The Purging Process

Ausbund, 91

Let me tell you, child of humanity, how to fear God and live according to his will. Godly fear will bring you wisdom and true righteousness. It is the beginning of the Spirit’s work in you. Whatever comes up, godly fear will take it deeply to heart and make decisions in the light of life and death.

Then, with the wisdom brought about by godly fear, comes faith and love. Faith and love live in hope. Hope brings patience, and if all of these become part of your life you truly stand in God’s protection.

The fear of God is painful within us, while purging us from sin. But as that process continues, powerful love starts pouring in, driving out death and pain, overcoming water, fire, and the sword to gain eternal life.

As long as we live in our natural bodies, certain fears stay with us—like the fear that we may fall back into sin. That keeps us humble and makes us cry to God for help.

Fear leads to wisdom and keeps us from touching evil. As long as fear works in us it gives us warnings when we stand in danger. But if we do not heed them, fear may diminish and we may become brazen sinners.

The one that has known grace but rejects it again, separates himself from God. For the sins he wilfully commits, no more offering remains—only a dreadful waiting on judgement. For rejecting Christ and despising the Spirit of grace, God will not turn to him again.

Therefore, if you have grace, live faithfully, so it will not leave you. Christ came to earth once, to be a sacrifice for sin. When he comes the second time he will look for sinless souls to greet him. The impure that stand before him, will get rejected and sent to hell.

The one that sins belongs to the devil, the father of lies. But those that are born of the Word are the children of God—God’s seed—and to them he gives heavenly grace.

Wisdom asks for clean vessels to fill for the honour of God. Only to the humble and pure will she come. If Wisdom lives in your conscience, value it highly. Honour her, for she is a great light. She is the Spirit’s power. Let no one steal this treasure from you.

That one that stands firmly with Wisdom during time, will enter God’s Kingdom with her, in eternal joy. There she will purify him completely, her light shining through and from him, with the brilliance of the sun!

anonymous Anabaptist writer, 16’th century, Europe

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