My beloved brothers and sisters in Christ God,
CHRIST IS IN OUR MIDST! HE WAS, IS, AND EVER SHALL BE.
“CHRIST THE POWER OF GOD, AND THE WISDOM OF GOD” (1 Corinthians 2:7).
“Now to the King Eternal, Immortal, invisible,
TO GOD WHO ALONE IS WISE, be honor and
glory forever and ever. Anen” (1 Timothy:17).
The Lord said: “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does
them, I will liken him TO A WISE MAN who built his house on the rock, and
the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on the
house, AND IT DID NOT FALL, FOR IT WAS FOUNDED ON THE ROCK. But
everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, AND DOES NOT DO THEM, WILL
BE LIKE A FOOLISH MAN WHO BUILT HIS HOUSE ON THE SAND: and the
rain descended, the floods came, and the wind blew and beat on the house;
AND IT FELL. AND GREAT WAS ITS FALL” (Matthew 7:24-27).
“However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not wisdom
of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. But
we speak THE WISDOM OF GOD IN A MYSTERY, THE HIDDEN WISDOM
WHICH GOD ORDAINED BEFORE THE AGES FOR OUR GLORY, which none
of the rulers of this age knew; FOR HAD THEY KNOWN, THEY WOULD NOT
HAVE CRUCIFIED THE LORD OF GLORY” (1 Corinthians 2: 6-8).
“Where is the wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the disputer of this age?
Has not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For since, in the wisdom
of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through
the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. For
Jews request a sign, and Greeks see after wisdom; but we preach Christ
crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness, but
those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, CHRIST THE POWER OF GOD
AND THE WISDOM OF GOD. Because the foolishness of God, is wiser than men,
and the weakness of God is stronger than men… God has chosen the foolish
things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things
of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty…But of Him you are in
Christ Jesus, Who became for us WISDOM FROM GOD–AND RIGHTEOUS AND
SANCTIFICATION AND REDEMPTION” (1 Corinthians 1:20-30).
Our holy Father among the Saints, Saint Theophylactos states: “No virtue can be accomplished without God, which is why Jesus said, ‘I will liken him unto a wise man.’ The ROCK IS CHRIST and the house IS THE SOUL. Therefore nothing will shake the man who builds his soul upon the doing of
Christ’s commandments. Neither the rain, WHICH IS THE DEVIL who fell from heaven, nor the rivers, which ARE MEAN AND HARMFUL MEN filled to overflowing by such a rain, nor the winds, WHICH ARE EVIL SPIRITS, nor in short, CAN ANY TEMPTATION CAST DOWN SUCH A MAN.”
We, Orthodox Christians, believe that our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ is truly the POWER and WISDOM OF GOD the Father–the BRIGHTNESS of the Father’s Glory (Hebrews 1:3), the SUBSTANTIAL and PERFECT IMAGE OF THE INVISIBLE GOD–WHERE He is, THE UNCREATED AND SAVING GRACE OF GOD. His Cross RESTORES MAN TO IMMORTALITY and stirs up the desire for the things of the Kingdom. “Philip said to Him, ‘Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? HE WHO HAS SEEN ME HAS SEEN THE FATHER; SO HOW CAN YOU SAY, SHOW US THE FATHER? DO YOU NOT BELIEVE THAT I AM IN THE FATHER AND THE FATHER IN ME? The words that I speak to you I do not speak of My own authority; but the Father WHO DWELLS IN ME DOES THE WORKS” (John 14:8-10). Indeed, He and the Father ARE ONE IN ESSENCE and UNDIVIDED. This is exactly what we confess when we recite the Creed: “And in One Lord Jesus Christ, the Only-Begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all Ages. Light of Light, True God of True God, begotten not made, One in essence with the Father, through Whom all things were made…”.
Man is devoid of any wisdom. The wise thing for him is to seek the only true wisdom, the wisdom of God. It is the wisdom of God that saves. The Orthodox priest declares to the faithful just before the reading of the Gospel, “Wisdom, let stand. Let us hear the Holy Gospel. Peace be to all.” In our Holy Orthodox Tradition, it is the practice that before the reading of the Gospel begins, all arise and listen to it while standing. This is a practice from antiquity and indicates the respect which we have for the Word of Lord. Also, it may be understood as an expression of our readiness to adhere to whatever we hear, that is, to walk in the way of the Lord. God’s wisdom is revealed in the Holy Scripture, both in the Old and New Testaments.
Holy Wisdom, also called Divine Wisdom (Gk. Αγία Σοφία) is the belief that perfect Wisdom is to be found in God alone. In the Mystical Theology of the Orthodox Church WISDOM (Σοφία) is understood as the Divine Logos/Word Who became incarnate as Jesus Christ. Also, in Our Holy Tradition, humility is the highest wisdom and is to be sought more than any other virtue. It is humility that cultivates not only the Holy Wisdom, but humility (in contrast to knowledge) is the defining quality that grants people salvation and entrance into His Kingdom.
Metropolitan Hierotheos writes, that in regards to the prayer of Solomon, that the wisdom he sought was not some abstract wisdom, but to stand beside the Throne of God (“give me the wisdom that sits by Thy Throne, and do not neglect me from among Thy servants”). The salvation of humanity was achieved through it (“For so the ways of them which lived on the earth were reformed, and men were taught the things that are pleasing unto Thee, and weree saved through wisdom” (Wisdom of Solomon 9:18).
There are many who are seeking spirituality but who are confused and do not know where to find it. Yet, our Holy Orthodox Church, as indicated by the holy Apostle Paul, divine wisdom is given to the spiritual person. The wise man, who possesses the Spirit of God is one who is obedient to His Logos/Word, the incarnate Son of God. It is He who invites those who truly believe and says “to them all, ‘If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me” (Luke 9:23). The Christian is none other than a willing follower of Jesus Christ. And to be even more clear, in the Gospel of Saint Matthew 10:38 we read: “And he that taketh NOT the cross, and followeth after Me, is NOT wothy of Me.” Saint Theopylact explains: “Whoever, He says, does NOT renounce this present life and give himself over to shameful death, for this is what the cross signified to the ancients, is NOT worthy of Me. But since there are many who are crucified, such as robbers, He added, “and followeth after Me,” that is, LIVE ACCORDING TO My laws.” Christianity is NOT a worldly and a secular life but the divine life in Christ Jesus. There are no compromises to the Faith, commandments, virtue, dignity, piety, worship, sacraments, Holy Scripture, dogma, morality, life, relationships, virginity, puriiy, and understanding of the Divine Teachings of Christ Himself just to simply appease the unbelievers and heretics in the world. Those outside the Orthodox Chrstian Church do NOT have the authority to attempt to pollute Christianity with distorted and unholy and heretical idealogies that seek the destruction of the Christian Church. And it is blasphemy to attempt to distort,mutate, adulterate the image of Christ. Look at the so called “Christian denominations”, cults, sects, etc., who have adopted these political, secular, and immoral ideologies and the tragic consequnces. Truly, the people are totally deceived, spiritually confused, disillusioned traumatized, and scandalized. Many of their adherents have left them in terror. The True Church, the One, Holy, Catholi, and Apostolic Church IS the Orthodox Church, the Church of the New Testament, the Church of the Holy Apostles, the Church of the Holy Fathers, and the Church of the Seven Ecumenical Synods. The Church is ONE, “endevering to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:3). There is One Church, One God, One Doctrine, and One Baptism. The Head of the Church IS CHRIST, “from Whom the whole Body [is] joined and knit together” (Ephesians 4:14-16).
“For this reason..” Saint Paul writes to the Ephesians, “I do not cease to give thanks fro you, remembering your in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of Glory, may give you A SPIRIT OF WISDOM and of REVELATION, that the knowledge of Him, having the eyes of your hearts ENLIGHTENED, THAT YOU MAY KNOW THE HOPE TO WHICH HE HAS CALLED YOU, what are the riches OF THE GLORIOUS INHERITANCE in the Saints and what is the immeasurable greatness of His power in us WHO BELIEVE…” Amen.
“Glory Be To GOD
– Saint John Chrysostomos
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With sincere agape in His Holy Diakonia (Ministry),
The sinner and unworthy servant of God