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Sorrow

“…the concept of godly sorrow (2 Cor 7:10) is not well understood. How easy it is to settle into spiritual languor, remaining content with externals, satisfied with routine righteous acts and a limited idea of God. We either join our secular neighbors in thoughtless avoidance, or else we assume a false righteousness that does not respond to the call of Christ.” (Dynamis 7/1/2014)


“There are two kinds of regret for the wrong we have done. In…2 Corinthians 7:1-10, Paul teaches the  distinction between these two kinds of remorse:  “worldly sorrow “and “godly sorrow.”… The difference between the two kinds of grieving lies in the object of our remorse. In worldly sorrow, we feel sorry for ourselves. Often, we first blame others for the way we feel. And when that doesn’t relieve our distress, we blame ourselves for the wrong that we have done. The result of failure to rid ourselves of regret produces self-pity. Then this unhappiness with ourselves deepens our remorse for doing the wrong. On the other hand, in “godly sorrow” we feel sorry for the offense that we have committed against God. This leads us not to look to ourselves but to look to God with the desire that He would forgive us.” (Fr. Basil)


“…only “godly sorrow” over our sins can heal us. This sorrow differs markedly from what he terms “worldly sorrow.”… for “godly sorrow produces repentance” (2 Corinthians 7:10). However, we must remember that true godly sorrow is only the beginning of repentance as a life-long work… Such sorrow produces healing through God’s grace, while the yield of our “worldly sorrow” is self-satisfaction and death…Godly sorrow produces the “diligence” (vs. 11) that allows us to change. Worldly sorrow – despite our tears and regrets – does not lead to deep inner conversion. Godly sorrow clears the soul, never seeking to justify what we have done. As we labor to cleanse our thoughts, attitudes, and passions of all traces of and desires for sin, our godly sorrow produces indignation (vs. 11). As the Spirit of God illumines our sin, we perceive our offenses through God’s eyes. Indignation follows as a healthy, God-given reaction. Being offended at our sins, we naturally seek to confess our faults.” (Dynamis 9/10/2021)


“The only form of dejection we should cultivate is the sorrow which goes with repentance for sin and is accompanied by hope in God. It was of this form of dejection that the Apostle said: ‘Godly sorrow produces a saving repentance which is not to be repented of’ (2 Cor 7:10). This ‘godly sorrow’ nourishes the soul through the hope engendered by repentance, and it is mingled with joy. That is why it makes us obedient and eager for every good work: accessible, humble, gentle, forbearing and patient in enduring all the suffering or tribulation God may send us. Possession of these qualities show that a man enjoys the fruits of the Holy Spirit: love, joy, peace, long-suffering, goodness, faith, self-control (cf. Gal. 5:22).” (St John Cassian) 


“Holy sorrow is part of repentance, conversion, and virtuous action, and is the firstfruit of infinite joy. It is to be distinguished from ungodly sorrow, a sadness that leads to despair…Cain's way was characterized by his sinful passions that dominated him. One of these was extreme sorrow, made manifest in his fallen countenance. His arrogant worship was rejected, and he fell into the opposite condition of extreme sorrow. Whereas godly sorrow leads one to humility and repentance, extreme sorrow nullifies both.” (Orthodox Study Bible, Matthew 5:4, Genesis 4:6)


“Holy sorrow is part of repentance, conversion, and virtuous action, and is the firstfruit of infinite joy. It is to be distinguished from ungodly sorrow, a sadness that leads to despair (see 2 Corinthians 7:10).” (Orthodox Study Bible, Matthew 5:4)

“Cain's way was characterized by his sinful passions that dominated him. One of these was extreme sorrow, made manifest in his fallen countenance. His arrogant worship was rejected, and he fell into the opposite condition of extreme sorrow. Whereas godly sorrow leads one to humility and repentance, extreme sorrow nullifies both.” (Orthodox Study Bible, Genesis 4:6)

"One has to accept sorrow for it to be of any healing power, and that is the most difficult thing in the world...when you understand what accepted sorrow means, you will understand everything. It is the secret of life.” (Joseph Pearce, Maurice Baring)

“...grief and sorrow drive you more into God. It is just as when it gets colder outside, the temperature kicks the furnace higher through the thermostat. Similarly, the sorrow and the grief drive you into God and show you the resources you never had.” (Pastor Timothy Keller)

“My attitude as a saint to sorrow and difficulty is not to ask that they may be prevented, but to ask that I may preserve the self God created me to be through every fire of sorrow. Our Lord received Himself in the fire of sorrow, He was saved not from the hour, but out of the hour…. If you receive yourself in the fires of sorrow, God will make you nourishment for other people.” (Oswald Chambers)

“There is a useful sorrow, and a destructive sorrow. Sorrow is useful when we weep for our sins, and for our neighbor’s ignorance, and so that we may not relax our purpose to attain to true goodness, these are the real kinds of sorrow. Our enemy adds something to this. For he sends sorrow without reason, which is something called lethargy. We ought always to drive out a sadness like that with prayers and psalms." (St. Syncletike of Alexandria)

"What hurts is the fact that there is such a strong presence of evil, violence, and error in our society, and nobody wants to see it. We might let a sorrowful thought pass our minds, but it just passes without any changes.” (Father John Zeyack)

“…the concept of godly sorrow (2 Cor 7:10) is not well understood. How easy it is to settle into spiritual languor, remaining content with externals, satisfied with routine righteous acts and a limited idea of God. We either join our secular neighbors in thoughtless avoidance, or else we assume a false righteousness that does not respond to the call of Christ.” (Dynamis 7/1/2014)

“Believe me, God does not send us temptations beyond our ability to resist, except perhaps for pride, for conceit, and for complaining, by which we ourselves aggravate our sorrows. Be careful not to complain or become faint-hearted. Magnanimity and patient endurance lighten sorrows, but faint-heartedness and complaining multiply and exacerbate them." (St. Makarios the Great)

“...we know that all will work out in the end because God loves us, and we believe His providential hand is at work in our lives. We believe God knows there is plenty of sadness, sorrow, and sickness in this life, but it will not prevail, because His plan for our salvation is at work.” (Abbot Tryphon)


#StSyncletikeofAlexandria #FatherJohnZeyack #StMakariostheGreat #OrthodoxStudyBible #JosephPearce #MauriceBaring #PastorTimothyKeller #OswaldChambers #Dynamis #FrBasil #StJohnCassian

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