The Earthquake came, and it did away with the unevenness of life

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 The Earthquake came, and it did away with the unevenness of life

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The Earthquake came, and it did away with the unevenness of life. Where, now, are those who wear silken robes? Where is the gold? All of those things have gone away, and they were torn asunder more easily than a spider’s web, and they disappeared more [quickly] than spring-time flowers. But since I see that your mind is prepared, I wish to set before you a more plentiful table. I see your bodies worn down, but your soul renewed. The fountains of sweat are many, but they wipe the conscience clean. For if athletes drip with blood for the sake of leaves of laurel, which is given today and tomorrow withers away, how much more ought you, who enter into the trial of virtuous actions, not to surrender in the labors for virtue, nor to grow soft. You as my audience are my crown, and one of you as a hearer is equivalent to the city. For some, on the one hand, crowned mixing-bowls, while others convened satanic symposiums, and still others prepared a sumptuous table. But you completed so great a vigil, and you cleansed all the city by the stepping of your holy feet, having measured out the market-place with your walking, and having made the air holy. For the air becomes holy from the singing of psalms, just as today you heard God saying to Moses, “The place where you are standing is holy ground.” (Exodus 3:5; Acts 7:33) You sanctified the ground, the market-place, you made our city a church. And just as a flowing torrent, carried by a great stream, overturns all things – in this way also the spiritual torrent, the river of God, which gladdens the city of God, was filled with water, and cleansed away the mire of impiety. No one is licentious, or rather, if someone is licentious, he is changed. He hears the voice, and his mind is reformed, the melody comes in, and his impiety is changed, he flees the passions of greediness. For even if he does not flee, but just as beasts in winter lurk in dens, so his impious mind is buried in the earth, and just as serpents, when frost stiffens their bodies, enter the lower regions, so too these passions, servile and slavish, are thus covered up as if into some abyss. And of course those who carry them are ashamed. For on the one hand they carry them, yet [the passions are] dead. For in place of winter, your melody comes to them. The voice comes into the hearing of greedy men, and even if he does not cast the passion out, yet the passion dies. [The voice] comes into the hearing of the licentious and the arrogant man, and even if he does not put to death his licentiousness and arrogance, he buries his licentiousness and arrogance. It is not a small [matter] not to speak wickedness boldly. I also said yesterday that the fruit from the earthquakes is great. Do you see the love for humanity of The Master, Who shakes [the] city and who makes [the] mind firm? He who rocks [the] foundations, and strengthens [our] thoughts? He who makes the city cracked, and makes our judgment strong? Set your minds on His love for humanity. He shook for a little while, He strengthened continuously. The earthquake [lasted] for two days, but let piety remain into all time. You were distressed for a little while, but you were rooted continuously. For I well know that, by the fear of God, your piety took root; and if an abatement should occur, the fruit remains. No longer are the thorn plants choking, nor an over-whelming rain washing away: the fear cultivated you well, it became an ally to my words. I am silent and the foundations send forth a sound; I remain silent and the earthquake sends forth a voice more sonorous than a trumpet, saying this: “The Lord is compassionate and merciful, patient and rich in mercy.” (Psalm 102/103:8) I was present, not in order to overwhelm you, but in order to strengthen you.” The Earthquake says these things, and sends forth a voice: “I scared you, not in order to grieve [you], but to make you more exact. Pay exact attention to the sermon. Since the sermon was too ineffectual, help called out; since the instruction grew weary, fear fought as an ally. I come speaking those things to you only

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