One Minute Reflection – 9 November – Dedication of The Archbasilica of the Most Holy Saviour – Apocalypse 21:2-5, Luke 19:1-10 – Scripture search here: https://www.drbo.org/
“But Zacheus standing, said to the Lord: Behold, Lord, the half of my goods I give to the poor and if I have wronged any man of anything, I restore him fourfold. Jesus said to him: This day is salvation come to this house because he also is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” – Luke:8-10
REFLECTION – “… This was an act of divine foreknowledge, for He well knew what would happen. He saw the man’s soul prepared most readily to choose a holy life and converted him, therefore, unto piety. The man, therefore, received Jesus joyfully and this was the commencement of his turning himself unto good, of his departure from his former faults and of his manfully, be-taking himself unto a better course.
But perchance, someone possibly may say, to our common Saviour Christ, ‘What do You, O Lord go to lodge with Zacheus and desire to abide with the chief of the publicans? He has not yet washed away the stain of his greedy love of money. He is still sick with covetousness, the mother of all crimes, still full of the blame of plunder and extortion.‘ But yes, He says, I indeed know this, in that I am God by nature and see the ways of every individual upon earth. And more than this, I know also, things to come. I have called him to repentance, because he is ready thereto and although men murmur and blame My gentleness, facts themselves, shall prove that they are wrong. For Zacheus, it says, stood up, and said unto the Lord, “Behold, the half of whatever I possess I give unto the poor and if I have defrauded any man, I make fourfold restoration.”
You behold his repentance; his rapid change unto a better course, his haste unto piety, the bountifulness of his love for the poor. He, who lately was a publican, or rather the chief of the publicans, given up to covetousness and set upon gain, at once becomes merciful and devoted to charity. He promises that he will distribute his wealth to those who are in need,that he will make restoration to those who have been defrauded and he, who was the slave of avarice, makes himself poor and ceases to care for gains.
Let not the multitudes, therefore, murmur when Christ saves sinners but let them answer us this. Would they have physicians succeed in effecting cures, when they visit the sick? Do they praise them when they are able to deliver men from cruel ulcers, or do they blame them and praise those who are unskillful in their art? But, as I suppose, they will give the sentence of superiority in favour of those, who are skillful in benefiting such as suffer from diseases. Why, therefore, do they blame Christ, if when Zacheus was, so to say, fallen and buried in spiritual maladies, He raised him from the pitfalls of destruction?
And to teach them this, He says, “Today there is salvation for this house, in that he also is a son of Abraham” for where Christ enters, there, necessarily, is also salvation. May He, therefore, also be in us and He is in us, when we believe, for He dwells in our hearts by faith and we are His abode. It would have been better then for the Jews to have rejoiced because Zacheus was wonderfully saved, for he too was counted among the sons of Abraham, to whom God promised salvation in Christ, by the holy prophets, saying, “There shall come a Saviour from Zion and He shall take away iniquities from Jacob and this is My covenant with them, when I will bear their sins.”
Christ, therefore arose, to deliver the inhabitants of the earth from their sins and to seek them that were lost and to save them that had perished. For this is His office and, so to say, the fruit of His Godlike gentleness. Of this will He also count all those worthy, who have believed in Him: by Whom and with Whom to God the Father be praise and dominion, with the Holy Ghost forever and ever, Amen.” – St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) Known as “The Pillar of Faith” Father and Doctor of the Church (An excerpt from Homily 127).
PRAYER – O God, Who for us bring each year the recurrence of the Consecration day of this Thy holy temple and always bring us back safely to the Sacred Rites, hear the prayers of Thy people and grant that, whoever enters this temple to pray for blessings., may rejoice in having obtained whatever he sought.Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).