During Lent, and especially Passion Week, we are faced with the stark reality that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). By “all” we don’t mean everyone except me! Like Paul, we must say with utmost sincerity that “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief” (1 Timothy 1:15).
Yet, when Christ commands us to “Repent!”, he does not mean we should feel shame to the point of despair – we cannot let Satan convince us that, like Judas Iscariot, we ought succumb to hopelessness. Rather, we are called to “repent”, that is, “change our minds”, so that we may turn away from the darkness of sin and death, and turn our gaze towards our “one Lord Jesus Christ”, who is the “Light of the world” and “Life”.
In this podcast, Father John Oliver uses “anger” as an example of a passion which we may use to our advantage in uprooting sin. Just as Christ was motivated by godly anger to clear the temple, we too must direct godly anger inwards and cleanse ourselves, since we too are temples of God.
“Never confuse the person formed in the image of God, with the evil that is in him; because evil is but a chance misfortune, an illness, a devilish reverie. But the very essence of the person is the image of God, and this remains in him despite every disfigurement.” – Saint John of Kronstadt