Author Topic: Early Church Fathers  (Read 148900 times)

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Offline Antonis

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #585 on: April 20, 2018, 04:30:50 PM »
And when those who are conducted by the angels appointed unto the souls have passed through this gate, they do not proceed on one and the same way; but the righteous, being conducted in the light toward the right, and being hymned by the angels stationed at the place, are brought to a locality full of light. And there the righteous from the beginning dwell, not ruled by necessity, but enjoying always the contemplation of the blessings which are in their view, and delighting themselves with the expectation of others ever new, and deeming those ever better than these. And that place brings no toils to them. There, there is neither fierce heat, nor cold, nor thorn; but the face of the fathers and the righteous is seen to be always smiling, as they wait for the rest and eternal revival in heaven which succeed this location. And we call it by the name Abraham’s bosom.

But the unrighteous are dragged toward the left by angels who are ministers of punishment, and they go of their own accord no longer, but are dragged by force as prisoners. And the angels appointed over them send them along, reproaching them and threatening them with an eye of terror, forcing them down into the lower parts. And when they are brought there, those appointed to that service drag them on to the confines or hell. And those who are so near hear incessantly the agitation, and feel the hot smoke. And when that vision is so near, as they see the terrible and excessively glowing spectacle of the fire, they shudder in horror at the expectation of the future judgment, (as if they were) already feeling the power of their punishment. And again, where they see the place of the fathers and the righteous, they are also punished there. For a deep and vast abyss is set there in the midst, so that neither can any of the righteous in sympathy think to pass it, nor any of the unrighteous dare to cross it.

--St. Hippolytus of Rome (d. 235), Against Plato, On the Cause of the Universe
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Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #586 on: April 20, 2018, 10:55:54 PM »
We acknowledge that when he created human nature, which is composed of immaterial soul and earthly body, he created it without sin--but it was not immutable--as Adam was in Paradise before transgressing the divine commandment; ...but having made it (endowed) with the authority of (free) will, he made it having the ability to perfect virtue through care and labor, with his help and grace; but it was not capable of sin--this (occurring) not as a result of nature forcing it, but whenever the will was negligent.

-- St. John II of Jerusalem (d. 417), Source

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #587 on: April 21, 2018, 12:17:11 PM »
"And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit" (Acts 2:2-4)

They partook not of burning but of saving fire, which consumes the thorns of sins but renders the soul radiant. This fire will come to you too, to strip away and destroy your thorn-like sins, and to make the precious possession of your souls shine yet more brightly; and He will give you grace, for He gave it then to the Apostles. He sat upon them in the form of fiery tongues, to crown them with new and spiritual diadems (by the fiery tongues on their heads). A flaming sword of old barred the gates of paradise; a fiery tongue, bringing salvation, restored the grace.

-- St. Cyril of Jerusalem (d. 386), Source

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #588 on: April 22, 2018, 03:49:29 PM »
So in this house of the world, when you look upon the heaven and the earth, its providence, its ordering, its law, believe that there is a Lord and Parent of the universe far more glorious than the stars themselves, and the parts of the whole world... He orders everything, whatever it is, by a word; arranges it by His wisdom; perfects it by His power. He can neither be seen--He is brighter than light; nor can be grasped--He is purer than touch; nor estimated; He is greater than all perceptions; infinite, immense, and how great is known to Himself alone. But our heart is too limited to understand Him, and therefore we are then worthily estimating Him when we say that He is beyond estimation. I will speak out in what manner I feel. He who thinks that he knows the magnitude of God, is diminishing it; he who desires not to lessen it, knows it not.

-- Marcus Minucius Felix (3rd century), Octavius 18

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #589 on: April 24, 2018, 05:36:11 PM »
I know that, just as the sheep come gladly when their own shepherd calls them, so in matters of religion men attend most gladly to the admonitions of a teacher who speaks their own language: and therefore, my very dear Apronianus, when that pious lady who is my daughter but now your sister in Christ, had laid her commands on me to compose for her a treatise of such a nature that its understanding should not require any great effort, I translated into Latin in a very open and plain style the work of Xystus, who is said to be the same man who at Rome is called Sixtus, and who gained the glory of being both bishop and martyr. I think that, when she reads this, she will find it expressed with such brevity that a vast meaning is unfolded in each several line, with such power that a sentence only a line long would suffice for a whole life's training, and yet with such simplicity that one who looked over the shoulder of a girl as she read it might question whether I were not quite weak in intellect. And the whole work is so concise that it would be possible for her never to let go of it. The entire book would hardly be bigger than the finger ring of one of our ancestors. And indeed it seems but right that one who has learnt through the word of God to count as dross the ornaments of the world should now receive at my hands by way of ornament a necklace of the word and of wisdom. For the present let this little book serve for a ring and be kept constantly in the hands: but it will not be long before it will penetrate into the treasure house and be wholly laid up in the heart, and bring forth from its innermost chamber the germs of instruction and of a participation in all good works.

-- Rufinus of Aquileia (d. 411), Source

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #590 on: April 26, 2018, 03:20:18 AM »
O how happy shall be that departure of ours, when Christ shall receive us into his own abode after we have been purged from the stains of sin through the experience of a better life! Martyrs and prophets will meet with us, apostles will join themselves to us, angels will be glad, archangels will rejoice, and Satan, being conquered, will look pale, though still retaining his cruel countenance, inasmuch as he will lose all advantage from our sins which he had secured for himself in us. He will see glory granted us through mercy, and merits honored by means of glory. We shall triumph over our conquered foe.

-- (Pseudo?)Sulpicius Severus (5th century), Letter 1.3

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #591 on: April 26, 2018, 03:32:54 PM »
Wherefore our Lord Jesus Christ permitted the first of the apostles, whose confession He had fixed as a kind of groundwork and foundation of the Church, to waver to and fro, and to deny Him, and then raised Him up again. And thus He gave us two lessons: not to be confident in our own strength, and to strengthen the unstable. Reach out, therefore, I beseech you, a hand to them that are fallen, "draw them out of the horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set their feet upon a rock," and "put a new song into their mouth, even praise unto our God," that their example of life may become an example of salvation, that "many shall see it and fear and shall trust in the Lord" (Ps. 40:2-3). Let them be prevented from participating in the holy mysteries, but let them not be kept from the prayer of the catechumens, nor from hearing the divine Scriptures and the exhortation of teachers, and let them be prohibited from partaking of the sacred mysteries, not till death, but during a given time, till they recognise their ailment, covet health, and are properly contrite for having abandoned their true Prince and deserted to a tyrant, and for having left their benefactor and gone over to their foe.

-- Theodoret of Cyrus (d. 458), Letter 77

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #592 on: April 27, 2018, 05:43:58 PM »
Who seeing that the human race was plunged in the depth of misery, that You might rescue man, Yourself also became man: nor were You willing only to be born with a body, but You became flesh, which endured to be born and to die. You undergo funeral obsequies, Yourself the author of life and framer of the world, You enter the path of death, in giving the aid of salvation. The gloomy chains of the infernal law yielded, and chaos feared to be pressed by the presence of the light. Darkness perishes, put to flight by the brightness of Christ; the thick pall of eternal night falls. But restore the promised pledge, I pray You, O power benign! The third day has returned; arise, my buried One; it is not becoming that Your limbs should lie in the lowly sepulchre, nor that worthless stones should press that which is the ransom of the world. It is unworthy that a stone should shut in with a confining rock, and cover Him in whose fist all things are enclosed. Take away the linen clothes, I pray; leave the napkins in the tomb: You are sufficient for us, and without You there is nothing. Release the chained shades of the infernal prison, and recall to the upper regions whatever sinks to the lowest depths. Give back Your face, that the world may see the light; give back the day which flees from us at Your death.

But returning, O holy conqueror! You altogether filled the heaven! Tartarus lies depressed, nor retains its rights. The ruler of the lower regions, insatiably opening his hollow jaws, who has always been a spoiler, becomes a prey to You. You rescue an innumerable people from the prison of death, and they follow in freedom to the place whither their leader approaches. The fierce monster in alarm vomits forth the multitude whom he had swallowed up, and the Lamb withdraws the sheep from the jaw of the wolf. Hence re-seeking the tomb from the lower regions, having resumed Your flesh, as a warrior You carry back ample trophies to the heavens. Those whom chaos held in punishment he has now restored; and those whom death might seek, a new life holds. Oh, sacred King, behold a great part of Your triumph shines forth, when the sacred laver blesses pure souls! A host, clad in white, come forth from the bright waves, and cleanse their old fault in a new stream. The white garment also designates bright souls, and the shepherd has enjoyments from the snow-white flock.

-- St. Venantius Fortunatus (d. 609), Source

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #593 on: May 07, 2018, 03:39:25 PM »
When the Lord invites the blest to their inheritance in the kingdom of heaven, He does not include a pilgrimage to Jerusalem among their good deeds; when He announces the Beatitudes, He does not name among them that sort of devotion... Therefore, my beloved friend, counsel the brethren to be absent from the body to go to our Lord, rather than to be absent from Cappadocia to go to Palestine

-- St. Gregory of Nyssa, On Pilgrimages

Offline Alpha60

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #594 on: June 24, 2018, 11:45:36 AM »
Disabling this sect in its turn with the mighty hand of the truth— like a stinging insect deprived of teeth—let us go on to the rest, calling on the God of all, as we always do, to be our guide and our defender against horrors, and to be the help of our judgment as he is the giver of our wisdom. May I thus learn the truth from him and be able to expose the nonsense of the others and, by the speech of the truth, make the medicinal antidote for them from many fragrant herbs. May it be given ungrudgingly: for healing, to those who have already contracted the disease; as a treatment, to whose who are coming down with it; as a preven- tative, to those who are about to learn something they did not know; and to myself, for God’s salvation and reward.

- St. Epiphanius of Salamis, on the Encratites, from Volume II of the Panarion (literally, the Medicine Chest).

 Here we see St. Epiphanius as a loving saint and not as the vindictive person some people think of him as.  The Encratites btw were a growing heresy in the fourth century apparently derived from the Tatianists; they celebrated the mysteries with water instead of wine and demanded complete celibacy, and they made use of the apocryphal Acts of Andrew, of Thomas and of John, which have come down to us more or less intact, and which exude the unpleasant aroma of Gnosticism.
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Offline Orthodox_Slav

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #595 on: June 24, 2018, 12:21:37 PM »
 ???
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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #596 on: August 06, 2018, 03:06:43 PM »
Let us be assured that to do no wrong is really superhuman, and belongs to God alone.  I say nothing about the Angels, that we may give no room for wrong feelings, nor opportunity for harmful altercations.  Our unhealed condition arises from our evil and unsubdued nature, and from the exercise of its powers.  Our repentance when we sin, is a human action, but an action which bespeaks a good man, belonging to that portion which is in the way of salvation.  For if even our dust contracts somewhat of wickedness, and the earthly tabernacle presseth down the upward flight of the soul, (Wisd. 9:15) which at least was created to fly upward, yet let the image be cleansed from filth, and raise aloft the flesh, its yoke-fellow, lifting it on the wings of reason; and, what is better, let us neither need this cleansing, nor have to be cleansed, by preserving our original dignity, to which we are hastening through our training here, and let us not by the bitter taste of sin be banished from the tree of life:  though it is better to turn again when we err, than to be free from correction when we stumble. For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, (Prov. 3:12) and a rebuke is a fatherly action; while every soul which is unchastised, is unhealed.  Is not then freedom from chastisement a hard thing?  But to fail to be corrected by the chastisement is still harder.  One of the prophets, speaking of Israel, whose heart was hard and uncircumcised, says, "Lord, Thou hast stricken them, but they have not grieved, Thou hast consumed them but they have refused to receive correction;" (Jer. 5:3) and again, "The people turned not to Him that smiteth them;" (Isa. 9:13) and "Why is my people slidden back by a perpetual backsliding," (Jer. 8:5) because of which it will be utterly crushed and destroyed?

It is a fearful thing, my brethren, to fall into the hands of a living God, (Heb. 10:31) and fearful is the face of the Lord against them that do evil, (Ps. 34:16) and abolishing wickedness with utter destruction. Fearful is the ear of God, listening even to the voice of Abel speaking through his silent blood.  Fearful His feet, which overtake evildoing. Fearful also His filling of the universe, so that it is impossible anywhere to escape the action of God, (Jer. 23:24) not even by flying up to heaven, or entering Hades, or by escaping to the far East, or concealing ourselves in the depths and ends of the sea. (Ps. 139:7-8) Nahum the Elkoshite was afraid before me, when he proclaimed the burden of Nineveh, God is jealous, and the Lord takes vengeance in wrath upon His adversaries, (Nah. 1:1-2) and uses such abundance of severity that no room is left for further vengeance upon the wicked.  For whenever I hear Isaiah threaten the people of Sodom and rulers of Gomorrah, (Is. 1:10) and say "Why will ye be smitten any more, adding sin to sin?" (Is. 1:5 LXX) I am almost filled with horror, and melted to tears.  It is impossible, he says, to find any blow to add to those which are past, because of your newly added sins; so completely have you run through the whole, and exhausted every form of chastisement, ever calling upon yourselves some new one by your wickedness.  There is not a wound, nor bruise, nor putrefying sore; (Is. 1:6) the plague affects the whole body and is incurable:  for it is impossible to apply a plaster, or ointment or bandages.  I pass over the rest of the threatenings, that I may not press upon you more heavily than your present plague.

Only let us recognise the purpose of the evil.  Why have the crops withered, our storehouses been emptied, the pastures of our flocks failed, the fruits of the earth been withheld, and the plains been filled with shame instead of with fatness:  why have valleys lamented and not abounded in corn, the mountains not dropped sweetness, as they shall do hereafter to the righteous, but been stript and dishonoured, and received on the contrary the curse of Gilboa? (2 Sam. 1:21) The whole earth has become as it was in the beginning, before it was adorned with its beauties.  Thou visitedst the earth, and madest it to drink (Ps. 65:9)--but the visitation has been for evil, and the draught destructive. Alas! what a spectacle!  Our prolific crops reduced to stubble, the seed we sowed is recognised by scanty remains, and our harvest, the approach of which we reckon from the number of the months, instead of from the ripening corn, scarcely bears the firstfruits for the Lord. Such is the wealth of the ungodly, such the harvest of the careless sower; as the ancient curse runs, to look for much, and bring in little, (Hag. 1:9) to sow and not reap, to plant and not press, (Deut. 28:39) ten acres of vineyard to yield one bath: (Isa. 5:10) and to hear of fertile harvests in other lands, and be ourselves pressed by famine.  Why is this, and what is the cause of the breach?  Let us not wait to be convicted by others, let us be our own examiners.  An important medicine for evil is confession, and care to avoid stumbling. I will be first to do so, as I have made my report to my people from on high, and performed the duty of a watcher. (Is. 21:6) For I did not conceal the coming of the sword that I might save my own soul (Eze. 33:3) and those of my hearers.  So will I now announce the disobedience of my people, making what is theirs my own, if I may perchance thus obtain some tenderness and relief.

One of us has oppressed the poor, and wrested from him his portion of land, and wrongly encroached upon his landmark by fraud or violence, and joined house to house, and field to field, to rob his neighbour of something, and been eager to have no neighbour, so as to dwell alone on the earth. (Isa. 5:8) Another has defiled the land with usury and interest, both gathering where he had not sowed and reaping where he had not strawed, (Matt. 25:26) farming, not the land, but the necessity of the needy.  Another has robbed God, (Mal. 3:8) the giver of all, of the firstfruits of the barnfloor and winepress, showing himself at once thankless and senseless, in neither giving thanks for what he has had, nor prudently providing, at least, for the future.  Another has had no pity on the widow and orphan, and not imparted his bread and meagre nourishment to the needy, or rather to Christ, Who is nourished in the persons of those who are nourished even in a slight degree; a man perhaps of much property unexpectedly gained, for this is the most unjust of all, who finds his many barns too narrow for him, filling some and emptying others, to build greater (Luke 12:18) ones for future crops, not knowing that he is being snatched away with hopes unrealised, to give an account of his riches and fancies, and proved to have been a bad steward of another's goods.  Another has turned aside the way of the meek, (Amos 2:7) and turned aside the just among the unjust; another has hated him that reproveth in the gates, (Isa. 29:21) and abhorred him that speaketh uprightly; (Amos 5:10) another has sacrificed to his net which catches much, (Hab. 1:16) and keeping the spoil of the poor in his house, (Isa. 3:14) has either remembered not God, or remembered Him ill--by saying "Blessed be the Lord, for we are rich," (Zech. 11:5) and wickedly supposed that he received these things from Him by Whom he will be punished.  For because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. (Eph. 5:6) Because of these things the heaven is shut, or opened for our punishment; and much more, if we do not repent, even when smitten, and draw near to Him, Who approaches us through the powers of nature.

-- St. Gregory the Theologian (d. 190), Oration 16.15-18

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #597 on: August 08, 2018, 05:59:51 PM »
You see what God requires of you, that you remember that grace which you have received, and boast not as though you had not received it. You see by how complete a promise of remission He draws you to confession. Take heed, lest by resisting the commandments of God you fall into the offense of the Jews, to whom the Lord Jesus said: We piped to you and you danced not; we wailed and you wept not. (Luke 7:32) The words are ordinary words, but the mystery is not ordinary. And so one must be on one's guard, lest, deceived by any common interpretation of this saying, one should suppose that the movements of wanton dances and the madness of the stage were commended; for these are full of evil in youthful age. But the dancing is commended which David practised before the ark of God. For everything is seemly which is done for religion, so that we need be ashamed of no service which tends to the worship and honouring of Christ.

Dancing, then, which is an accompaniment of pleasures and luxury, is not spoken of, but spiritually such as that wherewith one raises the eager body, and suffers not the limbs to lie slothfully on the ground, nor to grow stiff in their accustomed tracks. Paul danced spiritually, when for us he stretched forward, and forgetting the things which were behind, and aiming at those which were before, he pressed on to the prize of Christ. (Phil. 2:13-14) And you, too, when you come to baptism, are warned to raise the hands, and to cause your feet wherewith you ascend to things eternal to be swifter. This dancing accompanies faith, and is the companion of grace.

This, then, is the mystery. We piped to you, singing in truth the song of the New Testament, and you danced not. That is, did not raise your souls to the spiritual grace. We wailed, and you wept not. That is, you did not repent. And therefore was the Jewish people forsaken, because it did not repent, and rejected grace. Repentance came by John, grace by Christ. He, as the Lord, gives the one; the other is proclaimed, as it were, by the servant. The Church, then, keeps both that it may both attain to grace and not cast away repentance, for grace is the gift of One Who confers it; repentance is the remedy of the sinner.

-- St. Ambrose of Milan (d. 397), Concerning Repentance 2.41-44

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #598 on: August 09, 2018, 02:41:20 PM »
"For God is love." (1 Jn. 4:8) What more could be said, brethren? If nothing were said in praise of love throughout the pages of this epistle, if nothing whatever throughout the other pages of the Scriptures, and this one only thing were all we were told by the voice of the Spirit of God, "For Love is God"; nothing more ought we to require. Now see that to act against love is to act against God. Let no man say, "I sin against man when I do not love my brother, (mark it!) and sin against man is a thing to be taken easily; only let me not sin against God." How do you not sin against God, when you sin against love? "Love is God." Do we say this? If we said, Love is God, haply some one of you might be offended and say, What has he said? What meant he to say, that Love is God? God gave love, as a gift God bestowed love. Love is of God: Love IS God. Look, here have ye, brethren, the Scriptures of God: this epistle is canonical; throughout all nations it is recited, it is held by the authority of the whole earth, it has edified the whole earth. You are here told by the Spirit of God, Love is God. Now if you dare, go against God, and refuse to love your brother!

-- St. Augustine of Hippo (d. 430), Homilies on the First Epistle of John 7.4

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #599 on: August 10, 2018, 10:05:41 PM »
"And your labor of love." (1 Thes. 1:3) Why? What labor is it to love? Merely to love is no labor at all. But to love genuinely is great labor. For tell me, when a thousand things are stirred up that would draw us from love, and we hold out against them all, is it not labor? For what did not these men suffer, that they might not revolt from their love? Did not they that warred against the Preaching go to Paul's host, and not having found him, drag Jason before the rulers of the city? (Acts 17:5-6) Tell me, is this a slight labor, when the seed had not yet taken root, to endure so great a storm, so many trials? And they demanded security of him. And having given security, he says, Jason sent away Paul. Is this a small thing, tell me? Did not Jason expose himself to danger for him? And this he calls a labor of love, because they were thus bound to him.

-- St. John Chrysostom (d. 407), Homily 1 on First Thessalonians

Offline WPM

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #600 on: August 11, 2018, 09:38:46 AM »
I think we're purified by the fire
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Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #601 on: August 11, 2018, 05:47:29 PM »
David in prophecy hid the spirit under the letter; children, opening their treasures, brought forth riches upon their tongues, and, in language full of grace, invited clearly all men to enjoy them. Therefore let us with them draw forth the unfading riches. In our bosoms insatiate, and in treasure-houses which cannot be filled, let us lay up the divine gifts. Let us exclaim without ceasing, "Blessed is He that comes in the name of the Lord!"

-- St. Methodius of Olympus (d. 311), Oration on the Psalms

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #602 on: August 11, 2018, 05:48:39 PM »
I think we're purified by the fire

Indeed, sometimes you just want a break from the furnace though, ya know? :)

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #603 on: August 14, 2018, 02:47:08 PM »
But though He is Word, He is not, as we said, after the likeness of human words, composed of syllables; but He is the unchanging Image of His own Father. For men, composed of parts and made out of nothing, have their discourse composite and divisible. But God possesses true existence and is not composite, wherefore His Word also has true Existence and is not composite, but is the one and only-begotten God , Who proceeds in His goodness from the Father as from a good Fountain, and orders all things and holds them together. But the reason why the Word, the Word of God, has united Himself with created things is truly wonderful, and teaches us that the present order of things is none otherwise than is fitting. For the nature of created things, inasmuch as it is brought into being out of nothing, is of a fleeting sort, and weak and mortal, if composed of itself only. But the God of all is good and exceeding noble by nature, — and therefore is kind. For one that is good can grudge nothing : for which reason he does not grudge even existence, but desires all to exist, as objects for His loving-kindness.

-- St. Athanasius (d. 373), Against the Heathen 41.1-2

Offline Asteriktos

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #604 on: August 14, 2018, 06:48:25 PM »
Ye have applauded what I have spoken. But still shew me your applause too by deeds. Else what is the advantage of our meeting here? Suppose a child were to go to school every day, yet if he learnt nothing the more for it, would the excuse satisfy us that he every day went there? Should we not esteem it the greatest fault, that going there daily, he did it to no purpose. Let us consider this with ourselves, and let us say to ourselves, For so long a time have we met together at church, having the benefit of a most solemn Communion, which has in it much profit; and should we return back again just as we came, with none of our defects corrected, of what advantage is our coming here?

-- St. John Chrysostom (d. 407), Homilies on the Statues 5.21

Offline WPM

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #605 on: August 14, 2018, 11:32:27 PM »
Yes the Church Fathers.
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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #606 on: August 15, 2018, 12:28:58 PM »
Ambrose who supplied Origen, true man of adamant and of brass, with money, materials and amanuenses to bring out his countless books — Ambrose, in a letter to his friend from Athens, states that they never took a meal together without something being read, and never went to bed till some portion of Scripture had been brought home to them by a brother's voice. Night and day, in fact, were so ordered that prayer only gave place to reading and reading to prayer. Have we, brute beasts that we are, ever done the like? Why, we yawn if we read for over an hour; we rub our foreheads and vainly try to suppress our languor. And then, after this great feat, we plunge for relief into worldly business once more.

-- St. Jerome (d. 420), Letter 43

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #607 on: August 16, 2018, 09:22:41 PM »
And immediately he was outside paradise and outside that blessed way of life, becoming evil not from necessity but from thoughtlessness. Because of this he also sinned through wicked free choice, and he died through the sin. For the wages of sin is death (Rom. 6:23). For to the extent that he withdrew from life, he likewise drew near to death. For God is life, and privation of life is death. Therefore Adam prepared death for himself through his withdrawal from God, in accord with what is written, Behold, those who remove themselves from you are destroyed (Ps. 72:27 LXX). Thus God did not create death, but we brought it upon ourselves by a wicked intention.

-- St. Basil the Great (d. 379), Source

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #608 on: August 17, 2018, 02:36:01 PM »
By virtue of this course he becomes God, receiving his 'being God' from God, having deliberately added to the natural goodness of the image the likeness through the virtues--through the natural ascent to and conformity with his own beginning. For this point on there is also fulfilled in him the apostolic word which says, 'for in him we live and move and have our being' (Acts 17:28). For he 'comes to be in God' through diligence, having preserved uncorrupt the logos pre-existing in God of being. And being activated through the virtues he 'moves in God' according to the logos pre-existing in God of well-being. And he 'lives in God' according to the logos pre-existing in God of eternal being.

-- St. Maximus the Confessor (d. 662), Source

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #609 on: August 18, 2018, 03:56:47 PM »
But for one who is a man to comb himself and shave himself with a razor, for the sake of fine effect, to arrange his hair at the looking-glass, to shave his cheeks, pluck hairs out of them, and smooth them, how womanly! And, in truth, unless you saw them naked, you would suppose them to be women. For although not allowed to wear gold, yet out of effeminate desire they enwreath their latches and fringes with leaves of gold; or, getting certain spherical figures of the same metal made, they fasten them to their ankles, and hang them from their necks. This is a device of enervated men, who are dragged to the women's apartments, amphibious and lecherous beasts. For this is a meretricious and impious form of snare. For God wished women to be smooth, and rejoice in their locks alone growing spontaneously, as a horse in his mane; but has adorned man, like the lions, with a beard, and endowed him, as an attribute of manhood, with shaggy breasts — a sign this of strength and rule.

So also cocks, which fight in defense of the hens, he has decked with combs, as it were helmets; and so high a value does God set on these locks, that He orders them to make their appearance on men simultaneously with discretion, and delighted with a venerable look, has honoured gravity of countenance with grey hairs. But wisdom, and discriminating judgments that are hoary with wisdom, attain maturity with time, and by the vigour of long experience give strength to old age, producing grey hairs, the admirable flower of venerable wisdom, conciliating confidence. This, then, the mark of the man, the beard, by which he is seen to be a man, is older than Eve, and is the token of the superior nature. In this God deemed it right that he should excel, and dispersed hair over man's whole body. Whatever smoothness and softness was in him He abstracted from his side when He formed the woman Eve, physically receptive, his partner in parentage, his help in household management, while he (for he had parted with all smoothness) remained a man, and shows himself man. And to him has been assigned action, as to her suffering; for what is shaggy is drier and warmer than what is smooth. Wherefore males have both more hair and more heat than females, animals that are entire than the emasculated, perfect than imperfect. It is therefore impious to desecrate the symbol of manhood, hairiness. But the embellishment of smoothing (for I am warned by the Word), if it is to attract men, is the act of an effeminate person, — if to attract women, is the act of an adulterer; and both must be driven as far as possible from our society.

-- Clement of Alexandria (d. 215), Instructor 3.3

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #610 on: August 18, 2018, 03:59:46 PM »

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Re: Early Church Fathers
« Reply #611 on: August 18, 2018, 07:21:55 PM »
Axios, axios, axios!