The Divine Liturgy and Our Worship of God — 20160305

As we enter into the Great Fast and worship our God using the Liturgy of St. Basil the Great, we are also drawn into a detailed description of what we believe about our God. We pray this:

Who indeed is able to describe adequately Your deeds of might or proclaim the wondrous works you have performed at all times?

Our Church indeed calls us to stand in awe before our God. St. Basil shares with us the characteristics of our God when we pray:

You Who are without beginning, invisible, incomprehensible, unbounded and unchangeable

In light of these words, I would ask you to recall the challenge I gave you on the Weekend of the Prodigal Son, namely to assess your understanding of Who God is and to change that understanding to what God is as He as He has revealed Himself to be through the Church. When we really understand that we, as His creations, cannot change even one iota of His disposition toward us by our actions, we will begin to spiritually grow.

I truly believe that if we only see God as a Judge and an all-powerful being that demands we act a certain way or be punished, we can never respond to His love and can never truly become His children. We see that Jesus, despite the grave challenges He had to face, always thought of His Father as “Abba”, truly an affectionate term that expressed the fact the Jesus understood that the Father loved Him and that He, in turn, desired to voluntarily return the Father’s love. St. Basil, in the first prayer of the Anaphora, continues the prayer by addressing who the Son and Holy Spirit are. The prayer states that the Lord Jesus Christ is:

Great God and Redeemer, our hope, Who is the image of Your goodness, the seal of Your own likeness, showing You forth in Himself, O Father – the living Word, true God, eternal Wisdom, life, Sanctification, Power, the true light.

St. Basil then states that Jesus is the One through Whom

The Holy Spirit manifested Himself; the Spirit of truth, the gift of the adoption of Son, the pledge of our future inheritance, the first fruits of everlasting blessedness, the life-giving power, the found of sanctification, through Whom every creature possessed of reason and understanding is given the power to serve You (Father) and to send up to You an unending hymn of glory, because all things are Your subjects.

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