Monthly Archives

July 2005

2005, Articles, Raiati

Faith and Confession / 24.7.2005

In today’s epistle to the Romans: “if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you will be saved”. Here Paul summarizes the faith to be the belief in the resurrection of the Lord. He said this because the resurrection is the peak since it means the complete trust in Jesus and in what he inspired for us in his Gospel and in what the church passed onto us in dogma and worship. Other than the movement of the heart there are all the truths of the inspiration: The Trinity, the incarnation, the Holy Spirit, the Church, the sacraments and “the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come”.

The church reveals these things through teaching and preaches you with them so that they enter your heart and mind together, and these two are not separated in orthodoxy. Apostle Paul and the fathers after him did not think that only the mind is illumined. The heart also flares with the love of Christ. Paul reduced all the content of the faith by saying “God raised Jesus from the dead”. The church is tightened to this; this is why it celebrates Resurrection every Sunday as it does in Pascha and after it until the Pentecost.

Faith produces Confession through the tongue. At least, you cannot in the presence of strangers to faith say its contrary. This is blasphemy. The faithful heart appears through the tongue, since you have to spread the message of Christ and preach it. Every Christian is a preacher because he is happy with his Lord and he bursts his tongue by speaking about his master and he wants every person to love Lord Jesus so that he is saved and the church grows.

This is the testimony of the Christian: “You shall be witnesses to me in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth”. With what shall we testify? You do not testify simply by reading the Gospel to people and explaining it. The Gospel should be stabilized inside your soul or else it shouldn’t go out through your tongue. This is why it has been said: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning Word of life- the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us” (1John 1: 1 – 2).

It is obvious here that Apostle John in the beginning of his first ecumenical epistle has tasted Christ and that his word entered his entity and he felt it, therefore his tongue burst with this internal experience so he wrote. This is why the scripture said: “For in him we live and move and have our being”. Christianity is real in the internal entity and then it becomes words and work.

The peak of the testimony is that of the blood which the faithful sanctified through Jesus not only during the Roman persecutions but also in every time and place. It is when you insist that Christ is our savior and that he is “the way, the truth, and the life”. It is when you say that and show it even if this will result in your killing from oppressors (Blind nations or crowds). In our concept, your heart and tongue are always harmonious so that you are not separated from the master on any level of your entity. We are attached to Jesus in our life and death because “for if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord”.

The contrary of our position is that which is expressed by the word “Pious”, where you believe in your heart and you disbelieve through your tongue being afraid from death. This is permissible in this religion or that but for us it is complete blasphemy. We are lovers of Jesus not only if we were in peace or bliss, but we stay lovers even if we had to pay blood to express that.

Because of the duty of confessing, we have next to the martyrs a group of confessors, which are saints that were tortured because of their faith but did not reach death. However, they witnessed Jesus in their sufferings and took part in his resurrection.

Translated by Mark Najjar

Original Text: “الإيمان والاعتراف” – 24.7.2005

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2005, Articles, Raiati

Bad Supposition / 10.07.2005

“The eye is the lamp of the body”. The beginning of today’s Gospel (Matthew 6: 22–23) focuses on the old physics that believed that the eye has light in it and this light emerges from it in order to see. I borrow this old physical concept to understand the statement of the Lord: “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy,your whole body will be full of light”. This means that if you see through the divine light in you, your whole entity would be enlightened and you would see that the other person is a divine creature even if you analyzed his behaviors and realized that they were bad. If you behaved divinely, you would let light descend on the other; you would baptize him through light and go beyond what annoys you in him.

You cannot, of course, close your eyes if you were sure that the other carries any evil, lying, exploitation, or a will of exploitation or a desire to humiliate you, surround you or destroy a benefit of yours.  Know that you should see the reality and not be stupid or idiot. Knowing the reality of the other is a condition for you not to be, while dealing with each other, the oppressor or the oppressed.

However, the first encounter between you and the other should be based on good supposition in order not to be unjust; and if cooperation showed that the other has any evil or bad intention, then you would behave according to what was revealed to you. Nevertheless, you begin with good supposition.

Yes, there are people with innocent natures that could quickly lose and be fooled by others. The person that has this innocent nature must learn wisdom according to what the Lord said: “Be as shrewd as snakes”. However, this doesn’t imply constant caution, because this constant caution makes you unable to meet with people and deal with them, and this way you will also lose. The basis is to be able to combine between good supposition and shrewdness.

On the other hand, continuous bad supposition would make you see all people as bad people or enemies, and you would then need a lot of effort to change into the pure vision that goes along with the love that you freely give. Some people find it hard to understand others and to differentiate; they are worried from dealing with people so they run away from them especially if they expected problems or complications. However, confrontation is a must for healthy encountering to be achieved.

Things get more complicated in marital relationships. Here, bad supposition makes you drown in horrible imaginations. Here, you must understand the nature of your partner in the marital life, for if the other partner had a fun nature or was open minded and smiled for a person from the opposite sex, do not let bad supposition enter you in order not to go into this sick state in which you keep eye on the other partner in every motion and every word he or she says. A person might be pure or smooth with others so sometimes warmth would appear in his conversation with the other sex. We cannot stay enclosed and dry in our humanly behavior in order for the home not to be destroyed. You cannot be in constant monitoring over your wife and vice versa. You might have a state of spiritual or intellectual sympathy towards a woman and your wife might not be on the same level of this sympathy. Do not put your woman in a cage! Do not put your man in a cage! This would destroy the marital relationship. Nothing can kill the familial life more than jealousy.

Also, do not constantly doubt your son or daughter; believe them when they tell you where they were until the contrary is proved. Do not put your children in a cage for them not to choke and see that you are a dictator. You are their shepherd and not a police officer; taking care of them comes from love and trust.

When you show trust towards people that you deal with in your home or in your work, such as trusting your employees, you would make them in a state of peace and calmness and strengthen their personality and increase their love. Then, they would return your trust with trust also. Life is being together.

Trust is the basis. When the Lord loved us in Christ, he knew our ability to overcome our tiredness and sins. When people trust you because of your good supposition towards them, they would be getting closer to trusting God.

Translated by Mark Najjar

Original Text: “سوء الظن” –Raiati no28- 10.07.2005

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