world has come, and has found nothing in me," which we here on earth can nevermore speak with truth. For as often as the prince, the devil, comes he finds in us wicked lust, wicked desire, wicked longing. Whence also St. Paul, now filled with the Holy Ghost, yet calls himself a sinner [Rom. vii., 15–25]. Therefore all pious and godly Christians must confess themselves unholy even till death, whatever we may do of ourselves.
THE SECOND PASSAGE
Jesus says to Peter: "Put up thy sword in its place, for he who taketh the sword shall perish by the sword. Or thinkest thou that I could not pray to my Father, and he would send me more than twelve legions of angels? But how would the Scripture be fulfilled, that it must be thus?"—Matt. xxvi., 53, 54.
Mark here well, pious Christian, the word of Christ, so will you have an answer to the accusation of the brothers. First Christ says, "Put your sword into its place," he does not forbid you to bear it. You are not in authority; it is not your appointed place, nor are you yet called or elected thereto. "For who takes the sword shall perish with the sword." The sword means those who act without election, disorderly, and of their own authority. But no one shall take the sword himself, except one who has been elected and appointed thereto; for so he does not take it of himself, but it has been brought to him and given him. Now he may say, "I have not taken the sword. I would rather go unemployed, since I am myself not very stern. But since I am chosen thereto, I pray God that he will give me grace and wisdom that I may bear it and rule according to his word and will." So Solomon prayed and was given great wisdom by God to bear the sword well. Besides, do