The Seven Heavenly Virtues

Sep 19, 2020 0 comments

What are the 7 Heavenly Virtues and what do they mean

Virtue is affirmatively agreed to be a habitual and firm disposition to do the good. When Pope Gregory defined the seven deadly sins that we should avoid, he also included a counter-balancing set of values that we should espouse and adopt. These values were identified and know as seven heavenly virtues. These virtues are chastity, abstinence/temperance, liberality/charity, diligence, patience, kindness and humility. After Pope Gregory released his list of seven deadly sins in AD 590, the seven virtues became pronounced and practising them is said to protect one against temptation from the seven deadly sins

1) Chastity - Not doing unlawful sexual intercourse - First Heavenly Virtue

Merriam Webster dictionary defines chastity as abstention from unlawful sexual intercourse or abstention from all sexual intercourse e.g. The priest took a vow of chastity. Chastity in simple terms is a deliberate choice not to engage in any form of sex or its related acts. A chaste man/woman will not have a partner or practice activities that defile his/her body. Chastity also involves inward purging and total cleansing from all filthiness that has stained us. Living a holy life therefore must be the focus of every Christian that is thinking of heaven. The Bible says without holiness no man will see the Lord.

2) Abstinence/Temperance - Not doing sin - Second Heavenly Virtue

This is the practice of restraining oneself from indulging in something, typically alcohol or sex or generally sin. It is constant mindfulness of one's surroundings; practicing self-control, abstention, and moderation in all things. It can simply be said that it involves intentional staying away from something. As a heavenly virtue, abstinence is directly staying away from sin, evil and every form of wickedness that can hinder us from having mutual fellowship with God, God’s people and fellow human on Earth. It is a crucial and important virtue for heaven.

3) Liberality/Charitymeans generosity - Third Heavenly Virtue

It is the willingness to give and a product of nobility of thoughts or actions. In simple terms, a liberal man/woman will be known to give to people. He or she gives out to the needy the widow and the people around is the community. Liberality is an important heavenly virtue because God showed us an example of being liberal by giving out his only son to save humanity. To be able to be in heaven with God, we must be able to show this virtue here on earth. Giving is good but give liberally is better. We must be a giver at all times to show that we understand the value of liberality. It must be a culture and a way of our life to fulfil the heavenly virtues.

4) Diligence -  careful and persistent work - Fourth Heavenly Virtue

Diligence is the opposite of laziness. It is a function that governs an individual's attitude towards his approach in undertaking task and activities. Diligence involved being hardworking and determine to achieve a particular task all work assignment. As an aspect of heavenly virtues, it focuses on the determination of an individual to be persistent in actualizing something, most especially the day-to-day livelihood that qualifies us for heaven. It is another word for zeal and expresses careful nature in one's actions and work, budgeting one's time and monitoring one's own activities to guard against laziness.

5) Patience capacity to accept or tolerate delay - Fifth Heavenly Virtue

This cut across forbearance and endurance through moderation. Resolving conflicts peacefully, as opposed to resorting to violence. It is also the ability to forgive or to show mercy to sinners. Patience is a unique virtue that every Christian believer should have. Patience and endurance work hand in hand. A patient's believer will continuously wait for the promises of God available in the scriptures. He or she will not because of the challenges around, change in his or her conviction. The hope that our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ is coming back wholly lies in the ability to be patient with the fulfilment of God's word. Christians therefore must be patient to get all that has been promised for us.

6) Kindness - the quality of being  and generous - Sixth Heavenly Virtue

Kindness is inward compassion from an individual towards another. It is the source of benevolence and sympathy without thinking of self-benefit. It eradicates self and put on others-first attitude. It brings about friendship and it is full of love and charity. Kindness is the total opposite of wickedness. When one is kind to another, he or she never thought of doing evil in any form or wish that evil come on the other. A kind individual does not hold grudges and easily forgives no matter the level of offence done to him. Our lord is so kind that He forgives us of our sins. He admonished us to forgive others as he has forgiven us. We must exhibit or show this lifestyle of kindness by living with everyone around us in peace and showing them the love of God towards us all.

7) Humility is the quality of being humble - Seventh Heavenly Virtue

This is a form of modest behaviour, selflessness, and the giving of respect. Giving credit where credit is due; not unfairly glorifying one's self. Humility and entails the ability to respect those in authority and our fellow man. It is the total opposite of pride and self-gratification. A humble man will value the opinion of others and will not suppress their will. Humility is an essential value most especially as expected of all leaders and people of rank-and-file. Jesus Christ humbled himself, took the form of Man just to redeem us, how much more are we expected to leave a full life of humility and sobriety.

These seven heavenly virtues when kept and allowed to become part of our lives will keep us from being guilty of any of the seven deadly sins. 2 Peter 1:3 makes us understand that we have been called to virtue. It said, “According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:” In everything you do, always ask yourself if you are keeping all of these heavenly virtues.

Also read - 

Seven Deadly Sins In The Bible

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