Voices ever ancient, ever new. Lent, Week 4: Thursday

“How can you believe, when you accept praise from one another and do not seek the praise that comes from the only God?” (John 5:44)

Saint Cyril of Alexandria reflects on this verse from today’s Gospel, writes:

“He accuses the Pharisees of a love for power and of prizing honors from people. He is covertly hinting that it is exceedingly inadvisable to put the diseases of their own soul on God, who can by no means have anything to do with disease. He goes on to say that they, held fast by an empty kind of glory, thereby lose the fairest prize, meaning faith in him. Paul speaks clearly of this too when he says, “For if I were yet pleasing people, I should not be Christ’s servant.” It is almost always necessarily the case that those who hunt for honors from people fail when it comes to the glory that comes from above and from the only God.” (Commentary on the Gospel of John, 3)

We invoke your mercy in humble prayer, O Lord,
that you may cause us, your servants,
corrected by penance and schooled by good works,
to persevere sincerely in your commands
and come safely to the paschal festivities.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
Who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Glory to You Father, Son and Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen!