Of The Little Knowledge Of God There Is In The World

What men stand most in need of, is the knowledge of God. He is, in all things, infinite – in wisdom power and love.

When He works, his ways and his thoughts are declared by the prophet to be as far above our ways and our thoughts as the heavens are above the earth (Isaiah 55:9).

He makes no effort when He would execute what He has decreed; for to Him all things are equally easy; He speaks and causes the heavens and the earth to be created out of nothing, with as little difficulty as he causes water to descend or a stone to fall to the ground. His power is co-extensive with his will; when He wills, the thing is already accomplished.

His mercy, too, is but his pure will; He loved us before the creation of the world; He saw and knew us, and prepared his blessings for us; He loved and chose us from all Eternity.

Every new blessing we receive is derived from this Eternal origin; He forms no new will respecting us; it is not He that changes, but we.

When we are righteous and good, we are conformable to his will and agreeable to Him; when we depart from well doing and cease to be good, we cease to be conformable to Him and to please Him.

His justice against the wicked and his love towards the righteous are the same thing; it is the same quality that unites Him to everything that is good, and is incompatible with everything that is evil. Mercy is the goodness of God, seeing our wickedness and striving to make us good; perceived by us in time, it has its source in the eternal love of God for his creature.

It is God’s love towards us that gives us everything; but the richest of his gifts is that we may love Him with that love which is his due. His love towards us is stamped with his own character of infinity: it is not like ours, bounded and constrained; when He loves, all the measures of his love are infinite.

He comes down from Heaven to earth to seek the creature of clay whom he loves; He becomes creature and clay with him; He gives him His flesh to eat. These are the prodigies of Divine love in which the Infinite outstrips all the affection we can manifest. He loves like a God, with a love utterly incomprehensible.

How great and lovely is He in his mysteries!

But we want eyes to see them, and have no desire to see God in everything.

The Inner Life – Francois Fenelon

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