Four Hundred Texts on Love (Third Century) 7

Posted: September 28th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: St. Maximos the Confessor | Tags: , , , , | Comments Off on Four Hundred Texts on Love (Third Century) 7

14.  He who thinks that he has achieved perfection in virtue will never go on to seek the original source of blessing, for he has limited the scope of his aspiration to himself and so of his own accord has deprived himself of the condition of salvation, namely God. The person aware of his natural poverty where goodness is concerned never relaxes his impetus towards Him who can fully supply what he lacks.

When I read this text, I think of the parable of the Pharisee and the Publican. I would venture that when we look at another and judge ourselves more spiritually accomplished or virtuous, we think we have achieved some perfection in virtue. And even if it seems like something minor, it is spiritually devastating. It is only as we perceive our natural poverty as “the worst of sinners” that we can remain open to God and to salvation.


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