Participants with the Holy Spirit

So long as you live according to your fallen impulses you are dominated by your fallen mortal self. But once you die to the world, you are set free from this domination (cf. Rom. 7:2). We cannot die to the world unless we die to the moral aspects of ourselves. We die to these when we become participants with the Holy Spirit.

We know ourselves to be participants with the Holy Spirit when we offer to God fruits worthy of the Spirit; love for God with all our soul and genuine love for our fellow beings; joy of heart issuing from a clear conscience; peace of soul as a result of dispassion and humility; generosity in our thoughts, long-suffering in affliction and times of trial, kindness and restraint in our behavior, deep-rooted unwavering faith in God, gentleness springing from humble-mindedness and compunction, and complete control of the senses.

When we bear such fruits for God, we escape from the domination of our mortal self; and there is no law condemning and punishing us for the death-purveying fruits we produced while still living in an unregenerate state. Once we have risen with Christ above dead actions the freedom of the Spirit releases us from the law of our fallen self (cf. Rom. 7:4-6).

Nikitas Stithatos c. 1050

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