The Arena
The Arena

Episode · 9 years ago

Jesus Christ the Healer

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

"Healing Our Diseases: The Church as a Spiritual Hospital" is a ten-part lecture series dedicated to a close examination of the therapeutic nature of the Christian faith according to the teachings of the Holy Scriptures and the Church Fathers. This series begins with a lecture titled "Jesus Christ the Healer" and continues with lectures dedicated to "Sin as a Disease," "The Church as a Spiritual Hospital," and "The Spiritual Father as a Physician of the Soul." The last six lectures are dedicated to the diagnosis and recommended treatment plan for six common spiritual pathologies: self love, anger, gluttony, despondency, avarice, and pride. In this series, Holy Orthodoxy is revealed for what it is at its heart: a means for acquiring divine power and grace for the healing of our diseases of soul and body, and not a barren ideology. To download the other nine lectures of this series, please visit our website.

OSLOVI chemygospelblog Oslovenias, evils body, patristic nectar publications presents healing our diseases the church as a spiritual hospital. Healing our diseases the church as a spiritual hospital is a ten part lecture series dedicated to a close examination of the therapeutic nature of the Christian faith, according to the teachings of the Holy Scriptures and the church fathers. This series begins with a lecture entitled Jesus Christ the Healer and continues with lectures dedicated to sin as a disease, the church as a spiritual hospital and the spiritual father as a physician of the soul. The last six lectures are dedicated to the diagnosis and recommended treatment plan for six common spiritual pathologies self love, anger, gluttony, despondency, avarice and pride. In this series, Holy Orthodoxy is revealed for what it is, at its heart, a means for acquiring divine power and grace for the healing of our diseases of soul and body, and not a baron ideology. We hope that this presentation is edifying for you and that it be a help on your spiritual quest for more available titles and for more information, please visit our website at www dot patristic nectar dot org. I welcome all of you to this first lecture in our new series in the St John Chrystostom catechetical school, going in its fifteen year. This series I've entitled healing our diseases the Church as a spiritual hospital. We're going to begin with some basic theological lessons. The first for tonight, the subject is Jesus Christ, our healer. Next Wednesday the subject will be sin as a disease of the soul. The third week will be the church as the spiritual hospital and the fourth week will be the spiritual father as a physician of the soul, as as physician of the soul. Then we're on the fifth week. We're going to have our annual catechumen dinner on Wednesday night and invite all of our twenty eight catechumans to come and meet others that they haven't met and hopefully build some relationships and friendships that might even turn into sponsorships. And then we'll return the next Wednesday and will go through lent examining specific spiritual pathologies and how to overcome those diseases. So we'll have a session on overcoming self love, a session on overcoming sloth, a session on overcoming anger, a session on overcoming despondency. I expect that to be very well attended, that one, I really do, really do, since it's such a epidemic. A session on overcoming pride and vain, glory, etc. And of course we could go on and on and on. There is a text on spiritual diseases in the Corpus of the holy fathers that is everywhere as thick as physicians manuals on biological or physiological pathologies. So we're just going to touch on some major ones over the course of these next ten weeks and I'm hoping. What I'm hoping is that through this class that we will engage all the way through lent all the way to Pasca, enthusiastically in our own health, the pursuit of our own spiritual health. I'm also hoping that in our enthusiasm to do this as a parish, that that little torch might spread and that more of our conversation, more of the stuff, the substance of our fellowship at Church and in each other's homes and doing things together might involve some conversation about the health of our souls. It is not a great thing that...

...we talked so little about our spiritual health. I think it's not a good thing. I know where we're embarrassed sometimes to have these kinds of conversations with our brothers and sisters, and we certainly don't want to be talking about ourselves very much, but to talk about our common work, our common work of living in the church with the goal of overcoming death and sin in our life. This is what we're all about more than anything else. This is number one. Okay. So what I like to do? I hope you have a hand out. The hand out is almost blank, but it has five sentences on it covering the five main themes I want to cover tonight. So please let me begin this first lecture, entitled Jesus Christ, the Healer, our Lord and Savior. Jesus is everything that we human beings need. He has the answer to every desire. He's the fulfillment of every pious wish. The descriptions and the scriptures and in the tradition of the church, especially in our him, the deed, in our the churgical texts, the descriptions of his magnificence, like the measure of his own love, is past human tracing. We can't call him enough beautiful things, give him enough sacred titles to actually describe how wonderful he is and what he does for us, because every title behind that title is some way that our savior is actually delivering us, bringing us to glory. He's the savior of the world, the Christ, the son of God, the Lord, the great existing one. We call him at the end of every liturgy home, the great I am. He's the Great God, the wonderful counselor the Prince of peace, the word or the logos of the father. He's The immaculate icon of God, the wisdom of God. He is the power of God. He's the righteous one and our righteousness. He is the man. That's a good description for modern times. He is the man, the very definition of a human being. He's the last Adam. He's the teacher and the prophet part excellance. He's the great high priest, and his role as great high priest is so magnificently depicted now in the temple above the bishop's throne with the new icon of Christ the high priest. He is the king of Kings, the Good Shepherd, the Lamb of God, the Servant of the Lord, the suffering servant, the light of the world, the judge of all, the way, the truth, the life, the son of righteousness, the bread of life, the resurrection, the door, the true vine, our peace, the comforter who sends, the comforter, the redeemer, the firstborn, the bridegroom, the air of all things, the friend. That's another beautiful title for our savor that he uses up for himself to his disciples, the older brother, the true and faithful witness, the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, the Holy Temple, the one mediator between God and man, the intercessor, the pioneer and perfector of our faith and more. That's just a glimpse of the titles given to our Savior in the scriptures and in the tradition of the church, and honestly, a retrieve, a lecture series could be given on every one of those titles without question. We could take any one of those titles and go for ten weeks. Our theme in this class is Jesus Christ, the physician, the heavenly physician, the doctor of souls and bodies and this is a title he gives himself and I'll explain that in the second we're just going to be examining this one title in this in these weeks. Jesus Christ the healer. It's obvious from a simple reading of the gospels that Jesus the Healer is front and center in his own identity. No one can read the Gospels Matthew, Mark, Lucre John and not know immediately that Jesus has come to Helos of diseases of body and soul. It's obvious the evangelists, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, set him forth in the sacred text as a heavenly physician who has the medicine, he has the divine...

...power to cure us, and I want the use Saint Matthew's depiction, the Gospel that I know best. I want to use Saint Matthew's depiction of our savior and his healing power to unfold this for you. The Gospel of Matthew begins with the genealogy of our Savior. It describes his miraculous birth and Bethlehem, his flight into Egypt, his upbringing in Nazareth, and then it jumps to his appearance on the banks of the Jordan and his baptism at the hands of the forerunner. It proceeds to his contest with the devil in the desert and then the beginning of his Public Ministry of Preaching and healing, once John the Baptist had been arrested and set Matthew Summarizes this in his Gospel, the dual, fullse eye of Jesus's ministry, with these words. This is Matthew Four, verse twenty three, quote. and Jesus was going about in all Galilee teaching in the synagogues and proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people. Jesus is just on the scene and matthew already lays out a summary description of Jesus's entire ministry. He's doing two things. He's Preaching and Teaching The gospel of the Kingdom and he's healing everything in everyone. This is his summary. Now, having said that, Matthew launches into two major sections of his Gospel, chapters five through seven and chapters eight and nine. He launches into two major sections of his Gospel where he unpacks that summary Verse. He describes Jesus as Ministry, as a Ministry of Preaching and teaching and healing, those two things. And now in chapters five through seven, he's going to give us the most precious teaching Jesus ever gave, what we know as the sermon on the mount and then in chapters eight and nine he's going to recount in short little pericopes. He's going to recount healing after healing, after healing, after healing after healing. So he's now fleshing out what he just told of Jesus was doing with his time. He's giving us the best, the most beautiful samples of Jesus is twofold ministry. I want to turn your attention not to the sermon on the mount although that would be a fantastic class. That would be a fantastic class. I want to skip, though, for this class, chapters five through seven, where we see Jesus is most beautiful, illustrative teaching, and I want to go to chapters eight to nine where Jesus is revealed as the healer, the healer. Chapter Eight begins with the description of Jesus as he came down from the mountain. This is the mount where he delivered the sermon. Jesus came down from the mountain and great multitudes followed him, and behold matthew launches. Immediately a leper came to him. First thing Jesus is confronted with when he comes down from giving his most illustrative teaching is a man who has leprosy. The Leper is the sick man of whom there there is no more sick man. He is the worst, and Israelites a siet in an ancient civilization. You just don't touch the leper, you don't get near him, he's so diseased and with no cure. Jesus then commences his healings. He heals the leper by a touch. Then the dying servant of the Centurion, from a distance, with no prayer, know nothing. He heard, he healed invisibly. Then he heals Peter's mother in law from her fever by touching her hand. Then he heals a multitude of the Demon possessed and the ill and Bethseda, the town of Peter. Then he heals the gathering demoniac and gives him his sanity back. He heals mental illness and demon possession. Then he heals the paralytic in his hometown of copernium. Then he raises as Gyrus as twelve year old daughter from the dead. Then he gives sight to two blind men. Then he heals a dumb a mute who was demon possessed. All in chapter is eighty nine, one after the other, after the other, every kind of sickness of every kind of person. Then Saint Matthew, at the end of Chapter Nine, writes again something almost identical to what he wrote in Chapter Four, verse twenty three, remembered before he gives us...

...the details of Jesus's teaching and healing. He tells us that, summary, he went about Preaching and teaching the Gospel and healing every kind of disease. Now that he's done it, he says almost the exact same thing. Listen to this verse, and Jesus was going about all the cities and villages teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness. That's chapter nine, verse Thirty Five. literarily, this is called the Chiasm. It's a chiastic structure. When a teacher says something and then he fleshes it out and then he returns to that something and says it again. This is exactly what Matthews doing. He's he's bracketingness. You want to know what Jesus is? Ministry was all about two things. Boom, the sermon on the Mount Boom, a healing of all kind of diseases. Because Jesus Ministry was about two things. This is what Matthew does. That's very important because the very next verse after Chapter Nine, after he summarizes it again, is Jesus's calling of the twelve apostles and giving them all authority to teach and heal in his name. And if that will matthews doing here what our Lord himself did. His father sent him to proclaim the Kingdom and to heal people. He did that so magnificently. Matthew lays it out and then he gives the very powers that his father gave him to the hands of the apostles to take his teaching and his healing ministry to the world, and that's still going on. Jesus is the physician of the sick. This is a summary of his ministry. He came to function as a doctor Jesus the healer is as fundamental to the identity of our savior and to his saving work as Jesus the teacher is fundamental. In the midst of the depiction of our Lord's mighty works, in the middle of this power pack, chapters eight and nine, Saint Matthew Records an interaction, a stunning interaction, between Jesus and one of the leading tax collectors that provides a prism and rent and allows the readers, like us, to understand our Savior's ministry and how interconnected these two things are, how his preaching heals and how his healing teaches. You're about to see it. This amazing interaction between Jesus and a man, this tax collector, that Saint Matthew records, is actually an interaction between Jesus and Matthew himself. He's actually writing a little bit of autobiography because he though, he identifies himself as the author of the Gospel. Nowhere he's identified as the author of the Gospel by the tradition of the church universally, which is why, when you open your Bible, it says Matthew in this chapter, in this short five verses, Chapter Nine Verses Nine through thirteen, he identifies, the author identifies the man who was the tax collector Jesus was interacting with, as in Matthew. This is him. He's writing about himself. This is what he says. He says as Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting in the tax office and he said to him follow me, and he rose and followed him. And it happened that as he was reclining at the table in the house, behold many tax color other collectors and sinners came and were dining with Jesus and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, why is your teacher eating with tax collectors and sinners? But when he heard this he this is Jesus. When Jesus heard this, he said it's not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means. I desire compassion and not sacrifice, for I did not come to call the righteous us, but sinners. In other Gospel accounts, as did not call to come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. This is an incredible interaction. How Jesus goes when he's having this interaction with Matthew, and then the Pharisees are offended because Jesus has immersed himself in the loft, in the wayward life. He's offended the religious. They question him on it and then he takes out of nowhere a paradigm and lays it...

...out for them, the paradigm of the physician of the soul. He said, look, if you want to understand what's going on, you have to think of a doctor. If you want me only to hang out with healthy people, with the righteous, what am I doing here? I can't heal anyone if they're all healed like you, Pharisees. You obviously don't mean because you're fine. You've got it together. This incredible pricope of the calling of Matthew the sinful tax collector and the meal in Matthews House with other sinful tax collectors. It's amazing for a lot of reasons. It's really amazing because of how Humble Matthew is that he would record this and use his first name, even even though he was the one writing the Gospel. He made sure people knew this was him before he became the Great Apostle who would evangelize all over Palestine and ended a MARTYRIIC death. He himself was completely engulfed in wickedness. He was a man possessed of money and willing to sell out his own countrymen for it. It's amazing that he would make sure that he's identified. In the other Gospel accounts, his surname is used to the son of Levi, or sometimes it just calls him Leavi. This is also amazing because it combines both paradigms of teaching and healing in the interaction. Matthew is called to discipleship by our Savior. Matthew responds, he lives, leaves his sinful way of life. He gathers his friends at a table to meet the one who has changed this life as a beautiful paradigm for church growth. There the Pharisees complain of Jesus is Mingling with sinners and say to Jesus as followers, why is your teacher eating with sinners? Jesus answers for himself by saying it's not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are seek teacher physician, proclaiming healing. Here the teacher describes himself as a yacht thros, a healer, sin as a sickness. He was saying that these men, caught in the vice of avarice and infidelity, are sick and they need me, because I'm here from the bowels of my compassion to heal them as a doctor, sin as a sickness, and teaching and the disciples it process as healing. This is what we're doing, this is how we're engaged in our life in the church, in a quest for healing of body and soul. All of this writes smack in the middle of Matthew's chapters, revealing Jesus as the supreme teacher and healer. So it's as though these incredible truths that Matthews laying out is all condensed into one little interaction of five verses, with Matthew and his friends meeting the teacher who is the physician. So while we may make a distinction between Jesus the teacher and Jesus the healer, we should know that all of Jesus is teaching is designed to heal the whole person, and all of Jesus's healings are designed to teach that Jesus does doesn't do do teachings for the sake, I mean do healings for the sake of it. He would never make a good TV evangelist. He never does it to show off or just to show that he can. The Ministry of Teaching and healing he performs is designed to save the whole man, and this is because Jesus, his very name, means the savior, he who will save his people from their sins. Matthew says in his first chapter, the salvation that Jesus accomplishes for US springs in according to this teaching, of this interaction, from God's mercy, from his alios. He's descended from heaven or, in the words of Christ, I have come because compassion has moved made to the great condescension of the incarnation. He could not bear to see us in illness, in terminal disease, in disgrace under the tyranny of the evil one. This is what our Savior tells them. He says, you need to go and learn something. This is what he says to the Pharisees. Go and learn something, and then he refers to Josea, the Prophet. I desire compassion and not sacrifice. You want to understand what my ministry understand that it's coming, not to fulfill some sort of religious code like you Pharisees love to live. It's coming born of compassion, to heal men. This is the only way to understand why I'm here. This precious reality that God could not stand to see...

...us in our condition, under the tyranny of our passions, is very, very beautifully articulated in the service of Baptism, Deacon, and I know this because every baptism we read in the first major prayer of baptism, we read something almost exactly like this. I may we do the words from baptism. Great Art Thou, Oh Lord. This is the first prayer after the great litany. To can does the litany, asking the Holy Spirit to come upon the waters, and then the priest says these words, Great Art Thou, Oh Lord, and marvelous are thy works, and there is no word which is sufficient to him thy wonders. And then the chanters sing out glory to Thee Oh Lord, Glory to the three times, for thou, of thine own goodwill, has brought into being all things which before we're not and by THY might thou upholdest all creation. And by thy Providence, Thou orderest the world, for Thou, who art God, inexpressible and everlasting, didst descend on the earth and didst take on the semblance of a servant and was made in the likeness of man. For because of the tender compassion of Thy Mercy, Oh master, thou couldst not endure to behold mankind oppressed by the devil. But Thou didst come and didst save us. We confess THY grace, we proclaim THY mercy, we conceal not thy gracious acts. That is a prayerful, liturgical description of exactly what our savior was trying to teach the Pharisees how to understand his healing ministry and his saving ministry. It was born out of compassion, God's compassion. He came to heal our spiritual sicknesses and to deliver us from all mortal enemies, Sin, the devils, death itself, because he loves us and he cannot bear for us to be ruined, perpetually miserable and disgraced. He can't live with it. The S theme of compassion mentioned in the account of the call of Matthew and the dinner with the tax collectors and the sinners. Is picked up again at the end of the ninth chapter of Saint Matthew, where Saint Matthew writes these words and seeing the multitudes, he felt compassion for them because they were distressed and downcast, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest. This is the last thing he says before the call of the disciples in chapter ten and the passing on of his authority to heal and preach to the apostles. So he's showing, just like his ministry, was born from compassion, and the only way to understand the presence of Chrift they in our midst is as an expression of God's compassion for our need. In the exact same way, the only way to understand the Ministry of the apostles is in it as a response to God's mercy. Seeing that the harvest was plentiful but the workers are few, the Lord after us of his disciples to pray then and there that the Lord of the harvest would send out workers into his harvest. The very next day the prayers answered, the twelve are appointed and sent out. So the Ministry of the Apostles and their successors is a witness to the world and to the Church of the continuing compassion of God and the desire to teach the gospel of the Kingdom, the truth that saves, and to heal every spiritual disease. This is how the world should know us. We are people about the business of spiritual healing in ourselves and are wanting to share, like matthew wanted to share, wanting to see, share and interaction with the physician and the medicine of life freely. Freely you have received, freely give. This symbolic gaze of our savior over the multitudes of the sick and the needy is an open window to the heart of God. How does God perceive us, the whole world of human beings, in our contortions, in our diseases, our sins are misery, he's moved to compassion and he sends his son to heal us. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in him might not perish but have everlasting life. And from this Matthian text we can go on to say, for the son so loved the world that he called his disciples to pray for workers and then send out his apostles as agents and messengers of his saving love and power. This is the womb that gives birth to...

...sacred ordination and to the mystery of the priesthood and the very next verse. And having summoned his twelve disciples, he gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out to heal every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people. There it is again the exact same word, except this time used for the apostles. Here you have the unfolding of God's mystery, the healing of the world. Move to compassion. The father sends the son and gives him all authority to heal the human raised by his words life and ultimately, by his passion, death and resurrection. moved to compassion, the son sens his apostles and gives them authority to propagate and apply his saving acts to human beings throughout the entire world. The Healing Ministry of Jesus is applied in the church, the spiritual hospital by those given the Authority and grace to heal, the spiritual fathers. But we're going to delve into that a lot more in the let fourth lection. This is just a small window, just taken from Matthew's Gospel, a few examples in the first nine chapters of Matthew's Gospel to show that Jesus as the healer. Now I want to turn your attention to the subject of how he heals. What is his method? How does he do it? We know that he's the healer of body and soul and how he uses the paradigm of a physician of sinners being sick, the ill that decimated in need of healing, to understand his saving ministry. All four of the Holy Gospels are replete, literally overflowing, with signs of the Lord and demonstrations of his mighty power to heal men. Our Lord, like his heavenly father, is constantly working. This is how he describes his father. My father is working until now and I am working. He never stops. He's performing miracles constantly, most unnoticed or unrecognized by we men who are obsessed with the material and fixated on the earth. Despite our anatomy, we have a great power to ignore how we're fashioned and not to be looking up as bipeds to the heavens, but for somehow to bend ourselves over all the Times as that we get out of bed and we just start looking down fixed on the earth, when God has made us to course through our whole day, our life with their eyes up towards the heavens. These miracles, these constant miracles of healing throughout the gospels that leave us dumbfounded and in awe, are not actually called in any of the Gospel's miracles. That's not what they're called. They're often translated that way. St John, in his most profound on Gospel, the Fourth Gospel, calls these great acts of Christ signs. See Mia. He lists seven of the signs in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, what we call the Sonoptic Gospels. These great healing episodes are called the non these powers, powers, saving energies. What sick men and women need is the medicinal power of God, the effective antibiotic against sin, the organic deliverance from the power of disordered passions and habitual sins deliverance from the tyranny of the evil powers and the frightening death grip, literally, of corruption. This is what sick people need. We don't need ideas, we need power, we need grace. This divine medicine, this all powerful antibiotic, this power of God, is called in the New Testament Grace, and the acquisition of the grace of God is the whole purpose of the Christian life. It's the core of our ecclesial being. It's how we live, it's the reason we're in church, is the reason we participate in the sacraments, the great mysteries. It's the reason we keep the Sacred Commandments. It's the reason that we live close to each other and in the care of a spiritual father. Grace, which is the presence of the Holy Spirit in US and in our brothers and sisters, the uncreated and divine energy. This is what we're seeking, this is the reason that we're in the church. That's what we're trying to get and it's what God freely gives. Our Christian life is not about ideology, though the confession of the true faith is powerful unto salvation. We ought not confession confused, the confession of the true faith with the...

...simple intellectual assent to doctrinal propositions, as though such an ascent makes someone an Orthodox Christian. Be Very careful about this. Specially catechumans and neophights need to be very careful about this distinction, because catechumens and neo fights are making ideological changes constantly, the replacing old thoughts about God and the Church and salvation with new, more solid ones, those even that were true in their old life. They're establishing much deeper roots and they're gathering a whole lot of new things, and that can be a process of elation. WHO's not thrilled? You know, when the sun rises in the cold morning and it hits your skin, you just you breathe. This is a wonderful thing, but it's the beginning, it's the very beginning, and we have to be very careful in our interactions with loved ones in which we're sharing, and sometimes not even loved ones, people we don't really know, colleagues and neighbors. We have to be very careful in our sharing that we don't come across as though somehow this change of ideology has taken us from being non Orthodox to be Orthodox. Someone can have all of these ideological changes and not the Orthodox at all. Forgive me Orthodox. He is not just a Caleta gathering together of all those simple Christian truths that are held by the church in all times in all places. It is that, but it's that combined with faith and a movement of the whole person to get involved in this very process of healing which we call salvation. It's the beginning. It's the beginning. We can invite people to the table, like Matthew did, but we're inviting them as people who are recently delivered from tax collecting. We have to remember that it may be intellectual tax collecting or something much worse, but that's us. We ought not confuse the confession of the faith with a simple intellectual assent. Our Christian life is not about becoming moral or basically a good person who hasn't killed anyone. The Christian life is about a personal metamorphosis, a transfiguration, a healing of our nature by the acquisition of God's grace, by the healing power of God, by his energy. This is how we get changed. I want to take you back to Saint Matthew Again, to chapter nine, for yet another example of how we can be healed by the acquisition of God's power. How that is the goal of what we're looking for, the means to get healed. Grace Jesus was walking with a synagogue official on his way to heal this man's daughter, to raise her from the dead, and a woman who had been suffering from a hemorrhage for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his cloak. You know the story. She was saying to herself, if I only touch his garment, I will get well. Jesus, turning and seeing her, said, daughter, take courage, your faith has made you all matthew, nine, dred and twenty two. Sat Mark's record of this incredible healing provides even more details and the fact that this poor woman had thoroughly exhausted every means of medical care possible and in the process of going to every physician, every nurse, trying every trick, every form of Chemo, we might say she had spent her entire livelihood in vain in the cost of physicians, but had not only not improved but, through their treatment, had gotten worse. Sat Mark also gives greater details about the very moment of healing. He records that Jesus perceiving in himself that power coming from him, had gone forth, turned and asked who touched him. Here we have a glance of the way that our savior coursed through the multitudes. During his earthly ministry. He was literally radiating with the power of God, shining in the uncreated divine...

...energy like a brilliant son. He oozed grace for those who could see it and touch it, like this woman. He shared it with those who had faith and saw beyond the veil of his flesh which cloaked his divine power. You remember that one occasion when he took Peter, James and John Up to the top of Mount Tabor and was transfigured before them and shone more brightly than the sun and his garments became wider than any launder on earth could make them. He pulled back, in that one instance the veil of his flesh so that they could see how he was, not just at that moment, how he was always. This woman knew how he was. She experienced it by just touching a little, tiny bit a Tassel of his robe. In the fourth lecture I'm going to share lots of stories of how those who are healed chiefly our savior, but those who he make steelers on the earth. Even the littlest things we cherish because they have the grace of God in then. Some of you know the beautiful story of St Nictario so a, you know who's now painted on the walls of our Narthics, who died in one thousand nine hundred and twenty, very humbly as he lived his whole life, in a little tiny hospital room in downtown Athens, and the nun who was caring for him, when she noticed that he had passed, took off his sweater and put it on the bed next to him, on top of the feet of a man who had been in that bed for eight years paralyzed. The next thing she knew she felt a tap on her shoulder and it was the paralyzed man, tears coming down his face, walking saying you put this sweater on my feet. That was enough, that was enough. Grace was past. Grace was past. This is how our savior lived. It's this uncreated light that the hemorrhaging woman accessed by her faith. It's this grace, this light, that we seek when we heed the Lord's command to seek first his kingdom and his righteousness. This is what we're shooting for, is to acquire the Holy Spirit in greater measure, God's presence, in his power, in our life. As what we want, and our Lord is always encouraging us to do this. You remember in his beautiful teaching about prayer, just after he had taught his disciples to say that prayer, which we call the Lord's prayer, he told them he said look, ask and you'll receive, seek and you will find, knock and the door is going to be open to you. What man is there among you that, if his child asks for bread, is going to give him a tone? What man is there, if his son asks him for a fish, is going to give him a snake? He said, how much more will your father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him? St Luke, Chapter Eleven. This is what we seek and this is our saviors means of healing us. He passes to us his presence that we call grace. So, before I finish now these initial reflections on Jesus as our healer, I want to end by pointing out what the fundamental goal is. I've tried to establish Jesus as our healer and then the means by which he heals by grace. And now I want to end by mentioning a few words about what his goal, what his the tell us of his work is all the mighty physical healings that our Lord performed during his earthly ministry and continues to perform in the church, all his work through spiritual fathers and mothers, through his people, the faith, for the last two thousand years. They're all provisional healings. This means that those who are healed will again, as they did in the Gospels, almost universally, they will again fall into sickness and die, each and every one of them. The point of the healing, although there are too many reasons for the healings to even mention them all, but if we had to sum them all up, the point of the healing was to transfigure them, to establish them in a way of life as his disciple that would lead to their participation in his triumph over death and sickness, in the resurrection. Everybody who was healed came to a new position in life and became accountable to God for living...

...a new life based upon their healing. We have to remember that, by the way, when we ask for healings we won't God to deliver of just remember see John Krososten says this. He said remember, if you're going to get healed, the Lord is going to expect you to live different because now you're a heal person. God did something for you. Some of the reasons that he doesn't heal of the way we want to be healed is because he knows that it's going to put us in a very difficult position that we may not be able to fulfill. There's too many beautiful reasons to enumerate all of them that lie behind the healings in the gospels, but all are designed to carry the persons involved pass their immediate need and to the ultimate and definitive healing that our Lord would accomplish and make available to everyone who believes. Through his incarnation, through his obedient life, through his passion, his death and his resurrection, God has become man. The chasm between us has been bridged, the mediation affected, righteousness perfected and modeled on the earth. Death slain, the devil defeated, Sin Atone for the curse, an old hades destroyed, Christ resurrected, the God man ascended, Paradise opened human flesh throned in heaven, the throne of David occupied, the kingdom established, the demons trampled and man has been dignified, as we say, in the service of the Great Complin. God is with us. Hear this, all you people, and submit yourselves. The healing of mankind and the entire Cosmos takes place through the magnificent saving acts of our Savior and by his assumption of our fallen and diseased nature. By becoming a man himself, he healed us, he rectified fallen nature. By his obedient life, he refashioned humanity and he fulfilled Adam's original calling. By his life giving death, he destroyed the power of death. By his plundering of Hades, he stripped the prisons bear and delivered the captives. By his radiant resurrection, he has made everything new. By his glorious ascension, he has ennobled the human race and placed humanity up through the sky into the heavens. By his sending forth the Holy Spirit on the day of pentecos he has applied all of his saving acts to us. By his session and his mighty rule at the throne of God, the right hand of his father, he's governing everything to a consummation date at the end of the ages, and when he returns in glory, he will cause sickness, sorrow, death and the devil to be swallowed up by life and then dropped into the lake of fire, ushering in his eternal kingdom as an inheritance to the saints who dwell in light, to those who live in His grace, to those who possess the spirit. The goal of our Savior in all of these physical healings that I've mentioned to you is the greater goal of the salvation of the whole person. This is what he's trying to accomplish. He feels deeply about for all of our suffering. He bears all of our diseases and, according to Isaiah's prophecy, he takes our diseases on himself. But he does it not to just give us physical health to live a few more decades on the earth. That's not what it's about. He does these things to give us complete, total salvation, and that is normal place, more clearly set forth in the Gospel Lesson for the second Sunday of lent. The healing of the Paralytic, the paralyzed man that Gospel Account is a window through which we can see the whole goal behind Jesus's healings. Why he really doesn't? You remember the story this man who was racked with paralyzation, unable to move roof, which hindered his ability to draw near to Jesus himself. He could even get near the Lord because he couldn't move. It provided the occasion for the courageous and sincere and most meaningful act of true friendship performed by his four friends, friends who considered his illness to be their illness. You remember, they put him on their shoulders, they went through the crowds, they couldn't get him to Jesus. They found a way to get onto the roof. How do you get onto a roof with a paralyzed man? They bust it through the roof. Who would have even conceived of that idea, except people absolutely set on one thing, and that is getting into the presence of Christ to help...

...their friend. And they lowered this man into the presence of Christ. Strikingly, when the paralyzed man finally is dropped through the roof into the presence of our Savior, Jesus does not address his physical condition. At all. And here's the important thing to see. He doesn't say to the man walk. He greets the man with these words, my son, your sins are forgiven you. It was only later, upon perceiving the error in the hearts of those who are watching him, that our savior turned his attention to the man's physical condition and healed his body. And, according to our saviors testimony, he performed this miraculous act of physical healing in order to convince the audience. Is specially the skeptics who thought, well, the reason he said your sins are forgiven is because he doesn't have the power to healing. And who can forgive sins? Anyone but God? Who is this man? The reason Jesus actually went ahead and actually finally physically healed demands paralysis. Well, to shut their mouths, so that they would know he has authority on Earth to forgive sins and heal the soul and bring integrity and deliverance to the whole person, which is the whole goal of his healings. This is where he's trying to get all of us. Can you imagine the experience of the paralyzed man at the very moment when our savior uttered his gracious words to him. That man became like Christ, sinless, and this paralyzed man at that moment recognizes his real illness was not his paralysis, it was the bond of his sins that he could not escape. Our Saviors great concern is to heal our souls, because if we find healing for our souls, then our entire person's body and soul will participation, participate in the resurrection and an eternal life. Hence the immediate goal of the church and our own focus and endeavor is and ought to be, the healing of our own souls. The late Orthodox di Elogion from the John Romanides, emphasizes in his works a lot about the healing of the soul and the Ministry of the Church for this, and he has a beautiful quote in his book Jesus Christ, the life of the world that I want to read to you. He says having faith in Christ without undergoing healing in Christ is not faith at all. Here is the same contradiction that we find when a sick person who has great confidence in his doctor never carries out the treatment which the doctor recommends. What do we think about such a person? They have great confidence in the doctor. They have a terrible disease, they go to the doctor, the doctor tells them what to do and they don't do anything. What conclusion are we supposed to make? He continues. If Judaism and its successor, Christianity, had appeared in the twentieth century for the first time, they would most likely have been characterized not as religions but as medical sciences related to psychiatry, meaning that the predominant emphasis on the therapy of the soul is so central to our faith that people might think we're just some sort of unique psychiatric treatment. They would have a wide influence on society, owing to the considerable success in healing the ills of the partially functioning personality. That's what the church does. It fixes us, it teaches us to forgive, it teaches us to be patient, it teaches us to be balanced, it teaches us not to judge, not to be thrown up and down. This produces people of stability, people that are can be known actually as being people who are healed, not perfect, but stable in an unstable world. In no way can prophetic Judaism and Christianity be construed as religions that use various magical methods and beliefs to promise escape from a supposed world of matter and evil or hypocrisy into a supposed spiritual word world of security and success and quote. So here he's pointing out the purpose of the church is not to provide some sort of little magical thing. Well, father, just pray over me, as though the priest's prayer is going to bring to that person, without their engagement in spiritual healing, the healing and salvation that they want. It's not...

...so. With that theological Teaser, let me conclude and direct your attention to our next lecture, which is going to be entitled Sin as a disease. So next Wednesday, when I'm going to do now that we've established this paradigm of Jesus the Healer of soul and body, the means of his healing is the His grace and the goal the re establishment of the integrity of the whole person, our actual deliverance from our pathologies and establishment as the personalities God has truly made us to be. Now, next week we're going to look at exactly how we are diseased. What does that mean? was that mean for our bodies? What does that mean for our souls, for our minds, for our hearts, for our consciences. Will Look more deeply into sin as a disease next week. We hope that you have enjoyed and have been edified by this presentation offered to you by Patristic Nectar Publications, a nonprofit organization committed to nourishing the spiritually thirsty with the sweet teachings of the Holy Fathers. If you are interested in other available titles or if you would like more information on patristic nectar publications, please visit our website at www dot patristic nectar dot org. Again, that's www dot patristic nectar dot org.

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