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Short Stories (Stories for the Youth), book by Father Tadros Yacoub Malaty

44- I Read It Twenty Times

 

On a visit to a family in one of the American cities, I asked one of its members, Which book of the Bible do you read?

I dont read the Bible. He answered. I read the Old Testament about twenty times. As for the New Testament I read it so many times. I know all the commandments and the stories mentioned in the Bible.

St-Takla.org Image: A loving heart reading the Holy Bible - by Amged Wadee صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: قلب مُحِب يقرأ في الكتاب المقدس - رسم امجد وديع

St-Takla.org Image: A loving heart reading the Holy Bible - by Amged Wadee

صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: قلب مُحِب يقرأ في الكتاب المقدس - رسم امجد وديع

I kept silent for a while then I said, A man had read one verse and kept on reading it for more than eighty five years until he died.

Who is he?

St. Anthony.

Which verse?

He entered the church when not yet eighteen years old and heard the verse,

If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give it to the poor, and you will have treasure in

Heaven; and come, follow Me (Matt. 19.21).

He heard the saying and considered it a personal message sent to him. He kept on reading it trying to apply it all his life. However, he found it very broad. As if repeating what the Psalmist had said,

I have seen the consummation of all perfection, but Your commandment is exceedingly broad

(Ps. 119.96).

Our Bible is not to be read for memorization or for knowing the commandments and the stories. It should be read in order for the believer to meet with the Word of God, the Savior and the Friend, to have a conversation of love and enjoy living with Him.

We should read the commandment and practice it not as a mere ethical behavior but to become an icon of Christ. We should follow His example and acquire His characteristics. Our souls would then be decorated with the richness of His grace, so that they would be prepared as a bride for her Groom.

→ English translation of the story here at St-Takla.org: قرأته عشرين مرَّة!

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May Your Bible be open before my eyes.

May I read it with my heart and live it.

May I see You hidden behind the letters.

May I meet You and get to know You.

I shall then know You, love You and be united with You.

Your Holy Spirit enlightens the eyes of my heart

And attracts me to run towards You.

I shall bear witness for You so that all people may enjoy You.


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