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Chapter XI.

A question why he has called the feeling of fear and hope imperfect.

Germanus: You have indeed spoken powerfully and grandly of the perfect love of God. But still this fact disturbs us; viz., that while you were exalting it with such praise, you said that the fear of God and the hope of eternal reward were imperfect, though the prophet seems to have thought quite differently about them, where he said: “Fear the Lord, all ye His saints, for they that fear Him lack nothing.”17171717    Ps. xxxiii. (xxxiv.) 10. And again in the matter of observing God’s righteous acts he admits that he has done them from consideration of the reward, saying: “I have inclined my heart to do thy righteous acts forever, for the reward.”17181718    Ps. cxviii. (cxix.) 112. And the Apostle says: “By faith Moses when he 420was grown up, denied himself to be the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; choosing rather to be afflicted with the people of God than to have the pleasure of sin for a season, esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasure of the Egyptians; for he looked unto the reward.”17191719    Heb. xi. 24–26. How then can we think that they are imperfect, if the blessed David boasted that he did the righteous acts of God in hope of a recompense, and the giver of the Law is said to have looked for a future reward and so to have despised the adoption to royal dignity, and to have preferred the most terrible affliction to the treasures of the Egyptians?


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