Christ is in our midst, my dear readers!
Everything that does not have unity is doomed to destruction.
In today’s (the eighth Sunday after Pentecost) reading at the Liturgy, we heard a call for unity. The Savior, in His High Priestly Prayer, asks that we be one with God and with each other. The Apostle Paul tells us: Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment (1 Cor. 1:10).
We are called to be united in our profession of faith, in the sacraments and worship, in the church structure, in the understanding of Holy Scripture and Tradition. We strengthen and deepen our unity by partaking of the same Body and Blood of the Savior. All this makes us one in spirit with God and with each other. It is very important to understand and feel this unity not formally, but as if from within; not in letter, but in spirit.
You can take an analogy from family life. Can we, for example, say that a husband, wife and children are one family just because they live under the same roof? No, because there can be the deepest divisions within this family. A bottomless abyss of alienation can pass between a husband and wife, and each of them can live their own separate lives. Children and parents in general, living in the same house, can live in completely different worlds. If there is no love, harmony, mutual understanding in the house, then there can be no question of any unity. Formally, this is a family, but in reality they are complete strangers to each other.
The same thing is happening now in our homeland. As in any country, we have citizens who speak different languages. Could this be the subject of divisions? Can those who hate their own compatriots be called patriots? And how can we understand those who, professing (at least formally) the same Creed as us, reading the same Gospel, with the help of a grinder and a crowbar, seize our churches? Can these people be called believers at all? What kind of unity with them can we talk about?
The cause and root of all divisions is in hell. People who preach hatred and divide members of one big family into “their own” and “strangers”, into “right” Ukrainians and “wrong” Ukranians, are undoubtedly servants of the devil. But they will not be able to do anything if they themselves do not indiviually consent to this. This is how God allows Satan to sow tares between us, and by this sieve we find out who preserves unity with God and with each other, no matter what, and who does not; which of us are “children of God”, and which are the “devil's spawns”.
It is very sad that politicians, who should have done everything in their power to prevent divisions on national, religious and other grounds in our country, themselves incite this enmity. I would like them to still hear the words of Christ and understand that Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand (Matt. 12:25).