THE CHILDHOOD OF JESUS
THE GOSPEL OF JAMES

Biographical Gospel of the Lord

- Chapter 168 -
A Lesson In Love, Gentleness And Patience


 
H
ERE MARY tasted the mush which Joel had prepared for the little Child, and found that it was a bit sour and contained little gruel-like curds.
 
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At this she promptly called Joel who was still quite busy frying fish in the kitchen.
 
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When he came, Mary sternly rebuked him, saying, 'Joel, just taste this mush!
 
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Do you really have so little regard for the Child, for father Joseph and for me, the loyal wife of your father, that you can do this to me?
 
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Do our cows and goats not have any more fresh milk in their udders?
 
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Why did you take yesterday's already sour milk, which one can drink cold when one is thirsty, but not when it is cooked because it then is harmful, especially for children?'
 
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Joseph now also tasted the mush and was all ready to give Joel a dressing down;
 
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but the little Child sat erect and protested: 'Oh you children of men, why do you want to outdo Me everywhere?
 
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Was My remark about Joel not enough? Why do you want to fully condemn him after I have dealt with him?
 
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'Do you suppose I have a liking for such severity on your part? - Oh no! I am pleased only with love, gentleness of manner and patience!
 
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Joel, to be sure, made himself liable to rebuke through his carelessness,
 
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which is why I promptly rebuked him with My critical remark. Now this rebuke is sufficient; to what purpose then is an additional rebuke and a dressing down on top of that?
 
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Every father does right when he punishes the naughty little children with the rod, but he should always be a wise and gentle teacher to his grown-up sons.
 
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'Only, if a son were to rebel against his father, he shall be threatened!
 
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If he then changes his attitude, he shall be restored to the old harmony.
 
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But if he does not change his attitude, he shall be expelled from the house of the father and driven from the land of his fathers.
 
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Now Joel has not transgressed in anything, only his desire to prepare the fish did not leave him enough time to have milked a goat.
 
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But from now on he surely will never do that again, so let everything be forgiven him.'
 
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Thereupon the little Child called Joel over to Himself and admonished him, 'Joel, if you love Me as I love you, then do not cause your father and your mother any more such anxiety in the future!'
 
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This so stirred Joel that he began to weep, and he fell on his knees and asked the little Child, Mary and Joseph for forgiveness.
 
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And Joseph assured him, 'Arise, my son! What the Lord forgives you, that is also forgiven you by me and by mother.
 
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Go now, and see how the fish are doing.'
 
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To this the little Child quickly added, 'Yes, yes, do go, otherwise the fish will be overfried, and then they would not be good - for I want to eat of them Myself.'
 
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This concern pleased the other eight children so well that they laughed aloud for joy.
 
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And the little Child laughed with them quite heartily and put the entire company at the table in a very happy frame of mind, and Jonathan's eyes were filled with enraptured tears of joy.