|Chapter 3||Paul's Letter to Laodicea|
1. I, however, say: Avoid lies, which are the closest descendant of Satan, because now to a great extent you changed over to man's law, as I learned from Nymphas, and also through the Spirit of Christ within me.
2. What is the temple? Nothing but man's law – a dead work by the hand of man; nothing but mere phantasy that passes away as soon as you awaken from your sleep.
3. Since it is what it is, it is therefore a lie, which you are getting into, to lie and to deceive yourself; since you are of the opinion that therein you give God the honor, and to God Himself you lie to, and you are of the opinion that you render Him an important sacrifice.
4. You fools. What service do you want to render the Almighty Who founded heaven and earth before you were created?. What do you have now that you did not receive before; but since you did receive it, why do you behave as if you did not receive it?
5. Do you wish to render to the Lord to some extent a pleasant service, that you build Him a temple by the hand of man, and worship Him through ceremony and the burning of incense, and through dead prayers on long or wide ribbons?
6. Oh, look, how much you have been bewitched by an Apostle of Satan. Was Christ not – in whom dwells the fullness of the Deity – in the flesh sentenced to death in the temple, and at the time did He Himself not prophesy its total downfall.
7. How could He at this time find pleasure in this, if He cautioned severely all of His disciples, as He did us in the spirit, when He said: “Beware of the sourdough of the Pharisees and high priests”. And now you want to set up the old “Court of Justice” which has become an abomination before God, as a dwelling for the Lord, so that you may kill Him many times over.
8. How blind can you be and how far must you have passed over into the world, that you did not notice such an occurrence.
9. Is it not enough that Christ died once for all of us, and now all of us with Him, so that we can be resurrected with Him, while still in our flesh, to the true recognition of His Spirit which is within us, and to the recognition of the Father, Who loved us before the World existed?
10. How often do you want to kill Christ? Him, the only eternal Living Being, who once awakened all of us from death to eternal life through His Glorious Resurrection.
11. But I, Paul, say this: “Go and destroy the temple, erase all the designated days of feast in the calendars, remove the false bishop and his servants from his office, just like those from Jerusalem, who want to fatten themselves from the labor of your hands, and they had made for themselves a big iron box to hold your saved-up gold and silver.”
12. And burn the magnificent raiment, which are an abomination before God. Through this, you render the Lord a much more pleasing service, than if you would let yourself for 1.000 years be killed (i.e. sacrifice, Ed.) in such a temple.
13. Should you absolutely want to have in your midst a house pleasing unto God, build a hospital for the sick, the paralyzed, the ailing, the cripples, for the blind and the mute, and a house for poor widows and orphans, and a house for homeless foreigners, without exception, whosoever they might be.
14. Accommodate these human beings joyfully and with compassion, and share all your blessings with them, like our Lord, Jesus Christ, did on two occasions, when he fed with His abundance of blessings thousands of hungry people; then you will do Him, the only Holy One, a true and pleasing service for your own sanctification.
15. Because He Himself spoke about this, when He said: “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of my brethren, ye have done it unto Me.”
16. He spoke often and quite clearly on the matter, and what He considered to be a pleasing service to Him. Then why do you want something that is an atrocity, nauseating and disgusting, and a pestilence to Him?
17. A heart full of love is God, the Lord in Christ, the only pleasing, living temple, and He loves that much more, than a whole world full of Temples of Solomon, which are all dead. Whereas, the heart is alive and can love God and all brothers. Therefore, build this temple spiritually within yourself anew and at all times actively sacrifice in this temple to the Lord.
18. Not the temple, not the ceremony, not the priests and not the bishop, and not Paul and his disciples; not the Jew, not the Greek, nor the circumcision of the Jews and the foreskin, nor Solomon's temple; not even the original Greek, the Scythian, the heathen, the freed-man, the servant; nor the Sabbath, nor the new moon, nor the jubilee year is anything before God – only Christ alone is the all-in-all.
19. Be only drawn to Christ as God's Elect, as His saints and as His loved ones, through the living belief, through love, through heartfelt mercy for your brothers, through friendship, friendliness, humility, gentleness, and through total patience.
20. In everything get along with one another, and forgive each other from the heart, whatever it may be that one has against the other; then I will forgive you and the Lord will too, as soon as you have forgiven each other.
21. Do not sue each other at court, as the heathens do; they have their own courts. Live with each other in peace and tolerate and settle matters in your heart. Then you will be better off before the Lord, as if you conscientiously pay attention to all the laws of Moses. They are very hard to remember, but even harder to keep, because the laws of Moses are not pleasing to the Lord, but only a pure heart that truly loves God and the brothers.
22. Above all draw from love, because love alone is of any value before God, and it is the only fully valid link of all completion and all perfection.
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