Dear Friend of St. Athanasius Academy:
As we gain momentum – moving from the Baptism of our Lord in the River Jordan, to His coming Pascha – it is often helpful to be mindful of the Lord’s Words. This is especially true as they relate to His Incarnation and our salvation. They are critical in our gaining a deeper understanding of what it means for us, through Him and in the Holy Spirit, to be “born again to eternal life”. In this, we more clearly see how His Baptism is our Baptism, and how His Resurrection points us toward the promise of our resurrection and hope of eternal life. This month’s booklet – GOSPEL OF JOHN: Chapter 5 – With Study Notes – is a good starting point, offering a helpful perspective for the upcoming Great Lent. Below is a small sample.
5:24 Truly, truly I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has eternal life, and he shall not come into judgment, but passes from death into life.
1. The Jews were very angry at Jesus and wanted to kill Him, for He violated the Sabbath Day by healing the paralyzed man and by telling him to take up his bed and walk. Therefore Jesus tried to defuse the situation and calm their anger in an attempt to save them.
2. To accomplish these ends, He would vary His teaching – sometimes He would say high things and sometimes low things. He would say low things so as to calm down His opponents, and also to teach us humility. He would say high things, so as to lift up His opponents (and us as well) to the true faith.
See the attached PDF files for this month's full teaching and to order the study booklet.