Christ is risen! He’s truly risen! With that exclaim new-age is ushered in. In the matins preceding the divine liturgy we sing: “It is the day of resurrection! Let us shine forth in splendour for the festival, and embrace one another. Let us say: oh brethren, even to those, who do not love us; let us forgive all things in the resurrection, and thus, let us exclaim: “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling death by death, and bestowing life to those in the tomb.”
The gospel for the divine liturgy is one of the most gracious written. In a few theological strokes John takes as to the core of Easter (John 1:1 – 18). “In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God. All things were made through him and without him was not anything made that was made.” Christ, as God, cooperated with the Father to create the material and immaterial world. Christ is declared as God.
Yet, Christ is also fully man “in the word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth.” Christ fully embraced his creation and in so doing showed the true light that enlightened every man coming into the world. Christ is not only light but also life, the truth and the way. Anyone who believes in him is saved.
Salvation comes to all who genuinely endeavour to be followers of Him. As St John Chrysostom reminds us: the master is gracious and receives the last, even as a first. He gives rest to him, who rise at the eleventh hour, as well as to him who has laboured from the first. He is merciful to the one who delays, and nourishes the first. He gives also to the one, and to the other. He is gracious. He accepts the works, as he greets the endeavour. He all as a deed, and the intention he commends.” What a loving God.
The program for this week is as follows:
Thought for the week: from the matins of the resurrection service: “a sacred Pascha is shown to us today; a new holy Pascha and all venerable Pascha, a Pascha which is Christ the Redeemer; a spotless Pascha; a great Pascha ; a Pascha of the faithful; a Pascha which has opened to us the gates of Paradise; a Pascha sanctifying all the faithful” and “a Pascha of the light; a Pascha, the Lord’s Pascha; and all venerable Pascha has dawned for us; a Pascha on which, let us embrace one another with joy. Oh! Pascha, redemption from sorrow! For from the tomb today, as through a bridal chamber, Christ has shone forth, and filled the women with joy, saying proclaim it to the apostles.”
To next time.
Father John Athanasiou 0411 061 554