CHRISTIANITY✞

Christianity is not a religion of self-help but of divine rescue its a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

The message of the New Testament is that God the Son came to earth in the person of Jesus Christ to rescue sinful human beings from God the Father’s just wrath.  

The gospel reveals that Man is saved by God, from God. It also reveals that salvation is provided specifically through the death of Jesus Christ upon the cross. We are saved by believing in Christ (faith) and repenting of our sins.

The cross is the crucial point of Christianity. 

The Atonement is at the very heart of the Christian Faith but to understand “the atonement”, i.e., the reconciliation of men with God, a person must first understand both humanity’s sinful condition and God holiness, consequently God’s just wrath against sin. (m.a.)


In the first century after the death of the apostles the chief [Fathers]
were Ignatius and Polycarp, of whose writings fragments survive. In the second, Justin Martyr and  Irenaeus. In the third, Tertullian, Clement of Alexandria, Origen, Cyprian, Amobius, [and] Lactantius. In
the fourth, Athanasius, Eusebius of Caesarea, Hilary of Poitiers, Basil, Gregory of Nazianzus, Ambrose, Jerome, Gregory of Nyssa, Epiphanius, [and] John Chrysostom. In the fifth, Augustine, Cyril of
Alexandria, Theodoret, Hilary of Arles, Prosper of Aquitaine, [and] Leo I. In the sixth, Fulgentius Afer, Gelasius, Gregory the Great, and others.

2/14/20

Christ is the beginning and the end of all sciences.

Church Father


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostles

https://www.ligonier.org/learn/series/essential_truths_of_the_christian_faith/

https://www.studylight.org/history/early-church-fathers/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostolic_Fathers

https://www.ligonier.org/learn/series/cross_of_christ/

https://www.ligonier.org/learn/series/sacraments/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_culture

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Role_of_Christianity_in_civilization

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_symbolism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apostolic_succession

https://www.ligonier.org/learn/devotionals/apostolic-church/

https://www.ligonier.org/learn/devotionals/the-marks-of-the-church/

http://www.romans45.org/hallmap.htm

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Christianity

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecclesiastical_differences_between_the_Catholic_Church_and_the_Eastern_Orthodox_Church

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theological_differences_between_the_Catholic_Church_and_the_Eastern_Orthodox_Church

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filioque

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East%E2%80%93West_Schism

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_Christianity

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eastern_Christianity

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_Fathers

https://www.sacred-texts.com/chr/ecf/index.htm

https://www.preceden.com/timelines/10328-church-fathers-50—750-a-d

Patrology

https://www.churchfathers.org/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patristics

https://archive.org/search.php?query=patrology&page=1

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacred_tradition

Eusebius_Caesariensis,_Church_History

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Doctor_of_the_Church

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ante-Nicene_Fathers

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ante-Nicene_period

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ante-Nicene_Fathers_(book)

https://avidano.files.wordpress.com/2020/08/eusebius_pamphilius-church-hystory.pdf

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Ante-Nicene_Fathers

https://www.google.com/books/edition/The_Ante_Nicene_Fathers/Pe5YAAAAYAAJ?hl=en&gbpv=1&printsec=frontcover

https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Nicene_and_Post-Nicene_Fathers:_Series_I

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicene_and_Post-Nicene_Fathers

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Eastern_Orthodox_Christian_theology

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Outline_of_the_Catholic_ecumenical_councils

http://www.dailycatholic.org/councils.htm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_Christianity

http://www.pewforum.org/interactives/global-christianity/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trinitarianism_in_the_Church_Fathers

http://www.mljtrust.org/search/?q=christianity

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crucifixion

http://undergod.procon.org/view.background-resource.php?resourceID=87

http://www.ccel.org/fathers.html

https://archive.org/details/apostolicalconst00tattrich/page/21/mode/2up

http://www.biblestudytools.com/history/early-church-fathers/

http://www.ccel.org/ccel/richardson/fathers

https://mavidano.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/kelly-early-christian-doctrines.pdf

http://www.goarch.org/resources/fathers

http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/

http://www.tertullian.org/fathers2/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_theologians

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_denominations

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_philosophy

http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/index.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecumenism

Church-History

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catechesis

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_popes

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christianity_by_country

http://simple.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_denominations_by_number_of_members

http://christianityinview.com/comparison.html

http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_capr.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_centers_of_Christianity#Greece


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_angelology

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hierarchy_of_angels


 
Apostolic Fathers

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

07/22/20

Humble

A man for the greater he seems to be, the more he ought to be humble, and the more he ought to seek, the common advantage of all, and not his own.

Letter to the Corinthians
Chapter 42. The Order of Ministers in the Church.

The apostles have preached the gospel to us from the Lord Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ [has done so] from God. Christ therefore was sent forth by God, and the apostles by Christ. Both these appointments, then, were made in an orderly way, according to the will of God. Having therefore received their orders, and being fully assured by the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and established in the word of God, with full assurance of the Holy Ghost, they went forth proclaiming that the kingdom of God was at hand. And thus preaching through countries and cities, they appointed the first fruits [of their labors], having first proved them by the Spirit, to be bishops and deacons of those who should afterwards believe. Nor was this any new thing, since indeed many ages before it was written concerning bishops and deacons. For thus says the Scripture in a certain place, I will appoint their bishops in righteousness, and their deacons in faith.

Chapter 44. The Ordinances of the Apostles, that There Might Be No Contention Respecting the Priestly Office.

Our apostles also knew, through our Lord Jesus Christ, that there would be strife on account of the office of the episcopate. For this reason, therefore, inasmuch as they had obtained a perfect fore-knowledge of this, they appointed those [ministers] already mentioned, and afterwards gave instructions, that when these should fall asleep, other approved men should succeed them in their ministry. We are of opinion, therefore, that those appointed by them, or afterwards by other eminent men, with the consent of the whole church, and who have blamelessly served the flock of Christ, in a humble, peaceable, and disinterested spirit, and have for a long time possessed the good opinion of all, cannot be justly dismissed from the ministry. For our sin will not be small, if we eject from the episcopate those who have blamelessly and holily fulfilled its duties.

First  Clement

 

 
 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 

01/25/15

Love

To possess love is to be behind the reach of sin and to fulfill all demands  of holiness.

Polycarp

 

 
 
 
 
 

11/20/20

Patience

The Lord live  in patience,  but the devil  lives  in an angry temper.

Fear

Fear is of two kinds, if you want  to do something evil, fear the Lord and you will not do it. If you want to do something good, fear the Lord and you will do it.

Hermas

 

 
Greek Fathers

 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 

 

 

https://mavidano.files.wordpress.com/2020/12/origenes_commento_al_vangelo_di_matteo.pdf

https://mavidano.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/origen_on_first_principles.pdf

https://mavidano.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/lubac-origen-principles.pdf

 
 
 
 
Commentary to the Epistle to the Romans  
 
Who is the one that is free from sin? Doubtless, the knowledge of the true.  For this is what Jesus what saying to the Jews  who had believed in him: If you believe my words, you shall know the truth,  and the truth will  set you free. Thus is the truth and the knowledge of the truth that set  one free from sin.
 
This is why we must always examine ourselves  in  everything we do and in each action consider whom we are  serving, whether sin leading to iniquity, or  righteousness, leading to sanctification.
 
“I shall kill and I shall make alive”.  You need to understand what kind of death  it is that befit God to inflict. Doubtless is that  sort  of death that confers life,  i.e., that a  person should die to sin and live to God.
 
Christ came to reconcile  the world to God, and to offers those who believe in him  to the Father. Now those  whom he offers to the Father,  the Holy Spirit receive in in order to sanctified them and  give them life.
 
Justice is a virtue, and if anyone does less then justice allows, he is doubtless unjust. But if anyone under the appearance of justice, become excessive in respect to vengeance and insist on too fierce a punishment, he has devolved from justice to cruelty. This is why Salomon says :”Do not be overly Just”.
 
It is certain that  this is the nature of evil, that it should increase and growth  out of things similar to it. It is as if you add fire to fire, or combining an overcast sky to the darkness of the night. But if you offer good, evil will be extinguished. For contrary things are destroyed by their opposite, just as fire is quenched by water, and darkness is banished by light.
 
He who does what is good  not out of fear of the law but out of love for the good, no longer lives under the law of the letter but under the law of the spirit.
 
The love of one’s neighbor works no evil, love fulfilling of the law, in fact put love in for each of the commandment  of the law and see how easy they can be fulfilled. Can the one who love his neighbor murder him? Certainly none would kill the one he loves. Love  is  therefore the mean by  which what is commanded  “You shall not murder is fulfilled”. Does a man who love his neighbor commit adultery with his wife? Certainly not. In A similar way the one who  love his neighbor does not still his possession.  and he who love his neighbor does not  bear false testimony against him. The same to the other commandments , if there is love toward ones neighbor  they are kept without effort.
 
Daniel…when he says: “and the books were opened” namely those that are now rolled up and covered in our heart containing the writing of what we do. They are etched in a certain alphabet of the conscience,  yet are fully know to none  except God  alone. So then this books of our soul or pages of our heart will be opened in the presence of the throne of fire. And  so, for our crimes  which now we are disconcerted  to allow even one witness, than we shall have to endure the  innumerable throngs of the heavenly powers as witnesses.
 
For is far better not to have understanding than to understand things badly.
 
We have to be wise in good but simple in evil, so that if we are struck by evil, if we are struck by an injury, we should not became crafty, seeking crafty stratagem and argument by which we ought to pay back evil for evil and wickedness for wickedness. Instead in such a situation we should  call to mind that statement that says ” If anyone want to be wise before God , let him became a fool in this world.” We should be fool than by receiving injuries and not repaying it so that we can be wise before God who said “Vengeance is mine I shall repay it, says the Lord”.
But some unbelievers may cleverly object us and say: how can the same person be both wise and foolish? We shall answer him. Consider those arts that man practice,  how a man who is a grammarian is most adept becouse of language, is found to be most  foolish in the sculptor art… in this way is possible to be wise in the  things of God and foolish in the things in the world.
 
 
  Origen
 

 

https://mavidano.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/on-the-incarnation-athanasius.pdf

 
 
 
 

 
 
 

https://mavidano.files.wordpress.com/2021/01/on-wealth-and-poverty-by-john-chrysostom.pdf

 

https://biblehub.com/library/various/the_worlds_great_sermons_volume_i/chrysostom__excessive_grief_at.htm

https://archive.org/details/commentary_gospel_st_matthew_1405_librivox

https://archive.org/details/podcast_sermon-on-mount-commenta_736294790

https://archive.org/details/thehomiliesofsj01chryuoft

https://archive.org/details/homiliesofsjohnc07john

http://mb-soft.com/believe/txug/chryso27.htm

https://ccel.org/ccel/chrysostom?show=worksBy#worksBy

https://ccel.org/ccel/pearse/morefathers/files/chrysostom_four_discourses_01_discourse1.htm

11/12/20

Revenge

These things are written that we bear not malice towards those who injure us; but rebuke them and weep for them; for the fit subjects of weeping are not they who suffer, but they who do the wrong. The grasping man, the false accuser, and whoever works any other evil thing, do themselves the greatest injury, and us the greatest good, if we do not avenge ourselves. Do you see how we are the greatest gainers from the insolence of others? Nothing so delights God, as the not returning evil for evil? But what say I? Not returning evil for evil? Surely we are enjoined to return the opposite, benefits, prayers.

Slavery

For he who needs many things is the slave of many things, although he seem to be their master. Since the lord is the slave even of his domestics, and brings in another and a heavier mode of service; and in another way also he is their slave, not daring without them to enter the agora, nor the bath, nor the field, but they frequently go about in all directions without him. He who seems to be master, dares not, if his slaves be not present, to go forth from home, and if while unattended he do but put his head out of his house, he thinks that he is laughed at. Perhaps some laugh at us when we say this, yet on this very account they would be deserving of ten thousand tears. For to show that this is slavery, I would gladly ask you, would you wish to need some one to put the morsel to your mouth, and to apply the cup to your lips? Would you not deem such a service worthy of tears? What if you required continually supporters to enable you to walk, would you not think yourself pitiable, and in this respect more wretched than any? So then you ought to be disposed now. For it matters nothing whether one is so treated by irrational things, or by men.

Those  who amass their possession through covetousness also shrink from alms giving, for he who learn to make money this way does not know how  to spend it. How indeed a man all prepared to commit robbery, change his mind to do just the opposite? How in truth, will he who sizes on another man’s possessions be able to bestow his own possession on another man?       

Let us not esteem riches and honor and pleasure and power  but poverty, chains and bounds, and patience, practice for the sake of virtue.

For the covetous man, the slanderer, and the man guilty of any wrong doing injure themselves most of all,  while they are a great benefit to us, if we do not avenge ourselves.

St. John Homily 71- 80 John Chrysostom


 
 

 
 
 

https://avidano.files.wordpress.com/2020/09/the-fountain-of-knowledge.pdf


Latin Fathers
 

 
 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Credo_quia_absurdum

http://www.logoslibrary.org/tertullian/apology/45.html

https://ccel.org/ccel/tertullian?show=worksBy

http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/tertullian.html

https://archive.org/details/ecclesiasticalhi1845kaye/page/n41/mode/2up

https://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0311.htm

02/15/20

Chapter 32. None of the Heretics Claim Succession from the Apostles

But if there be any (heresies) which are bold enough to plant themselves in the midst of the apostolic age, that they may thereby seem to have been handed down by the apostles, because they existed in the time of the apostles, we can say: Let them produce the original records of their churches; let them unfold the roll of their bishops, running down in due succession from the beginning in such a manner that [that first bishop of theirs ] bishop shall be able to show for his ordainer and predecessor some one of the apostles or of apostolic men, — a man, moreover, who continued steadfast with the apostles. For this is the manner in which the apostolic churches transmit their registers: as the church of Smyrna, which records that Polycarp was placed therein by John; as also the church of Rome, which makes Clement to have been ordained in like manner by Peter. In exactly the same way the other churches likewise exhibit (their several worthies), whom, as having been appointed to their episcopal places by apostles, they regard as transmitters of the apostolic seed. Let the heretics contrive something of the same kind. For after their blasphemy, what is there that is unlawful for them (to attempt)? But should they even effect the contrivance, they will not advance a step. For their very doctrine, after comparison with that of the apostles, will declare, by its own diversity and contrariety, that it had for its author neither an apostle nor an apostolic man; because, as the apostles would never have taught things which were self-contradictory, so the apostolic men would not have inculcated teaching different from the apostles, unless they who received their instruction from the apostles went and preached in a contrary manner. To this test, therefore will they be submitted for proof by those churches, who, although they derive not their founder from apostles or apostolic men (as being of much later date, for they are in fact being founded daily), yet, since they agree in the same faith, they are accounted as not less apostolic because they are akin in doctrine. Then let all the heresies, when challenged to these two tests by our apostolic church, offer their proof of how they deem themselves to be apostolic. But in truth they neither are so, nor are they able to prove themselves to be what they are not. Nor are they admitted to peaceful relations and communion by such churches as are in any way connected with apostles, inasmuch as they are in no sense themselves apostolic because of their diversity as to the mysteries of the faith.

Persecution

The essence of persecution is the glory of God, whatever concern the glory of God will certainly proceed from the will of God. Therefore is clear that persecution, which works for the   improvement of the servants of God cannot be blamed on the devil. Evil  that seems required for the trial of faith  provided the instruments of, but not the justification for persecution. The real cause of persecution is an act of God’s will, choosing that  there be a trial of faith; than  that follows evil   on  the part of the Devil as a chosen  instrument of persecution. Thus a persecution  happens through the Devil but not by him. Satan can have no power over the servants of  the living God   unless the Lords permit it. In order that the Devil may be destroyed by the victory of the faith of the elect in overcoming temptation, or that same people may be shown by their defection under fire to have belonged to Satan.  God is the Lord of all if he will it you will suffer  persecution.

Do you fear man, O Christian?–you who ought to be feared by the angels, since you are to judge angels; who ought to be feared by evil spirits, since you have received power also over evil spirits; who ought to be feared by the whole world, since by you, too, the world is judged. You have put on Christ you have been  baptized into  Christ.


CHAP. XLV

We, then, alone are without crime. Is there ought wonderful in that, if it be a very necessity with us? For a necessity indeed it is. Taught of God himself what goodness is, we have both a perfect knowledge of it as revealed to us by a perfect Master; and faithfully we do His will, as enjoined on us by a Judge we dare not despise. But your ideas of virtue you have got from mere human opinion; on human authority, too, its obligation rests: hence your system of practical morality is deficient, both in the fulness and authority requisite to produce a life of real virtue. Man’s wisdom to point out what is good, is no greater than his authority to exact the keeping of it; the one is as easily deceived as the other is despised. And so, which is the ampler rule, to say, “Thou shalt not kill,” or to teach, “Be not even angry?” Which is more perfect, to forbid adultery, or to restrain from even a single lustful look?

Which indicates the higher intelligence, interdicting evil-doing, or evil-speaking? Which is more thorough, not allowing an injury, or not even suffering an injury done to you to be repaid? Though withal you know that these very laws also of yours, which seem to lead to virtue, have been borrowed from the law of God as the ancient model. Of the age of Moses we have already spoken. But what is the real authority of human laws, when it is in man’s power both to evade them, by generally managing to hide himself out of sight in his crimes, and to despise them sometimes, if inclination or necessity leads him to offend? Think of these things, too, in the light of the brevity of any punishment you can inflict–never to last longer than till death. On this ground Epicurus makes light of all suffering and pain, maintaining that if it is small, it is contemptible; and if it is great, it is not long-continued. No doubt about it, we, who receive our awards under the judgment of an all-seeing God, and who look forward to eternal punishment from Him for sin,–we alone make real effort to attain a blameless life, under the influence of our ampler knowledge, the impossibility of concealment, and the greatness of the threatened torment, not merely long-enduring but everlasting, fearing Him, whom he too should fear who the fearing judges,–even God, I mean, and not the proconsul.

kill vs anger

adultery vs lustful look

evildoing vs evil speaking

not to injure vs not to repay an injury  

Apology

 

CAPO 45 — Noi soli possediamo la vera innocenza: perché nostro maestro è Dio, non, come per voi, un uomo; e la punizione della colpa sarà per noi eterna, non, come per voi, temporanea. 

[1] E allora noi soli siamo innocenti. – Qua! meraviglia, se è inevitabile? E in verità è inevitabile. Avendo appresa l’innocenza da Dio, e la conosciamo perfettamente, come rivelataci da un maestro perfetto, e la custodiamo fedelmente, come impostaci da un giudice che non si può disprezzare.

[2] A voi, invece, un apprezzamento umano l’innocenza ha insegnato e, del pari, un dominio umano l’ha imposta: perciò né così completa, né tale da farsi altrettanto temere è la vostra disciplina, nei riguardi della innocenza vera. Quanta è la sapienza di un uomo a dimostrare un bene, tanta è la sua autorità a esigerlo: quanto è facile che la prima s’inganni, tanto è facile che la seconda venga disprezzata. 

[3] E in verità, che è più completo, dire: ‘Non ucciderai’, – oppure insegnare: ‘Nemmeno devi adirarti’? – Che è più perfetto, proibire l’adulterio, oppure rimuovere perfino dalla solitaria concupiscenza dello sguardo? Che è più evoluto, interdire il maleficio, oppure anche la maldicenza?. Che è più sapiente, non permettere l’offesa, oppure nemmeno il contracambio dell’offesa consentire?. 

[4] E dovete tuttavia sapere che anche le stesse vostre leggi, che aver di mira sembrano l’innocenza, la loro forma hanno derivato dalla legge divina, come più antica. Abbiamo parlato già dell’età di Mosè.

[5] Ma quanto scarsa è mai delle leggi umane l’autorità, se all’uomo spesso di eluderle capita, riuscendo a tener nascoste le sue colpe e, qualche volta, a non farne caso, rendendosi colpevole o volontariamente o costretto?

[6] Consideratela anche riguardo alla brevità del castigo, che, qualunque sia, tuttavia oltre la morte non durerà. Così anche Epicuro ogni tormento e dolore disprezza, dichiarandolo, se lieve, in verità, da non curarsene, se forte, di non lunga durata.

[7] E invero noi, che giudicati siamo sotto un Dio, che tutto scruta, e un castigo eterno da lui prevediamo, meritamente i soli siamo che l’innocenza raggiungiamo, e per la pienezza della sapienza e per la difficoltà del rimanere nascosti e per la grandezza del tormento, non di lunga durata, ma eterno; noi, che uno temiamo, cui dovrà temere anche colui che giudica, Dio, non un proconsole.

Apologetico

Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullianus (c. 155 Tunisia – c. 240 Tunisia)

 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Providence
 
God feeds the fowls and those creatures that have no sense  of things divine, neither drink nor food is lacking. Do you think that to a Christian,  do you think that to a servant of God, do you think that to one devoted to good works, do you think that to one dear to the Lord anything will be lacking?
Unless you think that he who feed Christ is not himself feed by Christ, or that earthly things will be lacking to those upon whom heavenly things are bestowed? whence this incredulous  thinking, whence this impious and sacrilegious contemplation?
1 Kings 17:7-16
(13 And Elijah said unto her, Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son
15 And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days.)
 
Almsgiving
 
What greater declaration could Christ have made to us? How more could He have stimulated the works of our justice and mercy than by having said that whatever is offered to the poor and the needy is offered to Him, and by having said that He is offended unless offering is made to the needy and the poor? So that he in the Church, who is not moved by consideration of his brother, may indeed be moved by contemplation of Christ, and he who does not give thought to his fellow servant in trouble and in need may indeed give thought to the Lord abiding in that very one whom he despises.
 
Contention
 
It would be foolishly to content with  you, since it would be an easier and lighter task to restrain the angry wave of of a turbulent  sea by shouting than to check your madness by arguments. Surely is  a futile labor and of no effect to offer light to someone blind, words to a deaf person, and wisdom to a brute, since a brute cannot understand, and a blind person cannot admit light, and one deaf cannot hear.
 
 
Love of riches
 
How can they follow Christ  who are held back by the chain of their personal property, how  can they seek heaven,  and ascent to the sublime and lofty who are weighted down by earthly desires? they think that they possess  who are rather possessed slaves of their own property, not lords as regards their money, but rather the bonds slave of their money. You save money which,  when saved do not save you
 
Peace
 
He who knows and loves the bond of charity ought to restrain his tongue from the evil of dissention.
The sons of God  should be peace makers, gentle in heart, simple in speech, harmonious in affections,
 
 
“Our Father”
 
Those who say to their father and mother: I do not know you, and who do not recognize their children, these have kept thy words, and observed thy covenant.’ Likewise the Lord in His Gospel has bidden us to call not our father upon earth, because one is our Father, who is in heaven. And to the disciple who had made mention of his dead father, He replied: ‘Let the dead bury their own dead.’ For he had said that his father was dead, when the father of believers is living. (Deut. 33:9)
 
 
 Nor can a sinning people be a son, but to those to whom the remission of sins is granted is the name of sons ascribed, to these also is eternity promised when the Lord himself says: ‘Everyone who commits sin is the servant of sin. But the slave does not abide in the house forever; the son abides there forever.’
 
 
‘Hallowed be thy name,’ not because we wish for God that He be hallowed by our prayers, but because we seek from the Lord that His name be hallowed in us. Moreover, by whom is God hallowed who himself hallows? But because He Himself said: ‘Be ye holy, for I am holy,’ we petition and ask for this, that we who have been sanctified in baptism may persevere in what we have begun. And for this daily do we pray. For we have need of daily sanctification, that we who sin daily may cleanse our sins by continual sanctification.
 
He says that we have been sanctified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God. We pray that this sanctification abide in us, and because our Lord and Judge warned the man who had been healed and quickened by Him to sin no more, lest something worse befall him, we make this petition with constant prayers, we ask this night and day, that the sanctification and quickening which is assumed from the grace of God be preserved by His protection.
 
 
We also say in addition: ‘Thy will be done in heaven as it is on earth,’ not that God may do what He wishes, but that we may be able to do what God wishes. For who stands in the way of God’s doing what He wishes? But since the devil stands in the way of our mind and action obeying God in all things, we pray and petition that God’s will be done in us. That it may be done in us, there is need of God’s will, that is, of His help and protection, because no one is strong in his own strength, but is safe by the indulgence and mercy of God. 
 
If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in Him, because all that is in the world is the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life which is not from the Father, but from the lust of the world. And the world with its lust will pass away, but he who does the will of God abides forever, as God also abides forever.’ We who wish to abide forever should do the will of God who is eternal.

Moreover, the will of God is what Christ both did and taught. Humility in conversation, steadfastness in faith, modesty in words, justice in deeds, mercy in works, discipline in morals, not to know how to do an injury and to be able to bear one done, to keep peace with the brethren, to love the Lord with a whole heart, to love Him in that He is Father, to fear Him in that He is God, to place nothing at all before Christ, because He placed nothing before us, to cling inseparably to His love, to stand bravely and faithfully at His cross; when there is a struggle over His name and honor to exhibit the constancy in speech with which we confess, under investigation the confidence with which we enter combat, in death the patience for which we are crowned; this is to wish to be co-heir with Christ; this is to do the commandment of God; this is to fulfill the will of the Father.

Moreover, we ask that the will of God be done on heaven and on earth, each of which pertains to the consummation of our safety and salvation. For since we possess a body from earth and a spirit from heaven, we ourselves are earth and heaven, and in both, that is in both body and spirit we pray that God’s will be done. 
And so by daily, yes, by unceasing petitions we pray for this, that both in heaven and on earth the will of God concerning us be done, because this is the will of God, that the earthly give way to the heavenly, that the spiritual and divine prevail.
 
As the prayer proceeds, we ask and say: ‘Give us this day our daily bread.’ This can be understood both spiritually and simply, because either understanding is of profit in divine usefulness for salvation. For Christ is the bread of life and the bread here is of all, but is ours. And as we say ‘Our Father,’ because He is the Father of those who understand and believe, so too we say ‘our Bread,’ because Christ is the bread of those of us who attain to His body. 
 
For daily bread cannot be lacking the just man, since it is written: ‘The Lord will not afflict the just soul with famine’; and again, ‘I have been young, and am old and I have not seen the just man forsaken, nor his seed begging bread’ ; likewise, since the Lord promises, saying: ‘What shall we eat or what shall we drink or what are we to put on? For after these things the gentiles seek; for your Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His justice, and all these things shall be given you besides.’ To those who seek the kingdom and the justice of God, He promises that all things are added. For since all things are of God, nothing will be lacking to him who has God, if he himself be not lacking to God. 
 
Necessarily too the Lord give us this admonition, to say in our prayer: ‘And lead us not into temptation.’ In this part it is shown that the adversary has no power against us, unless God has previously permitted it, in order that all our fear and devotion and obedience may be turned to God, since in temptations nothing is permitted evil, unless the power is granted by Him. Scripture proves this when it says: ‘Nebuchodonosor, king of Babylon, came against Jerusalem and assaulted it, and the Lord gave it into his hand.’ Moreover, power is given to evil against us according to our sins; as it is written: ‘Who hath given Jacob for a spoil and Israel to those who despoiled him? Hath not God, against whom they have sinned and were unwilling to walk in His ways and to hear His law, even poured out upon them the indignation of His fury? And again when Solomon sinned and departed from the precepts and the ways of the Lord, it is set down: ‘And the Lord stirred up Satan against Solomon himself.’
 
Power indeed is granted against us in two ways: either for punishment when we sin or for glory when we are approved, as we see was done with respect to Job when God made this clear with the following words: ‘Behold all that he hath is in thy hand; only put not forth thy hand upon his person.’ And the Lord in His Gospel says at the time of His passion: “Thou wouldst have no power at all over me, were it not given thee from above.’ When, moreover, we ask that we come not into temptation, we are reminded of our infirmity and weakness, lest someone extol himself insolently, lest someone proudly and arrogantly assume something to himself, lest someone think the glory of confession or passion to be his own, although the Lord himself, teaching humility, has said: ‘Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak,’ so that when humble and submissive confession precedes and all is ascribed to God, whatever is sought suppliantly with fear and honor of God, by reason of His loving kindness it may be granted.
 
 
‘But deliver us from evil,’ comprehending all adversities which the enemy undertakes against us in this world, from which there can be strong and faithful protection, if God delivers us, if, as we pray and implore, He furnish us His aid. Moreover, when we say: ‘Deliver us from evil,’ nothing remains for which we should ask still further; when once we seek God’s protection against evil, having obtained this, we stand secure and safe against all the works of the devil and of the world. For what fear indeed is there with regard to the world for him who has God as his protector in the world?
 
 
 
 and let it not suffer the enemy of God to approach it at the time of prayer. For he frequently creeps up and penetrates and with subtle deceit calls our prayers away from God, so that we have one thing in the heart, another in the voice, when not the sound of the voice but the mind and the thought should be praying to the Lord with sincere intention. But what slothfulness it is to be drawn away and to be captured by foolish and profane thoughts, when you are praying to the Lord, as if there were anything that you should ponder more than what you speak with God. How do you ask that you be heard by God, when you do not hear your very self? Do you wish the Lord to be mindful of you when you pray, when you yourself are not mindful of yourself? This is to be entirely off-guard against the enemy; this is, when you pray to God, to offend the majesty of God by the negligence of prayer; this is to be alert with the eyes and to be asleep with the heart, 
 
 

 
 

12/09/20

Release from worry through indifference is not negligence, but faith.

Hilary of Poitiers


The Welfare of their subjects lies in the integrity of their rulers;

The welfare and  order of the  Lord’s entire family will falter if what is required of the body is not likewise found in the head.

Leo the Great

 

 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 

12/06/20

Select Letters…

A great faith makes light of discomfort : it knows the retribution that fell upon the rich man clothed in purple, who in his pride refused Lazarus aid. The sufferer whom we despise and cannot bear to behold, whose very aspect turns our stomachs, is a man like our- selves, formed of the same clay, made out of the same elements. Whatever he suffers we may possibly suffer also. Let us regard his wounds as our own, and then all our lack of sympathy for others will be overcome by our pity for ourselves.

Increasing her knowledge she also increased her sorrow.

The first habit ruins talk, the second character; and children should never learn what they will afterwards have to unlearn.

Things that have become a habit you will find it hard to blame.

It requires great skill to look for gold in mud.

A libertine is all the more ardent when he is pursuing virtue, and thinks that the unlawful is especially delightful.

No one ever weeps when he is lying.

A good conscience  will  shrink from no man’s gaze. Silent looks, unspoken words, a man’s whole bearing, at times spell uneasiness, at other times security.

God looks upon the heart, we only see the face.

As an arrow, if it be aimed at a hard substance, sometimes rebounds upon the archer and wounds the wounder — and so the word is fulfilled : ‘ They were turned aside like a deceitful bow,’  and in another place : ‘ Whoso casteth a stone on high casteth it on his own head.’  Meddle not with them that are given to detraction.

Truth does not love corners nor does she seek out whisperers.

So we read in another place ‘ that Jesus began both to do and teach.’ ” How- ever fine a man’s teaching may be, it is put to the blush when his own conscience reproves him ; and it is in vain that his tongue preaches poverty and teaches almsgiving, if he himself is swollen with the wealth of a Croesus.”

And again after many generations we have the proverb : ” Remember ever the day of death and you will never go wrong.”  Lastly there is the satirist’s shrewd precept.

In the multitude of people is the king’s honor.

Select Letters of St.Jerome –


And the Apostle adds that we are “redeeming the time because the days are evil.”  Forests are brought into ill repute when robberies abound in them, not because the ground or the trees commit sin but because they have gained a bad reputation as places where murders occur. We also despise the sword by which human blood is poured out as well as the cup in which poison is mixed, not because the sword and cup commit sin but because those who use these things for evil purposes deserve reproach.  So also the age, which is a period of time, is not good or evil in itself; it is called good or evil depending on the people who live in it.

4.12a. Be as I am, for I was as you are

Happy is he who walks in the way of virtue, provided of course that he reaches perfection in it. There is no point in abstaining from vice unless you embrace moral excellence, because when it comes to noble pursuits, the beginning is not as praiseworthy as the end.

That proverb of the poet who is considered noble among the Romans is apt here, “Flattery attracts friends, and truth, hatred .” Once truth is taken out of the equation, the flattery by which he thought friends could be made is not so much flattery as it is adulation and obsequiousness, which as we all know should be called co¬ vert hostilities rather than friendships.
We should also bear in mind that today, too, we are praised, admired, and held in high regard as long as we explain Scripture according to the letter to infants and sucklings and to people in whose hearts Christ has never reached maturity or grown in stature, wisdom, and favor with God and men. But when we make a modest attempt to nudge them on to greater things, they go from being our panegyrists to being our enemies. They would rather follow the Jews than the apostles, who dissociated themselves from the teaching and traditions of the Pharisees.

The person who imitates the riches, power, and eminence of someone else emulates not what is good but what ought to be shunned. In the same way you should “be zealous for a good cause” and seek things that are spiritual rather than fleshly,

We find another type of zeal at work in the sons of Jacob, when they were jealous of their brother Joseph,  and in Miriam and Aaron, when they were jealous of Moses because he was the friend of God. Neither the sons of Jacob nor Miriam and Aaron were zealous because they wanted to be better than Joseph or Moses; they were aggravated because they were inferior to them. That kind of zeal is akin to envy. And should there come upon him a spirit of jealousy.” This, though, may be a neutral form of jealousy that is neither good nor evil but hovers between the two extremes and is called rivalry.

Moses speaks in a similar vein about the people of Israel, “Did I give birth to all these people?”  Who among us do you think is so concerned about the salvation of his students that he is plagued by worry his entire life—and not just for a few hours or two or three days at a time—until Christ is formed in them?

“Do not do to another what you do not want done to yourself,”  and also here: “Do to others what you would have them do to you.”  I do not want my wife to be defiled, I do not want my property to be stolen, I do not want to be crushed by false testimony, and (to include everything under one heading) I do not tolerate in¬ justice to be committed against me. If, out of the love that expresses itself through me, I do, or intend to do, good to others, I have fulfilled the entire Law.
It is not hard to show how keeping the one commandment to love satisfies all of the commandments.

Commentary on Galatians 

(Eusebius Hieronymus)

 
 
 
Church History