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    The Apostle Paul, with this reading from his Epistle to the Galatians, seeks to educate those who still do not realize that the Mosaic Law has a temporary and not eternal value. To illustrate this, he uses the example of the two sons of Abraham. The first child born from Hagar the slave symbolizes the current city of Jerusalem, which is undermined by her and her children. The other child of Abraham, born from the free woman Sarah, according to the promise of God, symbolizes the heavenly Jerusalem. The heavenly Jerusalem is free, and is the mother of all of us Christians. Since she is free from the Mosaic Law, this means that her children also are free from the Mosaic Law.

    In speaking of the heavenly Jerusalem, the Apostle Paul gives us the opportunity to look more closely at this eternal homeland promised to us by God, where Christians will live forever. The Lord often refers to it as the “Kingdom of the Heavens,” so that people will not confuse it with the kingdoms of this world. He also sometimes calls it the “Kingdom of God” or “My Father’s Kingdom,” giving honor to God the Father and His own kingdom. He also calls it Paradise (Luke 23:43).

    As Jesus revealed to us, God has prepared His Kingdom “before the creation of the world” for His Angels and those on earth who desire it by their seeking communion with God. This is done by applying His commandments, especially the commandment of love (see Matthew 25: 34-35). This heavenly kingdom is eternal, it has no end. The joy, rest, peace and happiness of all those who will live in it is also forever. In this kingdom of God there are none of the sorrows that people face in this life: such as the “pain, sorrow, sigh” of death and the like, but a happy “life of endlessness.”

    After the Second Coming of the Lord, the bodies of all people will be raised from materials that are, with the energy of the Almighty Creator, transformed into the spiritual. That is why in the Kingdom of Heaven we will have no material needs such as food, water or anything else we need here. “The Kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness, and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit” (Romans 14:17).

    The element that dominates the Kingdom of Heaven is light. But it is not the natural light that radiates from the sun. The Prophet Isaiah prophesies: “There the sun shall no longer be your light by day, nor shall the rising of the moon shine on you at night, but the Lord shall be your everlasting light” (Isaiah 60:19). The Apostle John also reveals to us: “The new Jerusalem, the kingdom of the heavens,” does not need sun or moon to brighten it, for the splendor of God is blazing, and its lamp is the Lamb, that is Jesus Christ who was sacrificed for our salvation as a lamb (see Revelation 21:23). Part of this light of Christ was seen (not the full splendor of the Divine) by Peter and the other two Apostles at the Transfiguration of the Savior on Mount Tabor. Peter felt such spiritual joy that he did not want to leave, and asked the Lord to set up places to stay, so they did not have to leave this wonderful situation. From this alone we can understand, what pleasure and happiness is felt by those who live in the light of the Kingdom of Heaven.

    This uninterrupted presence of the Lord in the heavenly Paradise gives indescribable joy to all people and the Angels. After all, as Jesus said, after the common resurrection people “will be like the angels of God in heaven” (Matthew 22:30). And the countless crowds of Angels with all the Saints will be a pan-harmonium chorus, as revealed by John the Apostle, and will chant: “You are worthy because you have redeemed us to God by your blood…Blessing and glory and wisdom, Thanksgiving and honor and power and might, be to our God forever and ever” (Revelation 5:9 & 7:12). There will always be hymns of thanksgiving and praise to the Triune God and everyone will live in a delightful feast.

    My brothers and sisters, this is our permanent home, for which God has destined us for. Let us take care of our lives to be made worthy to hear from the Lord: “Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” Amen.


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    Υλικά 800 γρ. μπακαλιάρος, ξαρμυρισμένος 2 μαρούλια, πλυμένα 1 ματσάκι άνηθο, ψιλοκομμένο 2 φρέσκα κρεμμυδάκια, ψιλοκομμένα 2 καρότα, τριμμένα 1...

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    Let’s take communion with humble thoughts. We should listen to and concentrate on the words of the Service of Holy Communion and we should say: ‘Christ, I’m such a sinner and no-one else is’.


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    Ο Μηνάς ήταν Αθηναίος και από την οικογένεια του ειδωλολάτρης. Όταν όμως εκπαιδεύτηκε και μορφώθηκε αρκετά, διαπίστωσε ότι η πολυθεΐα...

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    Because of so much reading, people today have ended up as tape-recorders and their cassettes are full of superfluous things. But according to Abba Isaac, teaching without action is a ‘repository of shame’.

    You see, lots of people who are interested in sports read sports magazines or newspapers and just sit there like lemons, but they admire the athletes. ‘He’s amazing’, they say. ‘Well done’. But they don’t break a sweat themselves or shed a couple of pounds in weight. They read and read about sports and lie around. That’s not doing them any good. All they have is the pleasure of reading.

    Some secular-minded people read newspapers, others read a romance or an adventure, or go to the stadium to watch the game and pass their time. Some of those who read spiritual texts do the same. They may stay up all night madly reading spiritual books and they’re happy. They pick up a spiritual book, settle down comfortably for a bit and start reading.

    ‘That’s done me good’, they say. Better to say you’ve enjoyed yourself, that you’ve had a pleasant time. Because it hasn’t done you good at all. It’s of benefit only when you see what you’ve read, examine yourself and then try to make an effort to put it into practice. ‘What does what I read mean? Where am I spiritually? What should I do?’ And there’s the fact that the more you learn, the more responsibility you have. I’m not saying not to read, not to know a lot and not to have responsibility, because that would be misleading. But don’t read just for pleasure.

    The bad thing is that if you read a lot and you’ve got a good memory, you remember a lot. You can then say a lot and fool yourself into thinking that you’re actually applying what you’ve read. In this way, you create a false picture, both for yourself and for other people. So don’t be content only with reading a lot. Make sure you apply it. Wide reading edifies people in a general way. The aim is, however, to become educated in a God-centred way. I’ve no intention of going and becoming a university professor*, in which case I’d be obliged to know all sorts of things. If I need to learn something from another sphere of knowledge, I’ll be able to easily enough, as long as I’ve acquired God-centred education.

    * Had this been his aim, he’d have made a fine one. I remember when I translated his book on Saint Arsenios, Elder Païsios asked me to write an introduction to the English text. I did so and we then met at the Monastery at Souroti to discuss it. The meeting took me straight back to tutorials at Oxford. The Elder went through the text with me, essentially, though very gently, indicating that it wasn’t much good and then went on to give me specific directions on how he wanted the introduction to be [WJL].

    Source: agiazoni.gr


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    Οι παλιοί έλεγαν ότι λάχανα και κουνουπίδια αν δεν κρυώσει ο καιρός δεν νοστιμίζουν. Οι καιρικές συνθήκες βέβαια έχουν πολύ...

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    If your prayer isn’t fervent, it doesn’t mean that it isn’t pleasing to God. Sometimes such prayer may be thought of as sacrifice, if you humble and censure yourself before God.


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    Στην Άπω Ανατολή και συγκεκριμένα στην Σεούλ βρέθηκε φέτος για τον εορτασμό του Αγίου Νικολάου ο Παναγιότατος Οικουμενικός Πατριάρχης κ.κ....

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    Η γυναίκα – πειρασμός Κατόπιν ανέβηκε στο Στύλο του Γελανίου, που ήτο ψηλότερος και έκανε ζωή αυστηρότερη και θαυμαστότερη. Μα...

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    The issue of freedom is of great importance in the Orthodox view of humankind. According to this, people are made to be free. Freedom is the result of the fact that we’re made in the image of God and have the opportunity and potential to use our independent power to reach the state of being in the likeness of God. This isn’t an innate potential, but is effected through grace, through our encounter with God.

    Freedom in Orthodox theology isn’t a free decision made from among a variety of choices. Real freedom is the transcendence of choices, of necessity, of corruptibility and sin. We experience real freedom when we’re removed from the passions that bind and restrict us. Our ontological freedom begins initially with our withdrawal from and severance of the passions, with our interaction with the uncreated energies of God and with our encounter with Christ. In Orthodox tradition, freedom isn’t an idea, but a person. And this person is none other than the Person of Christ.

    People are free to follow the road to Christ and His Kingdom. In the spiritual life, our freedom plays a defining role in our salvation. In the sacrament of confession, the spiritual guide doesn’t exercise authority, doesn’t impose and doesn’t give orders. He or she respects the personal freedom and particular personality of each of their spiritual children. Real parentage isn’t sadistic, but sacrificial, and the more the parents reduce their own personality, the greater the benefit to those in their care. The selfless presence of a spiritual guide who doesn’t impose but is a constructive force is what is required in a spiritual relationship.

    Such spiritual guides aren’t interested in acquiring some form of mechanical obedience, but rather they attempt to bring their spiritual children to spiritual maturity, so that they can decide for themselves. Spiritual guides help people to uncover their deeper self and, by the Grace of the Holy Spirit, to overcome narrow human boundaries and to attain salvation. It’s the combination of our freedom and Divine Grace that brings us salvation. Neither Divine Grace without our cooperation, nor our efforts without the aid of the Holy Spirit will bring us to salvation. Our freedom and responsibility as independent factors in the task of our salvation are to be understood in this context.

    Freedom is an internal state bound up with the truth and has no connection at all with external alternative free choices and opportunities. Carl Rogers understood that the freedom of Western culture is unproductive and limits us to choosing between certain alternative solutions and choices all the time. His own stance was that real freedom is the opportunity for us to choose whatever we really want at any time and in any circumstances. He called this internal existential freedom. This freedom gives us the courage to discover areas previously unknown to us and to make new revelations about ourselves and the world. It also gives us the opportunity to discover the meaning of life within ourselves.


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    Υλικά: · 1 κ. χταποδάκια (φρέσκα) · 1 ποτ. κρ. κρασί · 2 κρεμμύδια ξερά · 2 κρεμμυδάκια χλωρά ·...

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    We aren’t concerned with our own faults and sins, but we find plenty of transgressions in others. We fish them out and when we do so we make sure everyone hears about them. It’s become a bad habit now that, as soon as we hear something bad about somebody else, we go and spread it abroad. Our tongue burns and we hurry away to tell other people what we’ve heard and seen.


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