Friday, September 5, 2014




       In the Holy Orthodox Church, we not only are exposed to many prophecies but, on a regular basis,  we even utter them ourselves, often without being aware.  Speaking of the future, the following prophecy is spoken by all of us when we say the Sacred Creed.  “An He (Christ) shall come again in glory to judge the living and the dead.”  Christ being the Logos of God is perfect God and became perfect man,  and He will be the Judge of the entire race of man, and who is  able to escape this judgment? Fulfillment of this prophecy is unescapable and should be very important to us.

But when? It doesn’t matter, for with each of us,  our own death is the first step toward our judgment by the Lord. This brings the final  judgment very close to us, about a hundred years or so. The important thing when this day comes will be ourselves and our conscience. Do I have complete faith in the Lord? Did I keep His commandments? Do I pray to Him? In the morning? In the evening?
     If we had no real communication with God while in this world, we certainly will find our souls naked and destitute on that fearful day, resulting in our being cast into outer darkness as the Lord has warned us.

     However, our Lord Jesus Christ is compassionate and merciful and filled with forbearance toward man. So let us look a t a good judgment from Him that would cause us to enjoy the beauty and majesty of the kingdom of heaven forever. How can we achieve eternal life and the kingdom as we escape the judgment that can cast us into outer darkness.

     Christ makes the difficult easy and the impossible possible.”Come uno me all you that labor and are heavily laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me; for I am meek and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light " ``(Mat.11:29-30

    If we approach him in genuine faith , determined to follow Him, he will smooth the path and guide us gracefully to the prize of victory.  His commandments are simple and easy to keep if we are inclined toward what is good. Also if we fall into a violation and sin  repentance is made available to us. But if we live only for the flesh and its desires, we will never enter the kingdom of God. For with such a  reward  as eternal life and eternal joy, we must be willing to make some small sacrifices.

     Sin and lawlessness separate us from Christ, while love of His law and obedience to His commandments unite us to Him.  A few examples show the justice found in His commandments.
“Do unto others as you would have them do to you.” Do not lie or bear false witness. Do not steal or cheat another. Do not commit fornication but wait for marriage. Do not commit adultery.  These are a few only, and they can be kept along with all the other commandments, for Christ makes it easy. The beauty of not stealing and lying transforms us as does the beauty of honorable marriage and faithfulness in marriage. It transforms us from sinners to righteous, from a miserable life to a life of happiness and from the fear of eternal punishment to the strong hope of eternal life. Even the great Moses speaks about the two paths, one of life and one of death, and he advises, choose life that you may live.

Let us never forget we make the choice of good or evil, life or death, punishment or reward.. Let us not tempt the Lord by assuring ourselves that one day we will choose the better way, for we do not know the number of our days on earth.

     We will all live for ever, either a good life or the  bitter misery of the second death, according to our choice. Let us finally consider the time that the good eternal life lasts and the time of eternal punishment. We have difficulty in considering “forever,”  because we were born and live and die in time. But think of the sun standing still as well as the moon and stars. Let all movement on earth come to a halt and we are beginning slightly see eternity.  For time is generally measured by motion, such as earth on its axis and its journey around the sun. When time stands still, there is no tomorrow or yesterday but only today! The Church speaks in a resurrectional sense, crying out: Today Christ is risen! Today the virgin gives birth to the transcendant one! Today is the crowning of our salvation! Today Christ welcomes us all into the day that has no evening being eternal and endless life!

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