SAINT ANTHONY THE GREAT

FROM “THE LIFE OF SAINT ANTHONY THE GREAT”:

1.  And once when certain Arian madmen came to him, when he had questioned them and learned their impiety, he drove them from the mountain, saying that their words were worse than the poison of serpents.                                                                                                                                              HOW HE CONFUTED THE ARIANS.

And once also the Arians having lyingly asserted that Antony’s opinions were the same as theirs, he was displeased and angry against them. Then being summoned by the bishops and all the brethren, he descended from the mountain, and having entered Alexandria, he denounced the Arians, saying that their heresy was the last of all and a forerunner of Antichrist. And he taught the people that the Son of God was not a created being, neither had He come into being from non-existence, but that He was the Eternal Word and Wisdom of the Essence of the Father. And therefore it was impious to say, ‘there was a time when He was not,’ for the Word was always co-existent with the Father. Wherefore have no fellowship with the most impious Arians. For there is no communion between light and darkness. 2 Corinthians 6:14 For you are good Christians, but they, when they say that the Son of the Father, the Word of God, is a created being, differ in nought from the heathen, since they worship that which is created, rather than God the creator. But believe that the Creation itself is angry with them because they number the Creator, the Lord of all, by whom all things came into being, with those things which were originated.

2.  But we by the mention of Christ crucified put all demons to flight, whom you fear as if they were gods. Where the sign of the Cross is, magic is weak and witchcraft has no strength.

3.  Talking to the demons: “And for your fearlessness against them hold this sure sign— whenever there is any apparition, be not prostrate with fear, but whatsoever it be, first boldly ask, Who are you? And from whence do you come? “(43)

If you have received power against me I am ready to be devoured by you; but if you were sent against me by demons, stay not, but depart, for I am a servant of Christ. (52)- 

‘I am a servant of Christ. If you are sent against me, behold I am here.’(53)

4. On cowardice:…  the actual freedom from cowardice comes when we eagerly accept all unexpected events with a contrite heart. (21)

 

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