суббота, 12 декабря 2009 г.

Miracles of Christ on the Sabbath Day

Miracles of Christ on the Sabbath Day

                      9 December 1979



In the name, of the Father, of the Son and of the Holy Ghost.


Time and again we read in the Gospel of the anger which the Lord Jesus

Christ provoked by performing an act of mercy, a miracle of healing on

a Sabbath day. And we cannot help asking ourselves a question: Why did

He  do  it so constantly, so persistently, with such insistence? Could

it  be  to  challenge those who surrounded Him? Could it be to provoke

them? Could it be simply a pedagogical action?


I  believe  that  there  is  a great deal more in His action. The Lord

created  the  world  in  six days; on the seventh day He rested of His

toils  and  labours.  But what happened to the world then? The seventh

day  was  the  day  when  the  world  came into the hands of man to be

brought  to  its  fulfilment and to its completeness; the seventh day,

the  Sabbath of the Lord is the day of man. The whole of human history

falls  in  that  day.  But God did not leave man to work alone; as the

Lord  Jesus  Christ says in the Gospel, as reported by Saint John, My

Father  still  works,  He  shows His work to His Son for Him to fulfil

them.  And  in  another  passage  He teaches us, He tells us that His

judgment is true because it is not His judgment; He hears the words of

the Father and that is the judgment He pronounces.


And  so,  History is the day of man, but man is called to be guided by

the  wisdom, by the love of God. It is because we are so often seeking

for  our own ways, it is because we do not ask ourselves what is God's

way  in  one situation or the other that the world has become so ugly,

and  so  frightening,  and  so  tragic.  There  is  a Hebrew poem that

describes  the  misery of this world into which man does not bring the

love  of  God; it says, Man has ceased to believe in God and love has

departed  this  world.  Men  have  hanged  themselves in forests, have

drowned  themselves  in lakes, in rivers. Heaven is no longer mirrored

in  the  lakes,  in  the  woods; the bird does no longer sing songs of

paradise,  and  the  Prophet himself on his pedestal has become a mere



Is  this  not  what we have become? Not statues, but so much alike the

wife  of  Lot who turned back and who became a statue of salt. We have

remained  salt,  and yet, we are petrified, immobile, we do not fulfil

on  earth  this  function of ours. And Christ shows us, by working His

miracles,  His acts of love and of compassion on Sabbath day, time and

again,  He  Who  is  the  only true Man, the only Man who is in total,

ultimate  oneness  with  God,  what  our  part  should be: take on the

history  of  mankind,  take every situation in which we or others find

themselves, and carry them on our shoulders, in an act of mercy and of

love.  A  Western  writer has said that a Christian is one to whom God

has  committed  the  care  of  His  world  and of other people. Are we

discharging  this basic central commission of ours, do we care? We may

care with tenderness, we may care sternly, but we must care. And then,

this  seventh  day  when  God in His mercy and love has committed this

world  to  our care, still can yet become the day of the Lord. And the

City  of  man  which is been built without God, which so often is like

the  Tower of Ваbel, may still unfold and attain the greatness and the

holiness  of  the City of God in which the Lord Jesus Christ, true God

but  also  true  Man,  is called to be a citizen, the heart of it, but

also one of us.


Is  not  this call great enough? Is not God's faith in us sufficiently

inspiring?  Are  we  going  to defeat His hope, to reject His love for

ourselves  or  for  others?  Or are we going to learn from the ways in

which  Christ fulfils His human vocation in the day of the Lord? Shall

we not learn from Him, and together with Him build the world which God

has  dreamed,  has  willed  and is still loving in His distress and so

often in our betrayal of Him!


Let us learn to love one another actively, bear one another's burdens,

listen  to  the Living God when He speaks, listen with all our energy,

look  into  His  ways  and  be those who fulfil His will and bring the

world to the perfect beauty He has willed for it! Amen.




 * All texts are copyright: Estate of Metropolitan Anthony of Sourozh


           Metropolitan Anthony of  Sourozh Library


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