For God, He said, gave us understanding, that we might chase away all ignorance, and have the right judgment of things, and that using this as a kind of weapon and light against all that is grievous or hurtful, we might remain in safety. But we betray the gift for the sake of things superfluous and useless.
-St. John Chrysostom, Homily 20 and 21 on Matthew 6, 4th Century
Unless the grace of God comes to the help of our frailty, to protect and defend it, no man can withstand the insidious onslaughts of the enemy nor can he damp down or hold in check the fevers which burn in our flesh with nature's fire.
-St. John Cassian, Conferences, Conference Two: On Discernment, Paulist Press pg. 74, 5th century
And let me beg you to consider how he everywhere sets down these two points;His part, and our part. On His part, however, there be things varied and numerous and diverse. For He died for us, and farther reconciled us, and brought us to Himself, and gave us grace unspeakable. But we brought faith only as our contribution. And so he says," "by faith, unto this grace"What grace is this? tell me. It is the being counted worthy of the knowledge of God, the being forced from error, the coming to a knowledge of the Truth, the obtaining of all the blessings that come through Baptism. For the end of His bringing us near was that we might receive these gifts. For it was not only that we might have simple remission of sins, that we were reconciled; but that we might receive also countless benefits...A person has acquired rule and glory and authority, yet he does not stand therein continuously, but is speedily cast out of it. Or if man take it not from him, death comes, and is sure to take it from him. But God's gifts are not of this kind; for neither man, nor occasion, nor crisis of affairs, nor even the Devil, nor death, can come and cast us. out of them. But when we are dead we then more strictly speaking have possession of them, and keep going on enjoying more and more.
-St. John Chrysostom, Homily 9 on Romans 4, 4th Century
A brother, more thrifty than covetous, ... left behind him at his death a hundred pieces of money which he had earned by weaving linen. ... a council was held as to what should be done [with the money] ... However, Macarius, Pambo, Isidore and the rest of those called fathers, speaking by the Spirit, decided that they should be interred with their owner, with the words: "Thy money perish with thee."
-St. Jerome, Letter 22 to Eustochium
The truth is that people are frightened of being poor because they have no faith in Him who promised to provide all things needful to those who seek the kingdom of God (cf. Matt. 6:33). It is this fear that spurs them, even when they are endowed with all things, and it prevents them from ever freeing themselves from this sickly and baneful desire. They go on amassing wealth, loading themselves with a worthless burden or, rather, enclosing themselves while still living in a most absurd kind of tomb.
-St. Gregory Palamas, To the Most Reverend Nun Xenia no. 32, Philokalia Vol. 4 edited by Palmer, Sherrard and Ware; Faber and Faber pg. 305, 14th century
We advance toward humility by means of trials. He who rests on his virtue without suffering tribulation has the door of pride open before him.
-St. Isaac of Syria, Homily 57, in Ascetical Homilies, p. 283, 7th century
There is none who has tasted Godís richness and does not regard money as dung; none who has enjoyed the company of angels, none who has gotten drunk with their rapture, none who has shared their secrets, who does not hate the world and its intrigues. There is none whom the love of Christ has pierced who can any longer bear the filth of abominable lust; none whose mind has been captivated by Godís beauty who can be captivated by any passions of this world; none who has found God and known Him who has not proudly forgotten this world. These precious stones he collects and keeps in the treasure of his heart.
-St. John of Dalyatha, Homily on the Greatness of the Rank of Angels, Unknown