Jesus Christ-Victory

Prophet Hosea

Prophet Hosea

My beloved spiritual children in Christ Our Only True God and Our Only True Savior,
CHRIST IS IN OUR MIDST! HE WAS, IS, AND EVER SHALL BE. Ο ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ ΕΝ ΤΩ ΜΕΣΩ ΗΜΩΝ! ΚΑΙ ΗΝ ΚΑΙ ΕΣΤΙ ΚΑΙ ΕΣΤΑΙ.

PSALM 145 [146]
A Song of God's Majesty and Love

I will extol You, my God, O King; And I will bless Your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless You, And I will praise Your name forever and ever, Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; And His greatness is unsearchable.

One generation shall praise Your works to another, And I shall declare Your mighty acts. I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty, And on Your wondrous works. Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts, And I will declare Your greatness. They shall utter the memory of Your great goodness, And shall sing of Your righteousness.

The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, Slow to anger and great in mercy. The Lord is good to all, And His tender mercies are over all His works.

All Your works shall praise You, O Lord, And Your saints shall bless You. They shall speak of the glory of Your Kingdom, And talk of Your power, To make known to the son of men His mighty acts, And the glorious majesty of His Kingdom. Your Kingdom is everlasting Kingdom, And Your dominion endures throughout all generations.

The Lord upholds all who fall, And raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look expectantly to You, And You give them their food in due season. You open Your hand And satisfy the desire of every living thing.

The Lord is righteous in all His ways, Gracious in all His works. The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them.

The Lord preserves all who love Him, But all the wicked He will destroy. My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord, And all flesh shall bless His Holy name Forever and ever.

[This psalm is a song of praise to God as our hope and as the Restorer and Healer of Israel. In many Orthodox Churches, this is the ordinary second antiphon (psalm sung responsively) of the Divine Liturgy.]

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JESUS CHRIST-VICTORY
[Source: The Struggle for Faith and other writings of Bishop Nikolai Velimirovich and Archimandrite Justin Popovich]

The Lord silences storms on the sea. The Lord calms the winds. Last night we were terrified of the storm and the winds and the downpour of rain. The dogs were howling, the livestock were bellowing out of fear; roofs on buildings were demolished, trees were shattered and uprooted. Yet, see what a glorious morning has dawned! Light, clarity, and serenity--as though nothing had happened. Not a single leaf on the trees is rustling. We feel as though the day has conquered the night, light darkness, and joy sorrow. The Lord is victorious now just as He once was on the Lake of Gennesaret, and is at any other time. He is always victorious. He calms the storms and winds even within our souls. He commands the evil spirits to flee from us and not terrify us. He drives out fear. He brings in serenity, clarity, light and joy. Only He, my dear sisters, our golden Lord.

We give thanks to Him. We worship Him. We sing hymns to Him. We receive Him into ourselves. How do we receive Him into ourselves? We have already received Him into ourselves when we received Holy Communion. He has already entered inside our vessel of life, our body and our soul. And just as once He was in a boat He was in a boat with the Apostles, so is He, the very same He, now in the vessel of my life and yours. And whenever a storm arises in our soul, and wicked winds want to knock us down, He is our Savior. Just as before the terrified Apostles He once commanded the storm and wind: "Cease, and be still!" so also now can He perform the same miracle and restore serenity within us. We only have to pray to Him, again as the Apostles did at that time: "Lord, save us, we are perishing!" (cf. St. Matthew 8:24f).

You have seen the prosphora, the holy bread used for the Divine Liturgy, and you know what is stamped on the prosphora. Around a cross an inscription reads: "IC XC NIKA." This means: Jesus Christ, Victory. O my sisters, if Christ is in us, victory is in us, victory over any ill-will that might appear in our heart, over any bitterness, over any fear, and over any darkness that might creep into our minds or our body.

If the world troubles you, know that within you is the One Who is stronger than the world and has overcome the world. Just as He once told His Apostles: "Do not be afraid, I have overcome the world" (St. John 16:33). Therefore, my sisters, whenever people trouble you, enter into your heart will all your mind and there pronounce these words several times Isus Hristos Nika (Jesus Christ is Victory). And at once you will sense strength and light. Believe that the Lord Jesus has truly entered into your heart through Holy Communion, and believe that He has overcome the entire world and all that is in the world, and do not be afraid. Saint John the Evangelist, the meek Disciple of Christ who laid his head on the Lord's holy breast, says it this way: "Everyone who is born of God overcomes the world; and our faith is the victory that overcomes the world" (1 John 54).

If fear grips you because of a nightmare or because of some apparition or specter while awake, quickly enter into your heart with you mind and again pronounce these words a few times: Isus Hristos Nika (Jesus Christ is Victory). For the Lord is victorious over every evil power. Remember what you have read in the Gospel-how the Lord expelled and drove out evil spirits from people, and how He said: "I have seen Satan falling from heaven like lightning," and how after His glorious resurrection He gave power over demons to His Apostles and to all of us who believe in Him, when He said that this sign will belong to all those who believe: "You will cast out demons in My name" (St. Mark 16:17).

The evil spirit hates man more than any other creature in the world, and he hates Christians more than any other people, and he hates monks and nuns more than any other Christians. Therefore, he incessantly strives to instigate and conjure up some storm against monastics, whether he instigates it from outside through people or conjures it up inside the soul through foolish thoughts and impure desires. We read in the Lives of the Saints what a fierce struggle the holy monks and nuns had with these invisible beasts. But they were victorious through the name of Jesus, the sign of the cross, and courageous fortitude. Yes, and above all through the blood of the Lamb of God, as it is written in Revelations for God's chosen: "And they shall be victorious over him through the blood of the Lamb" (Rev. 12:11).

And the blood of the Lamb is in you, my sisters. Through Holy Communion you have taken it into yourself. Like living fire this most pure blood burns up every unclean power as well as our sins. Therefore, whenever storms rise up against you, whether from outside through unenlightened people or from within through foolish thoughts and impure desires, flee into your heart with your mind and say: Isus Hristos Nika (Jesus Christ is Victory). Our Lord is stronger than anyone or anything and is able both now and forever to overcome the world and demons, and to calm all the storms and winds, from without or within.

When you have received Christ into yourself through Holy Communion, my sisters, treat Him with more respect and importance than yourself. He has entered your heart, and has made our heart His throne. He must reign as King within you, shine within you, in order to fight for you. Do not play games and try to make yourself more important than Him. For He will leave you, and you will be left empty, and His throne in your heart will soon be seized by the murderer, Satan, your adversary and His. Where will you be then? Therefore, I admonish you, as soon as you receive Holy Communion into yourself, think and realize that you have received into yourself your strongest and dearest Lord, Lover, and Friend. Surrender yourself entirely to Him. Let Him direct your body, your soul, and your entire life to the very end. He is victorious over everything that assails you, hurts you, and leads you to destruction. Therefore, in your heart say to yourself often: Isus Hristos Nika (Jesus Christ is Victory).

It is clearly stated in Revelation what our heavenly Father has promised to give to those who are victorious over evil in this world. Thus it is written: "I will grant him who is victorious to eat of the tree of life, which is in the Paradise of God."  And again a little further on: "I will give to him who is victorious some of the hidden manna to eat, and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone." And a little further: "I will give to him who is victorious power over the heathen." And again the Lord says: "Whoever is victorious shall be clad in white garments and I will not blot his name out of the book of life."

Furthermore, the Lord says to His mystery-seer John: "I will make him who is victorious a pillar in the temple of My God; never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God." And again He says: "I will grant to him who is victorious to sit with Me on My Throne, as I Myself was victorious and have taken My seat with My Father on His Throne." And finally, to the victory the Lord promises everything, absolutely everything, saying: "Whoever is victorious shall receive everything, and I will be his God and he will be My son" (Rev. 2:7, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21; 21:7)...

We must not be afraid in the least, my dear sisters. The Lord knows our weakness. He does not expect more from us than we can do. He is the Victory. He is Isus Hristos Nika. He has been victorious; He continues to be victorious. He asks that we accept His victory and admit that we can do nothing without Him. The phrase written in Revelation, "whoever is victorious," means whoever conquers his own pride and conceit, acknowledges his own nothingness before the Almighty Christ, bears Him in his heart as the victorious One, and joins in His victory. This person will receive life eternal and a crown of glory, and will reign with Him on a heavenly throne, together with the Angels and the righteous, and will shine like the sun forever and ever.

The Lord gives us His victory. As the glorious Paul says: "Thanks be to God, who gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." And thus he exhorts the Corinthians: "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord" (1 Corinthians 15:57-58). What more can I in my deficiency add to what that pillar of Orthodoxy, Saint Paul, has said: "God has given you victory through His Son Jesus Christ." But now cling to that victory, do not allow yourselves to be moved off the right path or to be moved away from the Victorious Christ. Isus Hristos Nika (Jesus Christ is Victory).

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MY BLESSING TO ALL OF YOU

The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God and Father, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.

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Glory Be To GOD For All Things!

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With sincere agape in His Holy Diakonia,
The sinner and unworthy servant of God

+Father George