on earth He forgives sins. For while we are on earth we can blot out our sins.
But after that we are taken away from the earth, we shall not be able to
confess, for the gate is shut."
+ + +
appointed that human beings die once, and after this the judgment..." (Heb.
"There is hope of
mercy in time and in eternity; but there is confession in time only, and not in
eternity. There is no confession of sins in any time except in this present
life. By his own will each man is permitted and has throughout life the freedom
to choose confession. But when we die we lose life and along with it the right
to exercise our will. For then a law already set down unto rest or unto
punishment sustains, in accord with its past exercise" (St. Hilary of Poitiers,
Doctor of the Church, c. 365 A.D.)
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