Pascha 2017 Homily

The Tomb is empty, the corruption of our physical nature caused by the sin of Adam and Eve has been overcome. This means that all sin and its effects has been permanently trampled, it no longer has everlasting power over us. The return of Jesus Christ’s soul to His most pure body, signifies the conquering of Hades. When Jesus gave up His spirit after that most gruesome crucifixion, His spirit entered into Hades, the netherworld, the resting place of those who have fallen asleep. Since Jesus is the Divine Word that spoke creation into existence, since He is the Author of Life, Hades was subject to Jesus’ power, Hades itself could not contain the Most Pure God within its walls, Hades had no power over the One who created it, and in that great darkness of uncertainty, the Most Pure Light of the Lamb of God blinded those who were held captive there. After Jesus Christ broke the gates of Hades, He first brought with Him Adam and Eve, the first to sin and bring death to the world, He brought them up out of Hades and granted them entrance into Heaven, and since our first parents were granted entrance into Heaven, so too, we, their children, are now allowed to Rise with Christ, and spend eternity with the Holy Trinity, —after our work of spreading the Good News of Salvation to all has come to it’s earthly completion.
Jesus tells His disciples that “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Him.” This means that after going through the trial, after successfully withstanding every temptation of His flesh, and every appeal to His Spirit, the Conquering Lamb of God has been given complete dominion over the entirety of creation, what Christ wills, whether physical or spiritual, does occur. From this position of absolute authority, Jesus commands His disciples to “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe ALL I have commanded you,” It was the Disciples’ commission to make more disciples, to baptize, and to teach the whole world to follow the commandments that Jesus gave to them.
This, by proper succession is our job too, we are commissioned to teach the entire world about eternal salvation, about being released from slavery to sin, about the oppression of the Devil and his power over us being eternally thwarted. We have been commissioned to tell the world that the meaning of life is no longer a mystery, what happens after death has been revealed to us, and that we have indeed been given the true law that will guide us to moral perfection and to the virtue of true justice for ourselves and our societies.
Jesus’ last words in Matthew’s Gospel are, “and behold, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” Jesus, the seat of all authority has decreed that He will not abandon His creation, He will not leave us without help for as long as humanity exists. It is Christ Himself who will send us the helper, the comforter, the Spirit of Truth, The Holy Spirit to help us in carrying out the commission He has charged us with. We should not be afraid or ashamed to witness with everyone we encounter the gift of salvation Christ has given to us, because in those moments of encounter, the Holy Spirit will fill what is lacking, and our good intension of spreading the news of the Resurrection will spread joy to the whole world. Jesus said to Pilate, “For this I was born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth.” Following Jesus’ example, it is our job too, to bear witness to the truth of the resurrection to eternal life to all.

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