Oh that I knew where I might find him! that I might come even to his seat!
Read Chapter 23
Gregory The Dialogist
33. An elect person if he did not know God, assuredly would not love Him. But it is one thing to ‘know’ by faith, and another to know by His own Form, one thing to find by trustfulness, another to find Him by contemplation. In consequence whereof it is brought to pass that Him Whom they know by faith, all of the Elect long to see by His own Form as well. With the love of Whom they burn and glow because the honey of His sweetness they already taste of in the mere certainty of their faith. Which that person in the country of the Gerasenes cured of the devils well represents, who wishes to depart with Jesus; but by the Master of health it is, told him, Return to thine own house, and shew what great things God hath done unto thee. [Luke 8, 39] For on him that loves delay is still imposed, that by the longing of love delayed the title to rewarding may be heightened. And so to us Almighty God is made sweet in miracles, and yet in His own loftiness remains hidden from our eyes, that both by shewing something of Himself, He may by secret inspiration set us on fire in the love of Him, and yet by hiding the gloriousness of His Majesty may increase the force of that love of Him by the heat of longing desire. For except the holy man sought to see This Being in His Majesty, surely he would not bring in the words, that I might come even to His seat? For what is the ‘seat’ of God but those angelical Spirits, who as Scripture testifies are called ‘Thrones?’ He then that desires to ‘come to the seat of God,’ what else does he long for but to be among the Angelic spirits, that no failing moments of the periods of time he henceforth be liable to, but rise up to abiding glory in the contemplation of eternity.
34. Which words nevertheless are likewise appropriate to the righteous whilst placed in this life. For when they see any thing done against their wish and desire, they have recourse to the hidden judgments of God, that therein they may read that that is not irregularly ordered within, which seems to pass irregularly without. For when they behold with the eyes of faith the Creator of all things, ruling over the Angelical Spirits, then they ‘come to His seat.’ And whereas they observe that He, Who rules the Angels in a wonderful manner, does not dispose of man in any way contrary to justice, then indeed the principles of cases they see to be as just as they are, whilst the cases themselves externally seem to be unjust. And whereas they do this with humility, they often lay blame to themselves in their will, and their own wishes they sometimes judge in themselves, whilst they ponder that those things are better which the Creator appoints.