Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers: Series I/Volume V/On Nature and Grace/Chapter 79

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Chapter 79 [LXVI.]—A Certain Necessity of Sinning.

But let us revert to the apostle’s assertion: “The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”[1] By whom given if not by Him who “ascended up on high, led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men?”[2] Forasmuch, however, as there is, owing to the defects that have entered our nature, not to the constitution of our nature, a certain necessary tendency to sin, a man should listen, and in order that the said necessity may cease to exist, learn to say to God, “Bring Thou me out of my necessities;”[3] because in the very offering up of such a prayer there is a struggle against the tempter, who fights against us concerning this very necessity; and thus, by the assistance of grace through our Lord Jesus Christ, both the evil necessity will be removed and full liberty be bestowed.


  1. Rom. v. 5.
  2. Eph. iv. 8.
  3. Ps. xxv. 17.