Bishop Basil (Nesterenko)

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Glory to Jesus Christ, dear brothers and sisters!

I congratulate you with the Holy Sunday, Holy Communion. Today we have heard the Gospel (John I:43-51) where it is told about the first disciplines of Jesus Christ. We have to look for a lesson in every Gospel, which is read.

Today we saw Nathanael, who was truly a religious man and he expected for the coming of Messiah. All people were waiting. And Philip invited him and said: “We have found him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” Nathanael let a doubt and said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?”

And it is true that Nazareth considered to be a heathenish town, where only atheists lived. They did not know at that moment that Jesus was born in Bethlehem, as it was written by the prophets. That is why Philip said: “Come and see.”

So, now we have a chance to pretend being Nathanael. Every person heard for the first time one day about God, that Jesus Christ is Our Savior. But maybe, not every person believed that Jesus Christ can save us, that He is Our Savior. And we all let doubts come inside our heads. But during some time with God’s grace we united with God again. And God’s grace thrown light on our mind. We understood that Jesus Christ is the Messiah, who came to save all people on the Earth.

Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no deceit!” Nathanael saw the great gifts of Jesus Christ that He could see and feel everything in distance. And Jesus saw a religious man, who would become His Apostle with time. And it happened so. Nathanael became Jesus’ discipline and Apostle later on.

At that time Jesus Christ had some disciplines, whom He gathered together to give His knowledge to.

And He said to Nathanael: “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” At that moment Nathanael understood the nature of Jesus. He said to Him: “Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel” It is for the first time in the Gospel the recognition of Jesus as a Son of God appeared. That is why so many attention pays on it. Lord said him: “Truly, truly, I say to you,[k] you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

And it is true. Apostles were honored with such great mercy: they saw opened heavens and God’s Angels.

God wishes to every person only good and expects us with widely opened arms that everyone could come to Him and say: “You are God’s Son – Our true God.” And at that moment maybe for some people the sky will be opened and they will see God’s Angels.

I wish you all to accept God’s Son with strong Love in your hearts. When we could truly see opened heavens and feel Him.

Let the Lord save you!