UOC Chancellor: Lack of love will lead the world to destruction
Metropolitan Anthony of Boryspil and Brovary noted that the Lord will wait until the last for a person to do better.
Metropolitan Antony of Boryspil and Brovary, Chancellor of the UOC, emphasized that the Second Coming of Christ will happen when people run out of the main unifying factor, love. The hierarch stated this during a sermon on Maundy Monday, posted on the YouTube channel "Stained Glass: About Faith in Colors".
“The regular gospel reading on Monday of Holy Week reveals the images of the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ to this earth. While Christ’s First Coming was about being a slave, and its goal was to save the human race from sinful consequences, His Second Coming will take place in glory, and its goal will be to judge on the human race in accordance with how each person perceived the Gospel and built his/her life in accordance with it,” said Vladyka Anthony.
The Chancellor of the UOC reminded the believers that the Second Coming of Christ, just like the First, will have its own distinctive signs, hearkening to which a person can realize that the Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ is close.
“As the Gospel says, one of the signs of the Second Coming of Jesus Christ will be the appearance of the Antichrist in the world. Christ the Savior warns us: 'Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and will deceive many' (Matthew 24:4-5). Thus, the Lord wants to show us there will be many false leaders at the end of the age who, for the sake of their desire for power, for glory, for material prosperity, will try to inspire their views on the truth, drawing people to themselves, to their personality, rather than to Lord. As a result, such a false teacher will not unite people in the truth, but, on the contrary, will sow a split. A lot of those following him will be deceived, turned aside from the path of salvation,” the hierarch said.
“But what will cause the appearance of the Antichrist in this world? The Gospel gives us an answer to this question: ‘Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold’ (Matthew 24:12). Christ says that on the eve of His Second Coming people will hear of wars and rumors of wars, nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. According to the Holy Fathers, it is the absence of love that will lead the world to destruction. When the last drop of love disappears in people's hearts, God will have no choice but to destroy this world and create a new one with truth and love prevailing. Only those who in their lives fulfilled the main commandment of Christ, the commandment of love, will be welcome to this new world,” Metropolitan Anthony instructed the faithful at the beginning of Passion Week with these words.
Vladyka noticed that without love a person becomes indifferent to everything good, to neighbors and, finally, to God. Where there is no love, there is disappointment and despair. Nevertheless, a true Christian will always remain faithful to the Lord, even when it becomes the hardest thing to believe, even when such things are happening around that it may seem that God has left this world without His care. And then only patience will save those who remain faithful to God. Christ also says in the gospel passage, which is read on Holy Monday that “the one who stands firm to the end will be saved" (Matthew 24:13).
Still, why would the Lord allow evil to triumph for a while? Why would He allow the possibility of tribulations and trials for Christians, for the elect? Is it fair? Answering this question, Vladyka cites the words of St. Justin of Chelius: “The Lord waits until good and evil fully mature, until good can no longer become evil, and vice versa: until evil, unfortunately, can no longer become good. And as long as there is even a slight hope of correcting evil, God will wait for this and will give at least someone the opportunity to become better. When there is no longer such an opportunity, God will come into this world to judge the voluntary choice of each person.
“Thus, the horrors that will occur on the eve of the Second Coming of Christ are not at all the connivance of God or His indifference to this world, as it might seem at first glance, but a manifestation of His love and patience for all His creation. Because God will wait until the last for a person to repent and save his soul,” said the hierarch.
Earlier, the UOJ reported that, according to Metropolitan Anthony of Boryspil and Brovary, the cause of wars lies in the abuse of freedom.