The Imitation of Christ

Front Cover
1st World Publishing, 2004 - Religion - 300 pages
Purchase one of 1st World Library's Classic Books and help support our free internet library of downloadable eBooks. Visit us online at www.1stWorldLibrary.ORG - - The treatise "Of the Imitation of Christ" appears to have been originally written in Latin early in the fifteenth century. Its exact date and its authorship are still a matter of debate. Manuscripts of the Latin version survive in considerable numbers all over Western Europe, and they, with the vast list of translations and of printed editions, testify to its almost unparalleled popularity. One scribe attributes it to St. Bernard of Clairvaux; but the fact that it contains a quotation from St. Francis of Assisi, who was born thirty years after the death of St. Bernard, disposes of this theory. In England there exist many manuscripts of the first three books, called "Musica Ecclesiastica," frequently ascribed to the English mystic Walter Hilton. But Hilton seems to have died in 1395, and there is no evidence of the existence of the work before 1400. Many manuscripts scattered throughout Europe ascribe the book to Jean le Charlier de Gerson, the great Chancellor of the University of Paris, who was a leading figure in the Church in the earlier part of the fifteenth century. The most probable author, however, especially when the internal evidence is considered, is Thomas Haemmerlein, known also as Thomas a Kempis, from his native town of Kempen, near the Rhine, about forty miles north of Cologne.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.

Selected pages

Contents

That we must rest in God above all goods and gifts
151
Of the recollection of Gods manifold benefits
154
Of four things which bring great peace
157
Of avoiding of curious inquiry into the life of another
160
Wherein firm peace of heart and true profit consist
161
Of the exaltation of a free spirit which humble prayer more deserveth than doth frequent reading
163
That personal love greatly hindereth from the highest good
165
Against the tongues of detractors
168

Of obedience and subjection
22
Of the danger of superfluity of words
24
Of seeking peace of mind and of spiritual progress
25
Of the uses of adversity
27
Of resisting temptation
28
On avoiding rash judgment
31
Of works of charity
33
Of bearing with the faults of others
35
Of a religious life
37
Of the example of the Holy Fathers
38
Of the exercises of a religious man
41
Of the love of solitude and silence
44
Of compunction of heart
48
On the contemplation of human misery
51
Of meditation upon death
54
Of the judgment and punishment of the wicked
58
Of the zealous amendment of our whole life
62
ADMONITIONS CONCERNING THE INNER LIFE
67
Of the inward life
69
Of lowly submission
73
Of the good peaceable man
75
Of a pure mind and simple intention
77
Of selfesteem
79
Of the joy of a good conscience
81
Of loving Jesus above all things
83
Of the intimate love of Jesus
85
Of the lack of all comfort
88
Of gratitude for the Grace of God
92
Of the fewness of those who love the Cross of Jesus
95
Of the royal way of the Holy Cross
97
ON INWARD CONSOLATION
103
Of the inward voice of Christ to the faithful soul
105
What the truth saith inwardly without noise of words
107
How all the words of God are to be heard with humility and how many consider them not
109
How we must walk in truth and humility before God
112
Of the wonderful power of the Divine Love
114
Of the proving of the true lover
117
Of hiding our grace under the guard of humility
120
Of a low estimation of self in the sight of God
123
That all things are to be referred to God as the final end
125
That it is sweet to despise the world and to serve God
127
That the desires of the heart are to be examined and governed
130
Of the inward growth of patience and of the struggle against evil desires
132
Of the obedience of one in lowly subjection after the example of Jesus Christ
134
Of meditation upon the hidden judgments of God that we may not be lifted up because of our welldoing
136
How we must stand and speak in everything that we desire
138
That true solace is to be sought in God alone
140
That all care is to be cast upon God
142
That temporal miseries are to be borne patiently after the example of Christ
144
Of bearing injuries and who shall be approved as truly patient
146
Of confession of our infirmity and of the miseries of this life
148
How when tribulation cometh we must call upon and bless God
169
Of seeking divine help and the confidence of obtaining grace
171
Of the neglect of every creature that the Creator may be found
174
Of selfdenial and the casting away all selfishness
177
Of instability of the heart and of directing the aim towards God
179
That to him who loveth God is sweet above all things and in all things
181
That there is no security against temptation in this life
183
Against vain judgments of men
185
Of pure and entire resignation of self for the Obtaining liberty of heart
187
Of a good government in external things and of having recourse to God in dangers
189
That man must not be immersed in business
191
That man hath no good in himself and nothing whereof to glory
192
Of contempt of all temporal honour
195
That our peace is not to be placed in men
196
Against vain and worldly knowledge
198
Of not troubling ourselves about outward things
200
That we must not believe everyone and that we are prone to fall in our words
201
Of having confidence in God when evil words are cast at us
204
That all troubles are to be endured for the sake of eternal life
207
Of the day of eternity and of the straitnesses of this life
209
Of the desire after eternal life and how great blessings are promised to those who strive
212
How a desolate man ought to commit himself into the hands of God
216
That we must give ourselves to humble works when we are unequal to those that are lofty
220
That a man ought not to reckon himself worthy of consolation but more worthy of chastisement
222
That the Grace of God doth not join itself to those who mind earthly things
224
Of the diverse motions of Nature and of Grace
226
Of the corruption of Nature and the efficacy of Divine Grace
230
That we ought to deny ourselves and to imitate Christ by means of the Cross
233
That a man must not be too much cast down when he falleth into some faults
236
Of deeper matters and Gods hidden judgments which are not to be inquired into
238
That all hope and trust is to be fixed in God alone
243
OF THE SACRAMENT OF THE ALTAR
245
With how great reverence Christ must be received The Voice of the Disciple
248
That the greatness and charity of God is shown to men in the Sacrament The Voice of the Disciple
254
That it is profitable to Communicate often The Voice of the Disciple
257
That many good gifts are bestowed upon those who Communicate devoutly The Voice of the Disciple
260
Of the dignity of this Sacrament and of the office of the priest The Voice of the Beloved
263
An inquiry concerning preparation for Communion The Voice of the Disciple
265
Of the examination of conscience and purpose of amendment The Voice of the Beloved
266
Of the oblation of Christ upon the cross and of resignation of self The Voice of the Beloved
269
That we ought to offer ourselves and all that is ours to God and to pray for all The Voice of the Disciple
271
That Holy Communion is not lightly to be omitted The Voice of the Beloved
274
That the Body and Blood of Christ and the Holy Scriptures are most necessary to a faithful soul The Voice of the Disciple
278
That he who is about to Communicate with Christ ought to prepare himself with great diligence The Voice of the Beloved
282
That the devout soul ought with the whole heart to yearn after union with Christ in the Sacrament The Voice of the Disciple
285
Of the fervent desire of certain devout persons to receive the Body and Blood of Christ The Voice of the Disciple
287
That the grace of devotion is acquired by humility and selfdenial The Voice of the Beloved
289
That we ought to lay open our necessities to Christ and to require His Grace The Voice of the Disciple
291
Of fervent love and vehement desire of receiving Christ The Voice of the Disciple
293
That a man should not be a curious searcher of the Sacrament but a humble imitator of Christ submitting his sense to holy faith The Voice of the Belo...
296
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2004)

Thomas Kempis was born at Kempen, Germany in 1380. He attended Deventer in the Netherlands where he eventually joined the Canons and was later ordained as a priest. His most well-known work is the Imitation of Christ. It has been acclaimed as one of the greatest spiritual writings of all time. For some time there was some dispute as to the title's authorship. He died July 25, 1471.

Bibliographic information