Knowledge fulfilled in Practice

by Scott D. Hendricks

12. Even though knowledge is true, it is still not firmly established if unaccompanied by works. For everything is established by being put into practice.

13. Often our knowledge becomes darkened because we fail to put things into practice. For when we have totally neglected to practise something, our memory of it will gradually disappear.

14. For this reason Scripture urges us to acquire the knowledge of God, so that through our works we may serve Him rightly.

15. When we fulfil the commandments in our outward actions, we receive from the Lord what is appropriate; but any real benefit we gain depends on our inward intention.

16. If we want to do something but cannot, then before God, who knows our hearts, it is as if we have done it.  This is true whether the intended action is good or bad.

~ St. Mark the Ascetic

G.E.H. Palmer and Philip Sherrard and Kallistos Ware trans., The Philokalia: the complete text, vol. 1 (New York: Faber and Faber, 1979), 126.