Author Topic: Saints which have Commanded Nature  (Read 725 times)

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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Saints which have Commanded Nature
« on: January 13, 2011, 03:40:56 PM »
I wanted to start a thread where I can tap into all of your knowledge about saints who have come to be able to command nature by the grace of God. If people can provide either Bible verse quotes or some kind of citation for particular saints, such a a portion of the life which recounts the miracle and perhaps their dates of commemoration of the Church calendar, it would be appreciated. Also, any examples of saints controlling nature from the heavens in the Church triumphant are just as welcome. I'd like to get together a personal collection of all of these events, and perhaps at some point to publish them together in a collection for the edification of Orthodox Christians, but I'm just not sure how many examples exist in our tradition.



Holy Prophet and God-Seer Moses (September 4th)

Exodus 14:21-22

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And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the LORD caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided. And the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea upon the dry ground: and the waters were a wall unto them on their right hand, and on their left.



Righteous Joshua the Son of Nun (September 1st)

Joshua 10:12-13

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Then spake Joshua to the LORD in the day when the LORD delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel, Sun, stand thou still upon Gibeon; and thou, Moon, in the valley of Ajalon. And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the people had avenged themselves upon their enemies. Is not this written in the Book of Jasher? "So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and hasted not to go down about a whole day."



St. Alban the Protomartyr of Britain (June 22nd)

From St. Bede the Venerable's Life of St. Alban in his Ecclesiastical History of the English People

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When the judge perceived that he was not to be overcome by tortures, or withdrawn from the profession of the Christian religion, he sentenced him to be beheaded. Being led to execution, he came to a river, which was divided at the place where he was to suffer with a wall and sand, and the stream was very rapid. Here he saw a multitude of persons of both sexes, and of all ages and ranks, who were doubtless assembled by a divine impulse, to attend the most blessed confessor and martyr; and had so occupied the bridge on the river, as to render it almost impossible for him and all of them to pass over it that evening. Almost every body flocking out of the city to see the execution, the judge, who remained in it, was left without any attendance.

St. Alban therefore, whose mind was filled with an ardent desire to arrive quickly at his martyrdom, approached to the stream, and, lifting up his eyes to heaven, addressed his prayer to the Almighty; when, behold, he saw the water immediately recede, and leave the bed of the river dry, for them to pass over. The executioner, who was to have beheaded him among the rest, observing this prodigy, hastened to meet him at the place of execution; and, being moved by divine inspiration, threw down the drawn sword which he carried, and prostrated himself at his feet, earnestly desiring that he might rather suffer death, with or for the martyr, than be constrained to take away the life of so holy a man. Whilst he of a persecutor became a companion in the true faith, and the rest of the executioners hesitated to take up the sword from the ground, the most venerable confessor of God ascended a hill with the throng.



St. Mary of Egypt (April 10th)

From the Great Canon of St. Andrew of Crete

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And as he was pondering thus he saw the holy woman appear and stand on the other side of the river. Zosimas got up rejoicing and glorifying and thanking God. And again the thought came to him that she could not cross the Jordan. Then he saw that she made the sign of the Cross over the waters of the Jordan (and the night was a moonlight one, as he related afterwards) and then she at once stepped on to the waters and began walking across the surface towards him. And when he wanted to prostrate himself, she cried to him while still walking on the water:

"What are you doing, Abba, you are a priest and carrying the divine Gifts!"

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #1 on: January 13, 2011, 03:49:06 PM »

St. Herman of Alaska

When there was a tsunami on the Island, St. Herman took an icon of the Theotokos, placed it on the beach and assured the people that the water would not rise beyond the place where the icon was, and it did not.
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Offline podkarpatska

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #2 on: January 13, 2011, 06:03:09 PM »
St. Nicholas the Wonderworker. The Bishop of Patara decided to go on pilgrimage to the holy places at Jerusalem, and entrusted the guidance of his flock to St Nicholas, who fulfilled this obedience carefully and with love. When the bishop returned, Nicholas asked his blessing for a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Along the way the saint predicted a storm would arise and threaten the ship. St Nicholas saw the devil get on the ship, intending to sink it and kill all the passengers. At the entreaty of the despairing pilgrims, he calmed the waves of the sea by his prayers. Through his prayer a certain sailor of the ship, who had fallen from the mast and was mortally injured was also restored to health. http://ocafs.oca.org/FeastSaintsLife.asp?FSID=103484

Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2011, 12:49:38 AM »
Good replies so far! Are there more examples of this in the Holy Scriptures that I am not thinking of?

Offline Ionnis

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2011, 01:12:27 AM »
Saint Elias [Elijah] in First Kings said to Ahab, “As the LORD God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, except at my word.”  This came true.  A drought came upon the people.  When the people repented of their sin, St. Elias interceded on their behalf and rain came.
"If you cannot find Christ in the beggar at the church door, you will not find Him in the chalice.”  -The Divine John Chrysostom

“Till we can become divine, we must be content to be human, lest in our hurry for change we sink to something lower.” -Anthony Trollope

Offline Ionnis

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2011, 01:13:12 AM »
Saint Elias [Elijah] in First Kings said to Ahab, “As the LORD God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, except at my word.”  This came true.  A drought came upon the people.  When the people repented of their sin, St. Elias interceded on their behalf and rain came.
In times of drought, Orthodox Christians call upon St. Elias to intercede.



Fixed quote tags... -PtA
« Last Edit: January 14, 2011, 01:21:32 AM by PeterTheAleut »
"If you cannot find Christ in the beggar at the church door, you will not find Him in the chalice.”  -The Divine John Chrysostom

“Till we can become divine, we must be content to be human, lest in our hurry for change we sink to something lower.” -Anthony Trollope

Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2011, 02:16:14 AM »
Alveus Lacuna,

Could you Specify what exactly you are after? I ask because, as I thought about people to post and what qualified for what you were after, I didn't wonder if all miracles were a commanding of nature. For instance, nature says that dead men don't come back alive, so resurrecting someone is having a supernatural command of nature. But I don't think this is what you are after. I'm assuming you're only talking about parting waters and stopping the sun and such. But where is the line to be drawn? Anyway, here are a few to start, which may or may not be relevant...

Moses - Ex. 4-10; Ex. 15:25; Ex. 17:6/Num. 20:11

Joshua - Jos. 3; Jos. 6

Samuel - 1 Sam. 12:18

Elisha - 2 Kings 2:17; 2 Kings 3:15-20

Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2011, 02:48:16 AM »
The 1 Samuel verse was great! I suppose perhaps I should say "commanded the elements" or something like that. Think earth, water, fire and air manipulation. Raising the dead is certainly amazing, but not exactly what I had in mind.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2011, 02:48:36 AM by Alveus Lacuna »

Offline Alpo

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2011, 06:41:48 AM »
There's also Holy Prophet Elisha.



Being a non-English speaker I don't know what are the differences between all too numerous English Bibles but here's one example of his miracle from him from Douay-Rheims. There's several more if you continue reading forward.

Quote from: Douay-Rheims, 4. Kings 2: 13-15
And he took up the mantle of Elias, that fell from him: and going back, he stood upon the bank of the Jordan, And he struck the waters with the mantle of Elias, that had fallen from him, and they were not divided. And he said: Where is now the God of Elias? And he struck the waters, and they were divided, hither and thither, and Eliseus passed over. And the sons of the prophets at Jericho, who were over against him, seeing it said: The spirit of Elias hath rested upon Eliseus. And coming to meet him, they worshipped him, falling to the ground

« Last Edit: January 14, 2011, 06:43:08 AM by Alpo »
The user should probably be sleeping by now.

Offline Antonis

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Re: Saints which have Commanded Nature
« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2011, 03:38:25 PM »

St. Theodora of Vasta

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St Theodora lived during the tenth century on the Peloponnesus in Greece, near the border between the regions of Messenia and Arcadia in a town called Vasta. When the area was raided by bandits, Theodora was determined to help defend her village, but as a woman it was unthinkable to do so. Not to be deterred, Theodora secretly disguised herself as a male soldier in order to join the defense. Unfortunately, Theodora did not survive, and as she lay dying she uttered the following words:

"Let my body become a church, my hair a forest of trees, and my blood a spring to water them."

The villagers, moved by her bravery and her untimely demise, built a church at the site of her grave. A local river re-routed to pass directly under the church. Eventually, trees sprouted from the roof of the church, the roots of which are not visible under the roof and neither inside or outside the church.

This small chapel supports 17 large trees that emerge from the roof and the walls of the chapel. Each tree weighs close to a tonne and stands over 20 metres high. For hundreds of years, the roots have not been visible. Locals could not find a scientific explanation for this phenomenon. Many researchers have spent years studying this structure, even X-raying the walls, but have no explanation for the roots of the trees. In 2003, a geophysical report was presented at the 4th Symposium of Archaeometry in Greece. The results of this investigation proved that the roots followed the gaps existing inside the stone wall of the chapel creating repulsion stresses between the stones and thus reaching the ground.

The entire building is under considerable pressure due to the large load of the trees and it is a miracle that after hundreds of years, the chapel survives with no damage to the structure or to the trees. A spring comes out from underneath the chapel and irrigates the trees.  

Link provided by poster: http://orthodoxwiki.org/Theodora_of_Vasta -PtA
« Last Edit: January 23, 2011, 01:57:15 AM by PeterTheAleut »
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