August 4

The tongue of a back-biting soul is three pronged: it injures the speaker, the listener and sometimes the person being maligned.

~St Thalassios the Libyan

The text, ‘The Kingdom of heaven has drawn near’ (Matthew 3:2 ; 4:17), does not in my judgment imply any temporal limitation. For the kingdom ‘does not come in a way that can be observed: one cannot say, “Look, it is here” or “Look, it is there” ‘ (Luke 17:20-21). The phrase has reference to the relationship which the saints have with the kingdom, each according to his or her inner state. For ‘the kingdom of God’, says Scripture, ‘is within you’ (Luke 17:21).

~St Maximos the Confessor

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