Friday, April 26, 2019

Today is Good Friday

Preparing to venerate the Cross
For Orthodox.  That means last night we had the Good Friday services.  Orthodox still follow the Sunrise/Sunset approach in that regard. I will post no more until Easter (Pascha).

I will say that we are heading into the age of shadows, when evil is assaulting the Faith from every side, and doing a fine job of it.  As a result of its success, this evil is aided by a growing number of allies, in and out of the Faith.

It is a time when many have apostatized already, abandoning Christ and the Gospel.  Many others hold to variations of the Gospel, but subvert it to the evils of this rising storm because, well, that's what people do.  When the Beast arises, those who would not find themselves outside of the best parties will do what they can to stay in bed with the powers that be or keep suffering for Jesus on six figures a year.

It's not hard to do.  In fact, it's harder not to.  Hence we tend to celebrate those who dared buck the system, call out the court prophets, and sometimes even pay with their lives for their devotion to the Lord.  Martyrs is the name we sometimes use.

But lest we assume it's all them, Good Friday is an excellent chance to ask how we would have done when Jesus was arrested.  How would we have done in the temple courtyard when we're accused of being a Galilean?  How many of us would have risked joining Jesus on a cross, versus running to the hills?

There are many forces arrayed against the Faith and the best the Faith has produced in this world.  They are dedicated to the father of lies, and the powers of darkness.  That so many who are part of this seem to be good people, and we can't imagine them being servants of evil, just goes to show you that we ought to be more forgiving toward those sinners of the past than we sometimes are.

I fear it will get worse before it gets better.  We may be looking at the end of an epoch; the beginning of a long, dark night for mankind.  To right it, we won't need to go back just a few years.  Or even a few decades.  It's arguable that the Faith went the wrong direction many centuries ago, and we need to rethink much of what we've come to accept.  Not everything, of course.  But rather than imagine almost everything we've developed is awesome, except for a few exceptions, it might be time to imagine that most of what we've come to accept over recent years is wrong, except for a few exceptions.

In the meantime, we go into that period of darkness that reflects our time, as it does any such time in history.  But unlike the world, we have a hope that transcends the darkness.  But that is for Easter.

"But this is your hour - the hour of shadows." Luke 22:53.

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