Seite:Marsh Hallig 1856.djvu/265

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265

THE REPENTANCE.

you can not say these eyes have never wept through
fault of yours, this heart has never bled through you,
the fidelity of the sons of the hallig has received no
stain from you. Maria has only my wrong to forget.
Such forgetting is easy. But to forget it myself, death
must help me do that. And death itself can not help
me," cried he, in a voice of terror, "for after that comes
the judgment."
  So saying, he covered his face with his hands, and
sank back into his chair, in a silent stupor.
  After considering some time, the pastor went to God-
ber and said —
  "I will not talk to you of the vessel, will not call
your attention to the fact that perhaps no skill of yours
could have availed to save it ; how much more probable
it is that you would have all perished in that case, while
now five persons owe their lives to you. But I will speak
of the Gospel which proclaims pardon. We are alto-
gether sinners, and have nothing wherein to glory be-
fore God. If we conscientiously examine our own works,
we must confess that we can not stand before a just and
holy God, we must confess that in the light and judg-
ment of the Divine law our virtue must melt away like
a shadow, and that, on the other hand, our sins rise
over our heads. Before the Words "Be ye holy for I am
holy !" before the declaration that "For every idle word
which proceedeth out of your mouth ye shall give an
account," no excuse stands, no pretext, no justification.
Our weakness is but falsehood, for it is the fruit of a
lying spirit, who darkens and disfigures the Divine com-
mand, but who could never have that power if we did
not ourselves grant it to him, suffering evil desires to