May 27, 2018
First Sunday after Pentecost
Matthew 10:32-33 - “So every one who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.” (RSV)
Confession with the lips leads to salvation - The Son does not here speak soothing words but instead speaks of the consequences of denial. Note carefully: It is not by some power within yourself that you make your confession but by the help of grace from above. But if you deny me, the Son, he is saying, then I will deny you in the presence of the Father. Someone may then object: “How then am I to be blamed if God, forsaking me, denies me?” The answer is, your being forsaken is the fault of you yourself, the forsaken person, not of God.
“But why,” you object, “should I need to confess faith with my mouth if I confess faith in my mind?” No. We must confess with our mouths in order that we may be steadily trained to speak boldly. It is only through this more abundant love and determination that we will be raised on high.
In this way Jesus addresses himself to each one of us personally. He is not here addressing only his original disciples but also every one of us who follows after his disciples in accord with their witness to him. One who learns this lesson will teach it in boldness to others, prepared to suffer all things easily and with a ready mind. That is why so many have come to have faith in the witness of the apostles and the saints to this Word. (St. John Chrysostom, Adapted from the Homily on Matthew.)
The Apostles Fast begins after Vespers on Sunday evening and continues until June 29, the Feast of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul.
The icon is of "All Saints".