Friday, October 07, 2005

Chrysostom on the labor of preaching

I have found this quote from Chrysostom helpful in describing the serious toil involved in right preaching and the place of the church in aiding such an effort.

“Preaching really entails hard work, and this fact Paul made plain when he said: ‘Let the presbyters who rule well be held worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and in teaching.’ But you are responsible for making this toil light or heavy. If you despise my words or, though you do not despise them, do not embody them in your deeds, my toil will be heavy, because I am laboring fruitlessly and in vain.
But if you pay attention and make my words manifest in your deeds, I shall not even be aware of the perspiration, for the fruit produced by my work will not permit me to feel the laboriousness of the toil. And so, if you wish to spur on my zeal and not to extinguish it or make it weaker, show me the fruit of it, I beseech you, in order that, viewing the leafy crops, sustained by hopes of a rich harvest and calculating my wealth, I may not be sluggish in engaging in this promising task.”

Saint John Chrysostom, “Homily 22 (John 2:4-10),” ed. Roy Joseph Deferrari, vol. 33, The Fathers of the Church (New York: Fathers of the Church, Inc., 1957), 212.

1 comment:

Mark said...

Speaking of good quotes, here is the one from Peter Leithart that you wanted:

"The defense of liberalism was a (twisted) Pauline defense: to the secular modernist, we become as secular modernists, that we might win the secular modernist."

Leithart, Peter J. "Against Christianity." Moscow, ID: 2003 page 39.

Asante sana, walimu van neste.
--mab