There are seven capital sins: (1) pride, (2)avarice (greed), (3) lust (sensual passion),
(4) envy, (5) gluttony (excess in eating), (6)anger, and (7)sloth (laziness)..
(Exposition of the Orthodox Faith Third Series.
Published by the Serbian Orthodox Diocese in the United States of America and Canada,
1957, p. 102)
Remember the Students of St. Sava School of Theology - Libertyville
· The degree of repentance shown by Zacchaeus.
· The change in Zacchaeus' life.
· Jesus Christ coming to the house of Zacchaeus.
Recent Activities of Parish Priest
January 29 - Partipated in parish St. Sava Program.
January 30 - Visited parishioner at Greene County Memorial Hospital, Waynesburg.
January 31 - Went to Monastery Marcha, Richfield, Ohio.
February 1 - Attended funeral of Sub-deacon Michael Yaworski, Russian Orthodox Church
February 2 - Meeting with parishioner.
February 3 - Blessed four homes
From the Desert Fathers
He (Isadore the Priest) also said,
"It is impossible for you to live according to God if you love pleasures and money."
Then Jesus entered and passed through Jericho. Now behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus
who was a chief tax collector, and he was rich. And he sought to see who Jesus was,
but could not because of the crowd, for he was short of stature. So he ran ahead and climbed
up into a sycamore tree to see Him for He was going to pass that way. And when Jesus came to
the place, He looked up and saw him and said to him, 'Zacchaeus, make haste and come down,
for today I must stay at your house' So he made haste and came down, and received Him joyfully.
But when they saw it, they all complained saying, "He has gone to be a guest with a man who
is a sinner.' Then Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, "Look, Lord, I give half of my goods
to the poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold."
And Jesus said to him, "Today salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of
Abraham; for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost."
Zacchaeus Sunday is here. It is time to clear our minds and clear our hearts.
It is time to begin thinking about the journey to Pascha. It is the time to begin
the preparations necessary for the Paschal journey.
Coming soon are the Sunday of the Publican and the Pharisee,
the Sunday of the Prodigal Son, Meatfare Sunday and Cheesefare Sunday.
Lessons in humility, and forgiveness and the Last Judgment are in the Sundays ahead.
Today's Gospel reminds us that Jesus Christ came to seek and to save the lost.
Today we learn of Zacchaeus' efforts to make his himself right with God.
Zacchaeus may have lived a life not pleasing to God but he recognized it and tried
to correct it. Every person sins. Every person does things not pleasing to God.
Every person makes errors he or she wishes did not occur.
Through Holy Confession and Holy Communion, through prayer, fasting and almsgiving,
the repentant person experiences the healing and wholeness provided by the Lord Jesus Christ.
The Church wants us to study and know well the experience of Zacchaeus.
The Church considers the lesson of Zacchaeus so important this Gospel lesson is
read every year in every Orthodox Church on every continent.
We have heard the Gospel reading about Zacchaeus many many times. Each time the
lesson is new. Each time we hear about Zacchaeus we are expected to change our behavior
and to be better Orthodox Christians.
Zacchaeus was blessed to have Jesus Christ come to stay at his house.
Jesus Christ is present in every house welcoming Him.
Jesus Christ is present in every heart welcoming Him.
Zacchaeus was small in physical stature. Zacchaeus was big in the consideration given by the
Lord Jesus Christ. Our hearts and minds guide our lives. Our souls are of primary consideration.
Our Lord Jesus Christ said: "What is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world,
and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?"
The arrival of Zacchaeus Sunday reminds us to put our lives in order.
The sinfullness in our lives must be confronted and dealt with in ways pleasing to God.
If we do not recognize our own sinfulness, we need to study the Holy Scriptures more
carefully. We need to study the lives of the saints, We need to study the teachings of Christ.
Only Jesus Christ is perfect.
Denying our own sinfulness does to remove the sins we have. Confession of sins is necessary.
Seeking to have a change of heart, a change of thinking, a change in actions is necessary.
David says in Psalm 50/51 "Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit
within me." (50/51:10). How many of us take time to read the Psalms on
a regular basis? How many of us seek to clarify our thoughts and establish the direction of
our lives by studying the Holy Scriptures?
Most people spend a limited amount of time in Church. Time at home can be wisely invested
in learning more about God and the ways pleasing to God. To be able to deal with daily life, the
threats, the temptations, and the sinfulness, requires the armor of God and the wisdom of God.
A common saying is that we are what we eat. We are defined and shaped also
by what we read, what we watch, how we spend and invest our time and talents.
How often to we go to Holy Confession? How often do we partake of the Precious
Body and Blood of Christ? What percent of each day is invested in prayer and reading
of the Holy Scriptures?
Zacchaeus gave to the poor and restored fourfold to those he harmed. What percent of our
income is given for charitable purposes? Do we restore fourfold to those we may have harmed?
It is time to think seriously about our relationship with God. It is time to
thinking seriously about the direction of our lives and the condition of our souls.
St. Sava was a prayerful person. In his cell on the Holy Mountain, St. Sava established
a schedule of prayer that was continuous. St.Paul said we are to pray without ceasing.
For us to pray without ceasing, we must believe it is possible. We must seek the help of
God in making the effort. St. Paul would not have established the standard of unceasing prayer
if it were impossible to achieve.
Let us experience the unity with Christ experienced by Zacchaeus. May our hearts and homes
be visible dwelling places of the Lord Jesus Christ. May the joy of Jesus Christ's Presence
be very evident in our lives.
St. George Serbian Orthodox Church, Carmichaels, Pennsylvania.
January 23 / February 5, 2006
Holy Hieromartyr Clement, Bishop of Ancyra.
Fr. Rodney Torbic
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