Sunday's Thoughts
by Alice-Alexandra-Sofia
 

April_2012

 

The Perception

Lazarus

Χριστος Aνεστη!
Christ is Risen!

The Trust

The Thirst



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91. Sunday, April 1, 2012

 The Perception

 

…the ways of the ungodly are darkness; they understand not how they stumble.…

{Proverbs 4:19}

 

 

In the Books of the Old Testament, darkness always accompanies ungodliness. The broad term ungodliness refers to many attributes of those who committed themselves to the evil and sinned against God and against the people.

There is a distinction between an ordinary sinner and the ungodly one, or as St. John the Apostle writes {1 John 5:16–21}, there are some sins not leading to death, the sins, which can be forgiven because of people’s prayer.

St. John’s Epistle also contains especial warnings {1 John 3:9–18; 5:21} against

a/ lies, which are distinguishing feature of the children of the arch–evil

b/ hatred, which St. John equates with murder; hatred deprives those who harbor it of the everlasting life

c/ idols, from which the mind should be guarded.

The Books of the New Testament {e.g., Matthew 22:36–40; Mark 12:28–34; Luke 10:25–37; John 8:42–44; 1 John 3:9–15; 4:7–21} allow inference that the sins, which lead to death, are violations of two greatest commandments – love to God and love to the others. Idol–worshipers who reject God and go after idols commit deadly sin against God; lies and hatred equated with murder are deadly sins against the people.  

Before the chosen nation entered the Promised Land, Moses the prophet provided the definition of sins–violations of the law of God, mentioned abominations of the idol–worshiping nations, which must be avoided, and warned of the consequences, which the sinners inevitably encounter {e.g., Leviticus, Chapters 19–20; Deuteronomy, esp. Chapters 6, 7, 10, 27–30}.

After Moses, other prophets sent by God continued to explain the reasons of sinner’s suffering and devastation; they attempted to turn the sinful mind to understanding of Moses’ warning: choose life and live by the law of God, or reject God and die in calamities, sorrows, shame, slavery, and suffering, which are the natural end of every evil one, especially idol–worshiper {e.g., Isaiah 1:1–31; 2:5–21; 44:9–20; Ezekiel 8:1–18; 14:6–20; Hosea 4:1–14; 7:8–16; Micah 6:8–16; Zephaniah 1:1–18; 2:1–14; 2:1–4; Zacharias 5:1–4; 7:9–14}.

The summary of the Books of Prophets allow conclusion that the ungodly one is the one who deliberately becomes the apostate and idol–worshiper, rejects knowledge of God, and rebels against God by violating His law. The ungodly one perverts and corrupts own nature as well as the nature of other living beings; he kills, deceives, robs, and enslaves the others for the sake of money and worldly power, as well as for the sake of achievement of any of own purposes. 

The ungodly ones are the people who

 

committed themselves to the evil

↓     ↑

intentionally violate the law of God

(accomplish the deeds prohibited by The Ten Commandments)

↓     ↑

live by false, deceit, and hatred, in immorality and corruption

↓     ↑

commit crimes against God and against His creations.

 

So, why ungodliness leads to death?

The essence of the law of God is the Absolute Good, which the mind perceives as love. Two greatest commandments – love your God, and love your neighbor as you love yourself – are the manifestations of the universal law, which will stay even when the heavens and the earth vanish, and which Lord God Jesus Christ came to accomplish. The Holy Scriptures are all about the Word–God, because the knowledge of the Word–God makes possible homecoming for the lost ones. This knowledge is the road to God the Father, the way leading to salvation and immortality. When the Word–God becomes the στερεωμα*1*  – the foundation and the inner essence of the human soul–heart–mind, the Holy Spirit – the Almighty Omnipotent Life–giving Power of God the Father – comes and transforms the mortal being into the immortal creation capable to withstand the presence of God the Father and to dwell with Him forever. The knowledge of God the Father, the knowledge that Lord Jesus Christ defined as the eternal life, is the essence of new creations that God the Father creates by His Word, for the eternity with Him {cf.: Matthew 5:17–18; 22:36–40; Luke 21:33; John 5:38–47; 14:1–27; 17:James 1:18, 21–25; Revelation 21:3–7; 22:1–5}.

For development of the ability to accommodate the knowledge of the eternal life, Lord God Jesus Christ gave His disciples the new commandment – the commandment of the perfect love – the love without fear, confusion, and sorrows, which transforms man into the temple of the living God: the Christians should love each other as God loves them. God dwells in those who love each other, and those who love each other dwell in God {John 13:34; 14:23; 15:4, 9–17; 1 John 4:7–21}.

Consequently, a human essence/soul–heart–mind created after the image and likeness of God Who is the Perfect Love, lives only if and when it is in compliance with the law of Love {The Ten Commandments and the new Commandment of the Word–God – Exodus 20:1–17; Matthew 22:36–40; John 13:34–35; 15:10–13}.

Any sin committed by man begins with rejection of the good – love to God and love to the others. Only after love to God and to His creations is rejected, the one becomes able to rebel against God, to violate His law, and to inflict evil, suffering and death onto the others.

Any sin is rooted in the human mind: before man commits any deed, he thinks in accordance with a particular pattern of thinking, which he already accepted as appropriate way of thinking, because it is sanctioned by conscience. Then, he acts in accordance with particular patterns of acting, which he already accepted as appropriate ways of acting, because they are sanctioned by conscience.

The conscience is the natural attribute of the mind that has to pass through the world set for cognition of the good and the evil. If, figuratively, to liken conscience to the eyes of body, the prophets’ definition of the ungodly one as the blind wandering in darkness and perplexity becomes clear. Then, the one guided with right conscience, or the sense–perception of the good and the evil, might be compared with a traveler on the dark and dangerous road who has the Light {the Word–God – John 1:1–5, 9–10; 9:5} necessary to discern pits and other dangers, to avoid them, and to reach his destination.

Apostolic tradition likens conscience to “the voice of God in man”; Christian theologian refers to the conscience as to “a true teacher” [St. Thalassios the Libyan 1:71 in: The Philokalia 2:311 *2*].

As such, conscience might be seen as the necessary building block of temple of God within man, in which the Light of God shines and enlightens the mind, so it discerns the good and the evil, finds the truth, and obtains the immortality {cf.: Matthew 6:22–23; Luke 11:34–36; John 1:1–5, 9–10; 3:19–21; 9:5; 14:23}.

Only if conscience is impaired and the meanings of good and evil are changed, man becomes able to sin*3*.

The thought justifying an evil deed is the root of sin. If conscience does not reject such a thought because of incompatibility with the law of God, such a thought originates words (e.g., lies, profanity, propaganda) and actions (e.g., deception, robbery, murder), with which it

 

negatively influences the world

negatively affects life of the others

kills the mind, which conceived it and embodied it into own words, actions, and creations.

 

Only compliance with the law of God enables His creation to receive life–sustaining power of God. Figuratively speaking, rejection of God is suicide of the mind, because such mind deprives itself of the life–sustaining knowledge/energy, and consequently, starves to death. Continuation of life is impossible for those who have nothing good and who are not able to supplement own insufficiency; they are useless for the works of the good similarly to worthless grass and withered branches, which are suitable only to be burned in due time {cf.: Matthew 13:13–15, 24–30, 36–43; John 15:1–6}.

However, the ungodly one can be very successful in accumulation of wealth and other achievements traditionally identified as success and measured by the material things – money, positions of the authority, etc. Then, his achievements disappear with his death or even during his life, if he is weaker than competitors and enemies who have similar mind and purposes, yet who control more reserves or have more effective power of coercion, weapons, and so on.

However, can the ungodly one be successful at all, if to consider his life in terms of virtues, righteousness, goodness, and the overall summary of positive influence onto the world and life of other beings?

What is the world of the one who serves the evil and who sins before God and before the people? What is this mysterious condition, which the prophets define as darkness, and why this darkness is inseparable from the ways of the ungodly? 

Ungodliness destroys the ability to perceive the presence of God and makes impossible to enter the eternity in which human being will dwell with God. The ungodly one transforms himself into the creature of darkness: he lives under the judgment of death which he obediently follows avoiding the path of salvation, he wanders in darkness because he turned away from the Eternal Light leading to God {cf.: John 1:9–11; 3:18–21; 1 John 1:5}.

Consequently, the descriptions left by the prophets {e.g., Isaiah 6:9–10; 42:20–23; 44:9–20; 59:2–15} allow inference that after men separated themselves from God, their condition might be identified as the void of wisdom and inability of spiritual perception necessary for discrimination between the good and the evil. They become as pillaged and plundered people trapped in dungeon, as the prey of the hunters. They turn themselves into the pieces of the matter similar to the idols, which they serve: they have ears, yet they hear not; they have eyes, yet they do not see; they do not know how they stumble; they turn aside the mind from understanding; truth is taken away from them, and judgment departs from them. They wander as the blind who feel the wall; they expect enlightenment, yet walk in perplexity; in the daylight they are as in the night; they are as the dead among the living.

The meaning of darkness referred by the prophets is not a physical blindness. The one who rejects true God condemns himself to the spiritual blindness, which makes impossible discrimination of good and evil: his inner vision can be sufficient only for perception of the physical parameters of the temporal matter (light, space, mass, physical dimensions, and other properties of the matter). Instead of the fruits of wisdom (e.g., comprehension of the nature of things, understanding of the Past, knowledge of the Present, and perception of the Future), the ungodly mind is filled with false knowledge created by mythical and symbolical imagination; it lives within the unreal world of false beliefs, myths, and phantoms, in fear and confusion. Moreover, it perceives his imaginary world as the reality, because there is no light of intelligence capable of discerning between the good and the evil, between truth and false, firstly, because there is no love to God and to His creations.

In summary, it might be said that the living dead of the Old Testament prophets is the one

 

who became similar to the senseless idols made by human hands from stone, wood, and other materials

{e.g., Psalm 134(135):15–18}

who dispossessed himself of conscience, of the ability of discrimination between good and evil

who is incapable of learning the knowledge of good

and perception of truth

who lives by figments of imagination and myths,

within the dead world created by the corrupted imagination inclined to evil

who is incapable of understanding the nature of things, the nature of the world

who is not able of understanding the threats and dangers

who does not decipher the omens of the coming disasters.

 

The living dead of the prophets is the one with moral blindness and deaf conscience, and therefore, with debilitated mind – he has no mercy, no love, no compassion, no understanding of needs and suffering of the others, no understanding of righteousness and justice. He is the walking piece of animated flesh, with the heart of stone and mind capable only of evil and fruitless of good...

And I think that although the knowledge of the inner world of the ancient idol–worshipers is lost, some of the properties of this world still can be inferred.

The ancient prophets waged the war against the greatest evil, which can be committed by man: apostasy, rejection of the true God. Apostasy makes death – the embodiment of the arch–evil – the main idol. The prophets spoke of the reality in which the apostates lived and the roots of their apostasy – contacts with the cursed nations, acceptance of their idols, and imitation of their manner of life {e.g., Isaiah 2:6–9; Ezekiel 16:44–52}; this reality was not different from the imagined after–life to which the cursed nations*4* condemned their souls.

For instance, do not the living dead described by the prophets wander through their life similarly to the dead within the blinding fog of the Phoenician inferno*5*, which makes impossible any perception and therefore, leaves no possibility to escape into the world of light?

 This world is controlled by the evil and therefore, condemned to death, yet, love of God enables its prisoners – the mortal creatures – to find the road into the eternity. If the Light of God is rejected, the blinding fog hides the approaching ruin and darkness covers the ultimate destruction…

 

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 Notes:

 

*1* Concerning στερεωμα, see

 

1/ Psalm 17(18):1–2:  Αγαπησω Σε, Κυριε ισχυς μου. Κυριος στερεωμα μου, και καταφυγη μου, και Ρυστης μου  {I love Thee, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my firmament, and my refuge, and my Deliverer – Psalm 17(18):1–2}

 

2/  The Foreknowledge, Folder 2012, Page February_2012

 

3/ Pattern #11, Folder Patterns.

 

*2* The Philokalia: The Complete Text Compiled by St. Nikodimus of the Holy Mountain and St. Makarios of Corinth. Trans. and ed. G.E.H. Palmer, Philip Sherrard, Kallistos Ware, with the assistance of the Holy Transfiguration Monastery (Brookline) Constantine Cavarnos, Dana Miller, Basil Osborne, Norman Russel. London:  Faber & Faber, 1979–1995.  4 vols.

 

*3* Only if conscience is impaired and the meanings of good and evil are changed, man becomes able to sin. That is why re–programming of conscience is the first task of those who enslave men and make them the absolute – unreservedly obedient – human weapon used for achievement of the others’ purposes, e.g., such as chase for the phantom of the absolute power, world–wide dominion, establishment of empires, intimidation, extermination of the adversaries. Concerning some techniques of conscience re–programming, see Ignatius of Loyola’s training for the members of his society of Jesuits (The Church Militants, Folder Political Theology, Page_3). This training evokes “paroxysm of conscience”; it results in substitution of the orders of man for the law of God, because it re–defines the meaning of the good and the evil, and makes possible the blind obedience to the will of the others – superiors (the main of these “superiors” is the pope – Prefect of the Inquisition, who pretends to stand on the place of God).

 

*4* Concerning cursed nations, see Folder Archive_2008–2010, postings: The Future, Note 2, Page September_2010, and The Curse of Cain, Page_5_2009.

 

*5* Concerning the Phoenicians’ inferno, see The Unknown Path, Folder Archive, Page October_2011, and Phoenician Civilization, in Philosophy: the Beginning, Folder Philosophy, Page_1.



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 92. Sunday, April 8, 2012

Lazarus

 

…And the glory of the Lord shall appear,

and all flesh shall see salvation of God,

for the Lord has spoken.…

{Isaiah 40:5}

 

April 7, 2012, was Lazarus’ Saturday. Next Sunday, April 15, will be the day of the Feast of Feasts – Resurrection of Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the Holy Pascha (Orthodox Easter).

On Lazarus’ Saturday, the Orthodox Christians commemorate the special event preceding the Holy Pascha – resurrection of Lazarus {John 11:1–44}: Lazarus of Bethany, the friend of Lord Jesus Christ, died, was buried, and after four days in the tomb, came back to life, when Lord Jesus Christ called him.

Lazarus became the living manifestation of the absolute power and glory of the Word–God. His resurrection marks the time when the ancient prophesy that “all flesh shall see the salvation of God” is to be fulfilled, and the dead ones have to hear the Son of God and come to life {Luke 3:6; John 5:21–28; 11:38–44; Isaiah 40:3–5}.

The story of Lazarus*1* conveys unprecedented revelation of the unlimited power of Almighty and Omnipotent God Who came into the world, which He created, to be recognized and followed by His very own creations. He came to actualize human faith in God, to release human beings from the slavery of sin, to save them by reconciling with God, to re–create them into new beings destined for immortality, to open the way to God the Father, and to lead them out of the world that became the nest of the arch–evil. Resurrection of Lazarus is the last logical point in the chain of events, which as the street lights shining in darkness illuminate the road that leads to the homeland of man – the Kingdom of God. These events – miracles of Lord Jesus Christ – were created to resurrect the dead, to open the eyes of the spiritually blind, to teach and enlighten the ignorant, to set free the slaves, to heal the sick, so they would see the actual nature of the world and recognize God in Lord Jesus Christ. Resurrection of Lazarus allows the glimpse into the omnipotence of the life–giving power of the Word spoken by God {cf.: Luke 6:17–19; 7:11–23; John 1:1–3, 9–13; 3:16–18, 36; 5:21, 24; 6:45–47; 8:31–36; 11:25–26; 14:1–11; 17:1–11; Isaiah 6:9–10; 40:5}.

Lazarus came back into the temporal world to become the visible–perceivable–physical proof of the absolute power of the Word–God over life and death. While he lived, he was the living breathing material manifestation of the power of God: because of him, many believed in Lord Jesus {cf.: John 11:39–47, 53; 12:9–11}. After he left this world through the threshold of physical death (as we all have), through his story, the following generations had the insight into the miracle of resurrection.

Similarly to the dead Lazarus, the soul must hear the call of God; then, it is empowered to come out of the tomb of the world set for cognition of the evil and controlled by the ultimate evil – death, and to enter the world of the living. The ability to hear the call of God enables to accept the Word–God, to perceive the life–giving power of God, to conquer the evil, and to do the works of God; this ability makes possible transformation of a mortal being of dust into the immortal being created by God to dwell with God {cf.: Genesis 3:19; John 1:12–13; 14:12–28; James 1:18; Revelation 21:3–7; 22:3–5}.

However, the eternal life begins here, within the world of death, while a human being still lives as the unity of spirit–flesh, or soul–mind–body, within the world measured by the parameters of the matter. The eternal life begins here, in this world destined to death, and this life is in the Son of God {1 John 5:11–12}: as the ancient prophet cried, “my soul has clung to dust, give me life according to Thy Word” {Psalm 118(119):25}*2*. Resurrection by the Word–God to the eternal life is

 

to hear the call of God

to perceive the presence of God

to discover within own soul–heart–mind

the true Source and foundation of life – the Word–God.

 

For instance, if the living dead (e.g., the idol–worshiper) turns to the good and rejects the evil, if he follows Lord Jesus Christ and observes His commandments, he is resurrected to eternal life, although his physical appearance remains the same and he has to pass through physical death – death of body.

And I think that importance of spiritual perception cannot be overestimated. Indeed, if to judge by sins, iniquities, and other evils committed by each human being, we all are dead, because everyone has sinned against the Love of God and against the others: we forget our eternal essence and attach ourselves to the lifeless dust destined to disintegration. From such point of view, it could be said that Lazarus’s story portrays the future of each human being destined to be resurrected to the eternal life with God. Lazarus came out form the tomb when he heard the call of Lord God Jesus Christ, the Word–God. In similar manner, when the human soul–heart–mind perceives the Word–God and realizes that the Word–God – the eternal LogoV – is the only natural essence of man, it comes

 

out of the blinding fog of lies, heresies, and figments of imagination,

with which our daily life is overfilled

out of the clutches of the ultimate evil that corrupts, perverts, and consumes the weak

who cannot resist the evil,

because they are not protected with knowledge of the good

out of the tomb of the temporal world of the matter controlled by death

into the new world of God.

 

However, to enter the feast of the eternal life, the one must be prepared; otherwise, he could be found unworthy and cast out. Preparation to the feast of God means spiritual purification: the one should reject the works of evil, begin life in dignity, righteousness and truth, and dedicate himself to the good, charity, and mercy according to the commandments of God and instructions of His Apostles {cf.: Matthew 22:8–14, 37–40; Mark 13:31–37; Luke 21:34–36; John 13:34–35; 15:12–13; 1 Peter 3:15–22; 2 Peter 3:9–14; 1 John 3:9–18; 4:7–21; 5:1–3}.

The Christian Orthodox tradition observes the last week before the Holy Pascha – the Feast of Resurrection – as the time of strict fasting and repentance, when the one should

– reflect on the entire life – the past, present, and future

– forgive those who sinned against him, made him to suffer, and inflicted harm on him and his loved ones

– ask forgiveness of God for all sins committed intentionally or unintentionally, voluntarily or involuntarily, by thoughts, words, and deeds, with or without knowledge of the actual essence of own words and actions and their consequences.

Then, the one is prepared to the Greatest Feast of Holy Pascha – the day when, by the mercy and love of Lord Jesus Christ the Son of God, everyone has been given a possibility to reject the evil and the chance to become the child of God: to enter the eternal life, and to dwell with God forever {John 3:36; 5:28–29; 1 John 5:1–5; Revelation 21:5–7}.  

 

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Notes:

 

*1* See also in Folder Archive: Lazarus (April_2011), The Portion (Page_3_2008–2009), The Stumbling Ones (Page April–June 2010), The Fallen Asleep and Unity and Division (Page_1_2008).

 

*2* See also in Folder Archive: The Deliverance, (Page January_March_2010), The Name of God (Page May_2011), The Immortality (November_2011).

 

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93. Sunday, April 16, 2012

Χριστος Aνεστη!

Christ is Risen!

 

 Lord God Jesus Christ said:

 

The one believing in Me has life everlasting.

I am the Resurrection and the Life;

the one believing in Me, though he die, he shall live,

and everyone living and believing in Me, shall not die for ever

{John 6:47; 11:25}

 

God gave us the everlasting life, and this life is in His Son. God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, so we might live through Him – as in Adam all die, so in Christ all shall be made alive {1 John 4:9; 5:11; 1 Corinthians 15:22}.

 

We, the Christians, celebrate the Holy Pascha – the day of deliverance, the day of resurrection of Lord Jesus Christ, the day when the Son of God, the Word–God, bestowed life everlasting to everyone who wants to live: He defeated death, and death is no more – Christ is risen…

 

 

Χριστος Aνεστη!

Αληθως Aνεστη!

 

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94. Sunday, April 22, 2012

 The Trust

 

…Cursed is man, who trusts in man and will lean his arm of flesh upon him,

while his heart departs from the Lord…

{Jeremiah 17:5–8}

 

 

In the beginning, God said: I am the Lord thy God, Who brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage; thou shall have no other gods beside Me; thou shall not make to thyself an idol, nor likeness of anything, whatever things are… thou shall not bow down to them, nor serve them, for I am the Lord thy God, a jealous God, recompensing the sins of the fathers upon the children, to the third and fourth generation to them that hate Me, and bestowing mercy on them that love Me to thousands, and on them that keep My commandments {Exodus 20:1–6}.

Jeremiah the prophet said: cursed is man who trusts in man and will lean his arm of flesh upon him, while his heart departs from the Lord. Such a man shall not see when the good comes; he shall dwell in the barren wilderness, in a salt land, which is not inhabited. But blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord shall be. And he shall be as thriving tree by the waters… he shall not fear in a year of drought, and he shall not fail to bear fruit {Jeremiah 17:5–8}.

St. John the Apostle conveyed words of the Word–God: I am the Vine, and you are the branches; he dwelling in Me, and I in him, this one bears much fruit.  For apart of Me you can do nothing {John 15:5}.

The referred above three texts of the Holy Scriptures

a/ reveal the main law that controls life and death of man

b/ underlie all patterns of life and death – blessings and curses as Moses told his tribesmen {Deuteronomy; esp. chapters 5, 6, 7, 11, 27, 28, 29, 30} – that describe development and degradation, prosperity and ruin, optimization and collapse of human establishments

c/ describe evolution of the human mind.

The main law that defines the human nature and controls life and death of man is maintenance of the direct connection of God with His creation: only from God man receives the power to live, to create, to accomplish the purposes of own existence including development–optimization of the world given into the dominion of man. It means that only God is the source of the power that make life possible, the center around which the human universe exists, the core–essence of human soul–heart–mind, and the focus of the spiritual and intellectual life of man. If the mind rejects God and His law, it deprives itself of the life–sustaining power and loses ability of evolution–development – own, as well as anything that it controls.

The Moses’ blessings and curses denote

1/ the indicators of evolution of the God–worshiping mind and its creations

2/ symptoms of degradation and collapse of the mind, which rejected God and became unable of survival and creation of good.

These indicators and symptoms allow identifications of patterns according to which the entire human history evolves.

Each new generation accepts the consequences of sins of its predecessors, adds own crimes and transgressions, and conveys its legacy – the increased burden of lawlessness and issuing mental and physical disorders and suffering – to the next one. The history looks mostly as the catalog of disasters and catastrophes of all scales:

 

ruin and collapse of the empires, states, religions, societies,

and other establishments

↓   ↑

corruption and crimes of the rulers and leaders

↓   ↑

corruption, crimes, diseases and suffering of human beings

↓   ↑

extermination of living beings, pollution, and devastation of the world

given into dominion of men.

 

However, life and evolution of human mind is ascent to and acceptance of the Word–God. The process of civilization of man is preparation for return to God; it began with establishment of the connection between God and His creation, and it progresses through cognition of God and development of the ability to perceive presence of God and accomplish His will. The road into immortality begins at the moment when the mind comprehends the main truth: there is only One God and His creation–human being, and nothing separates human being from God beside human being’s own sins {rejection of God and violations of His law – e.g., Isaiah 59:1–15}. The mind that cognizes this basic truth becomes unable of making idols and worshiping anything in the surrounding world of the matter

 

through which the human being has to pass for cognition of the good and the evil

in which the human being must choose the good

from which the human being has to exit at the moment of the homecoming – returning to God.

 

From another angle of consideration, it might be inferred that by focusing the human mind on its Creator, God triggers evolution of His creation: God establishes the foundation

 

on which the Word–God becomes  στερεωμα  of the human soul–heart–mind

on which His Own Temple is built

to which the Holy Spirit descends {Luke 12:49} transforming

the mortal creature of flesh into the immortal child of God

{Psalm 18:2–3; Luke 12:49; John 14:23; 1 Corinthians 6:19}.

 

A human being is not able to comprehend the ways and the purposes of God, yet, the Holy Scriptures written for instructions and guidance of the children of God allow comprehension of the purposes of human existence and provide criteria for evaluation of the progress at the road to God.

For instance, the law, which at the beginning the chosen people accepted with fear and started to learn because of fear of death and other “curses,” later, revealed itself as the law of the Perfect Love without fear and suffering {Deuteronomy 5:22–31; John 3:16–17; 15:12–13; 16:27; 1 John 1:1–7; 3:1–18; 4:7–21}. The law itself did not change {Matthew 5:17–18}: it is the same law of life and death by which a human being either lives or dies. The human perception of the law became different, because the human mind discovered the meaning of love, cognized love of God, and opened itself to the Perfect Omnipotent and All–forgiving Love. With acceptance of love of God, the understanding comes that the human being created into the image and after likeness of Omnipotent and Free God has no limits in love and cognition of the good (and therefore, creation of the good), has no limits of perfection, and has no limits of understanding of the world given into dominion of man.

However, all this understanding, which is the attribute of freedom promised by God to those who cognize His truth, comes only into the mind enabled to accommodate it – into the mind that loves God and worships only God in spirit and truth {John 4:24; 8:31–36}.

And I think that the history of mankind might be seen as the history of the unceasing war, the war between the minds that want to be free and the minds that want to enslave those who want to be free. This war encompassed all and everything; its battle–fields are everywhere, even the churches that should enlighten men with knowledge that leads to complete freedom became the slave houses, in which the idols and self–deified men usurped the place of God, and laws and rules of men took the place of the law of God.

For instance, recently, I have seen the picture: the embalmed body of deceased leader of the church, which identifies itself as the “Christian church,” is “enthroned” in the church, into which the people packed to see the deceased and to mourn departure of their “rock”; near the throne, on which the cadaver is placed, the monk in black garment is kneeling.

Furthermore, during funeral stampede, three sheep of this leader were crashed to death and more than one hundred injured. Some people expressed opinion that leadership of the deceased made the Christian Church look like a sect, while the others refer to him as the “spiritual leader” who left his subjects vulnerable and unprotected in the time of trial and persecution of the Christians.

However,

a/ should any of Christian churches have thrones as the symbols of the authority of church hierarchs {e.g., similarly to the son of perdition – 2 Thessalonians 2:3–12} and hierarchies, which are the attributes of secular political establishments?

b/ should any man be referred to as the “rock” if the Holy Scriptures {e.g., 1 Corinthians 10:4} refer to God as to the Rock?

c/ does anyone of true Christians need self–proclaimed “fervent supplicants for all before God,” “universal infallible leaders/teachers/shepherds,” etc., if there is only One God, if man must worship only God in spirit and truth, and if there is only one Mediator between God and His creation–man – the Word–God, Lord Jesus Christ?

d/ does not the cadaver on the throne (near which a human being kneels) in the church’s building embody the completed departure from everything for what the Christian Church stands for?

In general, the very nature of Christian Church is not compatible with doctrines and teachings of men, as well as with hierarchies and titles (all those “holinesses,” “graces,” “all–holinesses,” etc.), commercialization, politics, and struggles for the earthly power. In particular, the purposes of the Christian Church include maintenance of the Christian communities in the traditions established by the Apostles of Lord God Jesus Christ, spreading of the Gospels, and education of children and adults by explanation of the teachings given by Lord God Jesus Christ Himself. If the church claims to be the Body of God, she must obey only God, follow God’s teachings, literally and precisely adhere to His law, strictly observe His commandments, and instruct the people how to observe the commandments of God.

The Old Testament priests were the messengers of God: they existed for keeping the knowledge of the law and for instruction of men concerning the law of God {Malachi 2:7}.

The Apostles of God defined the duties and responsibilities of the New Testament priests {e.g., 1 Timothy; 2 Timothy; Ephesians 1:1–23}. These responsibilities do not include enthronement and establishment of sects and hierarchies, because there is only one Mediator between God and man, the only One Head of man and of the Christian Church, and the only Head of all rule and authority – Lord God Jesus Christ, the Word–God {1 Corinthians 11:3; Ephesians 1:22–23; 5:23–24; Colossians 1:17–20; 2:10; 1 Timothy 2:5}.

The Christian Church belongs to God:

 

Christian Church is possession of God Who is her only One Holiness,

One Divine Grace, Absolute Good, Absolute Power, Omnipotent Love, and Everything

Christian Church lives by God and there is nothing else within the Church

beside God and His creation–man

Christian Church is Εκκλησια – the gathering of the chosen ones in the presence of God –

she comes to life where two or three human beings are gathered together in the name of God

{Matthew 18:20}.

 

Only God is the Lord and the Master, the Teacher, the Shepherd, the Overseer of souls, the Leader of those who are called for freedom, the Everything of man. There is nothing and there is none beside God that would be capable of holding any authority within the Christian Church – the establishment of God that unifies God with His children purified and saved by the Precious Blood of the Son of God, Lord Jesus Christ, the Word–God.  If the mind comprehends this truth, does it need to rely on any man whatever title he claims, whatever authority he ascribes himself, and whatever throne he climbs?

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95. Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Thirst

 

…O God, my God, I cry to Thee early;

my soul has thirsted for Thee.…

{Psalm 62(63):1}

 

The prophet speaks {Psalm 62(63):1} of the special state of the soul – the thirst for God; this thirst is in so many times more than thirst of flesh (ποσαπλως σοι η σαρξ μου) in a barren and trackless and dry land!

What is this something that the prophet wants, without which he feels as someone who is lost in the barren desert where there is no life–sustaining water and there is no way out?

The prophet’s soul is thirsty for God and he seeks the presence of God.

Then, why man needs God? How the one can find God? What the one should do to find God?

Another prophet says: let us pursue comprehension of the Lord; He will come to us as the early and latter rain to the earth {Hosea 6:4}.

The prophet’s words become clear if to recall that at the time of creation, the plants sprang up after God rained on the earth, after man was created to cultivate it {cf.: Genesis 2:4–9}. Since, the rain is seen as a deliverer of life–creating power, because it brings water that awakes the seeds to life.

Therefore, the prophet speaks of coming into existence, and this origin of life happens with coming of God, when the human soul absorbs knowledge of God as the seed absorbs life–giving water that the rain brings {cf.: John 4:10–14; 7:37–39}.

A human being needs God because he wants to live, because the human soul is created for the eternity with God, and because this eternity opens only to those who are with God, and who are the possession of God – the very own children of God {cf.: John 1:1–4, 9–13; 3:5–7; 4:13–14; 7:37–39; 14:23; 17:1–3}.

Understanding that there is the life behind the end of physical life of a body already is the first step to the eternity – the normal mind seeks only things that do exist: the nature of human mind is the unity with God–Creator {cf.: John 17:2–3, 23–24}, and only in God the mind finds completeness of own life, wisdom, and happiness of accomplishment.

Consequently, the thirst of the prophet, which he perceives as the most intense desire in many times exceeding the thirst of a body deprived of water, is the longing for God, longing for the life that extends beyond life of a body dying in waterless desert. To become ready for this life, the human mind should realize that man is created into image and after likeness of Immortal Omnipotent Almighty Perfect God, Whose attributes perceivable for the human mind include the absolute good, perfect all–forgiving love, and limitless freedom of cognition and creation of the good. The image of God that any human being carries within enables cognition of God. With knowledge of God, the human essence (soul–heart–mind) evolves into the being capable of immortality; without knowledge of God, the human essence is not able of evolution–development necessary for the next phase of existence. That is why the prophet speaks of the thirst likening presence of God to the life–giving water without which there is no life. Such a vision prepares the mind for understanding of the words of God concerning life–giving water that He gives His people, and allows comprehension of the human essence as a seed within the earth (body/flesh/matter) – the seed that comes to life only with life–giving water – by the power of the Holy Spirit of God {cf.: John 4:10–14; 7:37–39; 14:16–17, 26}.

When the human mind seeks God, firstly, it seeks understanding of itself, the knowledge of own nature, and the nature of the world given into dominion of man. If knowledge of God that the human mind already has is not adequate to the optimal knowledge, which is the necessary condition for life within the current world and for life at the next stage of existence (eternal life in the presence of God: immortality), a human being perceives such insufficiency as the spiritual thirst. Then, it seeks this knowledge of God that is the eternal life and – if given and if enabled to perceive – absorbs it and comes to life {cf.: John 1:1–4, 9–13; 14:15–26; 17:2–3}.

Hence, the human soul–heart–mind is seen as a seed of a new creation that comes into existence by the Word of Truth {James 1:18}.

So, similarly to the seed sleeping in the soil until the rain brings life–giving water that empowers it to spring up to the sun, the human soul awakes to the eternal life only if it receives the Word–God that enables it to receive the Holy Spirit: the human soul–heart mind obtains the life everlasting if

 

the Word of Truth, that is the Word–God, enters it,

heals if from evil, sets it free from sin,

and gives it the knowledge of God the Father –

the knowledge that is the eternal life

the Holy Spirit – the Spirit of Truth, the Omnipotent Power of God,

descends to it transforming a mortal creature into a human child of God,

enabling (teaching) the mind to comprehend/absorb the knowledge of God,

and

empowering the human being to dwell in the perfect Love of God

and to enter the eternity with God

{John 1:12; 3:3–7; 7:37–39; 14:15–28; 15:4–6, 26; 16:13–16; 17:2–3;

1 John 4:6–21; 5:11–12}.

 

Also, it could be said that the essence of human life is the kingdom/dwelling of God in the human soul {cf.: Luke 17:20–21; John 14:23; 17:2–3}.

In summary, as a seed carries within a potential of the mighty tree, in similar manner the human heart–soul–mind carries a potential of the kingdom of God – the eternity with God.

However, some of seeds do not wake up: they become the living dead, because they did not evolve – they complete their earthly existence and disintegrate in the darkness of the soil/earth/world of the matter in which they were placed to become ready for acceptance of the Light. At the same time, some of seeds come to life and bear the plenty of fruit – the smallest seed can evolve into the mighty tree in whose branches the birds of heaven find refuge. The knowledge of God makes the difference between evolving/evolution and degenerating/ruin, between light and darkness, between freedom and slavery, between wisdom and foolishness, between the barren desert and plentiful thriving land, between a withered branch and the fertile vine, between life and death {cf.: Mark 4:26–32; Luke 17:20–21; John 1:1–4, 9–13; 3:16–21, 36; 8:31–36, 51; 9:5; 14:23; 15:4–8, 16}.

Life comes only with God, and each seed/human being, who is destined to become a human child of God/firstfruit of new creations made to dwell with God in His eternity, has to go through the same process/way – birth into the eternal life. The birth into the eternal life is also seen as salvation from death, as coming to the Light, or – according to the parable – as homecoming of the prodigal/lost son who eventually, after initial disobedience/rejection of the Father, consequent deprivation, hunger, and becoming the living dead, returned to his Father {in: Luke 15:11–32; John 3:3–7, 13–21, 36}.

The Holy Scriptures provide guidance for those who seek God; they identify the stages of the process of coming to eternal life, or steps on the way that leads home, to God.

For instance, Psalm 106(107), which tells story of the people redeemed by God, specifies the stages of redemption–coming into the eternal life. It describes spiritual deliverance and awakening to the spiritual life in simple words understandable for everyone who knows or who can imagine what does it mean to be thirsty in dry wilderness and to be lost and unable to find the road in the trackless desert.

The road to the spiritual (therefore, eternal) life begins with a plea to God, with the prayer for salvation, with acknowledgment of the Omnipotent Power of God, with expectation of His mercy, and with acceptance of God’s All–forgiving Love. Then, God feeds hungry and thirsty soul, heals it, sets it free, and leads it into the fertile and plentiful land (opens the mind to cognition of God that is to the highest wisdom of man), where it would live free and complete the earthly existence without spiritual thirst and hunger.

Therefore, the stages of the road to the eternal life might be seen as

1/ desire of knowledge of God and cognition of God {filling of hungry and thirsty soul–heart–mind – Psalm 106(107):5–9}

2/ liberation, deliverance from slavery {Psalm 106(107):10–17}, or illumination and redemption of the ignorant one from the enemy – the evil and sin. Only the soul–heart–mind filled with knowledge of God is enabled to distinguish between the good and the evil and to choose the good: cognition of knowledge of God sets free from slavery, because slavery is ignorance and susceptibility to the evil and sin (sin is violation of the law of God: the iniquity committed in ignorance or by own free will, and issuing inability to accomplish a particular purpose – the will of God – for accomplishment of which a particular being was created)

3/ acceptance of the Word–God Who is sent by God the Father to heal and to deliver from ruin the ones, who are brought low with their own iniquities, afflicted with ignorance, and dwell at the gates of death {Psalm 106(107):17–20}

4/ coming to peace and freedom from distresses and affliction, when the soul enters into the quietness, because it has received the greatest treasure of man – knowledge and love of God – and peacefully completes the road home in presence of God and under protection and guidance of God {Psalm 106(107):23–30, 35–38}.

In summary, the referred above texts of the Holy Scriptures delineate the influence of life–giving knowledge of God on the human soul–heart–mind:

 

filling–completeness of those who are insufficient

(those who have the thirsty soul)

setting the slaves free

(slaves because they are ignorant of the knowledge of God 

and, therefore, are under the power of evil and sin)

awakening of the living dead/ignorant to the everlasting life

{because the eternal life is knowledge of God the Father

and His Son, the Word–God, given by Lord Jesus Christ, the Word-God – John 17:2–3}.

 

Psalm 106(107) prepares the mind for comprehension of the words of Lord God Jesus Christ in which He speaks of the Life–giving Holy Spirit of God as of life–giving water, as of the Spirit of Truth, Παρακλητος (Consoler, Giver of comfort, courage, and peace), and Teacher of knowledge of God {John 4:10–14; 7:37–39; 14:15–19, 26; 15:26; 16:13}: the human soul is thirsty for the Holy Spirit of God, because only by God a human being lives, only in the peace of God it evolves into completeness of perfection, and only in the Light of God it finds the road home, to the Creator and Father.

Then, the essence of Christian teachings opens to the mind of the believer:

 

I am the Way and the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father except through Me {John 14:6}.

 

And I think that the cry of the ancient prophet reveals not only the deepness of despair of those who lived before coming of Lord God Jesus Christ; it provides the insight into the emptiness and darkness of life of those who have no God. Then, the commandment of God to imitate God’s mercy and perfection by loving those who live under the darkness of ignorance and slavery of evil {cf.: Matthew 5:38–48; Luke 6:27–38} becomes understandable – at least the one who loves them does not increase their burden of evil, therefore, suffering.

Then, what are the contemporary societies, which fervently pursue “liberation” of their members of remnants of knowledge of God: what they are able to give instead of knowledge of life? Such societies could provide everything for their members that is expected to silence the cry of the thirsty soul: plenty of idols of all types and scales, wealth, perversion, corruption, “delight of wickedness,” vice, narcotics, arts, loud music, thrillers, games, any kind of entertainment, fruits of imagination to enjoy, phantoms to chase, etc., etc., etc., yet still, they are miserable in their ignorance.  

Then, many human beings live in prosperity and apparent happiness without God: knowledge of God and observance of His commandments do not facilitate advancement and do not bring success within the societies established on the social Darwinism, habitual corruption, and other components of the culture of death. Atheism became the wide–spread religion sustained by the public education, which declared the war to God under the slogans of political correctness embellished with misinterpretations of the constitutional separation of the religion and the state.

In addition, the mixture of false doctrines (e.g., such as Darwinism, Freudism, political theology, Aristotelian democracy and its derivatives – socialism, Nazism, communism, etc., which in fact, are the contemporary embodiments of heathenism and which spread ignorance, intolerance, hypocrisy, bigotry, and perversion) formed official religions and cults of the numerous political, social, and religious establishments, groups, and individuals that attempt to substitute own idols for true God and to impose own idol–worshiping mentality onto all the others. Apparently, their followers do not suffer from the thirst for God; moreover, they do not correlate the contemporary crises in all spheres of social, political, financial, and cultural life with ungodliness of the societies, which they dominate.

However, nothing helps those who believe that they are able to live peacefully and prosperously without God.

If knowledge of God (therefore, the truth and the good) does not live in the soul–heart–mind, there is no life in it – it is the living dead. Only the living dead are capable of corruption and perversion, they commit crimes against God and against the living beings; they are responsible for suffering, diseases and premature death of many.

Whichever benefits and perks (including, for instance, euthanasia of the elderly and sick ones, corruption of children with public education, which is “deliberated” of God and consequently of knowledge of moral and physical virtues, righteousness, and sound judgment, subsidies of the mandatory “health care” based on drugs developed for rodents and other animals) the ungodly societies provide for their members, the eternal life is out of their reach…

As always, the choice is in personal discretion: come to God and live, or run from God and die…

 


 



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