The Voice of the Ancients

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Mar 09, 2009 by Howard Baker | 0 Comments

In times such as these when political, cultural, and economic forecasts are obsolete by the time they are printed, where do we find lasting perspective? For me, it requires leap-frogging postmodern and modern voices in order to hear the wisdom of the ancients, the Fathers of the Church. Here is a sampling from the Ancient Christian Commentary on Romans 5:1-11:

BASIL THE GREAT: For those who are well prepared, tribulations are like certain foods and exercises for athletes which lead the contestant on to the inheritances of glory. When we are reviled, we bless; maligned, we entreat; ill-treated, we give thanks; afflicted, we glory in our afflictions. Homily 16

AUGUSTINE: Who can hurt such a [one]? Who can subdue him? In prosperity he makes moral progress, and in adversity he learns to know the progress he has made. When he has an abundance of mutable goods he does not put his trust in them, and when they are taken away he gets to know whether they have taken him captive. Of True Religion 92.

AMBROSIASTER: If Christ gave himself up to death at the right time for those who were unbelievers and enemies of God...how much more will he protect us with his help if we believe in him!...So if he died for his enemies, just think what he will do for his friends!  Commentary on Paul's Epistles.

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