This, then, is the highest image of all, in which we are lifted up, not only above our evils, but above our blessings as well, and are set down amid strange blessings, brought together by another’s labor; whereas we formerly lay among evils, heaped up by another’s sin, f265 and added to by our own. We are set down, I say, in Christ’s righteousness, with which He Himself is righteous; because we cling to that righteousness by which He is well pleasing to God, intercedes for us as our Mediator, and gives Himself wholly to be our own, as our High-Priest and Protector. Therefore, as it is impossible that Christ, with His righteousness, should not please God, so it is impossible that we should not please Him. Hence it comes that a Christian is almighty, lord of all, having all things, and doing all things, wholly without sin. And even if he have sins, they can in no wise harm him, but are forgiven for the sake of the inexhaustible righteousness of Christ that swalloweth up all sins, on which our faith relies, firmly trusting that He is such a Christ unto us as we have described. But if any one does not believe this, he hears the tale with deafears and does not know Christ, and understands neither what blessings He hath nor how they may be enjoyed.
With these prattlings of mine, Most Illustrious Prince, in token of my willingness to serve your Lordship to the best of my poor ability, I commend myself to your Illustrious Lordship, being ready to bring a worthier offering, if ever my mental powers shall equal my desires. For I shall always remain a debtor to every neighbor of mine, but most of all to your Lordship, whom may our LordJesusChrist, in His merciful kindness, long preserve to us, and at last by a blesseddeath take home to Himself.