Latest Thoughts

Recent Blogs

Mercy

“The word mercy in English is the translation of the Greek word eleos. This word has the same ultimate root as the old Greek word for oil, or more precisely, olive oil; a substance which was used extensively as a soothing agent for bruises and minor wounds. The oil was poured onto the wound and gently massaged in, thus soothing, comforting and making whole the injured part. The Hebrew word which is also translated as eleos and mercy is hesed, and means steadfast love. The Greek words for 'Lord, have mercy,' are 'Kyrie, eleison’ that is to say, 'Lord, soothe me, comfort me, take away my pain, show me your steadfast love.' Thus mercy does not refer so much to justice or acquittal a very Western interpretation but to the infinite loving-kindness of God, and his compassion for his suffering children!” (Father Anthony M. Coniaris)


“Mercy is the highest art and the shield of those who practice it. It is the friend of God, standing always next to him and freely blessing whatever he wishes. It must not be despised by us. For in its purity it grants great liberty to those who respond to it in kind. It must be shown to those who have quarreled with us, as well as to those who have sinned against us, so great is its power. It breaks chains, dispels darkness, extinguishes fire, kills the worm and takes away the gnashing of teeth. By it the gates of heaven open with the greatest of ease. In short, mercy is a queen which makes men like God.” (St. John Chrysostom)


“Thus, stated simply, to have communion with God means to have a share in His Divine Life. He lives in me and I in Him. I come to know God even as I know myself. I come to love even as God loves because it is His love that dwells in me. I come to forgive as God forgives because it His mercy that dwells within me. Without such an understanding of communion, many vitally important parts of the Christian life are reduced to mere moralisms….The disease of broken communion that was so long at work in us is difficult to cure. It takes time and we must be patient with ourselves and our broken humanity – though never using this as an excuse not to seek the healing that God gives.” (Father Stephen Freeman)


“This is an age of ideology. People divide themselves according to their allegiance to sets of dogmas and doctrines that dominate their thinking and their relationships. Many define themselves by the categories of left or right, red or blue, conservative or liberal, etc. In such an age, these social, political, and cultural theories set people against each other. But the Gospel is not an ideology. It is not a set of truths, or tenets that come from the human mind. As we see in today’s reading, the Gospel is the revelation of God’s mercy, the disclosure of His mighty acts to redeem us. It is not the teaching of some principles for living well. It is the story of our salvation, the narrative how the Son of God came to earth to redeem us from sin and death, to give us eternal life and to restore the image of God in us.” (Fr. Basil)


“Saint James was right: “Faith without works is dead.” Repentance is not a matter of merely feeling sorry for our sins, but of turning away from them as we become so open to our Lord’s mercy that His holiness permeates our lives.” (Fr. Philip LeMasters)


“The Lord Himself said: “Be merciful, just as your heavenly Father also is merciful” [Luke 6: 36]. He did not say: “Fast as your heavenly Father fasts,” neither did He say: “Give away your possessions as your heavenly Father is without possessions”; but he did say: “Be merciful as your heavenly Father is merciful.” This is because this virtue—above all—emulates God and is a characteristic of Him.” (Abba Dorotheos)

“Compassion for others and sympathy for their failings will bring the heart closer to the heart of God than any form of judging…Always let mercy outweigh everything else in you.” (St. Hesychius the Presbyter, St. Isaac the Syrian)

“Since Christ is the incarnate display of the wealth of the mercies of God, it is not surprising that his life on earth was a lavish exhibit of mercies to all kinds of people. Every kind of need and pain was touched by the mercies of Jesus in his few years on earth.” (John Piper)

“Asking God for mercy means asking Him for His Kingdom, which Christ had promised to grant those who ask for it and that He will add everything else that we are in need of. That is why the faithful are contented with this supplication (Lord have mercy) for it can be applied to everything.” (St. Nicholas Cabasilas)

“The standard by which we judge is that by which we will be judged; the mercy we give will be the mercy we receive.” (Orthodox Study Bible, James 2:8-13)

“God shows Himself to be a God of love and mercy in the beginning. After Adam and Eve and are ashamed of their nakedness He clothes them (Genesis 3:21). He sends them from the Garden before they can eat of the Tree of Life and live forever in a sinful state (Genesis 3:22-23). After Cain brings his offering with the wrong heart, God seeks to move him to repentance not punish him (Genesis 4:7). Yet many, familiar with these stories, still think of God as a punishing God.” (Sacramental Living Blog)

"Again and again we sing of God’s mercy in our services. We speak of His mercy in the Jesus Prayer, our faith rests on God’s love for us. But despite this there has entered into the minds of too many people the image of God as vengeful and harsh." (Father Spyridon Baily)

"The Greek word for “mercy” (eleos) means much more than some external “withholding of punishment” (which is what we usually understand it to mean in English). It is a divine energy; that is to say, its source is God –so we constantly ask Him for it. In our terms it is an internal disposition; an overflowing of the heart with compassionate, self-giving love. So, when I ask God for “mercy,” I am asking not only to receive it, but to carry it on; to be a vessel of His “mercy” in this world." (Sr. Dr. Vassa Larin)

“…no service is as pleasing to God as mercy. This is because mercy is most similar to God Himself who is merciful.” (St. Gregory the Theologian)

“…if mercy is to be sought from God, then mercy must be extended to others.” (Foundation Study Bible. Luke 11:4)


#SacramentalLivingBlog #FatherSpyridonBaily #SrDrVassaLarin #StGregorytheTheologian #FoundationStudyBible #StAbbaDorotheosofGaza #StHesychiusthePresbyter #StIsaactheSyrian #JohnPiper #StNicholasCabasilas #OrthodoxStudyBible #FatherAnthonyMConiaris #StJohnChrysostom #FatherStephenFreeman #FrBasil #FrPhilipLeMasters

Quote of the Day

News