“The humble soul is blessed. The Lord loves her. The Mother of God is higher than all in
humility, and therefore all races bless her on earth, while the heavenly powers serve her. And
the Lord has given us this blessed Mother of His as a defender and helper.”
St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings III.14
“Just as people do not enter a war in order to enjoy war, but in order to be saved from war, so we do not enter this world in order to enjoy this world, but in order to be saved from it. People go to war for the sake of something greater than war. So we also enter this temporal life for the sake of something greater: for eternal life. And as soldiers think with joy about returning home, so also Christians constantly remember the end of their lives and their return to their heavenly fatherland.”
St. Nicholas of Serbia, Thoughts on Good and Evil
“The ‘original sin’ of man, his turning from God-centredness to self-centredness, meant first and foremost that he no longer looked upon the world and other human beings in a eucharistic way, as a sacrament of communion with God. He ceased to regard them as a gift, to be offered back in thanksgiving to the Giver, and he began to treat them as his own possession, to be grasped, exploited and devoured. So he no longer saw other persons and things as they are in themselves and in God, and he saw them only in terms of the pleasure and satisfaction which they could give to him. And the result of this was that he was caught in the vicious circle of his own lust, which grew more hungry the more it was gratified. The world ceased to be transparent — a window through which he gazed on God — and it grew opaque; it ceased to be life-giving, and became subject to corruption and mortality, ‘For dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return’ (Gen. 3:19). This is true of fallen man and of every created thing, so soon as it is cut off from the one source of life, God himself.”
“Each of us can discuss God inasmuch as he has known the grace of the Holy Spirit; for how can we think of or discuss what we haven’t seen, or haven’t heard of, or don’t know? The saints say that they have seen God, but there are people who say that there is no God. Clearly, they say this because they haven’t known God, but this does not at all mean that He
is not. The saints speak of that which they have truly seen and know.”
St. Silouan the Athonite, Writings, VIII.9
“Falsehood – and only falsehood – separates us from God … false thoughts, false words, false feelings, false desires – Behold the aggregate of lies that leads us to non-being, illusion, and rejection of God.”
St. Nicholas of Serbia
“I believe like a child that suffering will be healed and made up for, that all the humiliating absurdity of human contradictions will vanish like a pitiful mirage, like the despicable fabrication of the impotent and infinitely small Euclidean mind of man, that in the world’s finale, at the moment of eternal harmony, something so precious will come to pass that it will suffice for all hearts, for the comforting of all resentments, of the atonement of all the crimes of humanity, of all the blood that they have shed; and that it will make it not only possible to forgive but to justify what has happened.”
Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov
“It should be known that the Antichrist is bound to come. Everyone, therefore, who confesses not that the Son of God came in the flesh and is perfect God and became perfect man, after being God, is Antichrist. But in a peculiar and special sense he who comes at the consummation of the age is called Antichrist. First then, it is required that the Gospel should be preached among all nations, as the Lord said, and then he will come to refute the impious Jews. For the Lord said to them: “I am come in My Father’s name and you received Me not; if another shall come in his own name, him you will receive.” And the Apostle says, “Because they received not the love of the truth that they might be saved, for this cause God shall send them a strong delusion that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” The Jews accordingly did not receive the Lord Jesus Christ Who was the Son of God and God, but will receive the imposter who calls himself God. For, that he will assume the name of God, the angel teaches Daniel, saying these words: “Neither shall he regard the God of his fathers.” And the Apostle says: “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day of the Lord shall not come except there come the apostasy first and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition, who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped, so that he sits in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God;” in the temple of God he said, not our temple, but the old Jewish temple. For he will come not to us but to the Jews, not for Christ or the things of Christ: wherefore he is called Antichrist.
First, therefore, it is necessary that the gospel should be preached among all nations. And then shall that wicked one be revealed, even him whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, with all the deception of unrighteousness in them that perish whom the Lord shall consume with the word of His mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming. The devil himself, therefore, does not become man in the way that the Lord was made man. God forbid! But he becomes man as the offspring of fornication and receives all the energy of Satan. For God, foreknowing the strangeness of the choice that he would make, allows the devil to take up his abode in him.
He is, therefore, as we have said, the offspring of fornication and is nurtured in secret and of a sudden he rises up and rebels and assumes rule. And in the beginning of his rule, or rather tyranny, he assumes the role of sanctity. But when he becomes master he persecutes the Church of God and displays all his wickedness. But he will come “with signs and lying wonders,” fictitious and not real, and he will deceive and lead away from the living God those whose mind rests on an unsound and unstable foundation, so that even the elect would, if it were possible, be made to stumble.
But Enoch and Elias the Tishbite shall be sent and shall turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, that is, the synagogue to our Lord Jesus Christ and the preaching of the Apostles. And they (Enoch and Elias) will be destroyed by him (Antichrist). And the Lord shall come out of heaven, just as the holy Apostles beheld Him going into heaven, perfect God and perfect Man, with glory and power and will destroy the man of lawlessness, the son of destruction, with the breath of His mouth. Let no man therefore, look for the Lord to come from the earth, but only out of heaven as He Himself has made certain.”
St. John of Damascus