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Chapter 77.—If We Would Give Alms to Ourselves, We Must Flee Iniquity; For He Who Loveth Iniquity Hateth His Soul.

Those, then, who think that they can by giving alms, however profuse, whether in money or in kind, purchase for themselves the privilege of persisting with impunity in their monstrous crimes and hideous vices, need not thus deceive themselves. For not only do they commit these sins, but they love them so much that they would like to go on forever committing them, if only they could do so with impunity. Now, he who loveth iniquity hateth his own soul;12481248    Ps. xi. 5. (“Him that loveth violence, His (God’s) soul hateth.” A.V.) and he who hateth his own soul is not merciful but cruel towards it. For in loving it according to the world, he hateth it according to God. But if he desired to give alms to it which should make all things clean unto him, he would hate it according to the world, and love it according to God. Now no one gives alms unless he receive what he gives from one who is not in want of it. Therefore it is said, “His mercy shall meet me.”12491249    Ps. lix. 10

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