In What Way, and For What Reason, the Will of God Permits This and That

Posted on February 18, 2009. Filed under: Catholicism, Christianity, Divine Providence |

HELIOTROPIUM :Conformity of the Human Will to the Divine
By FATHER JEREMIAS DREXELIUS
excerpt from Book One:Chapter Two:
In What Way, and For What Reason, the Will of God Permits This and That
2. Never certainly would such infinite Goodness permit so great wickedness in the world, unless it could thence produce greater good, and turn to salvation things which were devised for destruction. God permitted the jealousy of his brethren to exercise its malice against innocent Joseph; but with how great good was this Permission, not merely to his parents and brethren, but to the whole land of Egypt! God permitted guiltless David to be harassed with the most cruel injuries by wicked Saul, but it was to the greatest advantage of David himself and the entire kingdom of Israel. God permitted Daniel, most unjustly accused, to be cast into the den of lions, but it was to his own great good and that of many others. But why do I mention such as these? God permitted His Own Son to be crucified by murderers, but His Permission was for the ineffable good of the whole human race. And so from every Divine Permission there flow the greatest increase to the Divine Glory, and the richest blessings to the human race. Hence the Goodness of God and His Mercy, hence His Bounty and Power, hence His Providence, hence his Wisdom and Justice shine forth in a way which is altogether wonderful. Hence it is that the courage of many grows, the contest thickens, rewards are multiplied, and crowns of victory are increased.
And how worthy of wonder does Divine Providence show itself in these daily Permissions! For what great thing is it if you have produced good from good? But it is great indeed if you produce good from evil. Anyone can be a pilot in a calm sea, as the saying is. It requires no great skill, when the wind is favorable, the ship stout, the sea calm, the stars shining brightly, and the rowers well-used to their work, to reach the harbor already in sight; but when the winds are raging, the ship dismantled, the sky thundering, pirates lurking around, the rowers unskilled in their work, and the stars hidden from sight, still to reach the wished-for harbor, this in truth is a feat to be admired in a pilot. And such is God in His Permissions. By means of seeming contraries He conducts to a happy end. By means of so many sins of men he advances His Own Glory. In such an accumulation of wickedness He causes His Own dear ones to shine the more conspicuously. Under God’s guidance, acts of fraud turn to the advantage of the person who has been deceived; vexations and injuries add strength to the vexed; the wickedness of so many abandoned men strengthens the piety of others, and preserves them from perishing; and where many are thought to be utterly swallowed up they emerge again. The dungeon and chains opened for Joseph the way to an exalted throne of dignity; the envy of his brethren was of more service to him than the kindness of all the world besides. The treachery of Saul conferred on David a kingly crown. The den of lions raised Daniel higher than any courtiers or kings could have done. From the Cross Christ passed to Paradise; from Olivet He ascended to the Throne with the Father. But if God did not permit sins, and did not ordain what He permitted, and did not by His Ordinance turn them into good, we should have difficulty in recognizing the avenging Justice of God. But in this way we are taught lessons of deeper wisdom, and are constrained to confess a most wonderful order and connection of causes, by which so many blessings emerge at length from evils of such magnitude. There are, therefore, manifold causes for the Divine Permission. And this was the second point.
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HELIOTROPIUM: CONFORMITY TO THE DIVINE WILL, Fr. Jeremias Drexelius

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