By Desiderius Erasmus
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Extra resources for Discourse on Free Will (Milestones of Thought in the History of Ideas)
19,17). How could one ask somebody "if thou wilt be perfect, go, sell what thou hast" (Matth. 19,21). "If anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me" (Luke 9,23). Although this is a very difficult commandment, nevertheless the appeal is to the will. Subsequently, "For he who would save his life will lose it" (Luke 9,24). Wouldn't even the clearest commandment of Christ be senseless, if we could expect nothing from the human will? "Amen, amen I say to you" and again "Amen I say to you" (Matth.
37 38 DISCOURSE ON FREE WILL 24) Commandments and Exhortations; Reward and Punishment Again: "If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments" (Matth. 19,17). How could one ask somebody "if thou wilt be perfect, go, sell what thou hast" (Matth. 19,21). "If anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me" (Luke 9,23). Although this is a very difficult commandment, nevertheless the appeal is to the will. Subsequently, "For he who would save his life will lose it" (Luke 9,24).
If everything reduces itself to pure necessity, where does Wycliffe leave us any room for prayer or our own striving? To return to what I have been saying before. Once the reader of my disputation recognizes that my fighting equipment is equal to that of the adversary, let him decide for himself, whether to attribute more to the decisions of all the many scholars, orthodox faithful, saints, martyrs, theologians of ancient and more recent times; of all the universities, as well as of the many councils, bishops and popes, or more to the private opinions of one or two men.