Friday, August 3, 2012

Gifts of Belief and Suffering

For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.

He called both believing and struggling with distinction gifts of God, not to eliminate the freedom of their will, but to bring out that free will of itself, devoid of grace, can achieve no good work: there is need of both, our willingness and divine enabling.  In other words, the grace of the Spirit does not suffice for those lacking the will, nor in turn can willingness deprived of [grace] succeed in amassing the riches of virtue.

Theodoret of Cyrus, "The Letter to the Philippians" on Philippians 1:29-30

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