Charity #1

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1. I. THE "FIRST" OF CHARITY IS TO LOOK TO THE LORD AND SHUN EVILS BECAUSE THEY ARE SINS; THIS IS DONE BY REPENTANCE.

To be expounded in this order:

1. In so far as anyone does not shun evils because they are sins, he remains in them.

2. In so far as anyone does not recognize and know what are sins, he does not see otherwise than that he is without sin.

3. In so far as anyone recognizes and knows what are sins, he can see them in himself, confess them before the Lord. and repent of them.

4. Before repentance, good is spurious good. It is the same with charity, because good is of charity.

5. Consequently the "first" of charity is to look to the Lord and shun evils because they are sins.

  
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Thanks to the Swedenborg Society for the permission to use this translation.