Why did God make us, knowing that we would sin? (And Various Other Revelations Given to St. Hildegard)

The following words were revealed by God to St. Hildegard von Bingen (taken from her ‘Scivias’):

29. Why God made Man such that he could sin

“Therefore listen and understand Me, you who say in your hearts, “What are these things and why?” Oh, why are you so foolish in your hearts, you who have been made in the image and likeness of God? How can such great glory and honor, which is given to you, exist without testing, as if it were an empty case of nothing? Gold must be tested in the fire, and precious stones, to smooth them, must be polished, and all things of this kind must be diligently scrutinized. Hence, O foolish humans, how can that which was made in the image and likeness of God exist without testing? For Man must be examined more than any other creature, and therefore he must be tested through every other creature. How?
Spirit is to be tested by spirit, flesh by flesh, earth by water, fire by cold, fight by resistance, good by evil, beauty by deformity, poverty by riches, sweetness by bitterness, health by sickness, long by short, hard by soft, height by depth, light by darkness, life by death, Paradise by punishments, the Heavenly Kingdom by Gehenna, earthly things by earthly things and heavenly things by heavenly things. Hence Man is tested by every creature, in Paradise, on earth and in Hell; and then he is placed in Heaven. You see clearly only a few things among many that are hidden from your eyes. So why do you deride what is right, plain and just, and good among all good things in the sight of God? Why do you think these things unjust? God is just, but the human race is unjust in transgressing God’s precepts when it claims to be wiser than God.

30. Man should not examine the highest things since he cannot the lowest ones

Now tell me, O human: What do you think you were when you were not yet in soul and body? Truly you do not know how you were created. But now, O human, you wish to investigate Heaven and earth, and to judge of their justice in God’s disposition, and to know the highest things though you are not able to examine the lowest; for you do not know how you live in the body, or how you may be divested of the body. He Who created you in the first human foresaw all these things; but that same most gentle Father sent His Only-Begotten to die for the people, to deliver humanity from the power of the Devil.”

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Some Further Revelations Given to St. Hildegard

An Admonishment (one that is very relevant for our times)

“A man who sins with another man as if with a woman sins bitterly against God and against the union with which God united male and female… And men who touch their own genital organ and emit their semen seriously imperil their souls, for they excite themselves to distraction; they appear to Me as impure animals devouring their own whelps, for they wickedly produce their semen only for abusive pollution.”

Instruction on Spiritual Reading

“But now the Catholic faith wavers among the nations and the Gospel limps among the people; and the mighty books in which the excelling doctors had summed up knowledge with great care go unread from shameful apathy, and the food of life, which is the divine Scriptures, cools to tepidity.”

How to Remain Chaste

“When a person feels himself disturbed by bodily stimulation, let him run to the refuge of continence, and seize the shield of chastity, and thus defend himself from uncleanness. How? Let him cast out the tares from the wheat, which is to say, let him separate the clamor of lust from the sweetness of chastity. And whoever thus casts out of himself the taste for lust is very sweet and lovable to Me.”

The Delights of Paradise

“But Paradise is the place of delight, which blooms with the freshness of flowers and grass and the charms of spices, full of fine odors and dowered with the joy of blessed souls, giving invigorating moisture to the dry ground; it supplies strong force to the earth, as the soul gives strength to the body, for Paradise is not darkened by shadow or the perdition of sinners.”

7 Signs of The Holy Spirit: A Revelation to St. Bridget

Docility to the inspirations of the Holy Spirit is the only means to sanctity and salvation. The following words of Our Lady to St. Bridget of Sweden will help us to discern the inspirations of the Holy Spirit, Who always produces peace, clarity and obedience.

“My daughter, you can recognize both the Holy Spirit and the unclean spirit through seven signs:

7 Signs of the Holy Spirit

First, the Spirit of God makes a man deem the world worthless and consider in his heart all worldly honor as mere air.

Second, it endears God to the soul, and all delight in the flesh grows cold.

Third, it inspires him to patience and to glorying only in God.

Fourth, it stimulates the mind to be loving and compassionate with one’s neighbor and even with one’s enemies.

Fifth, it inspires him to all kinds of abstinence, even from licit things.

Sixth, it makes him trust in God in the midst of hardships and even to glory in hardships.

Seventh, it gives him the desire of wanting to depart and to be with Christ, rather than to prosper in the world and become soiled.

7 Signs of the Evil Spirit

The evil spirit has seven effects to the contrary.

First, it makes the world seem sweet, and heaven distasteful.

Second, it makes a man seek honors and forget about the meaning of his life.

Third, it arouses hatred and impatience in the heart.

Fourth, it makes him bold toward God and obstinate in his own plans.

Fifth, it leads him to make light of his sins and to make excuses for them.

Sixth, it inspires in him frivolity of mind and every carnal impurity.

Seventh, it inspires in him the hope of a long life and a feeling a shame about going to confession.

Guard your thoughts carefully, then, so that you do not get deceived by this spirit.”

(Taken from ‘The Prophecies and Revelations of Saint Bridget (Birgitta) of Sweden’, Book 4, Ch 23)

A Book Recommendation

Firstly, an exhortation to read (from St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church):

“St. Jerome says that when we pray we speak to God; but when we read, God speaks to us… In prayer, God hears our petitions, but in reading we listen to his voice… Good books supply the place of sermons. St. Augustine writes that good books are, as it were, so many letters of love the Lord sends us; in them he warns us of our dangers, teaches us the way of salvation, animates us to suffer adversity, enlightens us, and inflames us with divine love. Whoever, then, desires to be saved and to acquire divine love, should often read these letters of paradise.”

The book is, ‘Spiritual Works of Louis of Blois.’ It can be read here (free and legally): https://archive.org/stream/workslouisofbloi00bloiuoft#page/n9/mode/2up

Venerable Louis of Blois (Blosius), a holy and learned Benedictine, was often praised by St. Alphonsus. His writings are among my favourite spiritual works. They are very inspiring, concise, practical and balanced.

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