From a letter
attributed to Barnabus
The Way of Light
onsider now the way of
light: if any man wants to journey to his appointed home then he must put his whole
heart into his work. To aid our steps on the road, illumination has been given to us
as followslove your Maker, fear your Creator, glorify Him who redeemed you from death.
Be simple in heart, and rich in spirit. Shun the company of those who walk in the way of
death. Hate all that is not pleasing to God, hate all hypocrisy, and never depart from the
commandments of the Lord. Do not proclaim your own importance but keep a modest and humble
mind. Do not seek to cover yourself in glory. Make no evil plans against your neighbor.
Keep away from the sin of presumption.
Love your neighbor more than your own life.
Do not kill an unborn child through abortion, nor destroy it after birth. Do not withhold
your discipline from your son or your daughter but teach them the fear of God from their
childhood onwards. Do not covet your neighbor’s goods or avariciously hold on to your
own. Do not cultivate intimacy with the great but keep company with humble and virtuous
When tribulations come upon you, receive them
as you would receive good things, seeing that nothing happens without Gods concurrence.
Do not equivocate or speak in double meanings, for such deception is a deadly
Share your goods with your neighbor and do not
insist that they are yours alonefor if you are sharers in that which is incorruptible,
how much more must you be sharers in that which is corruptible. Do not be in a hurry to speak,
for the tongue is a deadly snare. Keep your soul as pure as you can. Do not be someone who
stretches out his hands to take, but keeps them tight shut when it comes to giving. Cherish
as the apple of your eye anyone who speaks to you expounds the word of the Lord.
Night and day keep the hour of judgment in mind.
Seek the daily company of the people of God, either laboring by word of mouthby going
among them, exhorting them and striving to save souls by the wordor laboring with your
hands to make reparation for your past sins.
Do not hesitate to give, and give without
grumbling: you will discover who can be generous with his rewards. Keep the commandments
you have received, adding nothing and taking nothing away. Hold evil in detestation. Make
your decisions fairly and uprightly. Do not cause quarrels, but rather bring together those
who are in dispute and reconcile them. Confess your own sins, and do not begin to pray with
an unrepentant heart. This is the Way of Light.
From the Epistle of Barnabus
Office of Readings, Wednesday of the Eighteenth Week in Ordinary Time