The Word of the Lord! The actual judge.
 As to James, he does not say that the congregation should "confess" their sins to an elder of the congregation, but he only says that no brother in the congregation should have any secret from the other, and want to be considered by the whole Community to be better than he really is. And this is the reason why James recommends but does not at all dictate that the sins or mistakes should be confessed to one another.
 But if all this is irrefutable, what is the ear-confession in the Catholic Church? I tell you, it is nothing more than an incriminating sin bank, where people get rid of their life's responsibilities and guilt. Through this transposition, they bring the ecclesiastical usury a double gain; firstly, each one for himself, and secondly, because he withdraws himself from the eyes of his brethren and his fellow-men by confession, so that they should not know who he really is in his inner being, and would regard him at least after the confession, immediately again as a completely honest man; while he remains after confession the same man as he was before.
 All the confessed sins are covered up this way and every owner will get them back to the extent that he has deceived himself and all his fellow-men! For himself, because, according to every confession, he regarded himself as a man fully worthy of Divine grace, by which he exalted himself and took pleasure in himself. He deceives his fellow-men, in that they never really know where they stand with him, and therefore should regard him to be much better than before.
 So these are interest rates, and they are called double fraud! And this deception is still a chief burden, which consists in the fact that the condemned man is deluded to be perfectly justified before the Lord.
 I can assure you that if Judas, the traitor, had established a Christian church, it would certainly have been better than this, which has not come out of Christianity, but from paganism, only by salting this paganism a bit with Christianity. For as salt is but the smallest ingredient of a dish, so in this paganism, Christianity makes up the smallest part. That would still be bearable if it were only good. But is the salt itself stale, how then will pure paganism be Christianity?
 The heathendom has many gods, therefore do those in possession of the new salt not want to stay with one God, but makes three thereof. After this God, which was separation into three, it makes saints of people who lived upon earth, creating a surrogate for the rejected “demigods” and “house gods”. The old heathendom was very profitable to its priests, but the pure Christianity stands directly opposed to such profiteering, for it expressly states: “Freely you received, freely you shall give”.
The True Christianity
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