On Demonic Opposition

Zec. 3:1-3 And the Lord showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the Angel of the Lord, and the Devil stood on his right hand to resist him. And the Lord said to the Devil, The Lord rebuke you, O Devil, even the Lord that has chosen Jerusalem rebuke you. Behold, is not this as a brand plucked from the fire?

St. John of Karpathos ca. 7th cent.

Keep in mind that high priest at whose right hand the devil stood, opposing all his good thoughts and words and actions (cf. Zech. 3:1). Then you will not be astonished at what happens to yourself. (For the Encouragement of the Monks in India 74)

On When Our Angels Withdraw From Us

St. John of Karpathos ca. 7th cent.

Then the devil left Him, and angels came and ministered to Him’ (Matt. 4:11). It does not say that the angels were with our Lord during the actual time when He was being tempted. In the same way, when we are being tempted, God’s angels for a time withdraw a little. Then, after the departure of those tempting us, they come and minister to us with divine intellections, giving us support, illumination, compunction, encouragement, patient endurance, joyfulness, and everything that saves and strengthens and renews our exhausted soul. As Nathanael was told, ‘You will see the angels ascending and descending upon the Son of man’ (John 1:51); in other words, the ministry and assistance of the angels will be given generously to mankind. (For the Encouragement of the Monks in India 73)

On the Power of Love and Faith in the Soul

St. John of Karpathos ca. 7th cent.

When the soul leaves the body, the enemy advances to attack it fiercely reviling it and accusing it of its sins in a harsh and terrifying manner. But if a soul enjoys the love of God and has faith in Him, even though in the past it has often been wounded by sin, it is not frightened by the enemy’s attacks and threats. Strenghtened by the Lord, winged by joy, filled with courage by the holy angels that guide it, encircled and protected by the light of faith, it answers the malicious devil with great boldness: ‘Enemy of God, fugitive from heaven, wicked slave, what have I to do with you? You have no authority over me; Christ the Son of God has authority over me and all things. Against Him have I sinned, before Him shall I stand on trial, having His precious Cross as a sure pledge of His saving love towards me. Flee far from me destroyer! You have nothing to do with the servants of Christ.’ When the soul says all this fearlessly, the devil turns his back, howling aloud and unable to withstand the name of Christ. Then the soul swoops down on the devil from above, attacking him like a hawk attacking a crow. After this it is brought rejoicing by the holy angels to the place appointed for it in accordance with its inward state. (Philokalia Vol I, pg. 304: Texts for the Monks of India 25)