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What is the value of effort in the end-times?


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#1 Theophan C.

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 04:55 PM

In the introduction to St.Theophan's "The Spiritual Life" there's reference to St.Anthony and Abba Ischyrion saying that even "very small efforts" during future godless times would "mean a great deal in God's eyes". Is this a widely accepted idea ?

Is there more or less consensus we are living in a "post Christian" age? It seems the rest of the world has thought so for some time now. Modernity was the name they gave to cultures gone past tradition and they call this time postmodern.

#2 Theophan C.

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 12:27 AM

I don't think I made it clear that Abba Ischyrion said he had "kept the commandments of God" and that others following would "do half as much" and those following them would live in the end-times and be surrounded by great enmity and temptation but those who then persevered would be revealed in the Kingdom of Heaven to be "much greater than those of us and our Fathers".

I guess what I'm asking is less required now because it's more difficult ? When I consider the earlier Christians I'm very inspired but also very daunted by their example. What a tough act to follow ! With God's help I hope to make some "very small effort" and it's encouraging to consider God might find even that small effort acceptable.

#3 Owen Jones

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 02:54 PM

I was laughing with a co-worker this morning about it being great living in a decadent society because you don't have to go to great lengths to have much higher moral standards than most folks! So it's interesting you would mention this topic now.

#4 Ilaria

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:00 AM

I guess what I'm asking is less required now because it's more difficult ? When I consider the earlier Christians I'm very inspired but also very daunted by their example. What a tough act to follow ! With God's help I hope to make some "very small effort" and it's encouraging to consider God might find even that small effort acceptable.


I think this might be a matter of approach; sometimes we feel terrible sorry because we do not fulfill our Christian duties - in such a case, we need a consoling word, as the one cited above, in order not to despair.
But I think that our benchmark has to be Christ commandments, the way we fulfill His teaching, because His commandments comprise all the historical periods - till the end of times.

#5 Michael T.

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Posted 16 April 2013 - 06:03 AM

What I have written below is what I understand to be the correct response.  I don't in anyway think I am "there."  But I know that it is a decision to be.

 

 

If I accept your premises:  One, that these are the “end times” Of course they are the end times for Christ is imminently coming,  the New Testament tells us that; Two,  Those who persevere  are those who Conquer, they will be saved, this is what John’s Revelation says.  Then the answer to your question is, no.

 

Less will not be expected but more.  God does not handicap us the way golfers are handicapped based on how good of a golfer
one is.   Before one becomes a slacker Christian ‘cause “we got it tough,” perhaps we need to read the lives of the saints again.  We are blessed with the times we live in.  If we are living in “tougher times” then we are blessed with having more of a chance to witness.  One witnesses by how one loves.  How should we love?  As Christ loved us.  And how do we do this?  by taking up our cross and follow Him.

 

If you ask me, this is the "put your money where your mouth is" statement of Christianity.  I am frightened by this, there is a very real part of me who would rather have a PoBoy and a beer than to even contemplate this.  What I mean, is to be just a "good guy" and live my life.  I want to want this!






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