God as Judge

Canon of St. Andrew: There has never been a sin or act or vice in life that I have not committed . . .

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There has never been a sin or act or vice in life that I have
not committed, O Savior. I have sinned in mind, word and
choice, in purpose, will and action, as no one else has ever
done.

Therefore I am condemned, wretch that I am, therefore I am
doomed by my own conscience, than which there is nothing
in the world more rigorous. O my Judge and Redeemer Who
knowest my heart, spare and deliver and save me, Thy servant.

+ The Great Canon of St. Andrew of Crete, Mon 4.4
Text of the Canon

St. Kosmos Aitolos: . . . You need your soul and Christ. . . .

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“Everything will happen suddenly. It may even happen tonight. Maybe it has begun already? Don’t you see that your crops have failed and your animals have died? The rivers and springs have dried up. Today you are deprived of one thing, tomorrow another. God is giving it to us a little at a time, and we stupid people don’t understand.

I say this to you and I counsel you, even if the sky were to fall down, even if the earth would rise up, even if the whole world were destroyed, as it is due to do so, today, tomorrow, don’t be concerned with what God is going to do. Let them burn your body, let them fry it, let them take your possessions – don’t concern yourself. Give them away – they are not yours. You need your soul and Christ. Even if the whole world were to fall apart, no one can take these two things away from you against your will. Guard these two, and don’t loose them.”

+ St. Kosmos Aitolos, The Life of St. Kosmas Aitolos Together with an English Translation of His Teaching and Letters, Translated by Nomikos Michael Vaporis

St. Dorotheos: A man can know nothing about the judgments of God. . . .

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“A man can know nothing about the judgments of God. He alone is the one who takes account of all and is able to judge the hearts of each one of us, as He alone is our Master. Truly it happens that a man may do a certain thing which seems to be wrong out of simplicity, and there may be something about it which makes more amends to God than your whole life; how are you going to sit in judgment and constrict your own soul? And should it happen that he has fallen away, how do you know how much and how well he fought; how much blood he sweated before he did it? Perhaps so little fault can be found in him that God can look on his action as if it were just, for God looks on his labor and all the struggle he had before he did it, and has pity on him. And do you know this, and what God has spared him for? Are you going to condemn him for this and ruin your own soul? And how do you know what tears he has shed about it before God? You may well know about the sin but do you not know about the repentance?”

— St. Dorotheos of Gaza, Discourses and Sayings

St. Gennadius of Constantinople: To judge sins is the business of one who is sinless . . .

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“To judge sins is the business of one who is sinless, but who is sinless except God? Who ever thinks about the multitude of his own sins in his heart never wants to make the sins of others a topic of conversation. To judge a man who has gone astray is a sign of pride, and God resists the proud. On the other hand, one who every hour prepares himself to give answer for his own sins will not quickly lift up his head to examine the mistakes of others.”

— St. Gennadius of Constantinople, The Golden Chain, 53-55

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