Monday, June 30, 2014

The Imitation of Christ, by Thomas à Kempis. Book 1, Chapter 5: Of the reading of Holy Scripture

Of the reading of  Holy Scripture

It is Truth which we must look for in Holy Writ, not cunning of
words.  All Scripture ought to be read in the spirit in which it
was written.  We must rather seek for what is profitable in
Scripture, than for what ministereth to subtlety in discourse.
Therefore we ought to read books which are devotional and simple,
as well as those which are deep and difficult.  And let not the
weight of the writer be a stumbling-block to thee, whether he be
of little or much learning, but let the love of the pure Truth
draw thee to read.  Ask not, who hath said this or that, but look
to what he says.
Men pass away, but the truth of the Lord endureth for ever.
Without respect of persons God speaketh to us in divers manners.
Our own curiosity often hindereth us in the reading of holy
writings, when we seek to understand and discuss, where we should
pass simply on.  If thou wouldst profit by thy reading, read
humbly, simply, honestly, and not desiring to win a character for
learning.  Ask freely, and hear in silence the words of holy men;
nor be displeased at the hard sayings of older men than thou, for
they are not uttered without cause.

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