The Son of God prophesied about the Temple on Moriah

The Son of God prophesied about the Temple on Moriah -- did He prophesy wrongly? Did stone remain on stone, and do worshipers still enter it today? Did He prophesy wrongly?(1)

A nation poured its whole soul into the walls of a single temple, and it remained
empty and soulless. Whoever entrusts his whole soul to stone for protection and ceases to keep watch over it himself, will truly be as capricious in the world as the shadow of an aspen tree.

"We have built God a temple," say the capricious, "and we have paid off its debt. From now on we only have obligations to ourselves alone. We have given to God what is God's, now we shall give to ourselves what is ours."

You wretches, what need will God have for a temple, if you have no need for it? What will your temple mean to the One for whom a single grain of sand is not too fine and the star-filled universe is not too spacious. Can those who are themselves homeless really build a home for the Teacher of all builders?

The Builder taught your ancestors and you yourselves to build Him temples, because you have need of them, not He.(2)

When you build for Him, you are building out of yourselves by means of Him. For earth can do nothing for Him without Him.

When you build the best for Him, you are setting an example for your soul, showing her what she should be building within herself.(3)

When you build for Him better than for your own body, you are setting an example for your soul, showing her that she should also be building herself a stronger, more sublime and radiant habitation than what the body needs and -- the body itself.(4)

When you build for Him, you are proving that your soul has not forgotten everything and has not reconciled herself to the shacks of the body.

You build Him expensive edifices, in order to remind your soul that she was intended for a royal palace, and not for hovels of clay.

You are not building a house for Him, but an image for your soul, a book and a reminder for your soul.

The Lord is overflowing with grace, and He comes down into your stone temples to meet with your souls.

But what will become of your temples, you wretches, if your soul does not heed and follow the example? If the domes of your temples are forever higher than your souls? If the width of your temples is forever wider than the narrow­ness of your souls? What will become of your temples?

If the candles in your temples of stone are forever brighter than the thoughts of your mind? If the myrrh and incense are forever more fragrant than the fragrance of your hearts? What will become of your temples?

If your altars are forever shining more brightly than all the shrines of your souls? If the splendor of your liturgies are forever more splendid than the splendors of your souls? If the resounding of the prayers in your temples finds more of an echo in the walls of stone than in your souls? What will become of your temples?

They will become the dead monuments of dead souls. And once they become this -- once they cease to be an example for the building up of the soul and become arrogance -- truly, stone will not remain on stone. And you, wretches, will wander about as the shadows of those who built the temples and knew what they were building and why; and you will dance all over the world as capricious as the shadow of an aspen tree.

1. Matt. 24:1-2. The Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed by the Roman legions in 70 A.D. and has never been rebuilt since.
2. Acts 7:48-50.
3. l Cor.3:16-17.
4. 1 Cor. 6:19.


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"As the Prophets saw, as the Apostles taught, as the Church has received, as the Teachers express in dogma, as the inhabited world understands together with them, as grace illumines, as the truth makes clear, as error has been banished, as wisdom makes bold to declare, as Christ has assured, so we think, so we speak, so we preach, honoring Christ our true God, and his Saints, in words, in writings, in thoughts, in sacrifices, in churches, in icons, worshiping and revering the One as God and Lord, and honoring them because of their common Lord as those who are close to him and serve him, and making to them relative veneration. This is the faith of the Apostles; this is the faith of the Fathers; this is the faith of the Orthodox; this faith makes fast the inhabited world."
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