Friday, December 2, 2016

Patristic Wisdom: Looking to Sunday

Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.  (2 Thess 2:16-17)

See how by the method of prayer he stirs up their mind, giving them the unspeakable care of God for pledges and signs.  “Comfort your heart,” he says, “in every good work and word,” that is, through every good work and word.  For this is the comfort of Christians, to do something good and pleasing to God.  See how he brings down their spirit.  “Which gave us comfort,” he says, “and good hope through grace.”  At the same time he makes them also full of good hopes with respect to future things.  For if He has given so many things by grace, much more things future.  I indeed, he says, have spoken, but the whole is of God.  “Establish”; confirm you, that you be not shaken, nor turned aside.  For this is both His work and ours, so that it is in the way both of doctrines, and of actions.  For this is comfort, to be established.  For when anyone is not turned aside, he bears all things, whatever may happen to him, with much long-suffering; whereas if his mind be shaken, he will no longer perform any good or noble action, but like one whose hands are paralyzed, so also his soul is shaken, when it is not fully persuaded that it is advancing to some good end.

John Chrysostom, Homilies on 2 Thessalonians

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