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St Gregory of Sinai“Hence because we are in fact non-spiritual we live and behave in a non-spiritual manner. Should we repent, we understand and practice the commandments only in a bodily way and not spiritually. And if after many labours a revelation of grace is in God’s compassion granted to us, we take it for a delusion. Or if we hear from others how grace acts, we are persuaded by our envy to regard that also as a delusion. Thus we remain corpses until death, failing to live in Christ and to be inspired by Him. According to Scripture, even that which we possess will be taken away from us at the time of our death or our judgment because of our lack of faith and our despair (cf. Matt. 2) : 29)· We do not understand that the children must be like the father, that is to say, we are to be made gods by God and spiritual by the Holy Spirit; for ‘that which is born of the Spirit is spirit’ (John 3 : 6). But we are unregenerate, even though we have become members of the faith and heavenly, and so the Spirit of God does not dwell within us (cf. Gen. 6 : 3). Because of this the Lord has handed us over to strange afflictions and captivity, and slaughter flourishes, perhaps because He wishes to correct evil, or cut it off, or heal it by more powerful remedies. ”

Saint Gregory of Sinai

(On the Signs of Grace and Delusion, Philokalia Vol. 4)

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