August 16

Those who pursue the carnal mode of life and in whom the will of the flesh is imperious…are not able to conform to God’s will (Romans 8:8). Their judgment is eclipsed and they are totally impervious to the rays of divine light: the engulfing clouds of the passions are like high walls that shut out the resplendence of the Spirit and leave them without illumination.

Their soul’s senses maimed, they cannot aspire to God’s spiritual beauty and see the light of the true life and so transcend the lowliness of visible things….they strive only for what is visible and corruptible, on this account fighting among themselves and even sacrificing their lives for such things, avid for wealth, glory and the pleasures of the flesh, and regarding the lack of any of these things as a disaster.

To such people applies the prophetic statement that comes from God’s own mouth: ‘My Spirit shall not remain in these men, for they are flesh’ (Genesis 6:3).

~Nikitas Stithatos

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