Angels could set us free; Angels: Day 198

Though angels have often come to aid God’s faithful people, says St. Gregory the Great, they could not redeem us from sin. Only God himself  could accomplish that.It (wisdom) cannot be gotten for gold” ( Job 28:15).What does “gold” mean here but the holy angels? They are called “gold” because they persist in the original innocence in which they were created. They shine with the beauty of righteousness, and they are stained with no impurity of sins—not in the very least.But none of the … [Read more...]

Christ was made man, not angel; Angels: Day 164

St. Gregory the Great says that Christ was made man because he came to save us, not the fallen angels. By not taking on their nature, he rejected Satan and his followers.Our old enemy does actually see the coming of the Redeemer. But, because he is restricted by the darkness of his pride, he never comes back to pardon with the elect.This is why it is written, “For surely it is not with angels that he is concerned but with the descendants of Abraham” (Heb. 2:16).In fact, this is why ou … [Read more...]

Sinners are Satan’s grave; Angels: Day 159

When our sins let Satan into our hearts, says St. Gregory the Great, our hearts become so many graves for the doomed spirit, who is bound for eternal death— and ready to take us with him.There is a great difference between the natures of human beings and angels. But those who are bound together by one and the same guilt in sin are caught in the same punishment.The prophet conveys this in a few short words when he says, “Assyria is there, and all her company, their graves round about her” … [Read more...]

Let false hope perish; Angels: Day 136

Continuing his meditation on Job’s cursing the day he was born and the night he was  conceived, St. Gregory the Great sees the curse as a renunciation of everything Satan offers to us.This holy man ( Job) mourned, in his own sorrows, the condition of the whole human race. He saw nothing that was in any way particular to himself in his own particular suffering. It’s very appropriate for him to bring back to mind the original cause of sin, and to soften the pain inflicted on him by thinking abo … [Read more...]

God’s light takes in the darkness; Angels: Day 118

Meditating on the first appearance of Satan in Job, St. Gregory the Great looks at the setting: “there was a day.” Why  does Scripture specify a certain day? St. Gregory offers one symbolic  interpretation.Or, considering that Satan was there as well, was Holy Scripture intend- ing to point out, by saying that this happened on a certain day, that in the light God saw the darkness?We cannot take in light and darkness in the same view. When the eye looms on the darkness, the light retreat … [Read more...]

Satan does not see God; Angels: Day 117

Examining the book of  Job, St. Gregory the Great encounters a puzzle  very near the beginning. How  could Satan come before the Lord when only the pure in heart shall see God? The answer, he says, is that God saw Satan, but Satan did not really see God.“Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them” ( Job 1:6).When it says that Satan came before the presence of God, that raises an im- portant question for us. It is wri … [Read more...]