Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 19

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 19

Healing of the Man With Dropsy

“The following day we went to an arcade called Domestia, where many who had been taught by John had gathered. Close by there was a man who had suffered from dropsy for six years. So grievously was he afflicted with this disease that it was not possible for him to speak. However, by making certain gestures, he motioned for paper and ink, and wrote two lines to John: ‘To the apostle and disciple of Christ: Have mercy on me the miserable sufferer, and take away my illness.’ John took the paper and wrote him back saying: “\’To the man afflicted with dropsy, from John, the apostle of Christ: In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, regain thy health.’ When the man with dropsy received the paper, he arose straightway, as one without any ailment. When the people saw this, they cried aloud: ‘Great is the God of John, who worketh such great wonders!’ Many of them came to be baptized, including the man who was formerly stricken with dropsy, who fell at the apostle’s feet and besought him for illumination. And John instructed and baptized him that same day.

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The Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 18

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 18

Philo the Jew

“In that city, there was a Jew by the name of Philo, who was a learned man and well-versed in the law Moses. He had a wife who was afflicted with leprosy. Once, he chanced upon John in the marketplace and struck up a debate with him concerning the Books of Moses. Whatever John would say he opposed. Philo remained intransigent for two whole days. On the third day, he still persisted, even after many lengthy discussions; so John said to him: ‘Philo, Philo, the holy Scriptures do not require verbosity, but obedience to their teachings and a pure heart.’ As he was so saying, they came upon a man with a fever who had been placed on the ground by his kinfolk, so that John, as he passed by, might heal him. Therefore, as John was leaving Philo, a young man standing by this afflicted man cried out, saying: ‘Teacher of the Christians, I beseech thee, attend to this sick man and heal him!’ John then approached and said: ‘In the name of Jesus Christ, arise and go to thy home.’ Straightway, the sick one arose and returned to his house, glorifying God. Now Philo witnessed what John had done, and running up to him, took him by the hand and said: ‘ Teacher, what is love?’ The apostle answered: ‘O observer of the law, God is love and he who hath love hath God!’ Philo continued: ‘Therefore show the love of God and come home with me. Let us eat bread together, that God may be with us.’ Immediately John followed him. As he entered Philo’s house, tht very moment Philo’s wife was cleansed of her leprosy. When the former persistent and contentious Philo beheld this, he changed forthwith, and falling prostrate before the apostle, said: ‘Teacher, be not wroth with me on account of my words when I argued against thy divine teachings, but bestow upon me and thine handmaiden, my wife, the seal of Christ.’ John then catechized them and performed baptism over them, with their whole household, remaining there for three days.

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The Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chaper 17

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 17

Resurrection of the Three Children

“The people sat on the sand, waiting for Coenops for three days and three nights from time to time crying out in a great voice: ‘O most honored Coenops, help us!’ And, from hunger, thirst, and the burning sun, many of them grew faint and lay senseless. Three of their children died. John watched them and was saddened over their deception and hardness of heart. Sighing and weeping, he prayed to God, saying: ‘O Lord, Fashioner and Protector of all that hath breath and life, for Whom I suffer all these things: hasten to open the hearts of these people, that none may perish.’ Then he turned to the crowd, and said: ‘Men and brethren, hear me! Today is the fourth day ye have not eaten, waiting for Coenops who is unable to return ever again. I beseech ye therefore, depart from this place and let each return to his own home to eat bread.’ Then those whose children had perished from hunger besought John. He then prayed: ‘O Lord Jesus Christ, by Whom those who have fallen asleep from ages past shall rise on the fearful last day when the trumpet shall sound: grant me, Thy servant, the souls of these three children, that I may glorify Thy most holy name unto the salvation of these people.’ And as soon as he completed his prayer, the dead children returned to life. This sign was seen by all of the bystanders, who fell at John’s feet, confessing: ‘Truly we are in great deception; for verily thou art a genuine teacher.’ When the apostle of Christ saw that their spirit was upright and had come to knowledge, he told those remaining: ‘Go in peace to your homes to eat and regain your strength. I am going to the house of the servant of God Myron. Tomorrow I shall return again and speak to you as is meet.’ Then he uttered a prayer and they departed in peace.

“When John and I entered Myron’s house, there was great joy and gladness; and with words inspired by the Holy Spirit, John consoled all the brethren there. A table was then set and we ate and glorified the Lord, rejoicing in our souls. The following morning, a great commotion throughout the city brought all the natives to the house of Myron, and all cried aloud: ‘Myron, most laudable Myron, give us our teacher that we too may be benefitted and enlightened by him!’ But Myron suspected that perhaps they were calling for John to come outside that they might do him some evil, or even slay him. The apostle understood Myron’s fears, and said: ‘Wherefore is thy heart troubled? I believe in Christ that these people mean me no harm.’ When the people beheld John they were exceeding glad and cried aloud, saying: ‘Thou art the benefactor of our souls! Thou art he who will enlighten us concerning the everlasting light!’ The divine John then answered them: ‘Indeed, I am a mortal man like yourselves. Much rather believe in Him Who sent me, Jesus Christ the Son of God, Who is the true Benefactor and guiding Light of men’s souls. He took pity on the race of men, who were plunged into the depths of ignorance and the deception of the demons, and deigned, in His supreme goodness, to become incarnate of the Holy Virgin, and without change becameth Man, though still God, like unto us in all respects save sin. He was crucified of His own will, and by His death abolished death, despoiling hades and delivering the souls of those therein. He arose on the third day, and sent us disciples and other ministers throughout the world to preach His kingdom. By the Holy Spirit, He furnished us with abundant authority against unclean spirits and the power to work miracles and healings of divers illnesses; and, for this, all the nations are turning to the true God and Creator of all. My children, do not close the ears of your hearts, but depart from deception and come to the light of the truth.’ With these and many other things did John exhort and comfort them, and many believed and were baptized there in the house of Myron.

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The Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 16

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 16

Coenops the Magician

“There was on the island of Patmos a certain magician by the name Coenops, who had lived in the wilderness and for many years held converse with unclean spirits. On account of predictions uttered by him, most of the inhabitants of the island considered him divine. The priests of Apollo, who were enraged at John for having destroyed the temple of Apollo and because he had made all the people followers of Jesus Christ, went to Ceonops and complained to him of Christ’s apostle, beseeching him to take revenge for the dishonor shown their gods, and they added that even the name of Ceonops was forgotten by the inhabitants. They also told him that Myron and Apollonides had John released from prison after they had complained to governor Aquila. Ceonops, however, did not wish to go to that city himself, since he had lived for many years in that place without leaving. But the citizens all the more often came to him with their request. Then he promised to send a wicked spirit to the house of Myron to seize the soul of John and deliver it to eternal judgement. In the morning he sent to John one of the princes of the evil spirits, commanding him to bring John’s soul to him. Arriving at the house of Myron, the demon stood in the place where John was. But John, perceiving the demon, said unto him: ‘In the name of Christ, I command thee not to leave this place until thou tellest me for what cause thou hast come hither to me.’

“Bound by John’s word, the demon was held fast and said to John: ‘The priests of Apollo came to Ceonops and besought him to go to the city and bring death down upon thee, but he did not wish to go saying: “I have lived in this place for many years, not going forth. Why should I trouble myself now over a worthless paltry man? Go your way, and in the morning I shall send my spirit, and he shall take his soul and bring it to me, and I shall give it over to eternal judgement.”‘ John then said to the demon: ‘Hath he sent thee at any other time to seize a human soul and bring it to him?’ The demon answered: ‘Indeed, he hath sent me and I slew a man, but never did I bring him the soul.’ John then asked: ‘For what reason dost thou submit to Coenops?’ The demon replied: ‘All the power of Satan is with him and he hath made a covenant with our princes, and we with him – Coenops obeyeth us and we him.’ Then Johnsaid: ‘I, an apostle of Jesus Christ, do command thee, evil spirit! Neither enter into the dwellings of men, nor return to Coenops, but go forth from this island into torment!’ Straightway the demon left the island. Coenops seeing that the demon did not return, sent another, but that demon suffered the same fate. Then two more of the princes of the dark powers did he send; one he commanded to go in unto John, but the other to keep watch to bring him back word. The demon that went in unto John suffered the same fate as those that came earlier; but the demon that stood guard, beholding the misfortune of his fellow demon, fled back to Coenops and related to him what had happened. Coenops was filled with wrath and, taking with him a great multitude of demons, went to the city. The whole cty rejoiced, seeing Coenops, and, approaching him, all bowed down in homage. Finding John amongst the people, Coenops was greatly incensed and said unto the crowd: ‘O ye blind men who have wandered from the true path, hearken unto me! If John is righteous, and all that he saith is true, let him converse with me and perform such wonders as I do; and ye shall see which of us is greater: John or I. If he seemeth more powerful than I, then I also shall believe his words and deeds.’

Coenops said to a certain youth: ‘Young man, is thy father alive!’ He answered saying: ‘He is dead.’ And Coenops said: ‘How did he die?’ The youth replied: ‘He was a sailor, and when his ship capsized, he drowned in the sea.’ Coenops said to John: ‘Now show thy power, John, that we may believe thy words: produce this boy’s father alive.’ John answered: ‘Christ hath not sent me to bring forth the dead from the sea, but to teach deluded people.’ Ceonops said to all the people: ‘Now will you believe me, that John is a liar who deceiveth you. Seize him and hold him fast while I bring forth the boy’s father alive. ‘

“Thy laid hold of John, and then Ceonops extended his hands and struck the water with them. When a splash was heard on the sea, all were afrighted; and eonops became invisible. All cried out: ‘Great art thou O Ceonops!’ And all of a sudden Ceonops came forth from the dea holding, as it were, the boys father. All were astounded. Ceonops sad: ‘Is this thy father?’ ‘Yea sir,’ the youth replied. Then the people fell at Ceoonops’ feet and would have killed John. But Ceonops forbade them saying: ‘When ye see greater than this ye may lay him.’ Then summoning another man he said: ‘Didst thou not have a son?’ And he answered: ‘Ye, sir, I had, but someone slew him out of envy.Ceonops cried out aloud, calling by name both the murderer and the slain, and both stood before him. Ceonops said to John: ‘Art thou not astonished, O John?’ Saint John replied: ‘Nay, I am not amazed by this.’ Ceonops sad: ‘Thou shalt see more, and then shalt thou marvel; and thou shalt not die until until I frighten thee with signs.’ John answered Coenops: ‘Thy signs will son come to naught.’ Hearing such words, the people fell upon John and beat him until they thought him dead. Then Ceonops spoke unto the people saying: ‘Leave him without burial; let the birds rend him to pieces!’ Leaving that place, they rejoiced with Ceonops.

“At 2:00 AM, when a great stillness reigned over the city, I approached John and heard him say: ‘Prochorus, my child.’ Weeping I replied: ‘What is it sir?’ He said to me: ‘Hasten to Myron’s house, where all the brethren have gathered, and inform them that John liveth yet and hath suffered no ill, and he shall come there again.’ Therefore, I left for Myron’s house and found all the brethren there weeping over John. All were astonished at seeing me, and I said to them: ‘Brethren, grieve not, but rejoice in the Lord, for our teacher liveth! He hath sent me to inform you all that ye may be at peace.’ When they heard from me that John was alive, they would not hear anything else. All arose at once and left quickly to find John, whom they found standing in prayer, after which they all exclaimed ‘Amen’, and then embraced one another. While all were weeping for joy and glorifying God, John said to them: ‘Brethren, see that none of you are deceived by the signs of Ceonops, for all he createth are phantoms. therefore, stay away from him and remain in peace in Myron’s hose, and ye shall behold the grace of God.’ With this and many other things did he encourage the brethren, and dismissed them in peace.

“It was not long before the heathen learned that that John was teaching in the place where they stoned criminals. Ceonops summoned a demon with whose help he wrought necromancy, and coming to that place Ceonops sad to John: ‘I plan to wreak upon thee yet greater disgrace and shame, for which cause I have left thee alive; come thou to the sandy shore of the sea. There thou shalt behold my glory and be put to shame.’ He then turned to the crowd that was following him, and said: ‘Hold this man while I show even greater signs than before; then I will send him into eternal punishment.’ When they reached the shore, many men and women were there who perfumed the area with incense and prayed. The moment they beheld Ceonops, they they fell down and paid homage to him. Three demons accompanied him, those whom people considered men that Coenops had raised from the dead. Ceonops then said to those holding John: ‘Do not release him, neither let any depart from this place until I have returned in glory.’ And clapping his hands together with great might, Ceonops plunged into the sea and was lost from sight. ‘Great art thou, O Ceonops!’ shouted the crowd, ‘and there is none greater than thee!’ Then John spread his arms in the form of a Cross and commanded the demons, who were standing therein human form, not to depart. He then prayed: ‘O God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who by the figure of Thy Cross didst enable Thy servant Moses to put Amalek to flight: bring down in the abyss of the sea the deceiver Ceonops, that he may never see the sun again, or be numbered among the living.’ And thus it happened, for there was a great peal of thunder, and the sea suddenly was troubled and waves were stirred up. And Ceonops did not emerge from the sea, but remained in the depths, like wretched Pharaoh of old.

“To the demons, whom the crowd considered men raised from the dead, John said: ‘In the name of Jesus Christ, who was crucified and rose again on the third day, depart from this island.’ And they straightway vanished. But those who thought they had back those who were dead, hat is, the father who drowned and the son who was slain, were vexed with John. One said unto him: ‘Sorcerer, restore to me my son!’ The other said: ‘Banished one, imposter, give me my father!’ Then all were saying: ‘If thou wert a good man, thou wouldst gather together the scattered and lost! But because thou art perverse, thou hast cast out them whom our benefactor Ceonops brought back. Therefore bring back those men who have vanished or thou wilt die this instant!’ Some of the enraged ones moved to slay John, but others restrained them, saying: ‘Let us not slay him until the great Ceonops returns. He will tell us what to do.

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The Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 15

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 15

Karus the Jew

“After the passage of those days, we left Myron’s house and went to a place by the sea called Proklo, which had shops in which hides were tanned. One of those tanners was a Jew called Karus,who began a discussion with John concerning the Pentateuch. Inspired by the spirit, the apostle of Christ explained ot the Jew the meaning of the Scriptures. Karus was contentious and gainsaid the words spoken by John. Nevertheless, the apostle,wth utmost meekness, set at naught all the words of the Jew, parallelling and applying the words of the prophets to the Son of God, the dispensation of the incarnation, the cross and the resurrection, which they all foretold. After Karus heard this, he thought it all blasphemy, and said to John: ‘Be silent, addled one!’ And with these words, the Jew became deaf and mute. All present marvelled how John rendered him speechless, and they believed in Christ. John then turned to them and said: ‘Why marvel ye, O men? He hath brought this judgement on himself! Know ye not that they who are not persuaded by these words are adjudged and prevailed upon by force, and then they yield?’ The philosopher Areotes stood nearby, and said to John: ‘Teacher, honey knoweth no bitterness, andmilk hath nothing bad.’ Then Areotes gestured to Karus, and motioned for him to fall at the apostle’s feet. Areotes then continued: ‘Father, I beseech thee to free this man who thou hast bound, as it is meet for the sake of love and compassion.’ John then took pity on Karus and said: ‘In the name of Jesus Christ thy mouth hath been closed; in His name again, let thy lips be opened.’ And straightway as John spoke, Karus regained his speech. All were amazed, and believed, and received baptism in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. After that, we went to Rhoda’s house to sojourn for a time. The following day, Karus sought us out and found us and falling at John’s feet, and said to him: ‘Rabbi, thou knowest from the Scriptures that our fathers grieved and provoked the wrath of God, and renounced Him Who was their life, Who is the boast and hope of all the nations. Because I have sinned against God and thyself, who was sent by Him, I beg thy forgiveness and implore thee to grant me the seal of Christ.’ John, therefore, catechized Karus and baptized him in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

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The Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 14

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 14

Healing of the Demonized Youth and the Paralytic

“The following day, John took me to a place called ‘Fortune’, where sat a paralytic. When he saw us approaching, he said to John: ‘Teacher of the Christians, do not overlook thy servant, for I, too, am a foreigner as thyself! Therefore do not despise and turn away from me. I have a little bread and butter here and I beg thee to condescend, and let us eat together.’ The apostle of Christ took pity on him and said: ‘Today we shall eat and rejoice together!’ We moved a little and met a peasant woman who was a widow. She was weeping and asked: ‘Where is the temple of Apollo?’ John said to her: ‘Wherefore thou needest the temple?’ The woman answered: ‘I have an only son, into whom hath entered an evil spirit, who hath tyrannized him already for thirty three days. So I have come to inquire of Apollo what to do on account of my son. But I do not know where the temple is, for I have never before been in this city.’ The apostle listened to the woman, and said: ‘Return to thy house, O woman, for by the power of Christ this very moment, thy son hath been purged of the evil spirit.’ Now the woman assumed that John was one of apollo’s priests so she believed his words, and returned to her house. She found her son delivered of the evil spirit and in his right mind. After John exhorted those present concerning the Kingdom of God, we returned to the place where the paralytic awaited us. The apostle then said to the man: ‘Behold as thou hast asked, we are come to share thy table, but who will serve us?’ The paralytic said: ‘Sirs I have inconvenienced you by asking that ye serve me, thy servant.’ John replied: ‘Nay, In the name of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, rise up and serve us.’ He then took him by the hand and he arose and served us with joy and gladness, glorifying God.’

“When the meal was over, we got up and, thanking the Lord, returned to Myron’s house. His nephew, Rhodon, was there, and he importuned John to baptize him. After the apostle taught and catechized him, Rhodon was baptized in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. The following day, the stranger who was formerly paralyzed and healed came. He bowed low before John and implored him: ‘Sir, I have despaired because of the incurable disease of my body which is now healed. Now do thou also restore my soul with the deal of thy God.’ All who beheld the former paralytic healthy and walking were astonished; and he would declare to everyone the manner of his healing. John catechized and baptized him, ordering him to keep the commandments of the Lord diligently, that he might not suffer the same again.

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The Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 13

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 13

The Temple of Apollo

“Three years had passed since our arrival at Patmos, and a great number came to believe and were baptized by John. One day, we went out to the market place near the temple of Apollo. A large crowd had gathered, wherein were some of the faithful; others were unbelievers. The priests of Apollo begin to say: ‘Mindless ones, why heed ye the words of that fraud? Do you not know that he is exiled for sorcery? Wherefore do ye deceive yourselves and hearken to this piteous and banished man who doth insult our immortal gods?’ John heard this and addressed the priests, saying: ‘Behold, in the name of Christ, your house shall be made desolate!’ And at that very instant, the temple of Apollo collapsed, though no one was injured. The priests then laid hold of John and inflicted upon in many stripes. He was then taken by them to the governor, Aquila, to whom they complained: ‘John, this exile, hath by sorcerous arts destroyed the temple of the great god Apollo!’
When the governor heard this he was troubled and saddened exceedingly. He commanded that we be bound in chains and placed in the deepest dungeon.

“When Myron and his son Apollonides heard of our predicament, they went before governor Aquila. Apollonides addressed him: ‘All agree that they compassion, philanthropy and charity is great towards all those in need. Therefore, I beseech thine honor, on behalf of the foreigner John: place him in our care. If any speak against him before thee, we will produce him in whatever hour thou wishest him to appear before thee.’ The governor answered him: ‘I have heard many things concerning this man, that he is a sorcerer. What if by magic he eludeth thee? Then what shall we do?’ They replied: ‘If thou becomest ill-disposed towards John, be it on our heads and all our house and possessions.’ Since the governor greatly respected Mton and Apollonides, and they were the most honored and prominent family in the city, we were given into their charge. Both father and son came down into our dungeon, and loosed our fetters and brought us back to their home. Myron then said to John: ‘Stay in the house of thy servant and no longer venture out into the marketplace, for evil and barbaric are many of the inhabitants of this city; and I fear that mayhap they may slay thee.’ John answered: ‘Brother Myron, Christ did not send me to rest in houses, ut sent me rather to the barbaric and eil men, saying: “I send thee forth as lambs among wolves,” and again, “we must through much tribulation enter the kingdom of the heavens.” Therefore, I am ready for the name of Christ, to bear dishonour, patiently to endure beatings, to rejoice in persecution, and in brief, daily to die for Christ.’

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Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 12

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 12

Chrysus the Magistrate

“The civic magistrate Chrysus, and his wife, Seline had an only son who was possessed. Hearing that John worked great wonders, he took his son and went to Myron’s house. When he beheld him, John immediately said: ‘Chrysus, thy sins prevail over and tyrannize thy don. Therefore consider thy taking of bribes and favoritism in lawsuits hateful to the Lord,that thou mayest find mercy with God. But wherefore hast thou come to us?’ Chrysus answered: ‘Sir, take whatever I possess in my house, only cast the evil spirit from my son, lest he peris evilly.’ John answered: ‘We have no need of thy possessions, but we have need of thee and thy son!’ Chrysus replied: ‘Sir, what must I do to restore my son?’ John answered:’Believe in the crucified Jesus and thou shalt behold His power.’ Chrysus then declared: ‘I believe sir, only heal my son!’ Then John took hold of the child’s right hand and sealed it with the sign of the cross thrice and offered up a prayer; and straightway the evil spirit departed from the lad. When Chrysus beheld this sign, he was struck with awe and fell down prostrate before John, saying: ‘Of a truth, father, God is with thee!’ The following day, Chrysus took Seline, his son, and a substantial amount of money, and went to John, saying: ‘Sir, take all of this and bestow upon us the seal of Christ.’ John replied: ‘For the deal of Christ ye do not require money, but only a pure faith. As for this money, distribute it among those in need, and receive freely the grace of Christ.’ After he had instructed them, he baptized them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, and sent them to their home in peace. We remained a long while in Myron’s home without going forth, but all came there to be catechized and baptized.

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Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 11

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 11

Basil and Grace

In the city of Flora there was another wealthy man, named Basil, who was noble and distinguished, but wasa pagan. His wife, Grace, was barren. One day, Basil visited a a nephew of Myron, whose name was Rhodon, and said: ‘What news is there in the house of thy kinsman Myron? Why doth he confine himself to those of his own household and the stranger who sojourneth with him, and does not visit us or speak with us? What exactly is the teaching of the man who dwelleth there? Tell me, if you please.’ Rhodon said to Basil: ‘Many marvel at the an; and I have heard it said that whatever the foreigner saith, it never faileth to come about.’ Basil then said to Rhodon: ‘Is it possible that by his words my wife might conceive?’ Rhodon answered: ‘They say of him that this too he can do.’ When Basil heard this, he went to Myron’s house, saying that he desired to speak with John. When John was told this by Myron, he received Basil gladly, who entered and reverenced the blessed one. John then spake with Basil saying: ‘The Lord fulfil all thine requests, and blessed is that man who doth not tempt God in his heart. Yet, O Basil, the Israelites tempted God, Who was incapable of being tempted; but inasmuch as He is good, He gave them his blessing. Once He split asunder the rock in the wilderness,and gave the disobedient ones to drink, and brought forth waters like rovers; then, another time, He sent to the ungrateful ones bread to eat from out of heaven – for which they did not labor; and yet another time, He sent them meat to satiety. But this stubborn and stiff-necked people did not believe in thee marvellous works of God. Wherefore, do thou not, O Basil, tempt God if thou dost not wish to suffer evil. Believe in Him, and all thy requests will He fulfill.’

Basil understood then that, whatever he had in his heart, John already knew, and said to the apostle of Christ: ‘I believed and believe, O teacher. But, I beseech thee;: entreat thy God that my wife may bear a child.’ John replied: ‘If thou believest, thou wilt see the power of God.’ Then John exhorted Basil concerning many things. Basil then left Myron’s house and went straight home. The following day, he went with his wife, Grace, to Myron’s house, and they reverenced the apostle. John then said to Grace, ‘Rejoice, O Grace; may the grace of God enlighten the hearts of both thee and thy husband, and grant thee godly fruit of the womb.’ After exhorting them sufficiently, the grace of the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they besought John to baptize them. After he had baptized them, they asked him to come and bless their home, which he did, and then returned to Myron’s house. The wife of Basil then conceived and, by the grace of the Holy Spirit, bore a son, naming him John. Basil then took a considerable amount of gold and presented it to the apostle, that he might distribute it among the poor. John said to him: ‘Go, my son, and distribute thy goods wirth thine own hands, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven.

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Life of Saint John the Theologian – Chapter 10

5 May 20

The Life and Struggles of the
Holy Apostle and Evangelist
John the Theologian

Chapter 10

Chrisippida

“Chrisippida, the governor Laurence’s wife and Myron’s daughter, watched in admiration how her parents and her brothers believed in Christ, and she said to her husband: ‘Behold, all my father’s house believes in the Crucified One Whom John doth preach. Let us resolve also to believe, that our house may exult with my father’s.’ Laurence said to Chrisippida: ‘Wife, as long as I am in this office with its authority, I am unable to become a Christian.’ She replied: ‘Now it is better for thee to do this because thou hast authority; for at the same time, thou canst be a guard and elp the faithful.’ The governor responded: ‘Know this, wife, that the religion of the Christians is spurned and condemned by all. If I do as thou sayest, immediately divisions ad schisms will occur. Everyone will be inflamed against us and we shall be denounced before the emperor, which will prove to our detriment. Therefore, I prefer to present the appearance of an idolater and secretly to support and help the believers in Christ. Then when I complete my term as governor, I will openly accept holy baptism and become a Christian. Therefore, take our son and go to thy father’s house, and when thou learnest from John the dogmas of Christianity, become baptised together with our child. However, be careful not to offend anyone by what thou hearest from John. Do not even disclose to me the mysteries thou wilt learn,but keep everything quietly to thyself until the appropriate time.’ Hearing this Chrisippida took her son and went to her father’s house. When she entered, she saluted John first, then her parents, then her brothers. John asked her: ‘Wherefore hast thou come, child?’ She answered: ‘I believe, honorable father, that God will inform hee, Albeit, I also will make it known to thee that it is out of godly zeal that I come to be enlightened by thee, that my house and my father’s may extol God together.’ John replied: ‘Would to God that the Lord enlighten thy hart, thy husband’s and son’s and all thy house!’ John said to her: ‘My child, this must be done with thy husband’s knowledge.’ Chrisippida answered by relating all the conversation she had had with Laurence. When John learned that it was by the governor’s order and permission that his wife sought baptism, all rejoiced. After he had catechized her and exhorted her to conduct her life in accordance with the commandments of Christ, he then baptized her together with her son.

“Then Myron produced a great deal of money and presented it to his daughter, saying: ‘Child, here is as much money as thou desirest. My table is laden with food whenever thou and thy son are so disposed to partake; only do not return to the governor, for perhaps, thou wilt be tempted to overlook one of the commandments of Christ.’ Chrisippidis agreed and said to her father: ‘As for the money, let it remain. Only now, once more, I and my son will return to our home that I may bring hither our means of subsistence; then we will remain with thee always.’ The apostle of Christ heard this, and said to Myron: ‘I do not accept, nor can I agree with thy words and thy daughter’s, for christ did not send me to seperate wives from their husbands or husbands from their wives; and especially in this instance, since thy daughter hath come to believe in Christ with the knowledge and consent of her husband. Therefore, let her go in peace to her own home; for I am confident that, by my Lord Jesus Christ, the One Who sent me, her husband will soon become a Christian. As for the money of which thou hast spoken, loan it to Christ, for, as it is written: “He that hath pity on the poor, lendeth to the Lord” [Prov. 19:17]. Therefore, unto those who approach thee for the purpose of alms, give, for our Lord Jesus Christ said: ‘Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto Me.” And elsewhere it is said: “Be merciful, so as to receive mercy; give and it will be given.'” Many other things did John utter, and he sent Chrisippida and her son back to her home. The following day, Myron presented to John a great deal of money, and said: ‘Take it, teacher, and distribute it among the poor.’ John said to him: ‘Behold, I accept thy good purpose, because I know it is from God; but into thine own hands I leave these things to give to those in need.’ Indeed, Myron gave to those in need, and God multiplied these god things in his house, making it like an abundant fountain pouring forth the grace of the Lord. All the members of Myron’s household rejoiced in Christ our Lord and bestowed their substance upon those in need.

“After the passage of two years, governor Laurance’s term of office came to an end and his replacement was installed. He then went to his father-in-law Myron’s house and, standing before John,said: ‘O teacher, the vexations of daily living have darkened my mind and hindered until this day my coming to partake of the benefit of thy teachings. But now, I beseech thy holy soul, by the enlightenment of thy God, to cleanse my conscience of my former sins. ‘Therefore, the apostle of Christ catechized and baptized Laurence, dismissing him to his home in the peace of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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