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Compulsion

“There is a big difference between having compulsions and being a slave to them. We share in Christ’s victory over sin through our union with Him by our choice and the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit within us gives us the awareness of our sin and the power to choose not to sin. The Holy Spirit within us also gives us the power to sincerely repent when we do sin and therefore maintain our union with Christ. Without this awareness and the assistance of the Comforter, the Helper, the Spirit of Truth, even though we may think and feel we are free, we are not. We are slaves who think ourselves free.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)


“God in His grace does not compel us to choose rightly. Instead, He works with us in synergy, cooperatively. Saint John Chrysostom’s “compulsion to choose” is an oxymoron. The glory of God’s grace cuts the tap root of every compulsion that we have hitherto accepted as “natural.” In the Christian life we receive grace to work with the Lord to extinguish our compulsions.” (Dynamis 8/22/2020)


“When God gives us the Holy Spirit, who frees our hearts to fulfill “the righteous requirement of the law” (Romans 8:4), we are no longer under compulsion to sin. We may actually “walk . . . according to the Spirit” (vs. 4). We may say no to sin and “not walk according to the flesh” (vs. 4), as if we were slaves. To do what pleases God is a wonderful gift, if we embrace the Spirit and strive with Him rightly.” (Dynamis 7/7/2021)


“Human personality presumes freedom, and not everybody wants to be free. It’s simpler and less confusing to glob onto some cause, group or person that would willingly take away God’s gift of freedom to imagine yourself satisfied and fulfilled. Freedom is not desired by everybody. Jesus says something about the subject in His enigmatic word “self.” “He who would save his self must lose it, but he who will lose his self for the gospel’s sake will find it.” [Matthew 16:25]…There can be no compulsion or threats, only the power of the Holy Spirit working through His human agent in order to convince the rebel resisting and rejecting the love of Christ to reconcile with the Father and find peace.” (Fr. Vladimir Berzonsky)


“All I’ve got to do, too, is live and die. All God asks of me, and all of us, is to assume the stewardship of our life, acknowledge that we belong to Him and owe our entire being to Him, and then die in peace, in His time and in the way He intends. That’s all. But I’m in a hurry, and I don’t know why. I’m driven by some odd compulsion that makes me feel I’ve always got to DO something: to perform, accomplish, create, whatever. I’ve bought in to the competitor-consumer mentality of the world I live in, and I can’t ever do enough to buy my way out. If I make more money, achieve some goal (usually suggested by somebody else), work hard enough to merit a few strokes from those above me, or simply keep busy enough so I don’t feel guilty at knocking off for a few hours, then my life is worthwhile, then I’ve succeeded. But of course I can’t ever win that frantic race. It’s not just because there are too many others ahead of me. It’s because I’m in the wrong race to begin with.” (Fr. John Breck)

"In the beginning" the Holy Trinity created the world (heaven and earth) "out of nothing" (ex nihilo) and not out of preexistent matter. The world is a production of God's free will, goodness, wisdom, love and omnipotence. God did not create the world in order to satisfy some need of His. Rather he created it without compulsion and without force in order that it might enjoy His blessings and share in His goodness. God then brought all things into being out of nothing, creating both the visible and the invisible.” (Greek Orthodox Archdiocese)

“When God sent Jesus Christ, He did so as one who saves by persuasion, not compulsion, for compulsion is no attribute of God.” (The Letter to Diognetus)

“ ‘Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled’ (Luke 14:23). The command in the parable which at times is badly misunderstood, "...compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.", only bespeaks of the great love that God has for all of us, and that He is willing to do everything to save His creation. To this we must add the words of Saint Paul, "The love of Christ controls us" (2 Corinthians 5:14). In the Kingdom of God there is only one compulsion and that is the compulsion of His unceasing Love for us.” (Father George C. Massouras)

“The sacrifices of the law…did not involve expressions of free will…Good should be loved for its own sake, not pursued under the compulsion of established penalties.” (St. Hilary of Poitiers, St. Gregory the Great)

“If we are feeling joyless spiritually and our spiritual practices – going Church, reading the Bible, praying, fasting – feel like forced labor, we need to ask ourselves are we doing these things because consciously or unconsciously we think we are appeasing God and thus doing them under some sort of inner compulsion? If so, we need to find our way back to that peaceful place where we are doing these things that please God out of love and they are simply an outward expression of that love.” (Sacramental Living Ministries)


#TheLettertoDiognetus #FatherGeorgeCMassouras #StHilaryofPoiters #StGregorytheGreat #SacramentalLivingMinistries #GreekOrthodoxArchdiocese #Dynamis #FrVladimirBerzonsky #FrJohnBreck


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