Thursday, January 28, 2010

Become "Partakers of Divine Nature"

Father Maximos perceived the Scriptures as foretelling man's purpose, since it was God Who said, "Let us make man according to our image and likeness....And God made man, according to the image of God He made him, male and female He made them.  And God blessed them...And God saw all the things that he had made, and, behold, they were very good (Gen 1:26, 27, 28, 31)."

"In his commentary on the Lord's Prayer, Our Father, he writes that "we are also taught to speak to ourselves of the the grace of adoption, since we are by grace worthy to call Father the One Who is our Creator by nature.  Thus by respecting the designation of our Begetter in grace, we are eager to set on our life the features of the One Who gave us life.  We sanctify His  name on earth in taking after Him as Father, in showing ourselves by our actions to be His children....

"Now His divine power has 'freely given to us all the things for life and piety, through the full knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which he has freely given to us the very great and precious promises, that through these ye might become partakers of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:3,4).' God made us so that we might become 'partakers of the divine nature' and sharers in His eternity, and so that we might come to be like Him (1John 3:2) through divinization by grace."
( The Great Synaxaristes of the Orthodox Church - January, Holy Apostles Convent, pp 826-827)

The path that he taught was the way of love.
"and do not say that "mere faith in our Lord Jesus christ can save me." For this is impossible unless you acquire love for him through works.,,,,The work of love is the deliberate doing of good to one's neighbor as well as long-suffering and patience and the use of all things in the proper way."( Four Centuries of Love, 1:39)

He also taught that this is impossible without ascetic labors.
Afflict your flesh with fasting and vigils.  devote yourself diligently to psalmody and prayer, and holiness in chastity will come upon you and bring love. (Four Centuries of Love, 1:45)

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