How can we be saved?
Orthodox Christians must steadfastly remain in Orthodoxy, preserve oneness of mind with one another and unhypocritical love, guard purity of soul and body, reject evil and unclean intentions, temperately partake of food and drink, and above all adorn themselves with humility, not neglect hospitality, refrain from conflicts and not give honor and glory in anything to earthly life, but instead await a reward from God: the enjoyment of heavenly goods.
(St. Sergius of Radonezh, Life, 32)
If you want to attain salvation, learn and keep in your heart all that the holy Church teaches and, receiving heavenly power from the mysteries of the Church, walk the path of Christ’s commandments, under the direction of lawful pastors, and you will undoubtedly attain the Heavenly Kingdom and be saved. All of this is naturally necessary in the matter of salvation, necessary in it entirety and for all. Whoever rejects or neglects any part of it has no salvation.
(St. Theophan the Recluse, Five Teachings on the Path to Salvation, 3)
In the spiritual life we can do nothing worthy without repentance, but the Lord has much mercy on us because of our intentions. He who compels himself and holds on to repentance until the end, even if he sins is saved because he compelled himself, for the Lord promised this in the Gospel.
(St. Mark the Ascetic, Homilies, 3)
If you become rich, consider whether or not you could worthily bear poverty.If you are happy, imagine how you could worthily meet unhappiness.When people praise you, think how you might worthily bear insult. And, all your life, think how you might worthily meet death.
(St. Nicholas of Serbia, Thoughts on Good and Evil)
So, being the portion of the Holy God, begin to do all that pertains to holiness, running away from evil words, unclean and shameful relations, drunkenness, passions and innovations, base lusts, defiled adulteries and overweening pride. For it is said: “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (I Pet. 5:5). So, let us unite ourselves to them to whom grace has been given by God. Let us put on oneness of mind, let us be humble, temperate, far from any cursing or evil speech, making ourselves righteous by deeds and not by words… Let our praise be from God, and not from ourselves. God hates those who praise themselves. Let the witness of our good deeds be given by others. (St. Clement of Rome, Corinthians, 30)
Christians, have we understood the great responsibility that we have taken on before God through baptism? Have we come to know that we must conduct ourselves as children of God, that we must align our will with the will of God, that we must remain free from sin, that we must love God with all our hearts and always patiently await union with Him? Have we thought about the fact that our heart should be so filled with love that it should overflow to our neighbor? Do we have the feeling that we must become holy and perfect, children of God and heirs of the Kingdom of Heaven? We must struggle for this, so that we may not be shown unworthy and rejected. Let none of us lose our boldness, nor neglect our duties, nor be afraid of the difficulties of spiritual struggle. For we have God as a helper, who strengthens us in the difficult path of virtue. (St. Nektarius of Aegina, The Path to Happiness, 2)
March 28, 2018
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