The Apostle Paul transmits wisdom, which he calls the hidden wisdom of God, not as clever talk but as mystery of uncreated light opening to glory, as grace springing from illumination to glorification (see 1Cor 2:7). For apostles and prophets, the criterion of sound wisdom is the Lord of glory, the wisdom of Christ crucified which imparts purification through resurrection, illumination through ascension and deification as glorification, which is the glorification of Christ opened to all. To see Christ in glory ‘as he is,’ is not to be inflated by seductive sophistication, but to humbly let Christ crucified impart his grace of resurrection, light and glory. Christ is in timeless glory; wisdom sees who he is, as he is, in glory. The ruling powers do not see this because they do not recognise the glory of the cross nor hear the wisdom of the crucified, for their hearts are blind and refuse to turn and see.
It is the Holy Spirit who communicates this wisdom, searching out the hidden depths of humble glory, spelling out the mystery of grace. Unturned hearts think this wisdom is foolish nonsense. For them, glory is pretentious pride, because spiritual discernment is despised and rejected by worldly powers, being utterly foreign to the hardened heart. But the wisdom of the Holy Spirit knows the mind of Christ and imparts his glory to all who turn and see. This is the legacy of apostles and prophets which inspires elders and saints, renewing the tradition of Patristic wisdom which did not end with John of Damascus, Photios, or Palamas, but is alive and well in illumined hearts whenever Christ in glory is humbly loved and known.
It is difficult to stand steadfast in wisdom when religious powers despise her therapies, when ruling powers threaten to tear the church apart, plunging its conventional leadership into ambivalence and ambiguity. But grace is glory, utterly free of this ambivalence. Where grace reigns, glory shines with an ineffable joy, untouched by ambiguity. The powers reign only in their own political and psychological domain, causing confusion that breeds division. The Kingdom of grace gives glory to God, unseating the hegemony of ruling powers. In glory, the Father generates the Son and the Spirit proceeds from the Father to abide in the Son, granting glorification to all whose hearts are purified and illumined in the Spirit. In the stillness of graced serenity, wisdom lets glory be, just as it is, generating the Son in us so that, regenerated by glory, we abide with the Spirit in Christ. So even when schism threatens to tear us apart and desolation appears to decimate sound communion, wisdom stands steadfast in glory.
Wisdom discerns glory not as verified fact but as revelation of glory to come already present in the hallowed Name. The Kingdom of glory is not of this world and the powers that be cannot see either it or their blindness until grace opens the eye of the heart. Confusions and divisions have their allotted place and time, spreading ambiguity until grace dawns and the Kingdom comes in the hallowed Name. Confusion and division are facts of life, but their power is of this world, and not decisive. The Spirit of truth bears witness to glory beyond their power, discerning grace unveiling the vacuity of their pretensions. Glory exposes their power to be ephemeral pretension and delusion, transforming their hollow presumption into enlightened joy.
Schisms are healed when the glory of the Name releases confusion into communion, dissolving division into wholesome union. Within glory, there was never trace of confusion or division, although the powers that be were oblivious to wisdom’s union and communion. In mythic terms, there never was a war in God, only a war in heaven that sought to extend its power on earth to destroy wisdom and grace. That war was lost when the powers were defeated on Golgotha. Apostolic wisdom stands steadfast as prophecy assimilated by prayer, awakening glorification in elders to illumine the saints, whatever power politics happens to be doing. Grace glorifies the saints when illumination grounds purification in the vision of God and the Name opens wisdom to the hidden mysteries of glorification.