What is the Science of Salvation?

A collection of quotes and sayings about Truth from the great traditions of the world.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Stand Aright

Therefore, in so far as this is what has been commanded you by the Holy Apostles, -stand aright, hold firmly to the traditions which you have received, both written and by word of mouth, that you be not deprived of your firmness if you become led away by the delusions of the lawless. May God, Who is All-powerful, make them also to know their delusion; and having delivered us from them as from evil tares, may He gather us into His granaries like pure and useful wheat, in Jesus Christ our Lord, to Whom belongs all glory, honor, and worship, with His Father Who is without beginning, and His All-holy and Good and Life-giving Spirit, now and ever and unto the ages of ages. Amen.



St. Mark of Ephesus

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Intercession

The glad in paradise intercede for me and cry out to Thee, O only Lover of mankind. Attend Thou to their prayers. Through them will I give Thee glory in return, for Thou hast hearkened unto their prayers and hast been generous to me and not disregarded my prayers.




St. Ephraim the Syrian
"A Spiritual Psalter"

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

God Uppermost

It is indeed a good thing to keep the thought of God uppermost in our mind and something that a true Christian should never cease doing.



St. Basil the Great
"Gateway to Paradise"

Church of Christ

...The flesh of Christ and the holy of the Lord cannot be carried outside, and there is no other house for believers except the one Church. This house, this hospice of unanimity the Holy Spirit designates and proclaims, when He says: "God who makes those of one mind to dwell in his house" (cf. Ps. 67.7). In the house of God, in the Church of Christ, those of one mind dwell; they persevere in concord and simplicity.




St. Cyprian of Carthage
"The Unity of the Church"
(Treatises)

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Work of the Kingdom

As much sand is washed away before the gold is found, and that in very small grains like millet, so out of many there are few found to be approved. Those who have the work of the kingdom are made manifest...




St. Macarius the Great
"Spiritual Homilies" (Homily XV)

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Word of God

...The word of God cannot be exiled as our bodies are.



St. Hilary of Poitiers

Friday, January 25, 2008

Listlessness

Listlessness begins with despondency and faintheartedness and the prolonged withdrawal of grace. It starts off with the application of economy towards some supposed infirmity or weakness, and ends in total disbelief and shamelessness and ingratitude. For those who live alone as hesychasts it starts from neglect of the rule and order of their lives, and grows if not attended to in good time. But in those who live with others, it begins with idle talk and backbiting.



Elder Joseph the Hesychast
"Struggles - Experiences - Teachings"

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Work on Yourself

Anyone who does not work on himself does not know what enormous significance for the soul and for living sensibly lies in cutting oneself off, if only for a moment, from the surrounding vanities and concentrating one's thoughts and conscience on what the Lord requires of one in given circumstances or at a given time.




Metropolitan Anthony (Khrapovitsky)
"Confession"

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Judge Not

...Take a fisherman: when he casts his hook into the sea and a large fish takes bite, he perceives first that the fish struggles violently and is full of fight, so he does not try to pull it in immediately by main force for the line would break and the catch would be lost in the end. No! He plays out the line and, as he says, allows the fish to run freely, but when he feels the line slacken and the first struggles have calmed down, he takes up the slack line and begins, little by little, to draw him in. So the holy fathers, by patience and love, draw the brother and do not spurn him nor show themselves unfriendly towards him, but as a mother who has an unruly son does not hate him or turn away from him but rules him with sweetness and sometimes does things to please him, so they always protect him and keep him in order and they gain a hold on him so that with time they correct the erring brother and do not allow him to harm anyone else, and in doing so they greatly advance towards the love of Christ.




St. Dorotheos of Gaza
"Discourses and Sayings"
(On Refusal to Judge our Neighbor)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Sin

All natural bodies gravitate towards the centre of the earth, and all human souls naturally yearn after their spiritual Centre or Prototype - God; only sin has perverted, and still perverts this natural tendency. Fire and smoke gravitate towards the elements akin to them.




St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"

Monday, January 21, 2008

Prayer

...You must become braver and array yourself to face those bodiless enemies. Don't be afraid of them. You don't see how many of them fall and turn their backs with every prayer you say. You only see how much you are wounded. But they are also thrashed; they also suffer. Every time we are patient, they flee with leaps and bounds, and every time we say a prayer, they are seriously injured. So at the time of battle, when you are firing shots and bullets, don't expect them to throw marshmallows and chocolates.




Elder Joseph the Hysychast
"Monastic Wisdom; Letters..." (Sixteenth Letter)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Asceticism

The examples of courage and endurance that are given by the Christian martyrs - thousands upon thousands of them - shine with radiant glory through every page of the history of the Christian Church. But, as the examples of voluntary martyrs are given to us to marvel at, so also (and no less), are the examples of the Christian ascetics, known and unknown, for asceticism is nothing other than a long-drawn-out martyrdom.




Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic
"The Prologue from Ochrid"

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Grace

Pray that you may be granted the grace to read the Fathers with the gift of understanding, the grace to live up to the standards they put before you, and the grace clearly to see your own frailty. You will not long be left wanting and waiting. God will give you help.




Staretz Macarius of Optina
"Russian Letters of Direction 1834-1860"

Friday, January 18, 2008

Joining with Christ

...The times are such now that a God-opposing bustle, in which the enemy of the human race reigns, has taken possession of humanity and, as was said in olden times, forces almost all people “to dance to its tune.” All this bustle, of which our present life is composed, is a God-opposing bustle, in which there is no God, in which God’s enemy holds sway and rules. If we made a vow to renounce Satan and all his works, then, in fulfilling it, we ought to strive not to stifle our soul with this bustle, but to reject it and to remember how the Church says, “One thing is needful” — only one thing is necessary — and to remember that we must join ourselves with Christ, that is, not only fulfill His commandments, but also endeavor to unite ourselves with Him.



St. Philaret the New Confessor
"Sermon on Theophany"

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Original State of Grace

Human beings were made in the image of God, but because of their sin the beauty of the image was destroyed and the soul dragged down by passionate desires. But God who made humanity is the true life. And so, as a consequence of humanity losing its likeness to God, it lost its harmony with life, since we cannot be outside God and still live a contented life.
Let us return to the original state of grace from which we were exiled by sin, making ourselves in the image of God once more, so that we may be like the Creator in our freedom from desire. For if you can make your life as close to the passionless calm of the divine nature as possible, then your soul will be restored to the image of God. And if you can achieve this similarity to God, you will also have attained the image of the divine life which lasts for ever in its eternal happiness.



St. Basil the Great
"Gateway to Paradise"
(Freedom from Passions)

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Ask the Lord for Help

...Ask the Lord for help, humble yourself, judge only yourself and no one else, and guard from temptation your sight and your senses, through which all kinds of trash gets into the soul. If you constrain yourself, you will correct yourself, with God's help; but there will be no rest on this earth - that is for all the saints in Heaven.




Elder Joseph of Optina
"Letters"

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

On the Prayer of Jesus

Only the poor in spirit who cling constantly to the Lord by prayer on account of the constant sense of their poverty and need are capable of discovering within themselves the greatness of the name of Jesus.



Bishop Ignatius Brianchaninov
"On The Prayer of Jesus"

Monday, January 14, 2008

The Inner World

If you follow the events of the outer world, do not lose sight of your inner world, your own soul...



St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"

Repentance

He who says that he has repented of a sin ought not only to be pricked with compunction for his sin, but also to bring forth fruits worthy of repentance.




St. Basil the Great
"Letters"

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Almsgiving

Nothing can bring the heart so near to God as almsgiving, and nothing brings such serenity to the mind as voluntary poverty.




St. Isaac the Syrian
"Ascetical Homilies" (Homily Four)

Friday, January 11, 2008

Love - The Basis of Life

The basis of life is love: Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength, and love your neighbor as yourself (Mk. 12:30-31).



St. Innocent of Alaska

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Lead Us Not Into Temptation

...He recalls the ardor of the Apostle Peter and how the Lord humbled him until He had raised him to a high level of perfection. "That which a natural ardor of spirit could not accomplish," said Vladyka, "was accomplished by the grace of the Divine Spirit, finding a place for Himself in a heart cleansed through repentance, adorned with faith, strengthened by humility."
"What happened with the Supreme Apostle," he continued, "is a rule of the life which operates in all of God's servants. It is not in daring plans, nor in bold imagination that their power is disclosed, but in the very denial of their natural strength does the power of God find a place."
Vladyka Anthony pointed out that the spiritual gaze of the worker who is newly called into the Lord's field, "should not be directed far away, but rather within himself; not into the future, but on the present: "Give us this day... And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.'"

Protopresbyter George Grabbe (later Bp. Gregory)
"Metropolitan Anthony (Khrapovitsky) as a Teacher of Pastorship"

The Beatitudes

...Only those of us who are meek and gentle as lambs belong to Christ's flock, while those who do not have the Spirit of Christ, those who do not have His meekness and gentleness, are not His.




St. John of Kronstadt
"Ten Homilies on the Beatitudes"

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Hope and Faith

There flourishes with us the strength of hope and firmness of faith, and in the midst of the very ruins of a collapsing world our mind is lifted up and our courage is unshaken, and never is our patience unhappy, and our soul is always secure in its God...




St. Cyprian of Carthage
"Treatise: To Demetrian"

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Christ is Born!

"For the Life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and show unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us" (1 John, 1,2). This new life is our Lord Jesus Christ, Who is now born in Bethlehem, as He Himself said during the last days of His earthly life: "I am the way, and the truth, and the life" (John 14:6).



Metropolitan Anthony Khrapovitski
Nativity Sermon, 1906



Christ is Born! Glorify Him!

Mercy for Others

He came to us with the mercy and good will of His heavenly Father, – and from us He demands mercy toward our neighbours...



St. John of Kronstadt

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Holy Trinity

The Angel-Messenger of the pre-eternal Counsel of the Holy Trinity comes to the earth. This is not an ordinary messenger; it is the Only-begotten Son of God Himself. He brings peace to men. "Peace be unto you," he said more than once to His disciples. "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you," He says to the apostles at the Mystical Supper, "not as the world giveth, give I unto you." And appearing after His Resurrection, again He says: "Peace be unto you." "For he is our peace," the holy Apostle Paul says concerning Him: "He came to the earth to reconcile man unto God by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby. And having come, He preached peace to those afar off and to those near, because through Him we both have access unto the Father."



St. John Maximovitch of Shanghai and San Francisco
Nativity Epistle of 1962

Friday, January 4, 2008

The Word Became Flesh

...What, then, O, brethren, is required of us in order that we might avail ourselves of all the grace brought unto us from on high by the coming to earth of the Son of God? What is necessary, first of all, is faith in the Son of God, in the Gospel as the salvation-bestowing heavenly teaching; a true repentance of sins and the correction of life and of heart; communion in prayer and in the mysteries [sacraments]; the knowledge and fulfillment of Christ’s commandments. Also necessary are the virtues: Christian humility, alms-giving, continence, purity and chastity, simplicity and goodness of heart.
Let us, then, O brothers and sisters, bring these virtues as a gift to the One Who was born for the sake of our salvation – let us bring them in place of the gold, frankincense and myrrh which the Magi brought Him, as to One Who is King, God, and Man, come to die for us. This, from us, shall be the most-pleasing form of sacrifice to God and to the Infant Jesus Christ.



St. John of Kronstadt
"The Word Became Flesh"
(Sermon on the Nativity of Christ)

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Words from God

He who speaks rightly should recognize that he receives the words from God. For the truth belongs not to him who speaks, but to God who is energizing him.



St. Mark the Ascetic
"Philokalia"

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Faith and Life

...When thou takest refuge in a Church, do not seek shelter merely in the place but in the spirit of the place. For the Church is not wall and roof but faith and life.




St. John Chrysostom

Life In Christ

The Lord is life in my death, strength in my weakness, light in my darkness, joy in my sorrow, boldness in my faintheartedness, tranquility in my agitation, obedience in my prayer, glory in my dishonor, and deliverance from my dishonor. Wonderfully, mightily, and quickly does He protect and save me in my misfortunes and distresses, and from the seductions of the passions. When I call upon Him to save me, the invisible enemies flee from me, after the evil they have wrought within me, and I sensibly recognize the saving right hand of my God, my Saviour, upon me. Glory and thanks to the Shepherd and Visitor of my soul!



St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"