Archive for the ‘parables’ Category

Thoughts on the Scriptures – 38th (33nd) Saturday after Pentecost

Saturday, February 16th, 2008

In today’s Gospel reading, our Lord tells us a parable about the importance of continual, persistent prayer. We saw this same lesson in action in the few Sunday Gospels, when both the blind man and the woman of Canaan persistently cried out, “Son of David, have mercy on me,” despite all manner of reproofs. Now, we hear the same lesson directly from the mouth of our Lord.

How are we to understand this parable? Are we to think of God as an unjust judge who hearkens unto us only because we trouble him? Certainly not – rather, our Lord is using an earthly example to teach us a lesson about God. We cannot understand God’s perspective, so we are presented with a human perspective. And truly, if even the unjust judge avenged the widow eventually, “shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?” We may not understand God’s actions in our lives, and we may not be able to see the answers to our prayers because our eyes are clouded by sin – but we know by faith that God does hear our prayers, and that prayer itself unites us closer to him. For this reason, we must cling to prayer, praying persistently in season and out. St. James tells us, “Draw near unto God, and He will draw near unto you,” and instructs that we pray to God always – giving thanks and glory to him in good times, and beseeching his help in bad times. And we know that he will hear us.

Tomorrow’s Gospel reading, about the publican and the pharisee, will tell us more about prayer – it will show us how to pray. Remarkably, the first words in the Lenten Triodion – the book of hymns and prayers for Great Lent – are “brethren, let us not pray….” They go on, of course: “Brethren, let us not pray as the pharisee.” (We will sing these words at tonight’s Vigil Service.) In other words, let us not pray in a prideful manner, giving thanks for our supposed virtues, but let us rather emulate the humility of the publican, the blind man, and the Canaanite woman, crying out, “Lord, have mercy!”

Reading:
Luke 18:2-8

2 There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: 3 And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. 4 And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; 5 Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. 6 And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. 7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? 8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?

Share

17th Saturday after Pentecost – Matthew 25:1-13 – Parable Of The Ten Virgins

Sunday, January 27th, 2008

LISTEN NOW

The Parable of the Ten Virgins is also appointed for Holy Equal to the Apostles Nina, Enlightener of Georgia. She is remembered Jan 14/27. This day fell on a Sunday in 2008.

Matthew 25:1-13 Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom. {2} And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. {3} They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them: {4} But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. {5} While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. {6} And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. {7} Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. {8} And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out. {9} But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves. {10} And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. {11} Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. {12} But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not. {13} Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh.


If the “LISTEN NOW” link does not work, copy this URL into your browser:
http://www.orthodox.net/sermons/pentecost-saturday-17_2008-01-27+parable-of-the-ten-virgins+aquiring-the-holy-spirit_matthew25;1-13.m3u

If this file does not work for you, try the direct link to the actual mp3 file:
http://www.orthodox.net/sermons/pentecost-saturday-17_2008-01-27+parable-of-the-ten-virgins+aquiring-the-holy-spirit_matthew25;1-13.mp3


RSS feed of Sunday and some weekday homiliesRSS feed of Sunday and some weekday homilies:http://feeds.feedburner.com/OrthodoxChristianSermonsOnTheGospelsEpistlesAndOtherTopics

Archive of Audio and text homilies:http://www.orthodox.net/sermons

Share