Choose a topic from Part 3a:

88. Recurrence of Sins Forgiven

1. A sin forgiven is forgiven. A man may, indeed, commit anothersin like the one forgiven, but he does not fall back intoforgiven sin. It is not possible for the stain of past sins, andthe debt of punishment incurred by them, to return upon theforgiven sinner. A sin may be worse because of like sins previouslyforgiven. But the past sins themselves, once pardoned, do notreturn.

2. Only in the sense that a man who is pardoned returns tosins like those forgiven, and thereby shows base ingratitude to theforgiving God, is it said that forgiven sins return upon thesinner.

3. Therefore, if a man has obtained forgiveness of mortalsins, and later commits others, his ingratitude does not bring backupon him the debt of punishment due to all past mortal sins. Still,there must be some proportion in this business. The more frequentand grievous one's past mortal sins have been, the greater isthe debt of punishment incurred by subsequent mortal sin.

4. We must not say that the ingratitude of a forgivensinner who commits mortal sins anew, is a special mortal sin initself. This ingratitude is regularly a circumstance only of thenew mortal sin which the offender commits. If, however, therelapsing sinner has an actual contempt of God and the favor hereceived in his earlier pardon, his ingratitude is a specialsin.

"The more you know and the better you understand, the more severely will you be judged, unless your life is also the more holy. Do not be proud, therefore, because of your learning or skill. Rather, fear because of the talent given you."
Thomas á Kempis

* * *

"The greatest glory we can give to God is to do his will in everything."
St Alphonsus de Liguori

* * *

"The Lord has always revealed to mortals the treasures of his wisdom and his spirit, but now that the face of evil bares itself more and more, so does the Lord bare his treasures more."
St John of the Cross, OCD - Doctor of the Church

* * *