Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Enlightened Shadows

Would that the memory of the fathers would exhale from the tombs;
Who were very simple as being wise;
And reverend as believing.
They without cavilling searched for, and came to the right path.
He gave the law;
The mountains melted away;
Fools broke through it.
By unclean ravens He fed Elijah at the desert stream;
And moreover gave from the skeleton honey unto Samson.
They judged not, nor inquired why it was unclean,
Why clean.

And when He made void the sabbaths,
The feeble Gentiles were clothed with health.
Samson took the daughter of the aliens,
And there was no disputing among the righteous;
The prophet also took a harlot,
And the just held their peace.
He blamed the righteous,
And He held up and lifted up their delinquencies:
He pitied sinners,
And restored them without cost:
And made low the mountains of their sins:
He proved God is not to be arraigned by men,
And, as Lord of Truth,
That His servants were His shadow;
And whatsoever way His will looked,
They directed also their own wills;
And because Light was in Him,
Their shadows were enlightened.

St. Ephraem the Syrian, Pearl VI.2-3

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