"The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire."
Ministry of John the Baptist
3 In those days John the Baptist appeared in the desert of Judea announcing, 2 “ Change your hearts and lives! Here comes the kingdom of heaven! ” 3 He was the one of whom Isaiah the prophet spoke when he said:
4 John wore clothes made of camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist. He ate locusts and wild honey.
5 People from Jerusalem, throughout Judea, and all around the Jordan River came to him. 6 As they confessed their sins, he baptized them in the Jordan River. 7 Many Pharisees and Sadducees came to be baptized by John. He said to them, “ You children of snakes! Who warned you to escape from the angry judgment that is coming soon? 8 Produce fruit that shows you have changed your hearts and lives. 9 And don’t even think about saying to yourselves, Abraham is our father. I tell you that God is able to raise up Abraham’s children from these stones. 10 The ax is already at the root of the trees. Therefore, every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit will be chopped down and tossed into the fire. 11 I baptize with water those of you who have changed your hearts and lives. The one who is coming after me is stronger than I am. I’m not worthy to carry his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. 12 The shovel he uses to sift the wheat from the husks is in his hands. He will clean out his threshing area and bring the wheat into his barn. But he will burn the husks with a fire that can’t be put out. ”
This new edition of the Image classic, with more than 100,000 copies sold, brings E. Allison Peers's magnificent translation of St. John of the Cross's masterpiece "Dark Night of the Soul" to a new generation of readers and will renew the interest of those already familiar with its soaring poetry and timeless truths. The sixteenth-century Carmelite monk St. John of the Cross stands alongside St. Teresa of Avila as the West's best konwn and most beloved Christian mystic. As Peers writes in the Introduction to his definitive translation of "Dark Night of the Soul," "The most sublime of all Spanish mystics, he soars aloft on the wings of Divine love to heights known hardly to any of them... True to the character of his thought, his style is always forceful and energetic." "Dark Night of the Soul" follows the soul's journey from a state of abandonment and darkness to a loving union with God. In a voice at once grandiose and melodious, and a style that combines the systematic theology of St. Thomas Aquinas with rapturous poetry, St. John describes the process of moving away from routine religious rituals and embracing a Being who can be known only through love. His words, Peers writes, "are a wonderful illustration of the theological truth that grace, far from destroying nature, ennobles and dignifies it, and of the agreement always found between the natural and the supernatural -- between the principles of sound reason and the sublime manifestations of Divine grace." One of the greatest contributions to the literature of mysticism, "Dark Night of the Soul" offers support and encouragement to all who seek oneness with God.