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BD 0451 5.6.1938
"By their fruits you shall know them ...."
By their fruits you will recognize them .... This word must serve you as a signpost that the one who walks in the Lord is immediately outwardly recognizable, and from this you will see how the promises of the word of God are faithfully fulfilled in those who also live according to it and are active in love. The danger for man is always the fact that some people believe that they are fulfilling the commandments of the Lord by simply listening to them or by fulfilling the required duties outwardly .... But they lack the intimate entering into the teaching of Christ, and a knowledge of the Word of God alone can never produce the fruits that the Lord promises to those who love Him and eagerly strive to fulfill His commandments.
So the danger exists that man does not recognize himself properly or that his whole way of life remains in spiritual inertia without fruitful success. How can a person who never practices love himself speak of the commandment to love one's neighbor and also want to understand it .... How will a person in humility be able to bow before the Lord, who never tried to put this humility, as it is taught, to work on himself .... who exalts himself over his fellow men, but with it takes up the Word of God and expresses himself pleasingly to others ....
It is so difficult for people to get their hands on the work of their own transformation into a new human being formed entirely according to God's will .... They find it so hard to part with the old and put on a new garment, and yet they approve with their lips everything that the Word of God teaches them .... And if the Word of God does not contribute to ennobling man in such a way that the fruits of his efforts are recognizable ...., the promises of the Word of God will also not be able to be fulfilled in these. Empty the words are accepted and empty the words will fade away again .... The blessing will not come unless a serious effort is made to fulfill the commandments of God.
It certainly requires self denial, firm will and overcoming .... but the fruits of it are unmistakable spiritual success .... And the one whose striving is blessed by these fruits will also be able to have an unspeakable influence on his fellow man .... For only he who himself practices love can teach love .... he who himself lives in humility can preach this virtue to others, he who himself is gentle and peace-loving can point out to others the blessings of it, and his example will always have an encouraging effect on people and would someone strive to follow such a servant of God, recognizable by the fruits, all this will be achieved through firm will and great love for the Lord .... Therefore ask for the strength to will and to love with all your heart, that the Lord may hear you and bless you.
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