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Jesus answered: 'Tell me, John: there was an householder who gave a perfect axe to one of his servants in order that he might cut down the wood which obstructed the view of his house.

'But the labourer forgot the axe, and said: "If the master would give me an old axe I should easily cut down the wood." Tell me, John, what said the master? Assuredly he was wroth, and took the old axe and struck him on the head, saying: "Fool and knave! I gave thee an axe wherewith thou mightest cut down the wood without toil, and seekest thou this axe, wherewith one must work with great toil, and all that is cut is wasted and good for nought? I desire thee to cut down the wood in such wise that thy work shall be good." Is this true?'

John answered: 'It is most true.' [Then said Jesus:] 'As I live eternally,' saith God, 'I have given a good axe to every man, which is the sight of the burial of one dead. Whoso wield well this axe remove the wood of sin from their heart without pain; wherefore they receive my grace and mercy; giving them merit of eternal life for their good works. But he who forgetteth that he is mortal, though time after time he see others die, and saith. "If I should see the other life, I would do good works," my fury shall be upon him, and I will so smite him with death that he shall never more receive any good.' 'O John,' said Jesus, 'how great is the advantage of him who from the fall of others learneth to stand on his feet!'