…And so if you desire to imitate the virtues of the Apostles, there is nothing to prevent you. All that is needed is your own fervent will, and a most tender love of virtue. Let not the expectation of miracles hold you back. The devil is indeed angered when cast forth from a human body; but much more so, if he sees a soul freed from sin. For this is his greater power, the spreading of sin. Because of this Christ died, that He might break this power. This has brought death. Because of sin the whole world is upside-down. If you destroy sin you have broken the nerves of the devil, you have bruised his head, you have destroyed his power, you have defeated his army, you have wrought a sign greater than all miracles.
                                                                St. John Chrysostom
                                                                “The Leaven of Holiness”
———————————————————————————————
Beloved,
Where does virtue lead, how does it profit the man? Because our Lord is good and the author all good things and the giver of life, mark what is written by the Chief Apostle. In 2 Peter we read the following concerning virtue:

3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: 4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. 5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; 6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; 7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. 8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Such a glorious path where path virtue leads. And what of those who do not heed the words of our Saviour?

9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.

Virtue leads us to godliness, for the Lord has called us to be holy. Adding virtue to faith leads us to godliness.  Concerning this, we read in 1 Peter, chapter 1:

15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; 16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

Virtue should be practiced everywhere and all times. Woe to those who are ‘situational Christians’, practicing their faith only on Sunday morning, yet revel in idolatry from Monday to Saturday.

Holiness and godliness come through much effort. May our Lord strengthen us to seek after Him, continually exercising all virtue in our speech, actions, and every thought!

Advertisements