Friday, May 19, 2017

Patristic Wisdom: Looking to the Sixth Sunday of Easter

If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever—the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. (Jn 14:15–17)

He says: I will confer the gift of the Holy Spirit, so that you may always have Him with you to teach you the truth. He speaks of another Advocate, as of another instructor, a comforter. This is a doctrine for those in dire straits, because the Spirit, through His grace, will make the afflictions inflicted on them by people lighter. And, as a consolation, through His gifts, He will enable them to easily endure their afflictions. This is what actually happened. Indeed, the more His disciples feared death before, the more they rejoiced in tribulations after the descent of the Spirit. He calls Him “Spirit of truth” since He teaches nothing but the truth, nor can He ever change to the contrary in order to teach anything different from the truth. He says “another” in relation to Himself, for while He was among them, He certainly filled the same role for them. In addition they received from the Holy Spirit the confirmation of all those things that He had taught them when He was present. Thus our Lord said, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witness in Jerusalem, in all Judea and among the Samaritans, and all nations.”

Theodore of Mopsuestia, Commentary on John

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