“every one of us therefore ought to strive, and take pains, and be diligent in all virtues, and to believe, and to seek from the Lord that the inward man may be made partaker of that glory here and now, and that the soul may have fellowship in that sanctity of the Spirit. … For Christ will come down from heaven and raise up all the tribes of Adam, those who from their beginning have fallen asleep. …Those who bear His own sign, that is the seal of the Spirit, He will call to Him as His very own. … Then shall the bodies of these be arrayed with divine glory from their good works, and shall be full of the Glory of the Spirit, which they had in their souls even here.” ~St. Macarius the Egyptian
Strive for Glory
In almost all Earthly professions, we have to strive in order to achieve. You don’t become a great doctor by refusing to study. You don’t become a successful politician by refusing to campaign. Spiritual growth is no different. While we are trapped n the realm of matter, it’s laws apply to us most of the time. One such unwritten law is that we mast strive to accomplish. Yes, we can inherit wealth, but that is not really an accomplishment. To accomplish anything takes work. Awakening the spirit and soul takes work. And once they are awakened, it takes work to keep them “nourished” and growing.
Work doesn’t necessarily mean manual labor. Not that there is anything wrong with manual labor, it is good for us in many ways. The work needed for spiritual awakening and growth is more mental than physical. The only physical part of it is the need to gaze at the spiritual sun regularly to “feed” the spirit and soul with the spiritual energy that sun provides. The Glory comes more from mental work than from manual labor.
What is this Glory St. Macarius writes about, and why should we desire. There are many names for it. It may be called enlightenment, or Oneness with God. It may be called Gnosis or Divine Knowledge. Higher Consciousness is another way of saying the same thing. It is the Holy Ghost descending as a dove on the head of Jesus after He was baptized. The tongues of fire that appeared over the heads of some saints is the glory. It is truth, wisdom, and eternal life.
Christ Will Come Down
Most Christians have traditionally interpreted sayings similar to this as meaning that Jesus will return to Earth in the End Time. They usually see Him as a god of vengeance ridding a horse and smiting their enemies with a sword, despite the fact that Jesus was a man of peace. That is not what is meant here at all.
St. Macarius means that the Christ Force or Christ Light will descend upon the “chosen” and awaken them from their deep sleep. In other words, the spiritual Light that carries the Christ Force within it will awaken the dormant spiritual faculties of man. This is not something new. This Christ Light has been awakening men for many centuries, but only a few rare and special individuals. Now, under the Sun of Righteousness, that Christ Force is increasing and the number who will awaken to the Divine Glory will dramatically increase. Sadly, however, there will be those who will cling to the darkness of materialism and go down with that sinking ship.
Arrayed With Glory
Do not misunderstand when St. Macarius says the bodies will be full of divine glory. The physical body does not directly receive the Light of divine glory. The spirit and soul receive that Light. It affects the body only indirectly. Anything that changes the spirit and the soul is eventually reflected in the physical body as well.
St. Macarius says we had this glory in our souls even here. So why don’t we feel it? Why don’t we experience it? We come into the material realm with our spiritual faculties in a dormant state. They must be awakened before that divine glory within the soul an be realized. That awakening must come from the external Light of the spiritual sun.