enough impurity in her to fit on the head of a needle-point. She was truly the most pure, for it was not fitting for the King of glory to lie in any vessel but the purest, chosen before all angels and men and more pure than they. The third gem was her beauty, for God is praised constantly by his saints for his Mother’s beauty, and all the holy angels and holy souls are filled with joy over her beauty. The fourth precious gem in the crown is the Virgin Mother’s wisdom, for she is filled with all divine wisdom in God and all wisdom is fulfilled and perfected through her. The fifth gem is her power and might, for she is so powerful and strong with God in her that she can subdue anything that has been created. The sixth gem is her clarity, for she shines so clear that she even illuminates the angels, whose eyes are clearer than light, and the devils do not dare to look upon her clarity. The seventh gem is the fullness of every delight and joy and all spiritual sweetness, for her fullness is such that there is no joy that she does not increase, no delight that is not made fuller and more perfect by her and through the blessed vision of her, for she is filled with grace and mercy above all the holy saints. She is the most pure vessel in which the Bread of angels laid and in which all sweetness and all beauty is found.
Between the seven lilies in her crown, her Son placed these seven gemstones. Therefore may you, her Son’s bride, honor and praise her with all your heart, for she is in truth worthy of all praise and all honor with her Son!”
About how, on God’s exhortation, the bride of Christ chose poverty for herself and renounced riches and carnal behavior, and about the truth of the things revealed to her, and about three remarkable things that Christ showed her.
Our Lord said to his bride: “You should be like a person who leaves and like one who gathers. For you should leave riches and gather virtues, leave perishable things and gather eternal things, leave visible things and gather invisible. I shall namely give you the exultation of the soul instead of the pleasures of the flesh, the joy of heaven instead of the joy of the world, the honor of the angels instead of the honor of the world, the sight of God instead of the sight of your friends; I, the giver and Creator of all good things, will give you myself, instead of the possession of worldly goods.
Answer me on the three things I am going to ask you. First, do you want to be rich or poor in this world?” She answered: “O my Lord, I would rather be poor since riches do me no good; instead they bother and distract me very much and draw me away from serving you.” “Tell me, second, do you find anything reprehensible or false according to your conscience and heart in the words that you heard from my mouth?” She answered: “Certainly not, all your words are reasonable.” Our Lord said for the third time: “What delights you more, the sensual lust of the flesh you earlier had or the spiritual consolation and delight that you now have?” She answered: “I feel ashamed and disgraced in my heart to think of my earlier fleshly lust and it is now to me like poison and tastes all the more bitter in proportion to my earlier ardent love for it. I would rather die than ever return to such a lust; it cannot be compared to this spiritual delight and happiness.”
“Thus,” our Lord said, “you confess in your mind that all the things I have told you are true. Why then are you afraid and worried that I am delaying the things I told you would happen? Behold the prophets and remember the apostles and the holy teachers of the Church. Did they find anything in me except the truth? That is why they did not care about the world or the desire for it. Why else did the prophets foretell the future things so far in advance unless it was because God wanted them first to proclaim the words with the deeds coming after so that the ignorant should be taught in the faith? In truth, all the mysteries of my Holy Incarnation were proclaimed to the prophets before I assumed manhood and became man, even the star that went before the three kings. They believed the words of the prophet and deserved to see what they believed in, and they were made certain immediately after they saw the star. In the same way now, my words should first be announced so that, when the deeds come later, they will be believed more surely.
I showed you three things. First, the conscience of a man whose sin I revealed and proved to you by the most clear and evident signs. But why did I do so? Could I not have killed him myself? Or could I not have drowned him in a moment, if I wanted? Of course I could have. But, so that others may be instructed and my words revealed showing how just and patient I am and how unhappy this man is whom the devil rules, I endure him still. Because of his evil will of remaining in sin and through his sinful lust in it, the devil’s power over him has increased so much that neither gentle words nor harsh threats nor the fear of hell can make him turn back from his sin. And this is true justice too, because, since he always had the will of sinning, even though he did not fulfill his sin by deed, he rightly deserves to be handed over to the devil for all eternity. For the smallest sin, lusted after, is enough to damn anyone from the kingdom of Heaven, who does not repent.
I showed you two others. The devil tormented the body of one but was not in his soul. He darkened the other’s conscience through his intrigues and yet did not get into his soul and had no power over him. But now you might ask: ‘Is not the soul the same as the conscience? Is the devil not in the soul when he is in the conscience?’ By no means! The body has two eyes to see with, and even if they lose their sight, the body can still be healthy. So it is with the soul. For even though the reason and conscience are sometimes distracted and troubled, nevertheless, the soul does not always get hurt by the sin. And thus, the devil had power over his conscience but not over his soul.
I shall show you a third man whose soul and body are completely ruled by the devil, and unless he is forced by my power and by my special grace, he will never be expelled from the man or leave him. From some people, the devil goes out willingly and quickly, but out of others, only reluctantly and by force. For in some people the devil enters because of the sin of their parents or because of some hidden judgment of God; this happens for example with children and witless men. He enters into others because of their infidelity or for the sake of some other sin. From these, the devil goes out willingly if he is exorcised by people who know conjurations or the art on how to exorcise devils. If they undertake such an exorcism for the sake of vainglory or for some worldly gain, then the devil has the power of entering into the one exorcising him, or again, into the same person he got exorcised from, for neither of them had any love of God. From those whose soul and body the devil possesses completely, he never goes out, unless he is forced through my power. Just as vinegar, if mixed with a sweet and good wine, spoils all the sweetness of the wine and can never be separated from it, so too will the devil not go out of the soul whom he possesses, unless he is forced through my divine power.
What is this wine if not the human soul that was sweeter to me above all created beings and so dear to me that I let my sinews be slashed and my body lacerated to the ribs for her sake? I suffered death for her sake rather than lose her. This wine was conserved in dregs, for I placed the soul in a body where it was kept according to my will as in a sealed vessel. But now this sweet wine has been mixed with the worst vinegar, that is, with the malice of the devil, whose evilness is more bitter and abominable to me than any vinegar. By my power, this vinegar shall be separated from this man whose name I will tell you, so that I may show my mercy and wisdom through him, but my judgment and justice through the former man.”
The first man was a high-born and proud cantor who, without the pope’s permission, went to Jerusalem and was attacked by the devil. About this demon-possessed man more can be read in book III, chapter 31 and in book IV, chapter 115. The second demon-possessed man in the same chapter became a Cistercian monk. The devil tormented him so much that four men could barely hold him down. His outstretched tongue looked like an ox tongue. The shackles on his hands were invisibly broken in pieces. After a month and two days this man was cured by Saint Bridget. The third demon-possessed man was a bailiff of Ostergotland. When he was admonished to do penance, he said to the one advising him: “Cannot the owner of the house sit where he likes? The devil has my heart and my tongue, how can I do penance?” He also cursed the saints of God and died the same night without the sacraments and confession.
Our Lord’s words of admonishment to the bride about true and false wisdom, and about how good angels aid the wise who are good while devils aid the wise who are evil.
“My friends are like scholars who have three things: First, a reasonable understanding above what is natural to the brain. Second, wisdom without human aid, for I myself teach them inwardly. Third, they are full of the sweetness and divine love with which they defeat the devil. But nowadays people study in a different way. First, they want to be wise out of vainglory in order to be called good clerks and masterly scholars. Second, they want to be wise in order to own and win riches. Third, they want to be wise in order to win honors and privileges.
That is why I leave them when they go to their schools and enter there, since they study because of pride, but I taught them humility. They enter the schools for the sake of greed, but I had no place to rest my head. They enter in order to win privileges, envying those more highly placed than themselves, but I was judged by Pilate and mocked by Herod. That is why I will leave them, because they are not learning my wisdom. But, since I am good and kind, I give each one what he prays for. The one who prays for bread will receive bread. And the one who prays for straw will be given straw.
My friends pray for bread, because they seek and learn the wisdom of God where my love is. But others, however, pray for straw, that is, worldly wisdom. For just as straw is useless for man to eat but, is instead, the food of irrational animals, so too there is neither use for the worldly wisdom that they seek nor nourishment for the soul, but only a small name and useless work. For when a man dies, all his wisdom is eradicated into nothing and he can no longer be seen by those who used to praise him.
I am like a mighty lord with many servants who, on their lord’s way, give to the people what they need. In this way the good angels and the evil angels stand in my service. The good angels minister to those who study my wisdom, that is, those who work in my service, nourishing them with consolation and pleasing work. But the worldly wise are assisted by evil angels who inspire them with what they want and form them after their will, inspiring them with thoughts of great speculation with much work. But if they would look to me, I could give them bread and wisdom without any work or trouble and a sufficient amount of the world to satisfy them. But they can never be filled of the world, since they turn that which is sweet into bitterness for themselves.
But you, my bride, should be like cheese, and your body like the mold wherein the cheese is formed until it has received the form of the mold. In this way, your soul, which is as delightful and sweet to me as cheese, must be tried and cleansed in the body, until body and soul united agree to maintain the same form of abstinence, so that the flesh obeys the spirit and the spirit leads the flesh toward all virtues.
The teaching of Christ to his bride about how she should live, and also about how the devil admits to Christ that the bride loves Christ above all things, and about how the devil asks Christ why he loves her so much, and about the love that Christ has for the bride.
“I am the Creator of the heavens and the earth. I was true God and true man in the Virgin’s womb and I rose from the dead and ascended into heaven. You, my new bride, have come to an unknown place. Therefore, you must do four things: First, you must know the language of the place. Second, you must have proper clothes. Third, you must know how to organize your days and your time according to the custom of the place. Fourth, you must become accustomed to the new food.
So, since you have come from the instability of the world to stability, you must learn a new language, that is, the abstinence from useless and vain words and sometimes even from permissible ones in order to observe the importance and virtue of silence. Second, your clothes should be humble both in the interior and exterior so that you do not extol yourself inwardly as being holier than others nor are outwardly ashamed to be seen as humble before people. Third, your time should be ordered in such a way that, just as you before used to have much time for the needs of the body, so now you should only have time for the soul, that is, to never again want to sin against me. Fourth, your new food is abstinence from gluttony and from delicacies with all prudence, as far as your human nature can endure it. The abstinence that goes beyond the capacity of human nature is not pleasing to me, for I demand the rational and the taming of lusts.
Then the devil appeared in the same moment. Our Lord said to him: “You were created by me and have seen all justice in me. Answer me now whether this new bride of mine is lawfully mine by proven justice. For I allow you to see and understand her heart so that you may know how to answer me. Does she love anything else as much as me or would she take anything in exchange for me?”
The devil answered: “She loves nothing as much as you, and rather than losing you, she would suffer any torment, if only you gave her the virtue of patience. I see like a bond of fire descending from you to her and it ties her heart so much that she thinks of and loves nothing but you.” Then our Lord said to the devil: “Tell me how she pleases your heart or how you like this great love I have for her.” The devil said: “I have two eyes; one is corporeal, although I am not corporeal, and with this eye I perceive temporal things so clearly that there is nothing so secret or dark that it could hide itself from me. The second eye is spiritual, and I see so clearly with it that there is no pain so small that I cannot see and understand to which sin it belongs. And there is no sin so small or slight that I do not see it, unless it has been purged by repentance and penance. But, although there are no body parts more sensitive and vulnerable than the eyes, I would still much rather desire that two burning torches without end penetrated my eyes than for her to see with the eyes of the spirit.
I also have two ears. One is corporeal, and no one can speak so secretly and silently that I do not immediately hear and know it through this ear. The second ear is spiritual, and no one can have such a secret thought or desire for any sin, that I do not hear it through this ear, unless it has been washed away by penance. And I would gladly prefer that the suffering of hell, surging forward like a stream and spreading the most terrible hot fire without end flowed through my ears than that she should hear anything with the ears of the spirit. I also have a spiritual heart, and I would gladly let it be ceaselessly cut to pieces and constantly renewed to the same suffering in order for her heart to grow cold in your service and love.
But, since you are righteous, I now have a question for you that you may answer. Tell me, why do you love her so much? Why did you not choose someone holier, richer and prettier for yourself?” Our Lord answered: “Because justice demanded this. You were created by me and have seen all justice in me. Tell me, while she is listening, why it was justice that you should have such a bad fall and what you were thinking when you fell!”
The devil answered: “I saw three things in you. I saw your glory and honor being above all things, and I thought about my own glory. For this reason I became proud and decided to not merely become your equal, but to be even higher than you. Second, I saw that you were mightier than all others, and therefore I desired to be more mighty than you. Third, I saw what would happen in the future, and since your glory and honor are without beginning and would be without end, I envied you and thought that I would gladly be tortured forever by the most bitter punishment if, thereby, you would die. And with such thoughts and desires I fell, and immediately hell was created.”
Our Lord answered: “You asked me why I love my bride so much. Assuredly, it is because I change all your malice into good. For since you became proud and did not want to have me, your Creator, as your equal, therefore, humiliating myself in all things, I gather sinners to myself and make myself their equal by giving them my glory. Second, since you had such an evil desire that you wanted to be more mighty than I, therefore I make sinners more mighty than you and partakers in my power. Third, because of your envy against me, I am so full of love that I offered myself up and sacrificed myself for the sake of everyone through my death.” Thereafter, our Lord said: “Now, devil, your dark heart is enlightened. Tell me, while she is listening, what love I have for her.”
The devil answered: “If it were possible, you would gladly suffer the same pain in each and every limb just as you once suffered on the cross in all your limbs, before losing her.” Then our Lord answered: “Since I am so merciful that I do not refuse my mercy and forgiveness to anyone asking for it, ask me then humbly for mercy yourself, and I will give it to you.” The devil answered: “Never shall I do this. For when I fell, a punishment was established for every sin and for every worthless word and thought. And every spirit or devil that fell will have his punishment. And before I would bend my knee before you, I would rather swallow all the punishments in me, as long as my mouth could be opened and closed in punishment, so that my punishment would be forever renewed.”
Then our Lord said to his bride: “See how hardened the lord of the world is and how mighty he is against me because of my hidden justice. I could indeed destroy him in a moment through my power, but I do no more injustice to him than to a good angel in the kingdom of Heaven. But when his time comes, and it is now approaching, I shall judge him with his followers. Therefore, my bride, may you always persevere in good deeds. Love me with all your heart. Fear nothing but me. I am namely the Lord over the devil and over all things created.”
The Virgin Mary’s words to the bride about her own sorrow at the suffering of Christ, and about how the world was sold through Adam and Eve and bought back as with one heart through Christ and his Virgin Mother.
Mary, the Mother of God spoke to the bride of Christ and said: “My daughter, consider the suffering of my Son, for his limbs were like my own limbs and his heart like my own heart. For just as other children use to be carried in the womb of their mother, so was he in me. But he was conceived through the burning charity of God’s love. Others, however are conceived through the lust of the flesh. Thus, John the evangelist, his cousin, rightly says: ‘The Word was made flesh.’ He came through love and was in me. The Word and love created him in me. He was truly for me like my own heart. For when I gave birth to him, I felt as though half my heart was born and went out of me. And when he endured suffering, it felt like my own heart was suffering. Just as when something is half inside and half outside – the half outside feels pain and suffering, but the inside also feels a similar pain – so it was for me when my Son was scourged and wounded; it was as if my own heart was scourged and wounded.
I was also the one closest to him at his suffering and I was never separated from him. I stood very near his cross, and just like that which is closest to the heart stings the worst, so his pain was heavier and worse for me than for others. When he looked at me from the cross and I saw him, then tears flowed from my eyes like blood from veins. And when he saw me so stricken with pain and overwhelming sorrow, he felt such a sorrow over my pain that all the pain of his own wounds became as subsided and dead for the sake of the pain he saw in me. I can therefore boldly say that his pain was my pain since his heart was my heart. For just as Adam and Eve sold the world for an apple, so my Son and I bought back the world as with one heart. Consider therefore, my daughter, how I was at the death of my Son, and it will not be hard for you to give up the world and her cares.”
Our Lord’s answer to an angel who was praying that sorrow in body and soul should be given to the bride, and about how even greater sorrow should be given to more perfect souls.
An angel was praying for his Lord’s bride and our Lord answered him: “You are like a knight of the Lord who never took off his helmet for the sake of sloth and who never turned his eyes away from the battle for the sake of fear. You are steadfast as a mountain and burning like a flame. You are so pure that there is no stain in you. You beg me to have mercy on my bride. You know and see all things in me. Nevertheless, while she is listening, tell me what kind of mercy you are asking for her; for mercy is namely threefold.
One is the mercy by which the body is punished and tortured and the soul is spared, as it happened with my servant Job whose flesh had to suffer all kinds of pain and torment but whose soul was protected. The second mercy is the one by which soul and body are spared from torment, as it was in the case of the king who lived in all sorts of lust and worldly pleasure and had no pain either in body or soul while he lived in the world. The third mercy is the one by which soul and body are punished, so that they have distress in their flesh and sorrow in their heart, as it happened with Peter and Paul and other saints.
For there are three states for humans in the world: The first state is that of those who fall into sin and get up again; these do I sometimes allow to suffer in their bodies so that they may be saved. The second state is that of those who would gladly live forever to be able to sin forever and who have all of their will and thought directed to the world, and if they do anything for me at any time, they do it with the intention of their worldly possessions growing and prospering. Neither punishment of the body nor very much pain of the heart is given to these people, but instead they are allowed to follow their own power and will, because they will receive a reward here for the least little good they have done for me to then be tormented for all eternity. For since their will to sin is everlasting, their torment shall also be everlasting. The third state is that of those who are more afraid of sinning against me and offending me than they fear any torment. They would rather endure to be tortured with unbearable pain in eternity than consciously provoke me to wrath. Sorrow of body and heart are given to these men, as with Peter and Paul and other saints, so that they may amend for all their sins in this world, or so that they may be chastised for a time for the sake of their greater glory and as an example to others. I have shown this threefold mercy to three persons in this kingdom whose names are well known to you.
But now, my angel and servant, tell me, for what kind of mercy do you pray for my bride?” He answered: “I pray for the mercy of her soul and body, so that she may amend for all her sins in this world and so that none of her sins may come before your judgment.” Our Lord answered: “May it be done according to your will.” Then he said to the bride: “You are mine and I will do with you as I please. Love nothing as much as me. Purify yourself constantly from sin every hour according to the advice of those I have entrusted you to. Hide no sin! Leave nothing unexamined! Do not consider any sin to be light or worthy of disregard! For anything you forget, I will remind you of and judge. None of the sins you have done will come before my judgment if they are punished and expiated through your penance while you live. But those sins for which you made no penance will be purged either in purgatory or by some secret judgment of mine, unless you make a full satisfaction and amendment for them here in the world.”
The words of the Virgin Mother to the bride about the excellence of her Son, and about how Christ is now being crucified more cruelly by his enemies, the evil Christians, than he once was by the Jews, and about how such people will receive a harder and more bitter punishment.
The Queen of Heaven said: “My Son had three good things: The first one was that no one ever had such a beautiful body as he did, since he had two perfect natures, namely, his Divinity and Manhood. His body was so pure that, just as no stain can be found in the clearest of eyes, so not a single defect could be found on his body. The second good was that he never sinned. Other children, however, sometimes bear the sins of their parents and sometimes their own; but he never sinned and yet bore the sins of everyone. The third good was that some men die for the sake of God and to receive a greater reward, but he died just as much for the sake of his enemies as for me and his friends.
When his enemies crucified him, they did four things to him: First, they crowned him with a crown of thorns. Second, they pierced his hands and feet. Third, they gave him gall to drink. Fourth, they pierced his side. But now I complain that the enemies of my Son, who are now in the world, crucify him more cruelly in a spiritual sense than the Jews who crucified his body. For even though the divinity is unable to suffer and die, still they crucify him through their own vices and sins. For if a man insults and injures an image of his enemy, the image does not feel the damage done to it; nevertheless, the perpetrator should be accused and judged for his evil intention to do harm as though it was a deed. In the same way, the vices and sins by which they crucify my Son spiritually are more abominable and heavy to him than the vices of those who crucified his body.
But now you may ask: ‘How do they crucify him?’ First off, they fasten him on the cross they have prepared for him when they do not heed the commandments of their Creator and Lord, but dishonor him when he warns them through his servants to serve him, and they despise this and instead do what pleases them. Then they crucify his right hand when they hold justice to be as injustice, saying: ‘Sin is not so heavy and abominable to God as it is said. God does not punish anyone for all eternity; he only threatens us with these hard things to scare us. Why else would he redeem man if he wanted us to perish?’ They do not consider that the least little sin a man finds delight in is enough to damn him to an eternal torment, and that God does not let the least little sin go unpunished, just like he does not let the least little good deed go unrewarded.
Therefore, they shall be tormented for all eternity because of their constant intention of sinning, and my Son, who sees the heart, counts that as a deed. For they would fulfill their will with deeds if my Son tolerated or allowed it. Then they crucify his left hand when they turn virtue into sin and the will to continue in sin until the end, saying: ‘If we just once say at the end of our life, “O God, have mercy on me,” God’s mercy is so great that we will be forgiven.’ But this is not virtue – to want to sin without bettering oneself, and wanting to receive a reward without having to work for it, not unless a real contrition is found in the heart that the man wants to change if only he could do so were it not for illness or some other hindrance.
Thereafter, they crucify his feet when they take pleasure in sinning without once thinking of my Son’s bitter suffering or without once thanking him from their inmost heart with words like these: ‘My Lord and God, how bitter your suffering was, praise and honor be to you for your death’ – such words are never heard from their mouth. They then crown him with the crown of derision when they mock his servants and consider it useless to serve him. They give him gall to drink when they rejoice and glory in sin. And not once does the thought arise in their heart of how grave and manifold and dangerous this sin is. They pierce his side when they have the will to continue in sin.
In truth, I tell you – and you can say this to my friends – that such people are more unjust in the sight of my Son than those who judged him, more unkind than those who crucified him, more shameless than those who sold him, and they shall therefore receive a greater torment than the others. Pilate knew very well that my Son had not sinned and did not deserve to die. But he, nonetheless, felt compelled to judge my Son to death because he feared the loss of his worldly power and the revolt of the Jews. But what would these have to fear if they served my Son, or what honor or dignity would they lose if they honored him? They will therefore be judged with a more severe sentence than Pilate’s, for they are worse than him in my Son’s sight. For Pilate judged him because of the request and will of others and due to fear, but these judge him for their own advantage and without any fear when they dishonor him by committing the sin that they could abstain from if they wanted. But they do not abstain from sin nor are they ashamed of the sins that they have done, for they do not consider that they are unworthy of the good deeds of the One whom they do not serve.
They are also worse than Judas, for when Judas had betrayed his Lord, he knew very well that he was God and that he had sinned heavily against him, but he despaired and hastened his days toward hell, thinking himself to be unworthy to live. But these know their sin very well and yet they continue in it without feeling any remorse about it in their hearts. They want to take the kingdom of Heaven with violence and power when they think they can get it, not through their good deeds but through a vain hope, but it is only given to those who work and suffer something for the sake of God.
They are also worse than those who crucified my Son. For when these saw the good works of my Son, namely, the raising of the dead and the cleansing of leapers, they thought to themselves: ‘This man does unheard of and extraordinary miracles. He overcomes anyone he wants with a word, he knows all our thoughts, and he does whatever he wants. If he is successful, we will all have to submit to his power and become his subjects.’ Therefore, in order to avoid being subjected to him, they crucified him because of their envy. But if they had known that he was the King of glory, they never would have crucified him.
But these people see his great deeds and miracles everyday, and they take advantage of his good deeds and hear how they should serve him and come to him, but they think to themselves: ‘If we must leave all our temporal belongings and follow his will and not our own, it would be heavy and unbearable.’ They despise his will so that it should not be placed over their own will, and crucify my Son through their hardened heart when they add sin upon sin against their conscience. They are worse than those who crucified my Son, for the Jews did it for the sake of envy and because they did not know that he was God, but these know him to be God, and yet, in their own malice and presumption and greed, they crucify him spiritually more cruelly than the Jews did physically. For they themselves have been redeemed, but the Jews had not yet been redeemed. Therefore, my bride, obey my Son and fear him, for just as he is merciful, he is also just.”
The most pleasant conversation of God the Father with the Son, and about how the Father gave the new bride to the Son, and how the Son received her with pleasure to himself, and about how the bridegroom teaches the bride about patience, obedience and simplicity through an example.
The Father spoke to the Son, saying: “I came with love to the Virgin and took your true body from her. You are therefore in me and I in you. Just as fire and heat are never separated, so it is impossible to separate the Divinity from the Manhood.” The Son answered: “May all glory and honor be to you Father; may your will be done in me and mine in you.” The Father answered him again: “Behold, my Son, I am entrusting this new bride to you like a sheep to be guided and educated. As the owner of the sheep, you will get from her cheese to eat and milk to drink and wool to clothe yourself with. But you, bride, should obey him. You have three things you must do: you have to be patient, obedient and willing to do what is good.”
Then the Son said to the Father: “Your will with power, power with humility, humility with wisdom, wisdom with mercy; may your will be done, which is and always will be without beginning or end in me. I take her to myself into my love, into your power and into the guidance of the Holy Spirit, which are not three gods but one God.” Then the Son said to his bride: “You have heard how the Father entrusted you to me like a sheep. You must therefore be simpleminded and patient like a sheep and fruitful in producing food and clothing.
Three people are in the world. The first is completely naked, the second is thirsty, and the third is hungry. The first signifies the faith of my Church, and it is naked because everyone is ashamed and afraid to speak of the true faith and of my commandments. And if some people do speak or teach about such things, they are despised and accused of being liars. Therefore, my words which proceed from my mouth, should clothe this faith like wool. For just as wool grows on the body of a sheep by the heat, so too my words proceed from the heat of my Divinity and Manhood to your heart. They will clothe my holy faith with the testimony of truth and wisdom and prove that the faith which is now regarded as vain is true, so that the ones who, up to now, have been lazy in clothing their faith in deeds of love after hearing my words of love, will be converted and enkindled again in order to speak with certitude of faith and act with power.
The second one signifies my friends who have a thirsting desire to make my honor perfect and are saddened at my dishonor. They shall be filled with the sweetness that they heard in my words, and enkindled with a greater love for me, and along with them, others who are now dead in sin, will also be enkindled in my love, when they hear of the mercy I have done with sinners.
The third one signifies those who think thus in their hearts: ‘If only we knew the will of God and how we should live, and if anyone taught us about the good way, we would gladly do what we could for the honor of God.’ These are hungry to get to know my way and will, but no one feeds them, since no one shows them completely what they should do, and if they are shown or taught what to do, no one lives according to the words with their deeds. And for this reason, the words seem as dead to them. Therefore, I myself shall show and teach them what they should do and I will fill them with my sweetness.
For worldly things, which are seen and desired now almost by everyone, cannot fill mankind but only arouse his desire and greed of the world to win more and more things. But my words and my love will feed men and fill them with an overflowing consolation. Therefore, my bride, who are my sheep, you must take great care to keep your patience and obedience. You are all mine by right and should therefore follow my will. The one who wants to follow the will of another should have three things: First, he should have the same will and opinion as the other; second, have similar deeds; third, he should move away from his enemies. But who are my enemies if not pride and every sin? You should therefore move away from them, if you desire to follow my will.”
Christ speaks about how faith, hope and love were found perfectly in him at the moment of his death and are found imperfectly in us wretches.
The Son of God said: “I had three things in my death: First, faith, when I bent my knees and prayed to the Father, knowing that he was able to save me from the suffering. Second, hope, when I steadfastly waited and said: ‘Not as I will.’ Third, love, when I said: ‘Thy will be done.’ I also had bodily agony from the natural fear of suffering when the sweat of blood went out of my body. Thus, in order that my friends should not fear that they are abandoned when the moment of tribulation comes to them, I showed them in myself that the weak flesh always flees from suffering.
But now you may ask how the sweat of blood went out of my body. Just like the blood of a sick person dries up and is consumed in all his veins, so was my blood consumed by the natural fear of death. My Father wanted to show the way by which Heaven would be opened and the exiled man to be able to enter therein, and therefore he delivered me out of love to my suffering in order that my body would be glorified in honor after the suffering had been fulfilled. For justice did not allow my Manhood to enter into glory without suffering, although I was able to do so by the power of my Divinity.
How then should those deserve to enter into my glory who have little faith, vain hope, and no love? If they believed in the eternal joy of Heaven and in the horrific torments of hell, they would desire nothing but me. If they believed that I see and know all things and have power over all things and that I demand a judgment over all, they would hate the world, and they would fear more to sin before me than before men. If they had a firm and steadfast hope, then their every thought and desire would be directed toward me. If they had a divine love for me, then they would at least think in their soul about what I did for their sake, how much I labored in preaching, how great my pain was in my suffering and how great my love was at my death when I preferred to die rather than to lose and forsake them.
But their faith is sick and wavering, threatening to fall soon, because they believe only when suffering and temptation does not attack them, and they lose their hope as soon as they are met with adversity. Their hope is vain, because they hope that their sin will be forgiven without justice and a right judgment. They hope with self-reliance to receive the kingdom of Heaven for nothing and wish to receive my mercy without the severity of justice. Their love for me is completely cold, for they are never enkindled in seeking or calling me unless they are forced to it by tribulation. How can I be warmed by such people who have neither a right faith nor a firm hope nor a burning love for me?
And therefore, when they cry out to me and say ‘O God, have mercy on me’, they do not deserve to be heard or to enter into my glory since they did not want to follow their Lord in suffering, and, therefore, they should not follow him to the glory. For no knight can please his Lord and be taken back into his mercy after his fall, unless he first humbles himself in penance for his contempt.”
Our Creator asks three questions of his bride. The first is about the servitude of the husband and the dominion of the wife; the second about the work of the husband and the spending of the wife; and the third about the contempt of the Lord and the honoring of the servant.
“I am your Creator and Lord. Answer me on the three things I am going to ask you. How is the state of the house where the wife is dressed like a lady and her husband like a slave? Is this right? She answered in her conscience: “No Lord, it is not right.” Our Lord said: “I am the Lord of all things and the King of angels. I dressed my servant, namely, my Manhood, with only usefulness and necessity, for I desired nothing from this world except meager food and clothing. But you, who are my bride, want to live like a lady, and wish to have wealth and honor and be held in honor. What is the benefit of all these things? All things are indeed vanity and all things must be left. Mankind was not created for any superfluity but only to have what the necessity of nature requires. This superfluity was invented by pride and it is now held and loved as the law.
Second, tell me if it is right for the man to work from morning to evening and then for the wife to spend everything that has been gathered in a single hour?” She answered: “No, this is not right; the wife is instead obliged to live and act after the will of her man.” Our Lord said: “I acted like the man who works from morning to evening, for from my youth up to the time of my suffering, I worked in showing the way to Heaven by preaching and by fulfilling what I preached with deeds. But the wife, that is, the soul, who should be like my wife, wastes all my work when she lives frivolously so that nothing of what I have done and suffered for her sake can benefit her; nor do I find any virtue in her in which I can delight in.
Third, tell me, is it not wrong and abominable for the master of the house to be despised and for the slave to be honored?” She answered: “Yes, it indeed is.” Our Lord said: “I am the Lord of all things. My house is the world, and mankind should, by right, be my servant. But I, the Lord, am now despised in the world and the man honored. Therefore shall you, whom I have chosen, take care to do my will, because everything in the world is nothing but sea foam and a false dream.”
Our beloved Creator’s words in the presence of the heavenly host and the bride, in which he complains about five men signifying the pope and his clergy, the evil laity, the Jews and the heathens; and also about the help he sends to his friends, signifying all mankind, and about the harsh judgment he executes on his enemies.
“I am the Creator of all things. I was born of the Father before Lucifer. I am inseparably in the Father and the Father in me and one Spirit in us both. Accordingly, there is one God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – and not three gods. I am the one who promised the eternal inheritance to Abraham and led my people out of Egypt through Moses. I am the one who spoke through the prophets. The Father sent me to the womb of the Virgin without separating himself from me but remaining inseparably with me so that mankind, who had abandoned God, would return to God through my love.
But now, in your presence, my heavenly host, although you see and know all things in me, yet for the sake of the knowledge and teaching of my bride standing here, who cannot understand spiritual things except through a corporal parable, I make a complaint before you over these five men who are standing here, for they provoke me to wrath in many ways. Just as I, once, in the Law, with the name of Israel, signified the whole Israelite nation, so now by these five men I signify every man in the world.
The first man signifies the leader of the Church and his priests; the second, the evil laity; the third, the Jews; the fourth, the heathens; and the fifth, my friends. But from you, Jew, I exclude all the Jews who are Christians in secret and who serve me secretly in a pure love, a right faith, and a perfect deed. And from you, heathen, I exclude all those who would gladly walk in the way of my commandments, if they only knew and were taught how they should walk and live, and who with their deeds do as much as they know and are able. These shall by no means be judged with you. I now complain over you, o head of my Church, who sit on my seat which I gave to Peter and his successors to sit on with a threefold dignity and power: First, so that they would have the power of binding and loosing souls from their sins. Second, so that they would open Heaven for the penitent. Third, so that that they would close Heaven to the damned and to those who despise my Law. But you, who should be healing souls and presenting them to me, you are in truth a murderer of souls. I appointed Peter as shepherd and guardian of my sheep. But you, however, scatter and wound them. You are worse than Lucifer. For he was envious of me and desired to kill none but me so that he could rule in my place. But you are so much worse, for you do not only kill me by driving me off from yourself by your bad deeds, but you also kill souls by your bad example. I redeemed the souls with my blood and entrusted them to you as to a faithful friend, but you deliver them back again to the enemy from whom I redeemed them. You are more unrighteous than Pilate. He judged no one else but me to death, but you not only judge me as if I were a powerless lord and worthy of no good thing, no, you also judge and condemn the souls of the innocent and let the guilty go free without any rebuke. You are more cruel than Judas who only sold me, but you not only sell me, but also the souls of my chosen men for your own shameful profit and vain name’s sake. You are more despicable than the Jews, for they only crucified my body, but you crucify and torture the souls of my chosen men for whom your malice and your sins are more bitter than from any wound from a sword. And so, since you are like Lucifer and more unrighteous than Pilate and more cruel than Judas and more despicable than the Jews, I complain over you with justice.
To the second man, that is, to the laity, our Lord said: “I created all things for your benefit. You gave your consent to me and I to you. You gave me your faith and promised by oath that you would serve me. But now, you have deserted me like a man who does not know his God. You hold my words for a lie and my deeds as vanity, and you say that my will and my commandments are too heavy. You have violated the faith you promised me. You have broken your oath and abandoned my name. You have separated yourself from the number of my saints and have come to belong to the number of the devils and you have become their friend. You think that no one is worthy of praise and honor but yourself. Everything that belongs to me and that you are bound to do for me appears heavy and bitter for you, but the things that please yourself are very easy for you. Therefore, I complain over you with right, for you have broken the faith you gave me in baptism and later; and for the love I have shown you in word and deed, you mock me and call me a liar, and for my suffering you call me a fool.”
To the third man, that is, to the Jews, he said: “I began my deed of love with you and I chose you as my people. I led you out of slavery, I gave you my Law, I brought you into the land I had promised your fathers, and I sent you prophets to console you. Thereafter, I chose a virgin for myself from among you from which I assumed Manhood. But now I complain over you since you do not want not believe in me, but say: ‘The Christ has not yet come; he is still to be expected.’ ”
Our Lord said to the fourth man, that is, to the heathens: “I created and redeemed you like the Christian man, and I created all good things for your sake. But you are like a man out of his senses, because you do not know what you are doing. You are also like a blind man, because you do not see where you are going. You honor and worship the created things instead of the Creator, and the false instead of the true, and you bend your knee before things that have less worth than yourself. That is why I complain about you.”
To the fifth man, he said: “My friend, come closer!” And he directly said to the heavenly host: “My beloved friends, I have a friend with which I signify and mean many friends. He is like a man trapped among evil people and harshly shackled in captivity. If he speaks the truth, they beat his mouth with stones. If he does something good, they thrust a spear into his breast. Alas, my friends and saints, how long shall I endure such men, and how long shall I tolerate such contempt?”
Saint John the Baptist answered: “You are like the most pure mirror, for we see and know all things in you as in a mirror without any help of words and speech. You are the sweetness that no one can describe in which we taste all good things. You are like the sharpest of swords for you judge in righteousness.”
Our Lord answered him: “Indeed, my friend, you said the truth, for my chosen men see all goodness and righteousness in me, and even the evil spirits see it in their own conscience but not in the light. Just like a man placed in a dark prison, who had earlier learned the letters, knows that which he had learned before even though he is in darkness and currently cannot see, so it is with the devils. Even though they do not see my righteousness in the light of my clarity, they still know and see it in their conscience. I am also like a sword that separates things into two parts. In this way I give each and every person what they deserve.”
Then Our Lord said to Saint Peter: “You are the founder and defender of the faith and of my Church. While my host is listening, state the sentence of the five men!” Peter answered: “O Lord, all praise and honor to you, for the love you have shown to your earth. Blessed be you by all your host, for you allow us to see and know all things in you that have been and will be, and that is why we see and know all things in you. It is true justice that the first man who sits upon your seat, while having the deeds of Lucifer, should shamefully lose the seat he dared to sit on and become a partaker in the torment of Lucifer. The right judgment of the second man is that he, who has fallen away from your faith, should fall down to hell with his head down and feet up, for he loved himself and despised you who should have been his head. The right judgment of the third man is that he will not see your face and that he should be tormented for his malice and greed, since unbelievers do not deserve to see your glory and beauty. The right judgment of the fourth is that he should be locked up like a man out of his senses and banished to the city of darkness. The right judgment of the fifth is that help should be sent to him.”
Then our Lord answered: “I swear by God the Father, whose voice John the Baptist heard in the Jordan; I swear by the body which John baptized, saw, and touched in the Jordan; I swear by the Holy Spirit who revealed himself in the form of a dove at the Jordan, that I shall do justice with these five men.”
Then our Lord said to the first of these five men: “The sword of my severity will go into your body; it shall enter at the top of your head and penetrate you so deeply and violently that it can never be drawn out. Your chair will sink like a heavy stone and never stop before it comes to the lowest of depths. Your fingers, that is, your assistants and advisers, will burn in the inextinguishable sulfurous fire. Your arms, that is, your office-holders, who should have reached out for the help and benefit of souls but instead reached out for worldly honor and profit, will be judged to the torment and suffering of which David speaks: ‘His sons shall be fatherless and his wife a widow and others shall take his property.’ Who is ‘his wife’ if not the soul which shall be excluded from the glory of Heaven and be widowed and lose God? ‘His sons’, that is, the virtues they appeared to have, and my simple and humble men who were under them, shall be separated from them. Their honor and property will be given to others, and they will inherit eternal shame instead of their dignity and glory. Their headgear will sink down into the filth of hell, and they will never be able to get up out of it. Just as they rose above others through their honor and pride, so in hell they will sink so much deeper than others so that it will be impossible for them to ever stand up again. Their limbs, that is, all the priests who followed and helped them in wickedness, will be cut off from them and severed just like the wall that is torn down where not a single stone is left upon another stone and the cement no longer adheres to the stones. No mercy will come to them, for my love will never warm them nor restore or build them up into an eternal house in Heaven, but instead they shall be excluded from all good and endlessly tormented with their headmen and leaders.
But to the second I say: Since you do not want to keep the faith you promised me and have love toward me, I shall send an animal to you that will rise from the surging torrent, and it shall swallow you. Like the torrent always flows downward, so this animal will drag you down to the lowest hell, and just like it is impossible for you to travel upstream against the surging torrent, it will be just as hard for you to ever ascend from hell.
To the third I say: Since you, Jew, do not want to believe that I have come, you will see me when I come on judgment day, but not in my glory but in your conscience, and you will come to know that all the things I said were true. Then there is nothing left for you but to be tormented as you deserve.
To the fourth I say: Since you do not care to believe and do not want to know me, your darkness will become light for you, and your heart will be enlightened so that you may know that my judgments are true, but you will still not come to the light.
To the fifth I say: I shall do three things to you. First, I shall fill you inwardly with my fervor. Second, I shall make your mouth harder and firmer than any stone, so that the stones turn back to the ones throwing them at you. Third, I shall arm you with my weapons so well that no spear will harm you but instead everything will melt before you like wax in the heat of the fire. Be therefore made strong and stand like a man. For just like a knight in battle who hopes for help of his lord and continues fighting as long as he still has some life-force in him, so may you too stand firm and fight like a man; for the Lord, your God, whom none are able to withstand, will give you help. And since your number is small, I will honor you and multiply you greatly. Behold, my friends, you see these things and know them in me, and in this way they stand before me.
The words I have now spoken will be fulfilled. But these other men shall never enter my kingdom, as long as I am King, unless they better themselves. For Heaven will only be given to those who humble themselves and to those who mourn over their sins with penance.” Then all the host answered: “Praise be to you, Lord God, who are without beginning and without end.”
The Virgin Mary’s words of advice to the bride about how she should love her Son above all things, and about how every virtue and gift of grace is contained in the glorious Virgin.
The Mother of God spoke: “I had three things by which I pleased my Son: First, humility in such a way that no created creature, whether angel or man, was more humble than I. Second, I had obedience, for I strove to obey my Son in all things. Third, I had a special charity.
For this reason I am honored threefold by my Son: First, I have been made more honorable than angels and men, so that there is no virtue in God that does not shine in me, even though he is the source and beginning of all virtues and the Creator of all things; but I, however, am the creature to whom he has given more grace than all others. Second, for my obedience I received such power that there is no sinner so unclean that he will not receive forgiveness if he turns to me with a will and purpose of amendment and a contrite heart for his sins. Third, for my charity, God is so close to me that the one who sees God sees me, and the one who sees me can see the Divinity and the Manhood in me and me in God as though in a mirror. For the one who sees God, sees three persons in him, and the one who sees me, sees, as it were, three persons. For the Divinity enclosed me in soul and body in himself and filled me with every virtue, so that there is no virtue in God that does not shine and appear in me, although God himself is the Father and giver of all virtues. For as it is with two bodies joined together, that whatever one body receives the other body also receives, so God has done with me.
There is no sweetness that is not found in me. It is like someone who has a sweet nut and gives a part of it to another. My soul and body are clearer than the sun and purer than a mirror, and just as three persons would be seen in the mirror if they stood near it, so the Father and Son and Holy Spirit may also be seen in my purity since I once had my Son in my womb with his Divinity. He is now seen in me with his Divinity and Manhood as in a mirror, for I have been glorified with the honor and glory of the resurrection. Therefore may you, my Son’s bride, strive to follow my humility and love nothing but my Son.”
The words of the Son to his bride about how people may rise up from a small good deed to the highest good and fall down from a small evil to the greatest punishment and torment.
The Son of God said to his bride: “A great reward sometimes arises from a little good. The date-palm has a wonderful smell, and in its fruit there is a stone. If it is planted in rich soil, it feels well, blossoms and makes good fruit and grows into a great tree. But if it is planted in dry soil, it dries out. Very dry and empty of all goodness is the soil that delights in sin, and it does not become better even if the seed of the virtues is sown in there. But rich is the soil of the mind that understands and confesses its sin and cries over their sin which has provoked their Creator to anger. If the date-stone, that is, if the thought of my severe judgment and power is sown in such a mind, it immediately strikes three roots in the mind.
The first one is that he thinks about how he can do nothing without my help, and for this reason he opens his mouth in prayer to me. The second is that he begins to give some small alms to me for the sake of my honor. The third is that he separates himself from worldly affairs in order to better serve me. He then begins to restrain himself from superfluities through daily fasting and abstains from and denies his own will and lust, and this is the trunk of the tree.
After this, the branches of love grow when he leads and draws everyone he can toward the good. Then the fruit grows when he also instructs others in goodness as much as he can and with all piety tries to find ways of increasing my honor. Such a fruit is the best one and most pleasing to me. And so, from a small good, man rises up to perfection. When he first takes root through a little piety, the body grows through abstinence, the branches are multiplied through charity and the fruit is increased through preaching.
In the same way, a man falls down from a small evil to the greatest damnation and torment. Do you know what the heaviest burden is for the things that grow? Surely it is the child who is conceived but cannot be born and dies inside the womb of the mother. And because of this the mother also ruptures and dies, and the father carries her and the child to the grave and buries her with the rotting fetus. This is what the devil does to the soul. The iniquitous soul is indeed like the wife of the devil: she follows his will in everything, and she conceives a child with the devil when sin pleases her and she rejoices in it.
For just as a mother conceives a child and bears fruit through the little seed that is nothing but an unclean rottenness, so too, the soul bears much fruit for the devil when she delights in sin. Thereafter, the strength and limbs of the body get formed as sin gets added to sin and increases daily. When the sins increase, the mother swells up and wants to give birth, but cannot, since her nature is consumed in sin, and her life becomes detestable. She would gladly desire to sin even more, but she cannot, and it is not allowed by God.
Then the fear arrives because she cannot fulfill her will, and her strength and joy are gone. Pain and sorrow are everywhere. While she is now despairing of being able to do any good thing or any good deed, her womb ruptures, and she dies while blaspheming and insulting God’s judgment and punishment. Then she is dragged by her father, the devil, down to the grave of hell where she is buried for all eternity with the rot of her sin and the child of her evil lust. Behold how sin increases from a small evil and grows unto damnation.”
The Creator’s words to his bride about how he is now despised and reproached by men who pay no attention to what he did in love for them, when he admonished them through the prophets and suffered for their sake, and about how they do not care about the anger he exercised against the stubborn by punishing them severely.
“I am the Creator and Lord of all things. I created the world and the world despises me. I hear a voice from the world like that of a bumblebee who gathers honey on the earth. For when a bumblebee is flying and begins to land on the ground, it emits a very raspy voice. I now hear this raspy and ignorant voice in the world, saying: ‘I do not care what comes after this.’ In truth, now everyone is shouting: ‘I do not care what comes after this and may I have my own will!’
Indeed, mankind does not care about what I did for the sake of love by preaching and suffering for them and by admonishing them through the prophets, and they do not care about what I did in my anger by executing my vengeance upon the evil and disobedient. They see that they are mortal and that death can strike them unexpectedly, but they do not care. They hear and see my justice which I exercised on Pharaoh and on Sodom for the sake of sin, and how I execute vengeance on other kings and rulers, and how I daily allow it to happen through the sword and other afflictions, but it is as if they were blind to all these things.
And for this reason they fly like bumblebees wherever they desire, and sometimes they fly as if they were jumping and running, for they exalt themselves in their pride, but they come down quickly by returning to their lust and gluttony. They also gather sweetness for themselves from the earth, for man works and gathers for the needs of the body and not for the soul, and for worldly honor but not the eternal. They transform the temporal things into a suffering for themselves, and what is useless, into eternal torment. But, for the sake of the prayers of my Mother, I will send my clear voice to these bumblebees, from which my friends are excluded (for they are in the world only in body), and it shall preach mercy. If they will listen to it, they will be saved.
The answer of the Virgin Mother and the angels, the prophets, the apostles, and the devils to God, in the presence of the bride, testifying about his many virtues and his perfection in creation, incarnation and redemption, and about how evil men nowadays contradict all these things, and about the severe judgment they receive.
The Mother of God said: “Bride of my Son, clothe yourself and stand firm, for my Son is approaching you. His flesh was pressed as in a winepress. For since mankind sinned in all limbs, my Son made atonement in all his limbs. His hair was pulled out, his sinews extended, his joints were dislocated, his bones mangled, and his hands and feet were pierced through. His mind was saddened, his heart afflicted by sorrow, his intestines was forced in toward his back, for mankind had sinned in all limbs.”
Then the Son spoke, while the heavenly host was present, and he said: “Although you know all things in me, still I speak for the sake of my bride standing here. I ask you, angels: What is it that was without beginning and shall be without end? And what is it that created everything and was created by none? Proclaim it and give your testimony!” All the angels answered as with one voice and said: “Lord, it is you. We give testimony to you about three things: First, that you are our Creator and that you created all things in Heaven and on earth. Second, that you are without beginning and will be without end, and your kingdom and power will stand for all eternity. Without you nothing has been created and without you nothing can be created. Third, we testify that we see all justice in you and all the things that have been and will be, and all things are present to you without beginning or end.”
Then he said to the prophets and patriarchs: “I ask you: Who brought you out of slavery into freedom? Who divided the waters for you? Who gave you the Law? Who gave you the prophetic spirit to speak about future things?” They answered him, saying: “You, Lord. You brought us out of slavery. You gave us the Law. You moved our spirit to speak and prophesy about future things.”
Then he said to his Mother: “Give true testimony about what you know of me.” She answered: “Before the angel, whom you sent, came to me, I was alone in soul and body. But after the angel’s words, your body was within me with Divinity and Manhood, and I felt your body in my body. I bore you without pain and suffering. I gave birth to you without anguish and travail. I wrapped you in poor clothes and I fed you with my milk. I was with you from your birth until your death.”
Thereafter he said to the apostles: “Say who it was that you saw, heard, and touched?” They answered: “We heard your words and wrote them down. We heard and saw the great works that you did when you gave us the New Law. You commanded the demons with one word to leave humans and they obeyed you and went out, and with your word you raised the dead and healed the sick. We saw you in a human body. We saw your great power and divine glory with your human nature. We saw you handed over to your enemies and we saw you hanging on the cross. We saw you suffer the most bitter pain and we saw you be laid in the grave. We touched you when you were raised from the dead. We touched your hair and your face. We touched the place of your wounds and your limbs. You ate with us and you gave us your eloquence. You are truly the Son of God and the Son of the Virgin. We also observed when you ascended with your Manhood to the right hand of the Father where you now are and will be without end.”
Then God said to the unclean demon spirits: “Although you hide the truth in your conscience, still I now command you to say the truth about who it was that reduced your power.” They answered him: “Just like thieves do not tell the truth unless their feet are pressed in the hard wood, so we do not speak the truth unless we are forced by your divine and formidable power. You are the one who, with your power, descended into hell. You reduced our power in the world. You took out from hell what was yours by right, namely, your friends.”
Then our Lord said: “Behold, all those who have a spirit and are not clothed in a body, bear witness to the truth for me. But those who have a spirit and a body, namely humans, contradict me. Some know the truth of me but do not care about it. Others do not know it and, therefore, they do not care about it but say it is all false.” He again said to the angels: “They say that your witness is false, that I am not the Creator of all things and that all things are not known in me. Therefore, they love the created things more than me, who am the Creator.” He said to the prophets: “They contradict you and say that the Law is useless, that you can be saved through your own power and wisdom, that the spirit was false and that you spoke according to your own will.” He said to his Mother: “Some say that you are not a Virgin and others, that I did not take a body from you. Others know it but do not care about it.” He said to the apostles: “They contradict you, for they say that you are liars and that the New Law is irrational and useless. Others believe it to be true but do not care about it. I ask you now: Who will be their judge?”
They all answered him, saying: “You, God, who are without beginning and without end. You, Jesus Christ, who are with the Father, to you is all judgment given by the Father; you are their judge.” Our Lord answered: “I who grieved for them am now their judge. But even though I know and can do all things, still, give me your judgment over them.”
They answered him: “Just as the whole world perished once at the beginning of the world in Noah’s flood, so too now the world deserves to perish by fire, since the wickedness and injustice are much greater now than what it was then.”
Then our Lord answered: “Since I am just and merciful, I shall make no judgment without mercy nor mercy without justice, and therefore, I will once more send my mercy to the world for the sake of the prayers of my Mother and my saints. But if they do not want to listen, the most severe and harsh justice will follow and come to them.”
The words of praise of the Mother and the Son to each other in the presence of the bride, and about how Christ is now regarded as shameful, dishonest, and despicable by people, and about the horrifying and eternal damnation of these people.
The Queen of Heaven spoke to her Son and said: “Blessed be you my God, who are without beginning and without end. You had the most noble and beautiful body. You were the most brave and virtuous man. You are the most worthy creature.”
The Son answered: “The words proceeding from your mouth are sweet to me and delight my inmost heart like the sweetest drink. You are more sweet to me than any other creature in existence. For just as different faces can be seen in a mirror by a person but none pleases him more than his own, so too, even though I love my saints, I love you with a special love, because I was born from your blessed flesh. You are like myrrh whose fragrance ascended up to the Divinity and led the Divinity to your body. This same fragrance drew your body and soul up to God, where you now are with soul and body. Blessed be you, for the angels rejoice in your beauty and all are saved by your virtue and power when they call on you with a sincere heart. All the demons tremble in your light and do not dare to stay in your splendor, for they always want to be in darkness.
You gave praise to me for a threefold reason, for you said that I had the most noble body; second, that I was the most brave man; and third, you said that I was the most worthy creature. These three things are only contradicted by those who have a body and soul, that is, human beings. They say that I have a shameful body and that I am the most despicable man and the lowliest of creatures. For what is more shameful than to tempt others to sin? For they claim that my body tempts to sin when they say that sin is not as abominable or displeasing to God as much as is said. They say that nothing exists unless God wants it to be so and that nothing is created but by him. ‘Why should we not use the created things to our benefit? Our natural frailty demands it and this is how everyone has lived before us and still do live.’ This is how people now speak about me and my Manhood, in which I, the true God, appeared among men. For I advised them to abstain from sinning and showed what a serious and grave matter it is, and this they say was shameful, as if I had advised them to do something useless and shameful. They say that nothing is honorable but sin and that which pleases their will.
They also say that I am the most shameful man. For what is more shameful than someone who, when he speaks the truth, gets his mouth beaten with stones and gets hit in the face and, on top of that, hears people insulting him, saying: ‘If he were a man, he would revenge himself over such an injustice.’ This is what they do to me. I speak to them through the learned fathers and Holy Scripture, but they say that I lie. They beat my mouth with stones and their fists when they commit adultery, murder, and lying, saying: ‘If he were manly, if he were the almighty God, he would revenge himself for such sins and transgressions.’ But I endure this with patience, and everyday I hear them saying that the torment is neither eternal nor as severe and bitter as it is said, and my words are judged and said to be lies.
Third, they judge me to be the most ugly and worthless creature. For what is more worthless in the house than a dog or a cat that someone would be glad to exchange for a horse, if he could? But mankind holds me to be of less worth than a dog, for he would not wish to take me if it meant that he would lose the dog, and he would reject and deny me before losing the dog’s hide. What is the thing that pleases the mind so little that one does not think of it and desires it more fervently than me? For if they regarded me more worthy than any other created creature, they would love me more than other things. But now they have nothing so small that they do not love it more than me. They grieve over everything but me. They grieve for their own and their friends’ losses. They grieve for an injurious word. They grieve over offending or hurting people more highly placed and powerful than they, but they do not grieve about offending or hurting me, who am the Creator of all things. What man is so despicable that he is not listened to if he begs about something and is not given a gift in return if he has given something? But I am utterly vile and despicable in their eyes, for they do not consider me worthy of any good, even though I have given them all good things.
But you, my most dear Mother, have tasted more of my wisdom than others, and never has anything but the truth ever left your mouth, just as nothing but the truth has ever left my own mouth. I will now justify myself in the sight of all the saints. First, against him, who said that I had a shameful body. I shall prove that I indeed have the most noble body without deformity or sin, and he shall fall into eternal shame and reproach which all will see. To the one who said that my words were a lie and that he did not know if I was God or not, I shall prove that I truly am God, and he will flow down like mud to hell. But the third, who regarded me as useless, I shall judge to eternal damnation so that he will never see my glory and my joy.”
Thereafter he said to his bride: “Stand firm in my service. You have come to a wall, as it were, in which you are enclosed, so that you cannot flee nor dig through its foundations. Endure this small tribulation willingly, and you will experience eternal rest in my arms. You know the will of the Father, you hear the words of the Son, you feel my Spirit, and you have delight and consolation in the conversation with my Mother and my saints. Therefore, stand firm, or else you will come to feel my justice by which you will be forced to do what I am now kindly urging you to do.”
Our Lord’s words to his bride about the contempt of the New Law, and about how that same Law is now rejected and despised by the world, and about how bad priests are not God’s priests but God’s betrayers, and about the punishment and damnation they receive.
“I am the God who in ancient days was called the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob. I am the God who gave the Law to Moses. This law was like clothing. For as a mother with her child in the womb prepares her infant’s clothing, so too I, God, prepared the New Law, for the Old Law was nothing but the clothing and shadow and sign of future things to come. I clothed and wrapped myself in the clothing of this Law. And then when a boy grows up somewhat, his old clothes are laid down and new clothes are taken up. In this way, I fulfilled the Old Law when I put aside the used clothing of the Old Law, and assumed the new clothing, that is, the New Law, and I gave this clothing and myself to everyone who wanted to have it. This clothing is not very tight nor difficult to wear but is well suited everywhere. For my Law does not order people to fast or work too much nor to kill themselves or to do anything beyond the limits of possibility, but it is beneficial for the soul and conducive to the restraining, mortification, and chastisement of the body. For when the body gets too attached to sin, then sin consumes the body.
Two things are found in the New Law: First, a prudent temperance in soul and body and the right use of all things. Second, a readiness for heeding and keeping the Law; for the person who cannot endure to stay in one thing can stand in another. Hereby follows that a person who cannot endure to be a virgin can live in an honorable marriage, and he who falls into sin may get up again and better himself.
But this Law is now rejected and despised by the world. For they say that the Law is narrow, heavy, and ugly. They say it is narrow, for the Law orders one to be satisfied with the necessary and to flee the superfluous. But they want to have all things without reason like senseless cattle and above the necessity of the body, and that is why the Law is too narrow for them. Second, they say it is heavy, because the Law says that one should have enjoyment with reasonable temperance and at established times. But they want to fulfill their lust more than what is good and more than what is established. Third, they say it is unsightly, because the Law bids them to love humility and to accredit every good to God. But they want to be proud and exalt themselves for the good things that God has given them, and that is why the Law seems ugly and vain to them.
See how despised and maltreated my clothes are. I fulfilled everything in the Old Law before I began the New Law. For the Old Law was too difficult, and my intention was that the New Law should remain until I came in judgment. But they shamefully threw away the clothing with which I covered the soul, that is, the right faith. And above this, they add sin to sin, since they also want to betray me. Does not David say in the psalm: ‘He who ate my bread thought treason against me’? In these words I want you to note two things. First, he does not say “thinks” but “thought”, as if it had already happened. Second, he denotes one man as a betrayer. But I say that it is those who are now present who betray me, not those who have been or who will come, but those who are now alive. I also say that it is not only one man but many.
But now you may ask me: ‘Are there not two kinds of bread, one invisible and spiritual, of which angels and saints live, and the other earthly, by which men are fed? But angels and saints do not want anything other than that which is according to your will, and men can do nothing other than that which pleases you. How, then, can they betray you?’
I will answer you in the presence of my heavenly host who knows and sees all things in me, but I say this for your sake so that you may understand: There are indeed two kinds of bread. One is that of the angels who eat my bread in my kingdom so that they may be filled with my indescribable joy. They do not betray me, since they want nothing other than what I want. But those who betray me are the ones who eat my bread at the altar. I truly am that bread. This bread has three characteristics: form, flavor, and roundness. I am indeed the Bread. And, like the bread, I have three things in me: flavor, form, and roundness. I have flavor, for just as all food is tasteless without bread and gives no strength, so without me, everything that exists is tasteless, powerless, and vain. I have also the form of the bread, since I am of the earth. I was born of the Virgin Mother, and my Mother is of Adam, and Adam is of the earth. I have also roundness wherein there is no end or beginning, since I am without beginning and without end. And no one is able to see or find an end or beginning in my wisdom, power, or charity. I am in all things, over all things, and outside of all things. Even if someone were to fly like the fastest arrow perpetually without end, he would still never find an end or a limit to my power and virtue on account of these three things: namely, flavor, form, and roundness. I am that bread that is seen and touched on the altar and is transformed into my body that was crucified. For just as a dry and easily inflammable piece of wood is quickly consumed if it is placed on the fire, and nothing remains of the wood but all of it is fire, so when these words are said, ‘This is my body,’ that which before was bread instantly becomes my body, but is not inflamed by fire like wood but by my Divinity.
That is why those who eat my bread betray me. What murder could be more unmanly and abhorrent than when someone kills himself? And what betrayal is worse than when two are joined by an indissoluble bond, and one betrays the other, as is the case of married people? But what does the man do in order to betray his wife? Indeed, he insincerely says to her: ‘Let us go to such and such a place so I can fulfill my will with you.’ She goes with him in true simplicity, ready for her husband’s every wish. But when he finds the proper time and place, he brings against her three means of betrayal: Either something so heavy that it kills her with one blow, or something so sharp that it cuts right through her intestines, or something to smother the spirit of life in her directly. Then, when she is dead, the betrayer thinks to himself: ‘Now I have done wrong. If my crime becomes known publicly, I will be judged to death.’ Therefore, he goes and lays his dead wife’s body in some hidden place, so that his sin may not be revealed.
This is what the priests who are my betrayers do to me. For they and I are joined together by a single bond when they take the bread and pronounce the words that change it into my true body, which I assumed from the Virgin. No angel could do this, for I gave this dignity to priests alone and elected them for the highest office. But now they act towards me like betrayers, for they show me a happy and kind face and lead me to a hidden place to betray me. These priests show me a happy face when they appear to be good and simple, and they treacherously lead me to a hidden place when they approach the altar. There I am ready like a bride or bridegroom to do all of their will, but they betray me.
First they lay something heavy over me when the divine office, which they say for me, is heavy and burdensome to them. They would rather speak a hundred words for the honor of the world than one for my honor. They would rather give a hundred coins of gold for the glory of the world than one penny for my sake. They would rather work a hundred times for their own benefit and that of the world than once for my honor. They press me down with this heavy burden, so that it is as though I am dead in their hearts. Second, they pierce me with a sharp blade that penetrates the intestines whenever the priest goes to the altar with the knowledge that he has sinned and repented, but yet is firmly resolved to sin again when his office is done, thinking thus to himself: ‘I truly repent of my sin, but I will not give up the woman with whom I have sinned so that I may not be able to sin any longer with her.’ These priests pierce me with the sharpest blade. Third, they smother the spirit when they think inwardly to themselves in this way: ‘It is good and delightful to be with the world and good to live in lust and I cannot restrain myself. I will do my will in my youth; when I grow old, I will become restrained and better myself.’ And by this wretched thought the spirit of life is smothered.
But now you may ask how their hearts becomes so cold and tepid toward me and everything good so that they can never be warmed or rise again to my love. Just as ice cannot catch fire even if it is laid on the fire, but only melts into water, so too, even if I give them my grace and they hear my words of admonishment, they cannot rise up to the warmth of life, but wither and fade away from everything good.
See how they betray me in that they show themselves to be simple without being so, and are burdened and depressed of my honor, which they instead should delight and rejoice in, and also in that their will is to sin and to continue in sin until the end. They conceal me and place me in a hidden place, when they think to themselves: ‘I know I have sinned greatly, but if I refrain from my office, everyone will reproach and condemn me as evil.’ And so they shamelessly go up to the altar and place me before them and touch me, who am true God and true man. I am as it were in a hidden place with them, since no one knows or sees how evil and abominable they are. I, true God and man, lie there as in a hidden place, for even if the worst priest said the words “This is my body,” he still consecrates my true body, and I, true God and true man, would lie there before him. But when he puts my body to his mouth, then I am no longer present to him through the grace of my Divinity and Manhood; only the form and flavor of bread remain for him, but not because I am not truly present for the evil as with the good due to the office of the sacrament, but because the evil and good do not gain the same benefit or perfection from my body. Behold how these priests are not my priests but true betrayers, since they sell and betray me like Judas. I observe the pagans and the Jews, but I do not see anyone worse than these priests, for they are in the same sin that made Lucifer fall from Heaven.
But now I will also tell you their judgment and whom they are like. Their judgment is damnation. David condemned those who were disobedient to God, and because he was a righteous prophet and king, he did not condemn out of wrath or bad will or impatience, but out of divine justice. So do I too, who am better than David, condemn those who are now priests, not out of wrath or bad will but out of justice.
Accursed be therefore everything of what they take from the earth for their own benefit, for they do not praise their God and Creator who has given them this. Accursed be their food and drink that enters their mouths and nourishes their bodies to become food for worms and destines their souls for hell. Accursed be their bodies that will rise again in hell to suffer and burn for all eternity. Accursed be the years in which they lived uselessly. Accursed be the moment that begins hell for them and that never will end. Accursed be their eyes with which they saw the light of Heaven. Accursed be their ears with which they heard my words and did not care. Accursed be their taste with which they tasted my gifts. Accursed be their touch with which they touched me. Accursed be their smell with which they smelled the delightful things of the world and forgot me, the most delightful of all.
But now you may ask: How will they be accursed spiritually? Well, their sight will be accursed, because they shall not see the vision of God in himself but only the darkness and sufferings of hell. Their ears will be accursed, because they shall not hear my words but only the screams and horrors of hell. Their taste will be accursed, because they shall not taste my eternal goods and joy but only eternal bitterness. Their touch will be accursed, because they shall not touch me but only eternal fire in hell. Their smell will be accursed, because they shall not smell the sweet smell of my kingdom that surpasses all sweet scents, but only have the foul stench of hell which is more bitter than bile and worse than sulfur. They shall be accursed by Heaven and earth and all brute creatures, for these obey God and glorify him, whereas they reject him.
Therefore, I who am the Truth, swear in my truth, that if they die like this and in such a disposition that they are in now, neither my love nor my virtue will ever encompass them, but instead, they will be damned for all eternity, and not only priests, but also everyone who rejects the commandments of God!
About how, in the presence of the heavenly host and of the bride, the Divinity spoke to the Manhood against the Christians, just as God spoke to Moses against the people of Israel, and about how damned priests love the world and despise Christ, and about their condemnation and damnation.
A great host was seen in Heaven and God said to it: “My friends, who know and understand and see all things in me, I am speaking in your presence, for the sake of my bride standing here, like someone who speaks to himself, for in this way does my Divinity converse with my Humanity. Moses was with God on the mountain forty days and nights, and when the people saw that he had been gone so long, they took gold and threw it into the fire and shaped a calf out of it, calling it their god.
Then God said to Moses: ‘The people have sinned. I will wipe them out, just like something written is erased from a book.’ Moses answered: ‘No, my Lord, do not. Remember that you led them up from the Red Sea and worked wonders for them. If you erase and destroy them, where is your promise then? I beg you, do not do this, for then your enemies will say: The God of Israel is evil who led the people up from the sea but killed them in the desert.’ And God was appeased by these words.
I am this Moses, figuratively speaking. My Divinity speaks to my Manhood just as to Moses, saying: ‘Behold what your people have done and see how they have despised me. All the Christians shall be killed and their faith eradicated.’ My Humanity answers: ‘No, Lord. Remember that I led the people through the sea in my blood when I was bruised from the top of my head to the sole of my foot. I have promised them eternal life; have mercy on them for the sake of my suffering.’ After hearing these words the Divinity was appeased and said: ‘Thy will be done, for all judgment is given to you.’ See what love, my friends!
But now in your presence, my spiritual friends, angels and saints, and in the presence of my bodily friends who are in the world and yet not in the world except with their body, I complain that my people are gathering firewood and lighting a fire, throwing gold into the fire so that a calf emerges for them to adore and worship as a god. It stands like a calf on four feet having a head, a throat, and a tail. When Moses delayed on the mountain a long time without returning, the people said: ‘We do not know what may have happened to him after this long time.’ And they were displeased that he had led them out of captivity and slavery, and they said: ‘Let us find another god to go before us.’
This is what these damned priests are now doing to me. For they say: ‘Why should we have a more austere life than others? What is our reward for this? It is better for us to live in peace and as we want. Let us love the world that we are certain about, for we are uncertain about his promise.’ Then they gather firewood when they devote all their senses to the love of the world. They light a fire when they have a complete desire for the world. They burn when their lust glows in their mind and proceeds in an act. They throw in gold, which means that all the honor and love they should show to me, they show to get the honor of the world.
Then the calf emerges, which means a complete love of the world. It has four feet of sloth, impatience, superfluous rejoicing, and greediness. For these priests who should be my servants are slothful in honoring me, impatient in suffering anything for my sake, excessive in rejoicing, and never satisfied with the things they have. This calf also has a head and throat, which means a complete will for gluttony that can never be satisfied, not even if the whole sea were to flow into it. The tail of the calf is their malice, for they do not let anyone keep his property if they can take it from him. By their bad example and their contempt, they injure and pervert everyone who serves me. Such is the love for the calf that is in their hearts, and in such they rejoice and lust. They think about me as those others did about Moses, and say: ‘He has been gone for a long time. His words appear vain and his deeds burdensome. Let us have our own will, let our power and will be our god.’ And they are not even satisfied by these things and forget me entirely, but instead, they have me as their idol.
The heathens used to worship wood and stones and dead men, and among others, an idol called Beelzebub was worshipped whose priests used to offer him incense with devotional genuflections and shouts of praise. And everything in their offering that was useless, they dropped on the ground, and the birds and flies ate it up. But everything that was useful, the priests hid away for themselves. They locked the door on their idol and kept the key for themselves so that nobody could go in.
This is what the priests are doing to me in this time. They offer me incense, that is, they speak and preach beautiful words in order to win praise for themselves and some temporal benefit, but not out of love of me. Just as the scent of the incense cannot be captured but only felt and seen, so their words do not attain any benefit for souls so that it can take root and be kept in their hearts, but they are only heard and seem to please for a short time. They offer me prayers, but not the kind that are pleasing to me. Like those who shouts praise with their mouths and are silent in their hearts, they stand next to me shouting with their mouths while in their hearts and thoughts they wander around in the world. But if they were speaking with a mighty or powerful man, then their hearts would follow their own speech and words so that no one would be able to remark on them.
But in my presence the priests are like men who are mentally deranged, for they say one thing with their mouths and have another in their hearts. No one who hears their words can be certain about their meaning. They bend their knees for me, that is, they promise me humility and obedience, but in truth, their humility is as Lucifer’s, and they are obedient to their own desires and not me. They also lock me in constantly and keep the key for themselves. They open up for me and praise me when they say: ‘Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.’ But then they lock me in again by fulfilling their own will, while my will is as an imprisoned and powerless man who can neither be seen nor heard. They keep the key for themselves when they, by their bad example, also lead astray others who want to do my will. And, if they could, they would gladly forbid my will from being fulfilled and accomplished, except when it suits their own will. They also hide anything in the offering that is necessary and useful to them, that is, they demand all their honor and privileges, but the human body, who falls to the ground and dies and for which they should offer the best sacrifice, him they consider as useless and leave the body to the flies, that is, to the worms on the ground. They do not care or bother about their obligation for the salvation of souls.
But what was said to Moses? ‘Kill those who made this idol!’ And some were killed, but not all. In the same way, my words will now come and kill them, some in body and soul by eternal damnation, others unto life so that they should convert and live, others through a fast death, for these priests are altogether abhorrent to me. But what shall I liken them to? They are indeed like the fruit of the thorn-bush, which is beautiful and red on the outside, but inside is full of impurity and stinging thorns. In the same way, these come to me as men who are red with love, and they seem to be pure to men, but inside they are full of all filth. If this fruit is laid in the earth, other thorn-bushes grow up from it. In the same way, these hide their sin and malice in their heart as in the earth, and they become so rooted in evil that they do not even blush to appear in public and boast about their sin. Hence other men not only find a reason to sin but also become deeply wounded in their souls, thinking thus to themselves: ‘If priests do this, it is even more permitted for us to do it.’ And they are not only like the fruit of the thorn-bush, but also the thorns, for they disdain to be moved by reproach and admonition, and they consider no one to be as wise as them and think that they can do everything they want.
Therefore, I swear by my Divinity and Manhood, in the hearing of all the angels, that I shall break down the door they have closed on my will, and my will shall be fulfilled, and their will shall be annihilated and locked in eternal torment and anguish. For as it was once said: ‘I shall begin my judgment with the priests and at my altar.’”
The words of Christ to his bride about how Christ is likened to Moses, in a figurative way, leading the people out of Egypt; and about how the damnable priests, whom he chose in the place of the prophets as his most beloved friends, now cry: “Depart from us!”
The Son of God spoke: “Earlier, I likened myself to Moses in a figurative way. When he led the people out, the water stood like a wall to the right and to the left. I am in truth this Moses, figuratively speaking, who led my Christian people out, that is, I opened heaven for them and showed them the way. But now I have chosen other friends for myself more loved and intimate than the prophets, namely, my priests, who not only hear my words and see, when they see me myself, but also touch me with their hands, which none of the prophets or angels could do.
These priests, whom I have chosen in place of the prophets as my friends, cry out to me, but not with such desire and love as the prophets did, no, the priests and the prophets cry out with two opposing voices. For the priests do not cry out as the prophets did: ‘Come, Lord, for you are sweet,’ but they cry out: ‘Depart from us, for your words are bitter and your deeds heavy and they make us ashamed!’ Hear what these accursed priests say! I stand before them like the most meek and gentle sheep from which they get wool for their clothing and milk for their food, and yet they despise me for such a great love. I stand before them like a guest saying: ‘Friend, give me the necessities of life for my body, for I need it, and you will receive the greatest reward from God in return!’
But even though I appeared with the simplicity of a sheep, they drive me away as a wolf lying in wait for the master’s sheep. They do not want to show me any hospitality and refuse to take me into their house, but instead, they affront me like a traitor unworthy of receiving hospitality from them. But what will the guest do when he has been rejected? Should he not bring out arms against the master of the house who drove him away? By no means, for this would not be just since the owner can deny or give his belongings to whomever he wants. But what shall then the guest do? He should indeed say to the one who drove him away: ‘My friend, since you do not want to take me into your house, I will go to another who will show mercy to me.’ And when he comes to another, he hears him saying: ‘You are welcome, my Lord, all that I have is yours. You shall now be the Lord, and I want to be your servant and guest.’ Those are the kind of lodgings I am pleased to stay in, where I hear such a voice.
I am indeed like a guest driven away by men. But even though I can enter any place by my power, still, on account of justice I do not, but I only enter to those who receive me with a good will as their true Lord, not as a guest, and entrust all their will into my hands.”
The Mother and Son’s words of blessing and praise for each other, and about the grace granted by the Son to his Mother for the souls in purgatory and those in this world.
The Mother of God spoke to her Son and said: “Blessed be your name, my Son, without end and blessed be your Divinity that is without beginning and without end! In your Divinity there are three wonderful things: namely, power, wisdom, and virtue. Your power is like the most violently burning fire before which everything that is solid and strong is reckoned as dry straw in a fire. Your wisdom is like the ocean that can never be emptied because of its greatness and vastness, and which, when it rises up and flows over, covers valleys and mountains. Neither can your wisdom be comprehended nor fathomed about how wisely you created mankind and placed him over all your creation. How wisely you arranged the birds in the air, the animals on the earth and the fishes in the sea, giving to each one its own time and order. How marvelously you give life to everything and take it away! How wisely you give wisdom to the unwise and take it away from the proud! Your virtue is like the light of the sun which shines in the sky and fills the earth with its light. Likewise, your virtue satisfies high and low and fills all things. Therefore, blessed be you, my Son, for you are my God and my Lord!”
The Son answered: “My most dear Mother, your words are sweet to me, for they come from your soul. You are like the dawn that breaks forth with clarity. You outshine all the heavens and your light and your clarity surpass all the angels. By your clarity, you drew to yourself the true sun, that is, my Divinity, so much so that the sun of my Divinity came to you and settled on you. By his warmth you are warmed in my love over all others and by his splendor you are enlightened in my wisdom more than all others. The darkness of the earth was chased away and all the heavens were enlightened through you. I say in my truth that your purity pleased me more than all the angels, and it drew my Divinity to you so that you were enkindled by the warmth of my Spirit; and through it you enclosed the true God and Man in your womb whereby mankind has been enlightened and the angels made joyful. Therefore, may you be blessed by your blessed Son! And for this reason, no prayer of yours will ever come to me without being heard, and through you, anyone who prays for mercy with the intention of mending their sinful ways will receive grace for your sake. For just as heat comes from the sun, so too all mercy is given through you. You are like a filled and flowing spring from which mercy flows to the help of the wretched.”
The Mother answered the Son: “All virtue and glory be yours, my Son! You are my God and my mercy; all good that I have comes from you. You are like the seed that was never sown but still grew and gave fruit a hundredfold and a thousandfold. For all mercy comes from you and since it is innumerable and ineffable, it can indeed be signified by the number one hundred, which signifies perfection, for all perfection comes from you and everyone is perfected in virtue by you.”
The Son answered the Mother: “Indeed, my Mother, you likened me rightly to the seed that was never sown but still grew, since I came with my Divinity to you, and my Manhood was not sown by intercourse but still grew in you, and from it mercy flowed out from you to all. Therefore, you have spoken rightly. Since you now draw mercy out of me with the most sweet words of your mouth, ask me what you want, and it shall be given to you.”
The Mother answered: “My Son, since I have won mercy from you, I beg for mercy and help for the wretched. For there are namely four places: The first is Heaven, where the angels and the souls of the saints need nothing but you whom they have – for in you they have every good. The second place is hell, and those who stay there are filled with malice and excluded from all mercy. Therefore, nothing good can enter into them any more. The third is the place of those being purged in purgatory, and those who stay there need a threefold mercy since they are tormented in a threefold way. They suffer through their hearing, for they hear nothing but pain, sorrow, and misery. They suffer through their sight, for they see nothing but their own misery. They are tormented through their touch, for they feel the heat of the unbearable fire and of the harsh torment. My Lord and my Son, give them your mercy for the sake of my prayers!”
The Son answered: “I will gladly give them a threefold mercy for your sake. First, their hearing shall be relieved, their sight will be eased, and their torment will be reduced and relieved. And all those who are in the greatest and most severe torment of the fires of purgatory shall from this moment come to the middle torment; those who are in the middle torment shall come to the lightest; and those who are in the lightest torment shall come home to rest.”
The Mother answered: “Praise and honor to you, my Lord!” And she immediately said to her Son: “My beloved Son, the fourth place is the world, and its inhabitants are in need of three things: First, repentance for their sins. Second, penance and atonement. Third, the strength to do good deeds.”
The Son answered: “Everyone who calls on your name and has hope in you along with a purpose of amendment for his sins shall be given these three things as well as the kingdom of Heaven. Your words are so sweet to me that I cannot deny you anything you plead for, for you want nothing other than what I want. You are indeed like a shining and burning flame by which the extinguished lights are enkindled and the burning lights are strengthened, for by your love which arose in my heart and drew me to you, those who are dead in sin will come to life again and those who are tepid and black like smoke will become strong in my love.”
The Mother blesses the Son in the hearing of the bride, and about how the glorious Son makes a wonderful comparison of his most sweet Mother to a flower that grew in a valley but rose up over mountains.
The Mother of God spoke to her Son and said: “Blessed be your name, my Son Jesus Christ, and all honor to your Manhood above all that is created! Glory to your Divinity above all good things, which are one God with your Manhood!” The Son answered: “My Mother, you are like a flower that grew in a valley. Around the valley there were five high mountains, and the flower grew out of three roots with a straight stem without any knots. This flower had five leaves that were filled with all sweetness. The valley with its flower grew above these five mountains, and the leaves of the flower spread themselves above every height of heaven and above all the choirs of angels. My beloved Mother, you are this valley for the sake of the great humility you had in comparison with all others. Your humility grew higher than five mountains.
The first mountain was Moses because of his power. For he had power over my people through the Law, as if it were enclosed in his hand. But you enclosed the Lord of all law in your womb and, therefore, you are higher than this mountain. The second mountain was Elijah, who was so holy, that he with soul and body, was assumed into my holy place. But your soul, my most dear Mother, was assumed above all the choirs of angels to the throne of God along with your most pure body. You are therefore higher than Elijah. The third mountain was the strength of Samson that surpassed all other men. Yet the devil defeated him with his treachery. But you defeated the devil with your strength and power. You are therefore stronger than Samson. The fourth mountain was David, who was a man according to my heart and will, but yet fell into sin. But you, my beloved Mother, followed my will in all and never sinned. The fifth mountain was Solomon, who was full of wisdom but nevertheless was fooled. But you, my Mother, were full of all wisdom and were never fooled or deceived. You are therefore higher than Solomon.
The flower grew from three roots, because of the three things you had from your youth: obedience, charity, and divine understanding. Out of these three roots grew the most straight stem without any knots, which means that your will was never bent to anything but my will. This flower also had five leaves that grew above all the choirs of angels. My dear Mother, you are indeed the flower with these five leaves.
The first leaf is your nobleness, which is so great that my angels, who are noble before me, when seeing and considering your nobleness, saw that it was above them and more eminent than their holiness and nobleness. You are therefore higher than the angels. The second leaf is your mercy, which was so great that you, when you saw the misery of all the souls, had compassion over them and suffered the greatest torment at my death. The angels are full of mercy, and yet they never endure sorrow or pain, but you, my loving Mother, were merciful to the wretched when you felt all the sorrow and torment of my death, and you wanted to suffer torment for the sake of mercy rather than being separated from it. Therefore, your mercy surpassed the mercy of all the angels. The third leaf is your loving kindness. The angels are loving and kind and want good for everyone, but you, my dearest Mother, had before your death a will like an angel in your soul and body and did good to everyone. And still you do not refuse anyone who reasonably prays for his own good. Therefore, your kindness is higher and greater than the angels. The fourth leaf is your beauty. The angels behold the beauty of each other and wonder over the beauty of all souls and all bodies, but they see that the beauty of your soul is above all that is created and that the nobleness of your body surpasses all created beings. And so, your beauty surpassed all the angels and everything created. The fifth leaf was your divine joy, for nothing pleased you but God, just as nothing but God delights the angels. Each and every one of them knows and knew his own joy in himself, but when they saw the joy in you to God, they beheld in their conscience how their joy flamed up in them like a light in the love of God. They saw that your joy was like a flaming bonfire, burning with the hottest fire, with flames so high that it came near to my Divinity. And for this reason, my most sweet Mother, your divine joy burned well above all the choirs of angels. Since this flower had these five leaves, namely, nobleness, mercy, loving kindness, beauty, and the highest joy in God, it was full of all sweetness.
But the one who wants to taste of its sweetness should approach the sweetness and assume it into himself. This is also what you did, my most sweet Mother. You were so sweet to my Father that he assumed all of you into his Spirit, and your sweetness delighted him above all other things. The flower also bears a seed by the heat and power of the sun and from it grows a fruit. In this way the blessed sun, my Divinity, assumed Manhood from your virginal womb. For just as the seed makes and grows flowers of the same kind as the seed wherever it is sown, so my limbs were like yours in shape and appearance, even though I was a man and you a woman and a virgin. This valley was uplifted with its flower above all mountains when your body together with your most holy soul was lifted up above all the choirs of angels.”
The Mother blesses her Son and prays to him that his words might be spread all over the world and take root in the hearts of his friends. And about how the Virgin is compared to a wonderful flower growing in a garden, and about the words of Christ that were sent through the bride to the pope and to other prelates of the Church.
The Holy Virgin spoke to the Son and said: “Blessed be you, my Son and my God, Lord of angels and King of glory! I beg of you that the words that you have spoken may take root in the hearts of your friends and that their minds may cling as firmly to these words as the pitch with which Noah’s ark was plastered, which neither storm-waves nor winds could break and dissolve. May they be spread out all over the world like branches and sweet flowers whose fragrance is spread far and wide, in order that they also may bear fruit and become sweet like the date whose sweetness delights the soul exceedingly much.”
The Son answered: “Blessed be you, my most beloved Mother! My angel Gabriel said to you: “Blessed art thou, Mary, among women!” And I bear witness to you that you are blessed and most holy above all the choirs of angels. You are like a flower in a garden that is surrounded by other fragrant flowers, but surpasses them all in scent, beauty, and virtue. These flowers are all the chosen men from Adam to the end of the world which were planted in the garden of the world and shone and smelled in manifold virtues. But among all of those who were and who will afterward come, you were the greatest in the fragrance of humility and a good life, in the beauty of the most pleasing virginity, and in the virtue of abstinence. For I bear witness to you that you were more than any martyr at my suffering, more than any confessor in your abstinence, and more than any angel in your mercy and good will. Therefore, for your sake, I will enroot and fasten my words like the strongest pitch in the hearts of my friends. They shall spread out like fragrant flowers and bear fruit like the sweetest and most wonderful date-palm.”
Thereafter, our Lord spoke to his bride: “Tell my friend, your father, whose heart is according to my heart, that he carefully present these written words to his own father and also give them to the archbishop and later to the other bishop. And when these have been thoroughly instructed, he may send them to the third bishop. Tell him also on my behalf: “I am your Creator and the Redeemer of souls. I am God whom you love above all things. See and consider how the souls which I redeemed with my blood are like the souls of men who know nothing about God, and they are imprisoned by the devil in such cruelty that he torments them in all their limbs as in a hard press. Therefore, if you savor my wounds in your soul, and if you account anything of the scourging and suffering that I endured as precious, then show by your deeds how much you love me. The words that I have spoken with my own mouth shall be made known publicly and brought to the head of the Church.
I shall namely give you my grace and my Spirit so that, wherever there is a quarrel between two, you may be able to reconcile them in my name through the power given to you, if they believe in my words. And as a further clarification of my words, you shall bring to the pope the testimonies of those who taste and delight in my words. For my words are like fat which melts more quickly when the warmth is greater inside, but if no warmth is found, the fat is thrown up and does not reach the intestines. This is how my words are, since the more a man eats and chews on them with a burning love for me, the more he is fed with the desire for heaven and the sweetness of the divine inner love, and the more he burns in my love and charity. But those who do not delight in my words may be likened to having lard in their mouths which they immediately spit out of their mouths and trample under their feet once they have tasted it. Some people despise my words in this way because they have no taste for the sweetness of spiritual things. But the lord of the land, whom I have chosen as my member and made truly mine, will help you manfully and provide you with the necessary things for your journey out of righteously acquired goods.”
The Mother and Son’s words of blessing for each other, and about how the Virgin is likened to the ark wherein the staff, the manna, and the tablets of the Law were, and many wonderful things are revealed in this comparison.
The Virgin Mary spoke to the Son and said: “Blessed be you, my Son, my God, and Lord of angels! You are the one whose voice the prophets heard, whose body the apostles saw, and the one whom the Jews and your enemies laid their hands on. You are one God with your Divinity and Manhood and Holy Spirit. For the prophets heard the Spirit, the apostles saw the glory of your Divinity, and the Jews crucified your Manhood. Therefore, may you be blessed without beginning and without end.”
The Son answered: “Blessed be you, for you are Virgin and Mother. You are the Ark of the Old Law in which there were three things: the staff of Aaron that blossomed, the manna of angels, and the tablets of the Law.
Three things were done with the staff: First, it was transformed into a snake without venom. Second, the ocean was divided by it. Third, it brought forth water out of the rock. I, who lay in your womb and assumed Manhood from you, liken myself with this staff. First, I am as terrifying to my enemies as the snake was to Moses. For they flee from me as from the sight of a snake, and they are terrified of me and abhor me like a venomous snake; and yet I am without the venom of malice and am instead all full of mercy. I allow myself to be held by them, if they want. I return to them if they search for me. I run to them like a mother to her lost and recovered son, if they call on me. I give them my mercy and forgive their sins, if they cry out to me. This is what I do for them, and yet they abhor me like a venomous snake.
Second, the ocean was divided by this staff when the way to heaven, which was closed for the sake of sin, was opened through the shedding of my blood and my pain. The ocean was indeed divided and a way was made, where there before had been no way, when the pain in all my limbs went to my heart, and my heart burst from the violence of the pain. Later, when the people had been led through the ocean, Moses did not lead them to the promised land immediately but to the desert, so that they would be tested and instructed there. This is how it is now, for when the people have accepted my faith and my commandments, they are not led into heaven immediately; for it is necessary that men should be tested in the desert – that is, in the world – as to how much they love God.
However, the people provoked God into anger by three things in the desert: First, because they made an idol and prayed to it. Second, because they longed after the fleshpots that they had in the land of Egypt and third, through their pride, when they, without the will of God, wanted to go and fight against their enemies. People sin against me even now in the world in the same way.
First, they honor and worship an idol: for they love the world and all the things in it more than me, who am their Creator. Therefore, the world is their god, and not I. For I said in my gospel: “Where a man’s treasure is, there his heart is also.” So, mankind’s treasure is the world, since their heart yearns towards it and not to me. Therefore, just as the Jews fell in the desert with a sword in their bodies, so too shall these people fall with the sword of eternal damnation in their soul and they shall live in damnation without end.
Second, they sinned through their longing for fleshpots. I gave mankind everything he needed to use in an honorable and moderate way, but he wants to have all things without moderation and reason. For, if his bodily nature could bear it, he would without end have sex, drink without restraint, desire without measure and limit, and, as long as he could sin, he would never desist from sin. Therefore, the same thing will happen to them that happened to the Jews in the desert, that is, they will die a sudden death in their body. For what is this temporal life other than a single moment compared to eternity? For this reason, they shall die a sudden death in their bodies to be torn away from this short life and live with torment in their souls for all eternity.
Third, they sinned in the desert through their pride, since they wanted to go to battle without God’s will. Likewise, people want to go to Heaven through their pride, and they do not trust in me but in themselves, doing their own will and abandoning mine. Therefore, they shall be killed in their souls by devils just as the Jews were killed by their enemies, and their torment shall be everlasting. They thus hate me like a snake, worship an idol instead of me, long for their own desires more than me, and love their own pride instead of my humility. Yet, I am still so merciful that I will turn to them like a loving father and take them to me if they turn to me with a repentant heart.
Third, the rock gave water through this staff. This rock is the hard heart of mankind, for if it is pierced with my fear and love, there immediately flow tears of repentance and penance out of it. No one is so unworthy and no one is so evil that he will not have tears flowing from his eyes and all his limbs awakened to devotion if he turns to me in a heartfelt contemplation of my suffering and bethinks how my power and goodness makes the earth and trees bear fruit.
Second, the manna of angels lay in the ark of Moses. So, too, in you my beloved Mother and Virgin, lay the bread of angels and of holy souls and of righteous men on earth, whom nothing pleases but my sweetness; for all of the world is dead to them, so that they would gladly go even without bodily nourishment if it were my will.
Third, in the ark were the tablets of the Law. So, too, in you lay the Lord of all laws. Therefore, may you be blessed above everything created in Heaven and on earth!”
Then Christ spoke to his bride and said: “Tell my friends three things. When I was bodily in the world, I adjusted my words so that good men were made stronger and more fervent in doing good things, and evil men became better, as was seen in the conversion of Magdalene, Matthew, and many others. I also adjusted my words so that my enemies were not able to refute them. For that reason, may they to whom my words are sent, work with fervor, so that through my words, the good may become more ardent in goodness, the evil repent from wickedness, and that they themselves be on guard against my enemies so that my words are not obstructed. In truth, I do no greater injustice to the devil than to the angels in Heaven. For if I wanted, I could speak my words so that the whole world hears them. I could also open up hell so that everyone may see its torments, but this would not be justice, since all men would then serve me out of fear, when they should serve me out of love. For no other than the one who has love shall enter the kingdom of Heaven. For I would be doing injustice to the devil if I took away from him one who is rightfully his, because of sin, and who is devoid of good deeds. I would also do injustice to the angel in Heaven, if I placed the spirit of an unclean man as an equal to the one who is pure and most fervent in my love.
Therefore, no one shall enter Heaven, but the one who has been purged like gold in the fire of purgatory or who has proved himself over a long duration of time in good deeds on earth so that there is no stain in him left to be purged away. If you do not know to whom my words should be sent, I will tell you: The one who is worthy to have my words is the one who wants to gain merit through good deeds in order to come to the kingdom of Heaven or who already has deserved it with their good deeds in the past. To such as these shall my words be opened up to and enter into them. Those who have a taste for my words and who humbly hope that their names are written in the Book of Life keep my words. But those who have no have taste for my words, consider them first, but then throw up and vomit them out immediately.”
The words of an angel to the bride about whether the spirit of her thoughts is good or bad, and about how there are two spirits, one uncreated and one created, and about their characteristics.
A holy angel spoke to the bride and said: “There are two spirits, one uncreated and one created. The uncreated Spirit has three characteristics: First, he is hot; second, sweet; and third, pure. First, he gives off warmth, and his warmth does not come from created things but from himself, since he, together with the Father and the Son, is Creator of all things and Almighty. He gives off warmth when the whole soul burns for the love of God. Second, he is sweet, when nothing pleases the soul and nothing delights it but God and the recollection of his deeds. Third, he is so pure that no sin can be found in him, nor any deformity or corruption or mutability. He does not give off warmth like earthly fire, and he does not make things melt like the visible sun, but his warmth is the inner love and desire of the soul that fills the soul and engrosses her in God. He is sweet to the soul, not as a desirable wine or fleshly lust or any other worldly thing, but instead, the sweetness of this Spirit is incomparable to all temporal sweetness and unimaginable to those who have not tasted it. Third, this Spirit is as pure as the rays of the sun in which no blemish can be found.
The second spirit that is created also has three characteristics. He is burning, bitter, and unclean. First, he is burning and consuming like fire, for he completely enkindles the soul he possesses with the fire of lust and evil desire, so that the soul that is filled by him can neither think nor desire anything other than fulfilling this desire; and the consequence of this is that her temporal life is sometimes lost along with all honor and consolation. Second, he is bitter as gall, since he so inflames the soul with his evil lust, that future joys seem like nothing to her and eternal goods but foolishness. And all the things that are of God and which she, the soul, is obligated to do for God, become as bitter and despicable to her as vomit and gall. Third, he is unclean, since he makes the soul so vile and inclined to sin that she does not feel ashamed for any sin, and she would not abstain from any sin, if she did not fear being shamed and judged before men more than before God. This is why this spirit is like a burning fire, because he burns of desire to do evil and enkindles others along with itself. This is why he is bitter, because all good is bitter to him and he wants to make it bitter for others as well as for himself. This is why he is unclean, because he delights in impurity and wants that others shall become like himself.
But now you might ask and say to me: “Are you not also a created spirit like him? Why, then, are you not like that?” I answer you: I am indeed created by the same God as he, for there is only one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and these are not three gods, but one God. Both of us were well made and created for the good, since God has created nothing but good. But I am like a star, for I remained in the goodness and love of God in which I was created. He, however, is like coal, since he left the love of God. Just as a star has brightness and splendor, whereas coal has blackness and filth, so the good angel, who is like a star, has his splendor, that is, the Holy Spirit – since everything he has, he has from God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, from whose love he becomes set on fire and from whose splendor he shines – constantly clinging to him and conforming himself after his will without ever wanting anything other than what God wants. And this is why he is burning; this is why he is pure.
The devil however is like ugly coal, and is uglier and more deformed than any other created creature. For just as he once was more beautiful than others, so he had to become uglier than others since he opposed himself against his Creator. Just as the angel of God shines with the light of God and burns incessantly by his love, so the devil is always burning and anguishing in his malice. His malice is insatiable, just as the goodness and grace of the Holy Spirit are inexpressible. For no one in this world is so rooted in the devil that the Holy Spirit does not sometimes visit and touch his heart. Likewise is no one so good that the devil does not gladly try to touch him with temptation. Many good and righteous men are tempted by the devil with God’s permission, and this is not because of their wickedness but for their greater glory. Indeed, the Son of God, who is one in Divinity with the Father and the Holy Spirit, was tempted when he had assumed Manhood; and how much more should not his elect be tempted then, so that their reward and glory may become greater!
Again, many good people sometimes fall into sin, and their conscience is darkened by the treachery of the devil, but then they get up again, being stronger and more steadfast than before through the virtue and power of the Holy Spirit. There is no one who does not understand in his conscience whether the suggestion of the devil leads to the ugliness of sin or to the good, if he would only think about and examine his conscience carefully. Therefore may you, bride of my Lord, not doubt whether the spirit of your thoughts is good or bad, for your conscience tells you which things to exclude and which to do.
But what should the one who is full of the devil do, since the good Spirit cannot enter him who is full of evil? He should do three things: First, he should make a pure and complete confession of his sins. Even if he cannot directly feel a complete remorse for his sins due to his hardened heart, still the confession will benefit him so much that the devil ceases with his treachery and yields to the good spirit. Second, he should be humble and wish to amend for all the sins he has committed and do the good deeds he can, and then the devil will begin to leave. Third, he should beseech God with humble prayer in order that he may get the good Spirit back and have contrition for the sins he has committed along with true divine love, since the love for God kills the devil. This devil is so envious and full of malice that he would rather die a hundred times than see someone do God the least little good deed out of love.”
Thereafter, the Holy Virgin spoke to the bride, saying: “New bride of my Son, put on your clothes and fasten your brooch, that is, my Son’s suffering!” She answered her: “My sweet Lady, put it on me yourself.” And the Virgin said: “Yes, I shall do it. I also want to tell you how my Son was disposed and why the holy fathers longed for him so fervently. He stood, as it were, in between two great cities, and a voice from the first city cried out to him saying: “O man, standing in between the cities, you are a wise man, for you know how to beware of coming dangers and injuries. You are also strong in the suffering of overhanging evils, and you are brave as well since you fear nothing. We have longed for and awaited you. Therefore, open our gate, for our enemies are besieging it so that it cannot be opened.”
A voice from the second city was heard saying thus: “You, the most kind and strong of men, hear our complaint and lament! We sit in darkness and suffer unbearable hunger and thirst. Consider our misery and our great distress. We are beaten like grass cut by a scythe. All goodness has dried and withered away in us; and all our strength has faded away in us. We beg you to come to us and save us, for you alone are the one we have awaited and hoped for as our liberator! Come and release us from our distress, turn our lamentation into joy, and be our help and salvation! Come, most blessed and worthy body, which proceeded from the pure Virgin!” My Son heard these two voices from the two cities, that is, from Heaven and hell. That is why he had mercy on them and opened up the gates of hell through his most bitter suffering and the shedding of his blood and brought his friends out of there. He opened up Heaven, too, to the joy of the angels, and led the ones into Heaven whom he had rescued from hell. My daughter, think on these things and have them always before your eyes!”
About how Christ is likened to a mighty lord who built a great city and a marvelous castle, signifying the world and the church, and how the judges and defenders and workers in the church of God have been changed into a bad bow.
Our Lord Jesus Christ said: “I am like a powerful lord who built a great city and named it after himself. Thereafter, he built a castle in the city in which there were many rooms for storing all kinds of useful necessities. Then, when he had built the castle and arranged all his things, he divided his people into three groups, saying: ‘I am going away to a far away country. Stand firm and work manfully for my glory! I have made arrangements for your food and your necessities, and you have judges to judge you and defenders to defend you from your enemies. I have also arranged for working men who shall feed you and give me a tenth part of their work, saving it for my use and my honor.’
But after some time had gone by, the name of the city was forgotten. Then the judges said: ‘Our lord has traveled to a far away country. Let us judge righteous judgments and do justice so that, when our lord returns, we may not be punished and be accused but receive honor and blessing.’ Then the defenders said: ‘Our lord trusts us very much and has left the defense of his house to us. Let us therefore abstain from superfluous food and drink so that we may not become unfit for battle. Let us also abstain from excessive sleep so that we may guard ourselves and not be trapped unawares. May we be well armed and constantly watchful so that we may not be found unprepared when enemies come. The honor of our lord and the salvation of our people depend very much on us.’ Then the workers said: ‘The glory of our lord is great and his reward is glorious and grand. Let us therefore work mightily and give him not only a tenth of our work but also offer him everything above our living expenses! Our reward shall become more glorious the greater the love he sees in us.’
Thereafter, some time went by, and the name of the city and the lord of the castle became forgotten. Then the judges said to themselves: ‘The delay of our lord is long, and we do not know if he will return or not. Let us therefore judge according to our own will and do what we please.’ The defenders said: ‘We are fools, because we work and know not what reward we shall receive. Let us enter into a covenant with our enemies instead and sleep and drink with them, for we do not care about whose enemies they have been.’ Thereafter, the workers said: ‘Why do we save our gold for others, when we do not know who will get it after us? It is better that we use it ourselves and dispose of it after our own will. Let us therefore give the tenth to the judges and placate them so that we then can do what we want.’
In truth, I am like this mighty lord, for I built myself a city, that is, the world, and placed a castle there, that is, the church. The name of the world was divine wisdom, for the world had this name from the beginning, since it was created in divine wisdom. This name was venerated by all, and God was praised in his wisdom and wondrously proclaimed by his creatures. But now the name of the city has been dishonored and changed, and a new name has been taken, that is, human wisdom.
For the judges, who before had made judgments in righteousness and the fear of the Lord, have now turned to pride and are trying to deceive simple men. They desire to be eloquent so that they may win human praise, and they speak and preach that which pleases men so that they may obtain favors. They tolerate calmly all words so that they may be called good and patient, and they accept bribes to overturn righteous judgments. They are wise for the sake of their own temporal benefit and their own will, but dumb when it comes to my praise. They trample and press down simple men under their feet and force them into silence. They extend their greed to all and make right into wrong. This is the kind of wisdom that is loved now, while my wisdom is forgotten.
The defenders of the church, who are the noblemen and knights, see my enemies and the attackers of my Church but do not care about it. They hear their words of blasphemy and mockery but do not care about it. They perceive and understand the deeds of those who attack my commandments and still bear them patiently. They behold them daily committing all kinds of mortal sins, as if they were allowed, and feel no compunction about it, but sleep and associate with them, binding themselves by oath to their company.
The workers, that is, the entire people, reject my commandments and withhold my gifts and my tenth. They offer gifts to their judges and show them honor and reverence in order to win their favor and goodwill. In truth, I can boldly say that the sword of fear for me and for my Church is thrown away in the world, and that a sack of money has been put in its place.”
The words in which God explains the nearest preceding chapter, and about the judgment that he makes against such people, and about how God for a while endures the evil for the sake of the good.
“I told you before that the sword of my Church is thrown away and that a sack of money has been put in its place, which is open at one end. The other end is so deep, that whatever one puts into it never reaches the bottom, and so the sack never gets filled. This sack is greed, which exceeds all measures and now has become so powerful that the Lord is scorned and nothing is desired but money and the selfish will of man. But I am like a lord who is both father and judge. When he shall go forth and judge, the bystanders say to him: ‘Lord, proceed quickly and make your judgment!’ The Lord answers them: ‘Wait a little until tomorrow, because perhaps my son will still amend himself in the meantime.’
When he comes back the next day, the people say to him: ‘Proceed, Lord, and make your judgment! Why are you postponing the judgment for so long and do not judge the guilty?’ The Lord answers them: ‘Wait a little while longer, to see if my son betters himself, and if he then does not repent, I shall make a just judgment over him.’ In this way I patiently endure mankind even until the last moment, since I am both father and judge. But my justice is unchangeable, and even though it sometimes is postponed a long time, I will still either punish sinners who do not better themselves or show them mercy if they amend themselves.
I also told you before that I divided the people into three groups: namely, judges, defenders, and workers. What do these judges signify if not the priests who have turned the divine wisdom into an evil and useless wisdom? Like clerks who take many words and assemble them into a few words, which say the same thing as the many did, so too have these present-day clerics taken my ten commandments and assembled them into a single one. And what is this single word if not: ‘Reach out your hand and give us money!’ This is their wisdom, to speak beautifully, to act badly and to pretend to be my servants while yet acting maliciously against me. For the sake of gifts, they gladly put up with sinners in their sins and bring about the downfall of simpleminded people through their bad example. Furthermore, they hate those who walk on my way. Second, the defenders of the Church, that is, the knights, are unfaithful, since they have broken their promise and their oath and gladly endure those who sin against the faith and law of my Holy Church. Third, the workers, that is, the whole people, are like untamed bulls which have three things: First, they dig the earth with their feet; second, they fill themselves to satiety; third, they fulfill their own lusts according to their own desire. Likewise does now the whole people crave after temporal goods with all of their desire, filling itself with immoderate gluttony and worldly vanity and practicing its carnal lust and delight without reason.
But even though my enemies are many, I still have many friends among them, although hidden. As it was said to Elijah, who thought none of my friends were left in the world but himself: “I have seven thousand men who have not bowed their knees to Baal.” So, even though my enemies are many, I still have some friends hidden among them who cry daily because my enemies are superior and because my name is despised. Therefore, for the sake of their prayers, I shall do like a charitable and good king who knows the evil deeds of the city but patiently endures its residents and sends letters to his friends to forewarn them of their danger. In this way I send my words to my friends; and they are not so obscure as the words in the Apocalypse which I revealed to John in an obscure way in order that they would be interpreted by my Spirit at the time that pleased me. Nor are they so hidden that they cannot be proclaimed – as when Paul saw many of my hidden secrets that he was not allowed to speak about – but they are so plain, that all, both small and big, can understand them, and so easy, that all who want to, can grasp and understand them.
Therefore, let my friends see to it that my words reach my enemies, so that they, perhaps, convert themselves and feel sorrow and remorse for their sins, when their peril and my judgment are made known to them. Otherwise, the city will be judged so severely that, just as a wall is torn down without leaving stone upon stone, so that not even two stones join to each other in the foundation, so shall it be with the city, that is, with the world.
The judges shall burn in the hottest fire. There is no fire hotter than the one that is fed with some fat. These judges were fat, since they had more opportunities of fulfilling their lust and will than others; they surpassed others in honor and temporal abundance, and abounded more in malice and unrighteousness. Therefore, they will burn in the hottest pan, that is, in the torments of hell!
The defenders shall be hanged on the highest gallows. A gallows consists of two vertical timber beams with a third placed above the others horizontally. This gallows with two wooden beams signifies their cruel and severe torment, which is, so to speak, made from two pieces of wood. The first beam signifies that they did not hope for my eternal reward nor worked for it with their good deeds. The second beam signifies that they did not trust in my power and goodness, when they thought I was not able to do all things or did not want to provide for them sufficiently. The wooden crossbeam signifies their evil conscience, for they understood very well what they should do but, instead, did evil and felt no shame about acting against their conscience. The rope of the gallows signifies the everlasting fire which can neither be extinguished by water nor cut by scissors nor be destroyed and broken by old age. On this gallows of the most cruel torment and inextinguishable fire, they will hang and feel shame and distress like unhappy traitors, since they were disloyal. They will hear insults, since my words displeased them. A woe shall be in their mouths, since their own honor and praise delighted them. They shall be mangled on this gallows by living crows, that is, by devils who can never get their fill, and even though they be wounded, they shall never be consumed, but they shall live in torment without end and their torturers shall also live without end. There shall be a woe that will never end and a misery that will never be mitigated. Woe unto them, that they were ever born! Woe unto them, that their life was so long!
And lastly concerning the workers, their just sentence will be the same as for bulls. For the bulls have very hard flesh and skin. Therefore, their judgment shall be the sharpest steel. This most sharp steel is the death of hell that will torment those who scorned me and loved their own will instead of my commandments.
The letter, that is, my words, are now written. May my friends work wisely and reasonably so that it comes to my enemies, for perhaps they will want to hear them and repent from their wickedness. But if some, after having heard my words, should say: “Let us wait a little moment, the judgment is not yet coming, it is not yet his time,” then I swear by my Divinity which cast out Adam from paradise and sent ten plagues over Pharaoh, that I will come to them faster than they think.
I swear by my Manhood, which I assumed without sin from the Virgin for the salvation of mankind, and in which I endured sorrow in my heart and suffered bodily torment and death for the eternal life of men, and in which I rose again from the dead and ascended into heaven and am seated at the right hand of the Father, true God and true Man in one person, that I shall fulfill my words.
I swear by my Spirit, which descended over the apostles on the day of Pentecost and inflamed them so that they spoke in the language of all peoples, that unless they better themselves and return to me like weak servants, I shall execute vengeance over them in my wrath. Then there shall be a woe in soul and body! Woe unto them that they came alive into the world and lived in the world! Woe unto them, for their lust was small and vain but their torment shall be everlasting! Then they shall perceive what they now scorn to believe, namely, that my words were words of love. Then they shall understand that I admonished them like a father, even though they did not want to hear me. In truth, if they do not want to believe in my words of goodwill, they will have to believe in the deeds when they come.
The words of our Lord to the bride about how he is loathsome and despicable food for the souls of Christians, and how the world, instead, is loved and found to be delightful by them, and about the terrifying judgment that is executed over such people.
The Son of God spoke to his bride: “Christians are now acting towards me as the Jews acted towards me. The Jews drove me out of the temple and had a complete will to kill me, but since my hour had not yet come, I escaped from their hands. Christians act towards me in the same way now. They drive me out of their temple (that is, out of their soul, which should be my temple) and they would gladly want to kill me if they could. I am like rotten and stinking flesh in their mouths. I seem, to them, to be like a man who utters lies, and they do not care about me at all. They turn their backs to me, but I will turn my neck to them, since there is nothing but craving in their mouths and irrational beastly lust in their flesh. Only pride is delightful in their ears, only the lust of the world delights their eyes. My suffering and my love are detestable to them and my life heavy and burdensome. Therefore, I shall do as the animal which had many dens: when hunters pursued and drove it from one den, it escaped into another. This is what I will do, because Christians are chasing me away with their bad deeds and driving me out of the den of their hearts.
Therefore, I want to go to the heathens in whose mouths I am now bitter and distasteful, but I will become sweeter than honey in their mouths. Nevertheless, I am still so merciful that I will happily receive each and everyone who begs for my forgiveness and says: ‘Lord, I know that I have sinned severely and I gladly want to better myself through your grace. Have mercy on me for the sake of your bitter suffering.’ But to those who harden themselves in their evil, I shall come like a warrior that has three characteristics: namely, dreadfulness, strength, and severity. I shall come and be so terrifying to the Christians that they will not dare to move the least finger against me. I shall also come to them with such strength that they will be like mosquitoes before me. Third, I shall come to them with such severity that they will feel a woe in this world and a woe without end.”
The words of the Mother to the bride about how sweet the Mother and the Son are to each other. How Christ is bitter, bitterer, and most bitter for the evil, and how he is sweet, sweeter, and most sweet for the good.
The Mother of God said to the bride: “Consider, new bride of my Son, the suffering of my Son, which surpassed in bitterness the suffering of all the saints. Just as a mother would feel the most bitter sorrow and anguish if she saw her son being cut to pieces alive, so, too, was I grieving at the torments of my Son when I saw his bitter sufferings.” Then she spoke to her Son, saying: “Blessed be you, my Son, for you are holy, as it is sung: ‘Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Sabaoth.’ Blessed be you, for you are sweet, sweeter, and most sweet! You were holy before you assumed Manhood, holy in my womb, and holy after you assumed Manhood. You were sweet before the creation of the world, sweeter to the angels, and most sweet to me when you assumed Manhood from me.”
The Son answered: “Blessed be you, my beloved Mother, above all the angels. Just as I, in a threefold way, was most sweet for you, as you were saying now, so I am bitter, bitterer, and most bitter for the wicked. I am bitter for those who say I have created many things without a reason and who scornfully say I have created mankind for death and not for life. What a miserable and foolish thought! Did I, who am the most righteous and virtuous, create the angels without a reason? Would I have enriched mankind with so many good things if I had created him for damnation? By no means! I created all things well and gave every good to mankind out of my love. But he, however, turned all good things into evil for himself. It is not because I created anything evil, but mankind moves his will in another way than he should, and not according to God’s law, and this is evil.
But I am bitterer for those who say that I have given them a free will to sin and not to do good, who say I am unjust since I condemn some and justify others, and who blame me for their own wickedness because I withhold my grace from them. I am most bitter for those who say that my law and commandments are exceedingly harsh and difficult and that no one is able to keep them, who say my suffering is worth nothing for them, and who therefore count it for nothing.
Therefore, I swear by my life, as once I swore through the prophets, that I shall justify myself before the angels and all my saints. Those for whom I am bitter shall understand that I created all things reasonably and well for the use and education of mankind, and that not the smallest worm exists without a reason. Those for whom I am bitterer shall understand that I wisely gave men a free will for their own good. They will also know that I am just, giving the eternal kingdom to good men, but everlasting torment to the wicked. For it would not be proper for the devil, who was created good by me but who fell through his own malice, to have fellowship with the good. The wicked will also understand that it is not my fault that they are evil, but their own fault. For if it were possible, I would gladly take upon myself the same torment for each and every man that I once suffered on the cross for all, if thereby they could return to their promised inheritance. But the will of mankind is always opposed to mine. I gave him liberty to serve me, if he would, and to gain the eternal reward; but if he does not want to, he should be tormented together with the devil and his followers, for whose malice, hell was justly created.
But because I am full of charity, I do not want mankind to serve me out of fear or be forced to do so like an irrational animal but out of love for God, for no one who serves me unwillingly or out of fear of torment can see my face. But those for whom I am most bitter will understand in their consciences that my law was most easy and my yoke most sweet. They will feel inconsolable sadness that they despised my law and instead loved the world, whose yoke is heavier and much more difficult than my yoke.”
Then the Mother of God answered: “Blessed be you, my Son, my God, and my Lord! Since you were most sweet for me, I beg of you that others may be made partakers of my sweetness!” The Son answered: “Blessed be you, my most dear Mother! Your words are sweet and full of love. Therefore shall each and everyone who takes your sweetness into his mouth and keeps it perfectly be benefited thereby. But the one who takes it and spits it out again will be tormented all the more bitterly.” Then the Virgin answered: “Blessed be you, my Son, for all your mercy and love!”
The words of Christ, in the presence of the bride, about how Christ is likened to a peasant, good priests to a good shepherd, bad priests to a bad shepherd, and good Christians to a wife. Many useful things are also explained in this parable.
“I am the one who never said anything false. The world considers me to be a peasant whose name seems contemptible. My words are counted as foolish and my house is considered a despicable shed. This peasant had a wife who wanted nothing other than what he wanted, who owned everything with him and had him as her master, obeying him in all things as her master. This peasant also had many sheep, and he hired a shepherd to watch over them for five gold coins and for the necessities of his bodily needs. Since this was a good shepherd, he used the gold to his benefit and the food for his sustenance. After some time had gone by, this shepherd moved and another shepherd came who was worse, who bought himself a wife with the gold and brought her his food, constantly taking his rest with her without caring about the sheep that were being lamentably scattered by cruel beasts.
When the peasant saw how his sheep were being scattered, he cried out saying: ‘My shepherd is unfaithful to me! My sheep are scattered by the most cruel beasts. Some of them are completely devoured by the beasts with body and fleece, while others are dead but their bodies left uneaten.’ Then the wife said to her husband the peasant: ‘My Lord, it is certain that we will not get back the bodies that are devoured, but the bodies who have remained unharmed, even though they are without life, should be brought home and made use of by us. For it would be unbearable for us if we lost everything.’ The husband answered her: ‘But what shall we do? Since the animals had venomous teeth, the flesh of the sheep has also become poisoned with deadly venom, the hide is ruined, and the wool is all tangled.’ The wife answered: ‘If everything is infected and ruined and everything taken from us, what shall we then live on?’
The husband answered her: ‘I see that there are sheep still alive in three places. Some are like the dead sheep and do not dare to breathe out of fear. Other sheep are lying deep in filth and cannot raise themselves up. Still others lie in hiding places and dare not come forth. Come therefore, my wife, and let us lift up the sheep that are trying to raise themselves up but cannot do so without help, and let us make use of them to our own benefit.’
Behold, I the Lord am this peasant, for men consider me to be a donkey raised in its stall according to its ways and habits. My name is the foundation of the Holy Church, but she is now considered to be contemptible, since the sacraments of the Church, namely baptism, confirmation, anointing, penance, and matrimony, are taken, as it were, with derision and given to others for the sake of greed. My words and deeds are considered and judged to be foolish and vain, for the words that I spoke in parables with my own mouth, have now been converted from a spiritual understanding to temporal entertainment. My house is looked on as contemptible, for the things of the earth are loved instead of the things of Heaven.
With this first shepherd I had, I symbolize my friends the priests, which I used to have in the Holy Church; for by a single word, I mean and signify many. I entrusted them with my sheep, that is, to consecrate my most venerable body and to rule and defend the souls of my chosen ones. I also gave them five good things more precious than all gold: First, an insight and understanding about all abstruse things so that they will be able to distinguish between good and evil, and between truth and falsehood. Second, I gave them understanding and wisdom in spiritual things; this has now been forgotten and human wisdom is loved instead. Third, I gave them chastity; fourth, temperance in all things and abstinence for the restraining and guidance of their body; fifth, steadfastness in good habits, words, and deeds.
After this first shepherd, that is, after these friends of mine, who used to be in my Church in days of old, other unrighteous shepherds came that bought a wife for themselves with the gold, that is, they took to themselves the body of a woman and intemperance instead of chastity and these five good things, and that is why my Spirit departed from them. For when they have a complete will to sin and to satisfy their wife, that is, to satisfy their lust, then my Spirit is absent from them, since they do not care about the perdition of the sheep so long as they can fulfill their evil lust. But the sheep that are completely devoured are those whose souls are in hell and whose bodies are buried in the grave awaiting the resurrection of the eternal damnation. The sheep whose flesh remains but whose spirit is taken away, are those who neither love me nor fear me nor feel any devotion or care toward me. My Spirit is far away from them, since their flesh is poisoned by the venomous teeth of the beasts, that is, their soul and their thoughts, which are symbolized by the sheep’s flesh and intestines, are in every way as disgusting to me and as repulsive to taste as is poisoned meat. From their hide, that is, from their body, has all goodness and charity dried out and it is unfit for any service in my kingdom and shall be delivered to the everlasting fire of hell after the judgment. Their wool, that is, their deeds, are so altogether useless that there is nothing in them that would make them worthy to receive my love and grace.
But what shall we do then, my wife, that is, good Christians, whom the wife symbolizes, what should we do? I see that sheep are alive in three places. Some of them look like the dead sheep and do not dare to breathe out of fear. These are the gentiles who would gladly have the right faith, if only they knew how, but who do not dare to breathe, that is, they do not dare to leave the faith that they have and take the right faith. The second sheep are those lying in hiding places who do not dare to come forth, and these are the Jews who live, so to speak, under a veil, and who would gladly come forth if they knew for certain that I was born. They namely hide themselves under a veil, since their hope for salvation is in the figures and signs that used to symbolize me in the Old Law but which in truth have been fulfilled in me, and because of this vain hope they are afraid to come forth to the right faith. The third sheep that lie in the filth are Christians in the state of mortal sin. They would gladly raise themselves up because of their fear of the torment, but they cannot due to their heavy sins and because they have no divine love. Therefore, my wife, that is, good Christians, help me! For just as a wife and a man should be one flesh and one limb, so the Christian is my limb and I am his, since I am in him and he is in me.
Therefore, o wife of mine, that is, good Christians, run with me to the sheep that still have a breath of life and let us lift them up and refresh them! Have compassion on me, for I bought them at a very high price! Let us lift them up, you with me and me with you, you at the back and I at the head! I gladly carry them with my hands. Once I carried them all on my back when it was all lacerated and fastened to the cross. O my friends, I love these sheep so dearly that, if it were possible for me to suffer such a death for each sheep as I once suffered on the cross for all of them, I would rather redeem them than want to lose them. That is why I cry out to my friends with all my heart that they should not spare goods or work for my sake; for if I was not spared from reproaching and insulting words while I was in the world, they should not spare themselves in speaking the truth about me. I was not ashamed to suffer a contemptible death for their sake, but stood there naked, just as I was born, before the eyes of my enemies. I was struck in the teeth with their fists. I was dragged by the hair with their fingers and scourged by their scourges. I was fastened to the cross with their tools, and I hung on the cross between thieves and robbers. Therefore, my friends, do not spare yourself in working for me since I endured such things out of love for you. Work manfully and bring help to all my sheep in distress.
I swear by my Manhood, which is in the Father as the Father is in me, and by my Divinity, which is in my Spirit as the Spirit is in the Divinity and the same Spirit is in me and I in him, and these are one God in three persons, that I shall run out to meet those halfway who work in carrying my sheep with me and help them, and I shall give them the most precious reward, namely, myself unto their everlasting joy.”
The words of the Son to the bride about the three kinds of Christians that are symbolized by the Jews living in Egypt, and about how the things which have been revealed to the bride should be transmitted, published and preached to ignorant persons by the friends of God.
The Son of God spoke to the bride and said: “I am the God of Israel and the one who spoke with Moses. When Moses was sent to my people, he begged for a sign, saying: ‘The people will not believe me otherwise.’ But if the people to whom Moses was sent were the Lord’s people, why did they not believe? You should know that this people consisted of three kinds of men: Some believed in God and Moses. Others believed in God but distrusted Moses, in that they thought that he, perhaps of his own invention and presumption, had presumed to say and do these things. The third were those who neither believed in God nor in Moses.
In the same way, there are now three kinds of men among Christians who are symbolized by the Hebrew people: There are some who rightly believe in God and in my words. There are others who believe in God but distrust my words, because they cannot distinguish between the good and the evil spirit. The third are those who neither believe in me nor in you to whom I have spoken my words. But, as I said, even though some of the Hebrews distrusted Moses, nevertheless they all went through the Red Sea with him and into the desert where those who had not believed worshipped idols and provoked God into wrath, which is why they also died in the most miserable of deaths. But only those who had an evil faith did so.
Therefore, my friend shall carry my words to those who believe him, since the human soul is slow to believe. And these shall afterwards spread them to others who do not know how to distinguish between the good and the evil spirit. But if the hearers beg them for a sign, let them show those men the staff, just as Moses did, that is, let them explain my words to them. For just as the staff of Moses was straight and terrifying (for it was transformed into a snake), so are my words straight so that no falsehood can be found in them. They are terrifying, since they proclaim the righteous judgment. Let them also explain and testify that, by a word and sound of a single mouth, the devil yielded from the creature of God – he who could move mountains, if he were not restrained by my power. What kind of power belonged to him when, with God’s permission, he was driven away by the sound of a single word?
Therefore, just as those Hebrews, who neither believed in God nor in Moses, yet went out of Egypt for the promised land when they, as it were, were forced along together with the others, so too, many Christians go out unwillingly together with my chosen men since they do not trust in my power to heal them. They do not believe in my words and they have a false hope in my power. Nevertheless, my words shall be fulfilled without their will and shall be, as it were, forced along to fulfillment until they get to the place that pleases me.”
St. Bridget | Saint Bridget of Sweden and her Revelations
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