Theology is the word of God, which is apprehended by pure, humble and
spiritually regenerated souls, and not the beautiful words of the mind, which
are crafted with literary art and expressed by the legal or worldly spirit.
Just as a beautiful statue cannot talk, manufactured words are unable to
speak to the soul of a man, except if the listeners are very worldly, and
pleased simply by charming conversation.
Theology that is taught like a science usually examines things historically
and, consequently, things are understood externally. Since patristic ascesis
and inner experience are absent, this kind of theology is full of uncertainty
and questions. For with the mind one cannot grasp the Divine Energies if he
does not first practice ascesis and live the Divine Energies, that the Grace of
God might be energized within him.
Whoever thinks that he can come to know the mysteries of God through
external scientific theory, resembles the fool who wants to see Paradise with a
Those who struggle patristically become empirical theologians through the
visitation of the Grace of the Holy Spirit. All those who have an external
education, in addition to the internal enlightenment of the soul, may describe
the divine mysteries and interpret them correctly, as did many Holy Fathers.
If, however, one does not become spiritually related to the Holy Fathers and
wants to take up translating or writing, he will wrong both the Holy Fathers
and himself, as well as the people, with his spiritual cloudiness.
Neither is it right for someone to theologize using someone elseís theology,
because he will resemble an impotent man who adopts othersí children, presents
them as his own and pretends to be the father of a large family. The Holy
Fathers took the divine word or personal experiences from their hearts: the
result of spiritual battles against evil and the fire of temptations, which
they confessed humbly or, out of love, wrote down in order to help us. They
never kept this love for themselves, acknowledging, likewise, that humility and
all the divine gifts are of God.
Those who present the gifts of God as their own are the most insolent and
most unjust in the world, for they wrong God and, even more, their own selves.
In this way they cause themselves to be deprived of Divine Grace so that they
wonít be judged as being more ungrateful and so that they wonít be destroyed
due to their great vainglory.
Those who are grateful towards God for everything and constantly attend to
themselves humbly and look after Godís creatures and creation with kindness,
theologize and thus become the most faithful theologians, even if illiterate.
They are like the illiterate shepherds who observe the weather in the
countryside, day and night, and become good meteorologists.
Those who live simply, with kindness and good thoughts, and have acquired
inner simplicity and purity, regard the supernatural very simply, as natural,
for everything is simple to God. God does not use greater power for the
supernatural and less for the natural, but the same power for everything. He
Himself is very simple and His Son revealed it to us on earth with His holy
When purity comes to man and simplicity with its fervent faith and devotion
arrives as well, then the Holy Trinity takes up His abode within us. With this
divine enlightenment one easily finds the keys to divine meanings, so as to
interpret the Spirit of God in a very simple and natural way, without causing
an intellectual headache.
Depending on the purity or guile that one possesses, analogous
interpretations are made, and one is benefited or harmed accordingly.
Oftentimes, one may cause harm due to oneís inexperience, even if acting with
good intentions. For example, a person does not know that white wine also
exists apart from red, and pours red paint into it to seemingly make it better,
and in this way he poisons people. But even if he is not inexperienced or
deceitful, but works only from human justice and logic, he will once again
wrong the Spirit of God, and, as a result, harm himself and others.
With human logic and justice we also hear the complaints of the laborers of
the first and third hour in the Gospel (Matthew
20:1-15), who believed that they were unjustly treated. God, however,
the beholder of the hearts of men, with the subtlety of His divine justice,
also rewarded the laborers of the eleventh hour for the anguish they suffered
before finding work. God would have even given to the laborers of the eleventh
hour a greater reward, out of His divine righteousness, full of mercy and love,
because the poor ones suffered greatly in soul and were more fatigued than
those who, for more hours, were exhausted physically. But we, wretched people
that we are, cannot fit Godís divine justice into our limited minds, just as His
infinite kindness cannot fit inside our limited love. Therefore, Godís love was
limited to giving everyone the same agreed reward, so as not to scandalize more
those who loved their self more than their fellow men. If He told them, "I
am not doing you wrong; we agreed on this amount..." He meant, "I am
a boss with noble love and divine justice which you cannot understand,"
and not, "I am boss and I take no one into consideration." For God is
our Father and we are His children, and all people know of His fatherly love;
He was crucified in order to redeem us and restore us to Paradise.
If we could go out of our self (the love for our self), we would also escape
from the gravity of the earth and see everything in reality, with a divine eye,
clearly and profoundly. That is why it is necessary for one to leave the world
for the desert, struggle with humility, repentance and prayer, be deserted by
his passions, remove his spiritual "rust" and turn into a good
conductor in order to receive Divine Grace and become a true theologian.
If we donít remove the rust from our spiritual cables, we will constantly be
short-circuited, full of worldly theories, doubts and questions. Then we cease
to theologize, being found in a condition of worldliness, but will speak
historically, or examine things legally and mathematically. Namely, we will
examine how many nails were used to crucify Christ and how many soldiers were
present when He was crucified without proceeding to the essence of things: that
Christ was crucified for our own sins, in order to redeem us, and suffered more
than all of the Holy Martyrs put together. Although He helped the Martyrs with
His divine power, He did not employ His divine power for Himself at all and
suffered terrible pains out of love, having His two hands and His two legs
pierced with nails. Whether they crucified His two legs with one or two nails
has no importance, inasmuch as both were nailed and He suffered the pain and
drank the vinegar, that He might sweeten us again in Paradise, eternally close
to Him, as our Loving Father.