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A Homily on Guria and Shamuna

Composed by Mar Jacob.

A Homily on Guria and Shamuna

Composed by Mar Jacob.


Of every kind of error, the lights were not put out;

An ornament for the bride of my lord Abgar, the Aramaean's son.

And more beautiful than silver tried in a furnace of earth were their necks.

The Sun of righteousness had arisen in their hearts;

And they were enlightened by it, and with His light chased they away the darkness.

And therefore did they look with scorn upon the sword,2 all athirst as it was for blood.

They were heedful of the faith of the house of God.

Lost is the soul, and life has perished from the man.

That that should not be struck down in which their very life was hidden.

But overthrown was not their faith which was within their hearts.

They uttered not a word by which unbelief might be served.

Proud of thee is our country, as of a treasury which is full of gold:

Since wealth art thou to us, and a coveted store which cannot be stolen from us.

And resplendent are thy beauties, because of the pains which are so severe upon thee.

And its poverty despiseth all the riches of the world.

He seized upon, and made him a chosen vessel for the faith.

And lo! enriched is the whole creation through His poverty.

The Evil One set on all his dogs to bark, that they might bite them;

But, forasmuch as they had the cross for a staff, they put them all to flight.

How they went up from the contest covered with glory?

And they continued telling him about Gehenna which was reserved for him.

Because all his menaces against the truth were accounted by them as empty sound.12

And to "that" country did they set their face to depart;

To the land of light, which is full of blessing for those who are worthy of it.

Yet is there deep silence, nor is there one that cries out for help or that murmurs.

But the noble men before him felt no weariness in their afflictions.

To utter the word when unrighteously questioned.

So that, when speaking and also when silent, they were alike stedfast.

And, if one turn but a little aside from it, a ditch receives him.

They made a sign that they would not sacrifice, and they inherited the place of the kingdom.

For, voiceless they uttered by signs the discourse of faith.

Pleased them well, because of the love of the Son of God.

And sought it as a treasure full of riches.

And, inasmuch as death is slain, it caused no suffering to the martyrs.

And whosoever will trampleth on him, yea mocketh at him.

And thus did they themselves endure mockery without a groan.

All error, whilst its voice was uplifted high in unbelief.

Here endeth the Homily on Guria and Shamuna.

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