Why we must truly know Christ

Archbishop Seraphim : Homily
Why we must truly know Christ
Thursday of the 11th Week after Pentecost
5 August, 2010
[Given outside of the Archdiocese]
2 Corinthians 4:1-6 ; Matthew 24:13-28


In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

It is crucially important for us that we know Who our Lord and Saviour truly is. This knowledge is something which has to be in the roots of our hearts, and not merely some sort of intellectual acknowledgement. As our Saviour has now told us, when the End of Times is coming, people are going to be saying with some sense of self-assurance : “Look, He is here” ; or “Look, He is there”. We certainly are in times like that even now. Sometimes, people say that Christ has already come, and that if we go here or there, we might find Him. Alternatively, some people are averring that Jesus Christ, as He has been presented to us in the Church for 2,000 years, is false. Instead, they suggest in a very sly manner that Jesus Christ is merely a philosopher or a sociologist. Very often (as we may see on too many corrosive television so-called documentaries), such persons present such questions as : “What if...”, or “Perhaps...”, or “Maybe....” Following these words will come a series of alternative theories which people too easily take as a fact rather that a vague possibility. The questions sow seeds of doubt which grow up into falsehoods that are understood to be facts. As we see, there are many lies that are told about Him, many more than these. When we are praying to the Mother of God in the prayers after receiving Holy Communion, we say to her : “Grant us release from the slavery of our own reasonings”. These lies that I was speaking about come from the slavery of our own reasonings.

Our Saviour is asking you and me to know Him as He is. What is the most common title that we use for Him all through our prayers ? This title is : “The Lover of Man”. We are always saying to Him : “You are good, and the Lover of man”. This is Who He is. As the Apostle John says : “God is love” (1 John 4:8). Our Saviour, Jesus Christ, is this very love. He wants you and me to know Him in this love. In this love, we will come to know everything that is necessary. We will understand what we must understand through and in our hearts. In this love, our hearts will guide our minds correctly. This is because Jesus Christ is not only Love, but He is Truth also. In Him there is only Truth. Whether or not we are actually now coming to the End of Days, it is of the first importance that we know Him in love, as our Saviour Himself is saying to us. It is crucial that we know Him in love so that we will not be able to be deceived.

So, brothers and sisters, let us not waste our time with all sorts of philosophies, all sorts of interesting ideas and propositions. Let us spend our time opening our hearts to the Saviour, asking Him to renew our love for Him, and asking Him through the prayers of the Mother of God truly to be able to know Him. When the time comes (even if it may be a long time yet before the time of testing arrives), we will be able to recognise our Saviour Himself.

Let us not forget one detail : the Second Coming of the Saviour is not something gradual. The Saviour says that the Second Coming will be like lightning. We do not know exactly when or where it will strike, but we do know that the Saviour, in His love, is coming. He is coming in His love for us and He is coming to take us to Himself. Let us live our lives in expectation of this arrival with joy, with love and with hope. Let us ask the Mother of God to support us as we follow her Son, so that together with her in the heavenly kingdom, we all together may glorify her Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ, together with the unoriginate Father, and the all-holy, good, and life-giving Spirit, now, and ever, and unto the ages of ages.