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Wednesday, November 29, 2017

One day, as he was teaching the people in the temple and preaching the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes with the elders came up and said to him, ‘Tell us by what authority you do these things, or who it is that gave you this authority.’ He answered them, ‘I also will ask you a question; now tell me, Was the baptism of John from heaven or from men?’ And they discussed it with one another, saying, ‘If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say, ‘Why did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘From men,’ all the people will stone us; for they are convinced that John was a prophet.’ So they answered that they did not know whence it was. And Jesus said to them, ‘Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.’” (Lk 20: 1-8)

Some teachers like to say, There is no such thing as a bad...

Sunday, June 4, 2017

When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly a sound came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire, distributed and resting on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance…” (Acts 2: 1-4)

There is much to be said, and internalized, and lived, on the basis of this great event in our common history, celebrated today, of the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Apostles, and through them on all of us. But I would just like to comment on the “sound” (ἦχος) in which He chose to descend, “like the rush of a mighty wind.” – Wind, of all things! For most of us who are not...

Friday, May 12, 2017

While Peter was still saying this, the Holy Spirit fell on all who heard the word. And the believers from among the circumcised who came with Peter were amazed, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on the Gentiles. For they heard them speaking in tongues and extolling God. Then Peter declared, ‘Can any one forbid water for baptizing these people who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?’ And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.” (Acts 10: 44-48)

Those who came with Peter were not a little surprised, because the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out “even on the Gentiles.” But the surprising part for our Orthodox mentality today, I think, both in terms of our ecclesiological and sacramental Tradition, is that these Gentiles wer...

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