15. To have the courage of one's beliefs has always been held in great esteem by mankind. This is because there is merit in facing dangers, persecutions, contradictions and even simple sarcasms, to which all those who openly proclaim their ideas are almost always exposed, especially when those ideas are not to the general liking. Here as in everything, the merit is in proportion to the circumstances and the importance of the result. There is always weakness in drawing back from the consequences entailed by opinions, and in denying them. But there are some cases in which this constitutes an act of cowardice as great as the one committed by fleeing from the moment of battle.
Jesus denounced this kind of cowardice from the particular point of view of His doctrine, by saying that if anyone was ashamed of His words then He too would be ashamed of them; that He would disown the person who repudiated Him and would only acknowledge before the Father, Who is in Heaven, those who publicly acknowledge Him. In other words those who are afraid to confess themselves as disciples of truth are not worthy to be admitted into the kingdom of truth. In this way they will lose the advantages of faith, because it is a selfish faith which they keep for themselves, hiding it for fear of the prejudice they may come to suffer in the world. Meanwhile those who put truth above all material interests and openly proclaim it, are working both for their own future and for that of others.