Lives of Saints - The 7 Hieromartyrs of Cherson Christianity - Books
You have heard that it was said, 'You shall not commit adultery;'                but I tell you that everyone who gazes at a woman to lust after her has committed adultery with her already in his heart.                If your right eye causes you to stumble, pluck it out and throw it away from you. For it is more profitable for you that one of your members should perish, than for your whole body to be cast into Gehenna.                If your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off, and throw it away from you. For it is more profitable for you that one of your members should perish, than for your whole body to be cast into Gehenna.                'It was also said, 'Whoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorce,'                but I tell you that whoever puts away his wife, except for the cause of sexual immorality, makes her an adulteress; and whoever marries her when she is put away commits adultery.                'Again you have heard that it was said to them of old time, 'You shall not make false vows, but shall perform to the Lord your vows,'                but I tell you, don't swear at all: neither by heaven, for it is the throne of God;                nor by the earth, for it is the footstool of his feet; nor by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King.                Neither shall you swear by your head, for you can't make one hair white or black.                But let your 'Yes' be 'Yes' and your 'No' be 'No.' Whatever is more than these is of the evil one.                'You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth.'*                But I tell you, don't resist him who is evil; but whoever strikes you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also.                If anyone sues you to take away your coat, let him have your cloak also.                Whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two.                Give to him who asks you, and don't turn away him who desires to borrow from you.                'You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor,* and hate your enemy.*'                But I tell you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who mistreat you and persecute you,                that you may be children of your Father who is in heaven.               
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The 7 Hieromartyrs of Cherson
   

St. Ephraim came from Amidene and was a count when Justinus the Thracian was reigning in 518. He came to Antioch to rebuild it because it had been destroyed by earthquakes for a second time. By royal command he was consecrated bishop by the people of Antioch in 527 as Meletios writes and as it had happened in times of old with Ambrosios of Mediolana (Milan) and Nectarios of Constantinople. Ephraim was a great enemy of the Monophysites. So, he wrote strongly against them, as Photios says. He heard that there was stylite monk in Hierapolis who was a follower of Severus the monophysite. So, he was moved by holy zeal, went to him and started teaching him the orthodox faith. But he was not at all convinced by his words. He only said: "Let us both get into the fire and whosoever is not harmed by the flame is orthodox and victorious." He said these words in order to scare the Patriarch away. But Ephraim said: "Bring here wood and fire and I shall get into it resting all my courage on omnipotent God. So, you, too, descend from your pillar." But he did not want to come down. Then, the Patriarch took his overcoat off, prayed and threw both himself and his overcoat onto the fire. Miraculously the fire was immediately put out and he and his overcoat remained unharmed and unburnt. When the stylite saw this miracle, he came down from his pillar and anathematized Severus' heresy. Thus, he was united with the catholic Church. These things are told by Sophronios, Patriarch of Jerusalem. Because Antioch had been ruined by earthquakes for a second time, as we have said above, the fear of earthquake made every Christian write on his homedoor these words: "May Christ stand with us." So, because of this Antioch was called Theoupolis (God's city) as Nicephoros relates in book xvii of his history. Emperor Justinus weeped a lot over the destruction of Antioch. St. Ephraim ministered his flock well and in a way pleasing to God for eighteen years according to Meletios and then departed to the Lord.

Apolytikion in the Plagal of the First Tone:
Since Thou hast given us the miracles of Thy holy Martyrs as an invincible battlement, by their entreaties scatter the counsels of the heathen, O Christ our God, and strengthen the faith of Orthodox Christians, since Thou alone art good and the Friend of man.

Source: http://www.goarch.org

Read lives of other Saints - http://www.truechristianity.info/en/saints_en.php


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