What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God? & Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Questions that must be answered. 5th Sun after Pentecost.

This Sunday the 1st Gospel reading was about the Healing of the Demoniac of the Gergesenes, and the 2nd Epistle, for the Royal Martyrs of Russia, from Romans. A general principle of scriptural exegesis is that we must answer all questions! St Paul asks: “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?” and then gives a long list of things that will not separate us – tribulation, distress, persecution, famine, nakedness, peril, or the sword. The demons who inhabited the man of the Gergesenes also asked a question :”What have we to do with thee, Jesus, thou Son of God?”, and in so doing, together with the people of the Gergesenes, provided an terrible “answer” to Paul’s question. Their reaction showed that how we react to Jesus is the only thing that can separate us from the love of Christ. These questions are of critical importance, and apply to us daily, moment by moment, whether we acknowledge them or not.

Holy Martyr Jacinthus (Hyacinth) Commemorated July 3. It is all because of holiness..

I read the lives of the Saints to inspire me and to show what I am not and what I should be. Who cannot be inspired by the super-human bravery of a TWELVE YEAR OLD BOY?

When I read the lives of the Saints, I often have a ?question? in my mind ? how could a person do such a thing ? have such bravery, endurance, humility, chastity, etc? The answer is always the same ? holiness. Or more properly, the ABSOLUTE, UNCOMPROMISING pursuit of holiness.

Would I have the courage to pray secretly when I knew being discovered would mean a terrible (in earthly terms) death? Yes, if I had faith and was holy….

Important stuff!! about morality in the Epistles read at the Vespers for Peter and Paul

In text format, also avail in Audio. Synopsis: A short exegesis of the 3 selections from the Epistles of the Apostle Peter, read at the Vespers for the feast of the Apostles Peter and Paul. The difference between their writings is explored. The Apostle Peter writes with simplicity and the conviction and wisdom that can only be gained by a life lived well, with many moral admonitions, based upon a deep understanding of what the God-man has done for us. It is like listening to your wise grandfather imparting his wisdom at the end of his life. He does not feel compelled to give detailed proofs, but he merely speaks with overpowering conviction because of experience. A few of verses from the selections are explored to illustrate this kind of “fireside chat” character of his writings. Those who are temped to call themselves Christians and still not heed the words of the Apostle ” abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul” should read the Apostle with greater care and humility. We are in an age that very much needs to heed the words of the Apostle Peter. There is also a short excursus into Peter’s restoration and how he was able eventually to say to His Lord, not only did he have affection for Him, but that He loved him with an all consuming, perfect love. This love is only possible if the admonitions of Peter are heeded.

Two things that made the Apostles great. “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God” & “Therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities”

Synopsis: Our Lord asked two questions of His followers – one completely unimportant, and takes up too much of our time, and the other is of priceless important and should take up all of our time. St Peter answered correctly, with conviction: “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” & This confession is part of what made the Apostles great. It is not a one-time answer, but must be answered with conviction, in all that we do. Our Lord told Peter that because of this confession, the gates of Hell would not prevail against the church. We examine this confession, and how the church endures. Part if the reason why the church endures is because of those who hold to the inner conviction the Apostle Paul had (and we must have): “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

Exegesis of Vespers readings for the Feast of the Apostles Peter and Paul. Differences between Peter and Paul

SYNOPSIS:A short exegesis of the 3 selections from the Epistles of the Apostle Peter, read at the Vespers for the feast of the Apostles Peter and Paul. The difference between their writings is explored. The Apostle Peter writes with simplicity and the conviction and wisdom that can only be gained by a life lived well, with many moral admonitions, based upon a deep understanding of what the God-man has done for us. It is like listening to your wise grandfather imparting his wisdom at the end of his life. He does not feel compelled to give detailed proofs, but he merely speaks with overpowering conviction because of experience. A few of verses from the selections are explored to illustrate this kind of “fireside chat” character of his writings. Those who are temped to call themselves Christians and still not heed the words of the Apostle ” abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul” should read the Apostle with greater care and humility. We are in an age that very much needs to heed the words of the Apostle Peter. There is also a short excursus into Peter’s restoration and how he was able eventually to say to His Lord, not only did he have affection for Him, but that He loved him with an all consuming, perfect love. This love is only possible if the admonitions of Peter are heeded.

Holy Apostles Peter and Paul. What defines the ministry of the Apostles? The life of the Apostles and the church is built upon the bedrock of the confession of faith.

Tommorow, June 29 on the church calendar, July 12 on the civil calendar, is the Feast of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul. Here is a homily which discussed the Great catch of 153 fish, that defines the ministry of the Apostles and what Peter’s confession really is. We must also have this confession!