by Fr. Dmitri, New Zealand
Saturday 27 November 2010 (18 Hathor; 18 Hatour):
Holy Apostle Philip
There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the
City of God, the Sanctuary of the habitations of the Most High.
You therefore must endure hardships as a
good solder of Jesus Christ.
(2 Tim. 2:3)
Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; fret not thyself
in any wise to do evil.
Prayer is expression of a longing to speak to God,
concealed in the depths of the soul.
(Heguman Pishoy Kamel)
Our treasure is to be sought in Heaven.
And whoever does not bear his cross and come after
Me cannot be My Disciple.
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven & earth.
Therefore our Saviour, lifted him to His kingdom,
and granted him the good things, which an eye has not seen.
Let us ponder on the unrighteousness of King Ahab, and on God's
punishment through the Prophet Elijah (1 Kings 16:17):
1. How Ahab gave himself utterly to idolatry and did that which
is evil in the sight of the Lord.
2. How the Prophet Elijah shut up the heavens by his prayers, and
there was no rain for three years.
' O thou enemy, thy destructions are come to a perpetual end, even as the cities which thou hast destroyed; thy memorial is perished with a roar.' (Ps. 9:7)
The adversary of the human race, the leader into error and the slayer of men from the beginning of time, has used every weapon and every scheme against man; he has set himself, day and night, to think out new weapons and schemes to lead even one man astray and to destruction, going about, 'as a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour'(1Pet.5:8).He hides like a poisonous snake and awaits his prey; he sets his web everywhere like a spider, only to catch some human soul and drag it down to his foul kingdom. Unbelievers were his cities.
Until the coming of Christ, he reigned in them unhindered and with an iron hand. The service of idols was service of him, fortune-telling and divination were service of him; perversion and debauchery of life among men were defended and encouraged by him; the sacrifice of human beings, the fire of the passions, discord, wars, evil-doing--all these were satisfaction to him.
But in the end, no weapons will remain to him, his cities will be destroyed and the memory of him will perish with a roar. This end spoken of by the prophet is the coming of Christ the Lord into the world. The Lord showed His power over the devil when overcoming his temptations on the mountain; He showed His might in driving demons out of men and commanding them to go this way or that; He showed His unconquerable lordship over sin and death by His Passion and Resurrection. And, what is perhaps most important, He harrowed Hell and scattered the power of the demons. It was not His will to annihilate the demons, but to scatter them and break their weapons, fragmenting and dispersing them. He released peoples from their domination; and, the greatest thing of all, gave men power over demons, that they might be able, by His name, to drive them out.
Do you see how the Lord linked His victory over the demons with His mercy towards men? He so weakened and broke them, confused and scattered them, that He put them under the power of men. Thus those who had been slaves became masters, and those who had been masters became slaves. The Lord did not give power over demons to all men, but only to those who believed in Him and kept His commandments. He gave them power, and gave them also a weapon--the Cross.
O Lord God, our Saviour from demonic power, help us also to fulfill that lest that Thou hast given us to perform.
To Thee be glory and praise, now and ever, unto Ages of Ages.
Evening: Psalm 68:11&35; Mark 3:7-21.
Morning: Psalm 145:10-12; Luke 6:12-23.
Liturgy: Rom. 10:4-18; 2 Pet. 1:12-21; Acts 3:1-16;
Psalm 19:1-4; Gospel: Matt. 10:1-15.
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