Saturday, February 02, 2008

Essential Thought about God's Energy

J.M.J. + O.B.T. + M.G.R.*

January 20, 2008

“Is it not ridiculous to say that the creative power is an essence, and similarly, that providence is an essence, and foreknowledge, simply taking every energy as essence?” St. Basil the Great, Contra Eunomius, I.8, PG 29, 528B

“The energies are various, and the essence simple, but we say that we know our God from His energies, but do not undertake to approach near to His essence. His energies come down to us, but His essence remains beyond our reach.” St. Basil the Great, Epistle 234

“And if we may reckon that the Cause of our existence did not come to the creation of man out of necessity but by benevolent choice, once more we say that we have seen God in this way too, arriving at an understanding of his goodness, not of his being…He who is by nature invisible becomes visible in his operations, being seen in certain cases by the properties he possesses.” St. Gregory of Nyssa, Homily on the Beatitudes, VI

“Essence and energy are not identical.” St. Cyril of Alexandria, Thesaurus 18, PG 75:312c

“The man divinized by grace will be everything that God is, apart from identity of essence.” St. Maximus the Confessor, Ad Thalassium 22, PG 90:320a

“But He Who is beyond every name is not identical with what He is named; for the essence and energy of God are not identical.” (Orthodox Saint) Gregory Palamas, Triads, p. 97

“Nor does indeed everything predicated of him denote the substance, for relation is predicated of him, which is relative and refers to relationships with another but is not indicative of substance. Such also is the divine energy in God, for it is neither substance nor accident, even though it is called a quasi-accident by some theologians who are indicating solely that it is in God but is not the substance.” (Orthodox Saint) Gregory Palamas, Capita 127

“God also possess that which is not substance. Yet it is not the case that because it is not a substance it is an accident. For that which not only does not pass away but also admits or effects no increase or diminution whatever could not possibly be numbered among accidents. (Orthodox Saint) Gregory Palamas, Capita 135

“Nature and energy are not identical.”(Orthodox Saint) St. Gregory Palamas, Capita 143

We see only dimly and yet we know:

– Spiritual Energy is involved
– Spiritual Light is active and transforming
– The event is shrouded in Mystery
– Holy Mass (Divine Liturgy) is the center
– Christ's Real Presence is the source and summit
– The Wellspring of Worship flows with His Grace
– Gravity is still at the heart of the matter.

Sincerely yours in Jesus and Mary,
Mike Rizzio, SOLT

Imitate Mary
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Live for the Triune God

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* - J.M.J. + O.B.T. + M.G.R. stands for: Jesus, Mary and Joseph;
O Beata Trinitas; St. Michael, St. Gabriel and St. Raphael

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