True Christian Religion (Chadwick) n. 611

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611. X

In so far as a person is regenerated, so far are his sins removed; this removal is the forgiveness of sins.

The reason why so far as a person is regenerated, so far are his sins removed, is that regeneration consists in controlling the flesh so that it does not take control, in taming the former man and his lusts so that he cannot rise again and destroy the faculty of understanding; for if this is destroyed, there is no further possibility of the person being reformed. This reformation cannot occur, unless the person's spirit, which is above the flesh, is instructed and advanced towards perfection. No one, whose understanding is still unimpaired, can fail to conclude from this that such events cannot take place in an instant, but do so one after another, just as a person is conceived, carried in the womb, born and brought up, in the sequence demonstrated above. The properties belonging to the flesh or the former man are inherent from birth. They build the first home for his mind, the dwelling-place of lusts, which are like wild beasts in their cages. They live at first in the forecourts, and little by little creep into the rooms of that house below ground level, and afterwards climb the stairs and make rooms for themselves. This happens by stages as the child grows, becomes a boy and then a youth; then he begins to use his own understanding to think and his own will to act.

[2] Anyone can see that a house built thus far in the mind, where lusts like ochim, ghoim* and satyrs hold hands to dance, cannot be destroyed in a moment, and a new house built in its place. Of course the lusts holding hands and so disporting themselves must first be banished, and new desires for good and truth be brought in to replace the lusts for evil and falsity. Any wise person can see that such things cannot take place in an instant from the single consideration, that every evil is the product of countless lusts, resembling a fruit that below the surface is full of maggots with black heads and white bodies. Evils too, he will realise, are numerous and closely linked, like the offspring of a spider just hatched from its belly. So unless one evil after another is brought out, and the process continues until the link is broken, a person cannot become new. These considerations have been presented in order to make it known that in so far as anyone is regenerated, so far are his sins removed.

* This word is obscure, but a reference to Isa. 13:22 seems intended; perhaps iyim should be read, as there.

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