Guarantees For Pure Living
By Bishop Moussa
Some young people think that the life of purity has nowadays become impossibility. There are actually mighty forces urging humans to fall: instinct with its pressing calls, which are not hushed into silence; society with its endless stumbling; and the devil as an evil prince working in this world against God and holiness, exerting every effort to undo God's plan from creating human kind, and His blessed targets concerning humans.
The widespread tune nowadays is that of the spirit of the age." Society today runs to keep up with the contemporary development in the scientific, intellectual and progressive fields. The ecclesiastical community works hard to grasp the changes occurring in this generation and the different propensities activating these changes, such as the propensity for rational pride; anxiety; intellectual bluntness; permissively; moral laxity .. etc.
Yet, there is a deception by which Satan tries to steal into the hearts of our young people today. It implies that this age is different from the previous ones in such a way that holiness has
become an illusion. Thus, the devil suggests that there is no need to toil to reach this holiness. !
The first fact which is beyond any doubt is that every society in its time is a modern one. First Century society was modern compared to the society which existed before Christ ... etc.
The second fact is that the change occurring in societies does not touch the essence of matters at all, but it is an intellectual, scientific, political and social change. Yet, it is impossible - as far as sin and holiness are concerned - that any society should differ from a previous or following one. This is an entirely
Spiritual matter and the spirit is eternal, immortal not subject to time or development but beyond both of them.
+ The third fact is that the essence of human kind is unchangeable: the instincts are the same as they were long ago, the fallen nature is the same one inherited -of Adam; Further, the perennial ambitions and divine conscience are things that do not alter from one generation to another except according to the individual's honesty in using or neglecting them.
The fourth fact is that if we suppose the easiness of failing and the difficulty of salvation in our age, we should not forget that "Where sin abounded, grace abounded much more." (Rom5:20). The salvation of human kind does not depend upon human kind alone, it is in God's hand when it stretches to pick up and save the person who seeks the truth with a toiling heart and an honest will.
If we asked contemporary young people to live in Sodom or Gomorrah, they would have found no difference between their circumstances and the circumstances of the most modern communities though there is a forty-century overlap between the two cases,
We may also remember how holiness was flourishing in the Apostolic Age, though it coercisted with an astoundingly widespread magic and idolatry with their disgraceful filthy rites. Hence, there is nothing new under the sun. The new thing is our languid intention - as young people - to live for Christ; hence we search for excuse to anesthetize our consciences when they deviate.
Now we need to apprehend certain guarantees, which support us- as young people - in our holy struggle against sin to the point of shedding our blood:
1- The work of God's Grace:
Certainly our human efforts, however great, they can not add even one cubit to our stature. This conclusion we draw from our daily experience. Certainly also the forces of evil are mightier than our ability to face them with our feeble humanity.
Therefore came the "stewardship of God's grace" to solve the problem and abolish the horrible contrast existing between a most holy God and sinful human beings. Grace is an inner divine work through which humans become partakers in the divine nature. Grace is an infinite power flowing within humans, therefore, the instinct is controlled, the mind enlightened and the whole being humbled. Grace is a divine healer who heals the soul ridding if of its perversions and pains.
Hence, the youngman who entrusts himself to the work of grace feels a true change in the soul; senses; throughts; feelings; and inclinations. We can not realize the magnificence of this miracle but by experiencing it. Grace is a powerful energy that elevates the soul above the molestations of body; the temptations of the world; and the nothing of the enemy of good. Grace is, simply; God dwelling within humans. The means by which we get this grace are; obedience, true acceptance of the Lord Jesus as a prince of life as well as perpetual fellowship with Him as a practical expression of this chocie; by prayer, gratification by the Bible, and continuous union to His holy Body and Blood.
If we have an iron will to live according to Christ, let us interpret it into a practical way by an actual fellowship with Him and practical obedience to His teachings,. Here comes the role played by struggle, through which we receive the grace necessary for our salvation.
Come on dear friend!!
Approach the Master!
Pour yourself under His feet!
Surrender your poor dead life to Him!
Then be sure, each time you pray,
you wilt get new hyssop to wash your sins,
you will get new ammunition to tight in the evil day!
·· Beware: of surrendering to the enemy's trickery, "No use" Let your answer be, "No use of me, but all the use is in the Lord God Who redeems my soul from death and my life from the Pit." Be strong by the over-whelming love that fills Jesus' heart for you and trust the infinite tenderness flowing out of Him towards you – you the weak and enslaved Be sure! Get up! He is calling you! Don't wait! Don't surrender to your past, nor to your weakness, nor to your enemy's deceits! Jesus is always waiting for you! He rejoices for the repentant's return whatever his past maybe.
3. Full Life
. Among the most serious dangers threatening your purity, dear friend,: is the vacuum. i don't mean only the vacancy of time, but the trivial life, that is with no mission, no responsibility and no aspirati0ns. Take your mission, as a worker of Christ, from the hands of the Lord. ;You should respond to His eternal love and search. for His children who are-far off Him; Your responsibility as a student is to bear witness for the Lord by your honesty and holy ambitions till your life becomes full of blessed aims and pure hopes designed at serving God and His children. Place before your eyes sacred aims such as:
+ Practicing constant prayers.
+ Grasping the Holy Bible.
+ Grasping the spirit of Church, i.e. its holy fathers, history, doctrines and prayers.
+ Grasping the spirit of the age; and its thoughts & culture in order to use all this for the service of Christ and for seeking the souls that have gone astray and attract them: to the Shepherd.
+ Take an interest in your studies and work. Study willingly and anxiously. Don't study merely to achieve success in exams only. You should rather aim at increasing and developing your love for work so as to do it efficiently and pleasantly.
Be sure that occupying your heart with pare aims pours purity within you, while triviality of life and vacancy of heart are of no avail
4. Psychological Serenity
You may notice that one does not resort to alcohol, drugs or smoking unless he is stressed. He resorts to such things as a sort of wrong pursuit for happiness. It is the same with purity: psychological misery resulting from academic or social failure or financial troubles makes the soul resort to instinct as an easy means of compensation. Therefore, as Christian young people, we have to possess - through the grace of Christ - the serene soul that deals positively with the clashes of daily life.
In this way, our undisturbed inner life goes beyond such troubles, rather take them as lessons for the future. This turns failure into success; financial problems into a means to experience Christ's honest hand upon His children; the death of one's parent or brother into an open window on heaven through which we see God's compassionate hands, eternity and the falseness of this age. In this way, our souls can enjoy serenity in the hands of God,.so that we i ·,·~n0 longer need compensation
through harmful pleasures.
5. Honest life
You have to be honest in all the aspects of your life: academic; social; spiritual;... etc. Your motive4 in following Christ must be pure, placing Christ, not His gifts, as your target. You jave to be alert and strict feelings and affections, so as to reject getting involved into a relationship you may ulteriorly think sacred only to expect for yourself a pure life.
Be precise in your senses; thoughts; and inclinations so that they may not become the devil's access to your heart. Be sure that God who sees your struggle from heaven, will not forsake you but will support you with His outstanding power. Preoccupy yourself with God, then will be unravelled from your organs easily.
Our fight is not against sin to overcome it as with Christ to possess Him. And if we possess Christ, we then gain everything.
|| The Orthodox Faith (Dogma) || Family and Youth || Sermons || Bible Study || Devotional || Spirituals || Fasts & Feasts || Coptics || Religious Education || Monasticism || Seasons || Missiology || Ethics || Ecumenical Relations || Church Music || Pentecost || Miscellaneous || Saints || Church History || Pope Shenouda || Patrology || Canon Law || Lent || Pastoral Theology || Father Matta || Bibles || Iconography || Liturgics || Orthodox Biblical topics || Orthodox articles || St Chrysostom |||| Bible Study || Biblical topics || Bibles || Orthodox Bible Study || Coptic Bible Study || King James Version || New King James Version || Scripture Nuggets || Index of the Parables and Metaphors of Jesus || Index of the Miracles of Jesus || Index of Doctrines || Index of Charts || Index of Maps || Index of Topical Essays || Index of Word Studies || Colored Maps || Index of Biblical names Notes || Old Testament activities for Sunday School kids || New Testament activities for Sunday School kids || Bible Illustrations || Bible short notes
|| Prayer of the First Hour || Third Hour || Sixth Hour || Ninth Hour || Vespers (Eleventh Hour) || Compline (Twelfth Hour) || The First Watch of the midnight prayers || The Second Watch of the midnight prayers || The Third Watch of the midnight prayers || The Prayer of the Veil || Various Prayers from the Agbia || Synaxarium