Papal Documents - 567 

vitude those who had previously been enslaved by the pleasures of the flesh. Once they were dead to their vices and could live for God and no longer for themselves, from the moment that their old selves were killed, there flowed forth for themfrom that same jawbone Jgs 15:19 [of Francis’s preaching] abundant waters, which refreshed the fallen, cleansed the filthy, and irrigated the dry. This spring, gushing up to eternal life, could be purchased without money and without price; its stream spread far and wide, watering the vineyard, sending out its branches to the sea and its shoots to the river. Ps 79:11 [Vulgate, Ps 78:11]

4 Finally, following the footprints of our father Abraham, this man not only left spiritually his country and his kindred, but even his father’s house, to go to the land which Gn 12:1 the Lord, by divine inspiration, had shown him. And that he might more readily press on for the prize of the heavenly call Phil 3:14 and more easilyenter by the narrow gate, Mt 7:13 he discarded the baggage of worldly possessions. He conformed himself to the one who, although rich, became poor for our sake; he distributed 2 Cor 8:9 his goods freely, giving to the poor, so that his righteousness might endure forever.

As he approached the land of vision, on one of the mountains Gn 22:2that had been shown him—namely the height of faith—he offered as a holocaust to the Lord his own flesh. As it had previously deceived him, like Jepthah he offered this only-begotten daughter, laying it on the fire of love, mortifying his flesh by hunger, thirst, cold, nakedness, fasting, and countless nights of prayer. When he had thus crucified his flesh with its passions and desires, Gal 5:24 he was able to say with the Apostle: It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. Gal 2:20 Truly, he no longer lived for himself, but rather for Christ, who died for our sins and was raised for our justification, so that we might no longer be enslaved to sin.

Uprooting his vices and courageously taking up the struggle against the world, the flesh, and the spiritual forces of evil, Eph 6:12 he utterly renounced wife, farm, and oxen, the things which had prevented those who had been invited from attending the banquet. Rather, when the Lord commanded him, he rose like Jacob. Having received the seven-fold gift of the Spirit, and with the aid of the eight Gospel beatitudes, he went up by these fifteen steps of virtue, mystically contained in the Psalter, to Bethel, the house of God, which he himself had prepared for him. There he made an altar of his heart for the Lord and offered upon it the fragrance of devout prayers. These the angels brought




Mira circa nos, Bullarium Franciscanum, p. BFr 1, p. 42-44

& in Spiritus servitutem redegit carnis illecebris antea servientes. Quibus vitiis mortuis, & Deo viventibus, jam non ipsis, quorum pars pessima periit, ex mandibula ipsa egressa copiosa est aqua, reficiens, abluens, & foecundans lapsos, sordidos, & arentes, quae in vitam aeternam saliens absque argento, & commutatione aliqua potest emi; cujus rivuli longè, latèque diffusi vineam irrigant usque ad mare palmites, & usque ad flumen propagines extendentem.

3 Hic denique Patris nostri Abrahae imitatus vestigia, mente de terra, & cognatione sua, nec non Domo Patris ejus egrediens, iturus in terram, quam sibi Dominus, & divina inspiratione monstrarat; ut expiditius curreret ad bravium vocationis coelestis; & per angustam portam posset facilus introire; sarcinam terrenae substantiae deposuit, se Illi conformans, qui cum dives esset, pro nobis factus est pauper, eamque dispersit, dedit Pauperibus, ut sic ejus justitita in saeculum saeculi permaneret.

Et in Terram visionis accedens, super unum sibi montium demonstratum, videlicet excellentiam fidei, carnem suam quasi filiam unigenitam, quae ipsum interdum deceperat, cum Jephte Domino in holocaustum obtulit, igne supposito charitatis, illam fame, siti, frigore, ac nuditate, vigiliis multis, & jejuniis macerando; qua cum vitiis, & concupiscentiis crucifixa, dicere poterat cum Apostolo: Vivo ego, jam non ego, vivit autem in me Christus: quoniam jam non sibi vixerat, sed Christo potius, quo pro peccatis nostris mortuus est, & resurrexit propter justificationem nostram, ut nullatenus peccato ulterius serviamus.

Vitia quoque supplantans, & contra mundum, carnem, & potestates aereas luctamen assumens viriliter, uxore, villa, bobus a coena magna retrahentibus invitatos penitus abdicatis, cum Jacob Domino jubente surrexit, & gratia Spiritus septiformis accepta, octoque sibi assistentibus Beatitudinibus evangelicis, Bethel Domum Dei, quam se ipsum praeparavit eisdem, per quindecim gradus virtutem, qui mysticè in Psalterio continentur, ascendit. Et ibidem Altare cordis Domino contrahens, aromata devotarum orationum obtulit super eo per manus Angelicas in conspectu Domini deferenda,

Francis of Assisi: Early Documents, vol. 1, p. 567