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The Earnest of the Spirit

Saint Irenaeus was born 130 ad and became bishop of Lyons (France) 177 ad. He was a disciple of St. Polycarp, who himself was a disciple of St. John the Evangelist. St. Polycarp is the "angel of the church in Smyrna" mentioned in  Revelation 2:8-11. Saint Irenaeus died as a martyr 202 ad. He wrote his book "Against Heresies" circa 180 ad.

Our Lord's Body and Blood

St. Jacob of Serug (Yaakoub el Serougy) was born 451, the year the Council of Chalcedon met. He became bishop of Serug on the border of Iraq and Turkey in 519. He opposed the Council of Chalcedon,  wrote more than 600 homilies and reposed in the Lord November 29, 521. 

Third Century Pentecostals

 

Asterius Urbanus gives us this fascinating description of the sect of the Montanists or Phrygians which flourished in the early third century and which was declared heretic by the Church Universal.

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The One Incarnate Nature of the Word

 

“Since your Perfection enquires whether or not one ought to admit that there are two natures in Christ, I thought it necessary to address this point.” Thus does Saint Cyril define the reason of writing his First Letter to Succensus, bishop of Diocaesarea in Asia Minor (Turkey). Succensus was an orthodox and a good theologian, friendly to Saint Cyril, who alerted him to the views of the “Eastern bishops”, mostly sympathizers of Nestorius, and asked him to write refutations to what they propagated. Here is how this letter starts:

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The Two Goats and the Two Birds

 

And he shall take of the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats for a sin offering, … And he shall take the two goats, and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.

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Can God Suffer II?

We say that He both suffered, and rose again, not meaning that the Word of God suffered in His own nature .... but in so far as that which had become His own body suffered, then He Himself is said to suffer these things, for our sake, because the Impassible One was in the suffering body.1


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On Halloween

With regard to our non-participation in the pagan festival of Halloween, we will be strengthened by an understanding of the spiritual danger and history of this anti-Christian feast.

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Can God Suffer?

For He Himself, just like His Begetter is unalterable and immutable, and was never capable of any passibility (susceptibility to pain). But when He became flesh, that is became man, He appropriated the poverty of humanity to Himself; firstly, because even though He became man, He still remained God; and secondly, because He accepted the form of a servant even though He is free in His own Nature.

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Can God Increase?

And the Child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, being filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon Him. And again; But Jesus increased in stature and wisdom and grace with God and men. (Luke 2: 40,52)



TO say that the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, being filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon Him, must be taken as referring to His human nature. 

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The Synergy Between Free Will and Grace

FOR the purpose of God whereby He made man not to perish but to live for ever, stands immovable. And when His goodness sees in us even the very smallest spark of good will shining forth, which He Himself has struck as it were out of the hard flints of our hearts, He fans and fosters it and nurses it with His breath, as He "willeth all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth," (1 Ti 2:4) for as He says, "it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish," (Mt 18:14) ... For He is true, and lieth not when He lays down with an oath: "As I live, saith the Lord God, for I will not the death of a sinner, but that he should turn from his way and live." (Ezec 33:11a) 

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