Christelijk Leven

"Zoek liever eerst het koninkrijk van God en zijn gerechtigheid, dan zullen al die andere dingen je erbij gegeven worden." Matt. 6:33

"Laat alle wrok en drift en boosheid varen, alle geschreeuw en gevloek, en alle kwaadaardigheid. Wees goed voor elkaar en vol medeleven; vergeef elkaar zoals God u in Christus vergeven heeft." Ef. 4:31,32

"Ten slotte, broeders en zusters, schenk aandacht aan alles wat waar is, alles wat edel is, alles wat rechtvaardig is, alles wat zuiver is, alles wat lieflijk is, alles wat eervol is, kortom, aan alles wat deugdzaam is en lof verdient." Fil. 4:8

"Wees als gehoorzame kinderen en geef niet opnieuw toe aan de begeerten waardoor u vroeger, toen u nog onwetend was, werd beheerst, maar leid een leven dat in alle opzichten heilig is, zoals hij die u geroepen heeft heilig is. Er staat immers geschreven: 'Wees heilig, want ik ben heilig.’" 2 Pet. 1:14-16

"Heb de wereld en wat in de wereld is niet lief. Als iemand de wereld liefheeft, is de liefde van de Vader niet in hem, want alles wat in de wereld is - zelfzuchtige begeerte, afgunstige inhaligheid, pronkzucht -, dat alles komt niet uit de Vader voort maar uit de wereld. De wereld met haar begeerte gaat voorbij, maar wie Gods wil doet blijft tot in eeuwigheid." 1 Joh. 15-17


Let us honor the aged among us. Clement of Rome (c. 96, W), 1.11.

Let it be understood that those who are not found living as He taught are not Christians—even though they profess with the lips the teachings of Christ. Justin Martyr (c. 160, E), 1.168.

He says, “Take no anxious thought for tomorrow,” meaning that the man who has devoted himself to Christ should be sufficient to himself, and servant to himself, and moreover lead a new life that provides for each day by itself. For it is not in war, but in peace, that we are trained. War needs great preparation, and luxury craves profusion. But peace and love, simple and quiet sisters, require no arms nor excessive preparation. The Word is their sustenance. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.234, 235.

There is discrimination to be employed in reference to food. It is to be simple, truly plain, suiting precisely simple and artless children—as ministering to life, not to luxury. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.237.

On the other hand, one does not have to be gloomy, only serious. For I certainly prefer a man to smile who has a stern countenance, rather than the reverse. . . . But even smiling must be disciplined. For we should not smile at what is disgraceful. Rather, we should blush, lest we seem to take pleasure in it by sympathy. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.250.

We ourselves must entirely abstain from filthy speaking. And we should stop the mouths of those who practice it by stern looks and averting the face. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.250.

Let us keep away from ribbing others. For this is the originator of insults. Strife, contention, and enmities burst forth from insults. As I have said, insult is the servant of drunkenness. So a man is not judged by his deeds alone, but also by his words.
Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.251.

Our aim is to be free from disturbances. This is the meaning of the phrase, “Peace to you.” . . . In a word, the Christian is characterized by composure, tranquility, calmness, and peace. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.252, 253.

Look to Elisha the Tishbite, for instance. In him, we have a beautiful example of frugality—when he sat down beneath the thorn, and the angel brought him food. “It was a cake of barley and a jar of water.” Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.281.

We must cast away the multitude of vessels, silver and gold drinking cups, and the crowd of domestic servants. For we have received from the Instructor the fair and grave attendants, Self-Help and Simplicity. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.281.

He who has adopted the true life, if he is to abandon luxury as something treacherous, must not only cultivate a simple mode of living, but also a style of speech that is free from verbosity and insincerity. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.311.

Those whose speech is evil are no better than those whose actions are evil. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.331.

Leaving his dwelling place and property without excessive emotion, the man of God embraces the mansion that is in heaven. He readily follows Him who leads him away from this present life. He by no means and on no occasion turns back. Rather, he gives thanks for his journey and blesses [God] for his departure. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.440.

We should not gnaw and consume the soul by idleness, nor by being vexed because things happen against our wishes.
Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.451.

The struggle for freedom, then, is waged not alone by the athletes of battles in wars. Rather, it is also waged in banquets, in bed, and in the tribunals by those who are anointed by the Word—who are ashamed to become the captives of pleasures.
Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.506.

Holding festival in our whole life, persuaded that God is present everywhere, we cultivate our fields, praising. We sail the sea, hymning. In all the rest of our life, we conduct ourselves according to discipline. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.533.

Such are they who are restrained by law and fear. For on finding a favorable opportunity, they defraud the law, by giving what is good the slip. But self-control, desirable for its own sake, . . . makes the man lord and master of himself. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.542.

The spiritual man certainly relieves the afflicted person, helping him with consolations, encouragements, and the necessities of life. He gives to all who need. Yet, he does not give equally, but justly—according to desert. Furthermore, he even gives to him who persecutes and hates.
Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.542.

The spiritual man rejoices exceedingly. All day and night, he speaks and does the Lord’s commands. He does this not only on rising in the morning and at noon, but also when walking about, when asleep, and when dressing and undressing. He teaches his son, if he has a son. He is inseparable from the commandments and from hope. He is ever giving thanks to God. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.546.

He never remembers those who have sinned against him, but forgives them. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.546.

We are the same to emperors as to our ordinary neighbors. For we are equally forbidden to wish ill, to do ill, to speak ill, to think ill of any person. The things we must not do to an emperor, we must not do to anyone else. Tertullian (c. 197, W), 3.45.

It is mainly the deeds of a love so noble that lead many to put a brand upon us. They say, “See how they love one another!” . . . And they are angry with us, too, because we call each other brothers. Tertullian (c. 197, W), 3.46.

There is no law forbidding the mere places [i.e., the circus] to us. For the servant of God may enter without any peril of his religion not only the places for the shows, but even the temples—if he has only some honest reason for it, unconnected with their proper business and official duties. Why, even the streets, the market place, the baths, the taverns, and our verydwelling places are not altogether free from idols. Satan and his angels have filled the whole world. It is not by merely being in the world, however, that we lapse from God, but by touching and tainting ourselves with the world’s sins. . . . The polluted things pollute us. Tertullian (c. 197, W), 3.83.

Shall you escape notice when you sign your bed or your body? When you blow away some impurity? When even by night you rise to pray? Will you not be thought to be engaged in some work of magic? . . . Render to Caesar, indeed, money. Render to God yourself. Otherwise, what will be God’s, if all things are Caesar’s? Tertullian (c. 200, W), 3.70.

Christ is an “object of envy” or emulation to the saints. For they aspire to follow His footsteps and conform themselves to His divine beauty. They aspire to make Him the pattern of their conduct, and thereby win their highest glory. Hippolytus (c. 205, W), 5.167.

He is called the resurrection. He raises a person from the dead not only at the moment when a man says, “We are buried with Christ through baptism and have risen again with Him.” Rather, He also does this when a man, while still here—having laid off all around him that belongs to death—walks in the newness of life that belongs to Him, the Son. Origen (c. 228, E), 9.312.

Our Lord is a Teacher and an Interpreter for those who are striving towards godliness. On the other hand, He is a Master of those servants who have the spirit of bondage to fear. Origen (c. 228, E), 9.314.

This way is indeed narrow, for the majority of persons are lovers of their flesh and cannot bear to walk in it. Origen (c. 228, E), 9.360.

He who zealously imitates the prophetic life and attains to the spirit that was in the prophets must be dishonored in the world, and in the eyes of sinners. To them, the life of the righteous man is a burden. Origen (c. 245, E), 9.426.

From the very beginning, this was inculcated as a precept of Jesus among His hearers: men are to despise the life that is eagerly sought after by the multitude, and are to be earnest in living the life that resembles that of God. Origen (c. 248, E), 4.449.

When the Lord says that man should eat bread with groaning, what are you now doing—you who desire to live with joy? You seek to rescind the judgment uttered by the highest God, when He first formed man. . . . If the Almighty God has commanded you to live with sweat, you who are living in pleasure will already be a stranger to Him. The Scripture says that the Lord was angry with the Jews. Their sons, refreshed with food, rose up to play. Now, therefore, why do we follow these circumcised men? In what respect they perished, we should beware. Most of you obey them, for you are surrendered to luxuries. Commodianus (c. 240, W), 4.214.

Christians used to sell houses and estates so that they might lay up for themselves treasures in heaven. They presented the proceeds from them to the apostles, to be distributed for the use of the poor. However, now, we do not even give the tenths from our patrimony! And while our Lord bids us to sell, we rather buy and increase our store. Thus has the vigor of faith dwindled away among us. Thus has the strength of believers grown weak. And, therefore, the Lord, looking to our days, says in His Gospel, “When the Son of man comes, do you think He will find faith on the earth?” We see that what He foretold has come to pass. Cyprian (c. 250, W), 5.429.

Nothing distinguishes the unrighteous from the righteous more than this: that in affliction, the unrighteous man impatiently complains and blasphemes. In contrast, the righteous man is proved by his patience. Cyprian (c. 250, W), 5.489.

The kingdom of God is not in the wisdom of the world, nor in eloquence, but in the faith of the cross and in virtue of living.
Cyprian (c. 250, W), 5.551.

The sick are to be visited. In Solomon, in Ecclesiasticus, it says: “Do not be slow to visit the sick man.” . . . Also in the Gospel: “I was sick and you visited me. I was in prison and you came to me.” Cyprian (c. 250, W), 5.555.

The just man is neither at enmity with any human being, nor does he desire anything at all that is the property of another. For why should he take a voyage? What should he seek from another land—when his own is sufficient for him? Or why would he carry on war and mix himself with the passions of others—when his mind is engaged in perpetual peace with men? Lactantius (c. 304–313, W), 7.153.

The just man will omit no opportunity to do anything merciful. . . . He must not receive a gift from a poor man. That way, if he himself has given the poor man something, it will be good, for it was gratuitous. If anyone reviles the just man, he must answer him with a blessing. He himself must never revile, so that no evil word will proceed out of the mouth of a man who reverences the good Word. Moreover, he must also diligently take care lest by any fault of his he should at anytime make an enemy. Lactantius (c. 304–313, W), 7.183.

True things must be preferred to false; eternal things, to those that are temporary; useful things, to those that are pleasant. Let nothing be pleasing to the sight but that which you see to be done with piety and justice. Let nothing be agreeable to the hearing but that which nourishes the soul and makes you a better man. . . . If it is a pleasure to hear melodies and songs, let it be pleasant to sing and hear the praises of God. . . . For he whochooses temporal things will be without eternal things. He who prefers earthly things will not have heavenly things. Lactantius (c. 304–313, W), 7.188.

Whoever, then, prefers the life of the soul must despise the life of the body. He will in no other way be able to strive after that which is highest, unless he will have despised the things that are lowest. . . . However, he who prefers to live well for eternity will live badly for the present. He will be subjected to all sorts of troubles and labors as long as he is on earth—so that he may have divine and heavenly consolation. And he who prefers to live well for the present will live ill in eternity. For he will be condemned to eternal punishment by the sentence of God.
Lactantius (c. 304–313, W), 7.201.

Follow your trades as secondary, as something necessary for earning a livelihood. However, make the worship of God your main business. Apostolic Constitutions (compiled c. 390, E), 7.423.

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