The sequence of a person's rebirth to the image of God, in which he was originally fashioned but has nevertheless to attain as a willed act through his own experience on earth, has an important consequence: inner integrity that pays allegiance to nothing else than the highest within him.

The temptations that beset each of us day by day can no more be evaded than could Christ claim exemption from the temptations of the evil one when he was led into the wilderness by the Holy Spirit after the humble acceptance of John's baptism, one of repentance despite his own sinlessness. Nor, on the other hand, should these temptations be weakly acceded to and their fruits embraced. The first way would be tantamount to a rejection of the world, the second a capitulation to its values. We have, like Christ, to suffer many things both for our own growth into the knowledge of love and for the sake of the world, that it be lifted up by our life's witness to the truth.

When we move in our own integrity, we can confront the many illusions conjured by the prince of this world who is also the prince of darkness. Then alone do we cease to look for external security such as is offered by worldly power. And so we can indeed withstand the temptations to corruption around us not simply with a virtuous sense of revulsion but with a larger understanding born of suffering and fructified by love. This love alone can redeem the world from the darkness of despair to the open-hearted acceptance of the light that penetrates even the most appalling circumstances. So does the crucifixion of the innocent bring to pass the resurrection of all created things to their fulfilment in God. Then we may fear no evil, for love has transformed even it to the light of God's purpose.

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