What is the Science of Salvation?

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

Monday, March 31, 2008

What The Lord is Giving

Forsake things present, and put thy trust in things to come. ...Little are the things which thou art forsaking, great what the Lord is giving.





St. Cyril of Jerusalem
"Catechetical Lectures"

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Conscience

After God, let us have our conscience as our mentor and rule in all things, so that we may know which way the wind is blowing and set our sails accordingly.




St. John Climacus
"The Ladder of Divine Ascent" (Step 26)

Saturday, March 29, 2008

The Cross

By the Cross, the Son of God having become man, accomplished our salvation. He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the Cross (Phil. 2:8). Having stretched out His hands upon the Cross, the Saviour with them, as it were, embraced the world, and by His blood shed on it, like a king with red ink, He signed the forgiveness of the human race.




St. John Maximovitch
"The Cross, Preserver of the Universe"

Friday, March 28, 2008

Live Wisely

When the heart is occupied with worldly things, especially superfluous ones, it forsakes the Lord - the Source of life and peace - and is therefore deprived of life and tranquility, of light and strength; but when it repents of its care for vain things, and wholly turns from corruptible things to incorruptible God, then the fountain of living water again begins to flow into it, and peace, tranquility, light, strength, and boldness before God and man once more dwell within it. We must live wisely.



St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"

Thursday, March 27, 2008

There is God

...For there where God is, is also all that belongs to Him. If God is within you because of your love, than you will have His justification for your sins, deliverance from your captivity, peace instead of your evil conscience, joy instead of your misery, comfort instead of your sorrow, justification at God's judgement, assistance against your enemies, wisdom and intelligence instead of confusion and ignorance, strength in your weakness. If the Lord dwells in you for the sake of your love, then who can be against you, what harm can befall you? If He is your peace, then who can disturb you? If He is your joy and comfort, then who or what can cause you sorrow? If He is your strength, then who can overcome you? If He is your King, then who can subjugate you? If God is with us then who can be against us, boldly exclaims St. Paul together with all those who love the Lord (Rom. 8:31). Such is love, and behold what it brings with it! Those who enter into the love of the Lord feel that they are more and more filled and perfected. For love is the bond of perfectness (Col. 3,14).




St. Theophan the Recluse
"How to Learn to Love the Lord"

What Are Christians?

What are Christians? Christians are Christ-bearers, and by virtue of this bearers and possessors of eternal life, and this according to the measure of faith and according to the measure of holiness which is from faith. The Saints are the most perfect Christians, for they have been sanctified to the highest degree with the podvigs of holy faith in the risen and eternally-living Lord Christ and no death has power over them. Their life is entirely from the Lord Christ, and for this reason it is entirely Christ's life; and their thought is entirely Christ's thought; and their perception is Christ's perception. All that they have is first Christ's and then theirs. If the soul, it is first Christ's and then theirs: if life, it is first Christ's and then theirs. In them is nothing of themselves but rather wholly and in everything the Lord Christ.
Therefore, the Lives of the Saints are nothing else but the life of the Lord Christ, repeated in every saint to a greater or lesser degree in this or that form. More precisely it is the life of the Lord Christ continued through the Saints, the life of the incarnate God the Logos, the God-man Jesus Christ who became man. This was so that as man He could give and transmit to us His divine life; so that as God by His life he could sanctify and make immortal and eternal our human life on earth. "For both he who sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one" (Heb. 2: 11).



Fr. Justin Popovich

"Introduction to the Lives of Saints"

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Judge Not

Do not regard the feelings of a person who speaks to you about his neighbor disparagingly, but rather say to him: "Stop, brother! I fall into graver sins every day, so how can I criticize him?" In this way you will achieve two things: you will heal yourself and your neighbor with one plaster. This is one of the shortest ways to the forgiveness of sins; I mean, not to judge. 'Judge not, and ye shall not be judged.' (Luke 6:37)




St. John Climacus
"The Ladder of Divine Ascent" (Step 10)

Monday, March 24, 2008

Humility

He who has humbled himself within will not be cheated by his lips; for what is not in the treasury cannot be brought out through this door.





St. John Climacus
"The Ladder of Divine Ascent" (Step 25)

Humility

Why does humility lead up to the heights of righteousness, whereas self-conceit leads down to the depths of sin? Because anybody who thinks he is something great, even before God, is rightly abandoned by God, as one who thinks that he does not need His help. Anybody who despises himself, on the other hand, and relies on the mercy from above, wins God's sympathy, help and grace. As it says, "The Lord resisteth the proud: but he giveth grace unto the lowly" (Prov. 3:34 Lxx).




St. Gregory Palamas
"Homilies" (Homily Two)

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Works of Light

The time is always right to make a beginning of a way of life that will lead to salvation. To prove this, the great Paul says, "Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation" (2 Cor. 6:2). "Let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us do the works of light. Let us walk honestly as in the day" (cf. Rom. 13:12-13).




St. Gregory Palamas
"Homilies" (Homily 42)

Friday, March 21, 2008

Faith

Christ being led into the heart by faith, dwells in it with peace and joy. It is not without reason that it is said of God, "He is Holy and rests in the saints."




St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"

Faith

Christ being led into the heart by faith, dwells in it with peace and joy. It is not without reason that it is said of God, "He is Holy and rests in the saints."




St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Salvation

The salvation which Christ brought to humanity consists not only of the conscious assimilation of Christ's principle truths and of His love, but also of the fact that by means of His compassionate love Christ demolishes the partition which sin sets up between men, restores the original oneness of nature, so that the man who has subjected himself to this action of Christ finds new dispositions, new feelings and longings, not only in his thoughts, but also in his very character, these being created not by himself, but coming from Christ who has united Himself to him.




Metropolitan Anthony Khrapovitski
"The Dogma of Redemption"

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Virtue or Foolishness?

A good grape-picker, who eats the ripe grapes, will not start gathering unripe ones. A charitable and sensible mind takes careful note of whatever virtues it sees in anyone. But a fool looks for faults and defects.




St. John Climacus
Ladder of Divine Ascent (Step 10)

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Deeds

We who have been granted the bath of eternal life do good works not for the sake of reward, but to preserve the purity which was given us.





St. Mark the Ascetic
"To those who think to be justified by deeds"
(The Philokalia)

Monday, March 17, 2008

Where Does Christ Dwell?

But where does Christ dwell? --in pure hearts, hearts that are humble and contrite, there where He is not grieved by doubt or unbelief, by indifference towards Him Who is God and Saviour; there where men do not prefer the temporal sweetness of sin; where the idols of the passions have been chased out; where crude materiality is not preferred to the Kingdom of God. where Christians often turn their thoughts to the heavenly, as those created for heaven, for eternity; there where they seek God's truth, where every day and every hour they are attentive to His commandments. Here is where Christ dwells. And what does He do there? If only we knew (some, of course, do know) what He does in souls worthy of His abiding presence--what rest, comfort and joy He imparts, what paradisal bliss He gives them to experience while still on this earth...




St. John of Kronstadt

Divine Blessings

...Divine blessings are bestowed according to the measure of faith in each man. Similarly, the strength of our faith is revealed by the zeal with which we act. Thus our actions disclose the measure of our faith, and the strength of our faith determines the measure of grace that we receive.





St. Maximos the Confessor
"The Philokalia"

Endurance and Humility

Let no one think that he endures suffering and achieves holiness through his own powers...




St. Theodoros the Great Ascetic
"The Philokalia"

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Love

...All other gifts are nothing without love.





St. Tikhon of Zadonsk

Friday, March 14, 2008

Intention

God judges our intention, but in that which is within our power. He, in man-befriendingwise, also requires us to act. Great is he who leaves undone nothing that is within his power; but greater is he who humbly attempts what is beyond his power.




St. John Climacus
"The Ladder of Divine Ascent" (Step 26)

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Things of Heaven

...This is the reason also of our careful watchings and fasts and prayers, so that the mind, weaned from the things of this world, may not savor what is earthly but may behold the things of heaven.




St. John Cassian
"Selected Writings"

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

INDIGNITY

A little fire softens a large piece of wax. So, too, a small indignity often softens, sweetens and wipes away suddenly all the fierceness, insensibility and hardness of our heart.



St. John Climacus
"The Ladder of Divine Ascent" (Step 4)

Monday, March 10, 2008

Preparing Yourself

And though every day a man lives may rightly be a day of repentance, yet is it in these days more becoming, more appropriate, to confess our sins, to fast, and to give alms to the poor; since in these days you may wash clean the sins of the whole year.




St. John Chrysostom
"The Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers"

Fasting

Do you fast? Give me proof of it by your works. If you see a poor man, take pity on him. If you see a friend being honored, do not envy him. Do not let only your mouth fast, but also the eye, and the ear, and the feet, and the hands, and all the members of our bodies. Let the hands fast, by being free of avarice. Let the feet fast, by ceasing to run after sin. Let the eyes fast, by disciplining them not to glare at that which is sinful... Let the ear fast... by not listening to evil talk and gossip... Let the mouth fast from the foul words and unjust criticism. For what good is it if we abstain from birds and fishes, but bite and devour our brothers?




St. John Chrysostom
"The Proof of Fasting"

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Judge Not

One pious starets, noticing that his brother had committed a sin, sighed and said, "Woe is me! As he sinned today, so will I tomorrow." And the following is a story about another ascetic, Abba Moisei. A monk committed a sin. The brethren, who had assembled to decide his case, sent for Abba Moisei, but the humble starets refused to attend the council. When the rector sent for him a second time, he appeared, but in quite a striking manner. He had taken an old basket, filled it with sand and was carrying it on his back. "What does this mean?" asked the monks, catching sight of him. "See how many sins I bear behind me?" answered Moisei, pointing to the heap of sand. "I don't see them, yet I have come to pass judgment upon another." So therefore, brethren, following the example of the ascetics, upon observing others' sins, we should consider our own sins, regard our own transgressions and not judge our brother. And should we hold anything against him, let us pardon and forgive him, that our merciful Lord may forgive us also.

St. Tikhon, Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia (1901)

Friday, March 7, 2008

Holiness

Holiness is the fruit of man's efforts and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Holiness is reached by him who wears a cross and in the name of Christ wages warfare against the obstacles to holiness, to becoming akin to Christ. These obstacles are sins, sinful habits, firmly rooted in the soul. Struggle against them is the major work of a Christian, and in so far as he purifies his soul, so far will he receive of the Holy Spirit.



St. John Maximovitch

Thursday, March 6, 2008

A Guest

For as long as you are on earth, consider yourself a guest in the Household of Christ. If you are at the table, it is He who treats you. If you breathe air, it is His air you breathe. If you bathe, it is in His water you are bathing. If you are traveling, it is over His land that you are traveling. If you are amassing goods, it is His goods you are amassing. If you are squandering, it is His goods that you are squandering. If you are powerful, it is by His permission that you are strong. If you are in the company of men, you and the others are His guests. If you are out in nature, you are in His garden. If you are alone, He is present. If you set out or turn anywhere, He sees you. If you do anything, He remembers. He is the most considerate Householder by Whom you were ever hosted. Be careful then toward Him. In a good household, the guest is required to behave. These are all simple words but they convey to you a great truth. All the saints knew this truth and they governed their lives by it. That is why the Eternal Householder rewarded them with eternal life in heaven and glory on earth.



Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich
"The Prologue from Ochrid"

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Pure Heart

God loves those who have a pure heart, listens to their prayers, grants them their requests that lead to salvation, reveals Himself to them and teaches the mysteries of the Divine nature.



St. Nectarios of Pentapolis

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Work

Abba Muthues used to say, "I would rather have the man with a little work, which abideth and is constant, than him who at the beginning laboureth severely, and soon ceaseth altogether."





"The Paradise of the Fathers"

Prayer

Prayer is the constant feeling of our own spiritual poverty and infirmity....



St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"

Sunday, March 2, 2008

The Soul

The soul that really loves God and Christ, though it may do ten thousand righteousnesses, esteems itself as having wrought nothing, by reason of its insatiable aspiration after God. Though it should exhaust the body with fastings, with watchings, its attitude towards the virtues is as if it had not yet even begun to labour for them.




St. Macarius the Great
"Spiritual Homilies" (Homily 10)

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Thy Will Be Done

If you wish to correct anyone from his faults, do not think of correcting him solely by your own means: you would only do harm by your own passions, for instance, by pride and by the irritability arising from it; "but cast thy burden upon the Lord," and pray to God "Who trieth the hearts and reins," with all your heart, that He Himself may enlighten the mind and heart of that man. If He sees that your prayer breathes love, and that it really comes from the depth of your heart, He will infallibly fulfill the desire of your heart, and you yourself will soon tell, seeing the change that has taken place in him for whom you have prayed, that it is the work of "the right hand of God, the most High."




St. John of Kronstadt
"My Life in Christ"