Sunday, 14 October 2012

About the misfortune of those who come to Christ and then apostatize from Him

              By Saint Nikolai Velimirovich

"For if after they have escaped the pollution's of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them then the beginning" (2 Peter 2:20).
Brethren, bright is the sun but brighter still are the words of the apostle. Brethren, the sun illumines bodies but it cannot illumine souls, while the apostolic words illumine the souls. The apostle clearly sees the heights and depths of a soul and he illumines it for us out of fervent love, in order to lead us on the pure path of salvation. In a few words, he gives us two great instructions. The first instruction: one cannot flee from the impurity of this world in any other way except through the knowledge of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

First of all, without knowledge of the Lord Jesus one is unable to see or to know the impurity of this world, and second, man is unable to be cleansed from this impurity without the knowledge of the Lord Jesus. The second instruction: when man flees from the impurity of this world by knowing the Lord Jesus and, again, becomes entangled in it, then for him "the latter end is worse than the beginning." For knowing the light, he again returns into the darkness and the darkness becomes even darker, and, recognizing justice, he again sinks into injustice and his punishment is more severe; and recognizing holiness he again falls into beastliness and the animal is still more furious. The holy apostle does not hesitate to equate this turning back with a dog who returns to his own vomit and with the sow, who having been washed returns to wallow in the mire.

Whoever recognized the Lord Jesus Christ also recognized all that is needed for his salvation; he received a binocular to see the impurity, lies and injustice and received the power to flee from all of that. Therefore let him not turn back so that eternal death does not swallow him up. Let him not tempt God countless times. For if God was quick to save him the first time He will be slower the second time, and even slower the third time. My brethren, illuminating are the apostolic words.
O Lord Jesus, Savior, Almighty and All-Good, do not depart from us in the hours of our weaknesses and deliver us when the impurities of this world again draw us to themselves.
To You be glory and thanks always. Amen

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