On Keeping One’s Head (Part II)

And if thy hand, or thy foot scandalize thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee. . . . And if thy eye scandalize thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee. Matthew 18:8-9 These words, metaphorical though they be, and no matter how one interprets them, are among the many hard sayingsContinue reading “On Keeping One’s Head (Part II)”

Knowing the Lord

It is the “first day of the week,” and the first day of our Lord’s resurrected life (Lk. 24). Two of his disciples are walking on the road, “reason[ing] with themselves,” “and are sad” in their reasoning. It is fitting that Christ appears to them in earnest discourse, for Christ himself is the Logos (Reason)Continue reading “Knowing the Lord”

Blessed is the Man!

Of St. Joseph, Scripture seems to tell us little, but what it says is of the greatest weight. We know that Joseph was a “just man,” and that justice entails the right ordering of all things, in perfect submission to God and nature. We know that Joseph’s thoughts were so intensely focused on doing God’sContinue reading “Blessed is the Man!”

How Not to Drown in Scripture

Holy Scripture is, as I said, the highest and best learning that anyone can have, if one takes the right way in the learning. It is—as a good, holy saint says—so marvelously devised that a mouse could wade in it and an elephant be drowned in it. For there is no man so lowly butContinue reading “How Not to Drown in Scripture”

Behold Upon the Mountains!

Behold upon the mountains The feet of him who brings good tidings, And who preaches peace. Nahum 1:15 Dietrich Buxtehude’s adaptation of a medieval hymn, itself the fruit of devotional meditation on Scripture, invites us with its exquisite beauty to contemplate the good tidings of our salvation, and the manner in which it has beenContinue reading “Behold Upon the Mountains!”

True and False Enlightenment

Christians are called to be “the light of the world” (Mt. 5:14). “No man lights a candle, and puts it in a hidden place, nor under a bushel; but upon a candlestick, that they that come in, may see the light” (Lk. 11:33). Just as Christ is himself “the true light, which enlightens every manContinue reading “True and False Enlightenment”

Finding Wholeness Apart from the Multitudes

St. Paul tells us that “many” (multi) “walk” as “enemies of the cross of Christ.” Worshipping “their belly” (desires), they “mind earthly things.” Though they “glory . . . in their shame,” we do not do well to follow them, for “their end is destruction.” If we would do better, our conversation must be “inContinue reading “Finding Wholeness Apart from the Multitudes”

Day of Wrath? Or Day of Mercy?

It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins. 2 Mac. 12:46 Sacred music can play an important role in helping us to digest the wisdom contained in sacred texts. By evoking passions befitting the truths of faith, music can help the intellect gainContinue reading “Day of Wrath? Or Day of Mercy?”

Delighting in the Wisdom of the Lord

This blog takes its name from Psalm 36, which speaks of the relationship between justice and wisdom. “The mouth of the just shall meditate wisdom,” we read, “and his tongue shall speak judgment (loquetur judicium).” How can a mouth meditate? Here the mouth is an image of the mind. The words we speak with ourContinue reading “Delighting in the Wisdom of the Lord”