Easter message from Mor Gregorios Yohanna Ibrahim
- SYRIAN ORTHODOX ARCHDIOCESE OF ALEPPO
“I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20)
We take the blessed opportunity of the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, to offer our apostolic benediction and congratulations.
We are very pleased to address and share with you the joyfulness, as we celebrate one of the most important pillars of our Christian faith; the Resurrection of our Lord from the dead, having been crucified for our sins and died for our salvation, buried, then risen with glory to give us life.
The Resurrection remained the most important event in history. Mankind has been glorified by the resurrection. He defeated all his enemies: sin, death, and devil and cloaked with the gown of glory and victory. Due to the resurrection, mankind received endless blessings, one of which his return, after a long estrangement, to the bosom of the heavenly Father and became the son of grace.
In his first epistle to the Corinthians, St. Paul, the Apostle to the Gentiles, opens his mind to an event of Resurrection, specifying to us all what we need to know and believe for our salvation:
"Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.” (Corinthians 15:3-4) NIV.
In order to verify the authentication of this great event and precious gift to humanity, St. Paul motivated us to delve in the books and to go back to the living sources, especially the Old Testament, and what was foretold by the prophets who clearly indicated the coming of Christ in the flesh, his death and resurrection.
St. Paul emphasized that the resurrection of the dead is a fact, without which Jesus would not have risen. Therefore, we hear this efficacy of faith loud in his message: “And if Christ has not risen, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.” (1 Corinthians 15:14) NIV.
Thus, the resurrection of Christ, is a paramount for the interconnectivity of evangelism and faith. That is our testimony about God. That is how the Church built its Faith, its Dogma and Tradition, on the basis of the Resurrection.
Therefore, we consider the resurrection as a true and unquestionable event, that we renounce and revoke all anti-resurrection, ideologies and intellectual endeavors.
Two millennia later and still we are celebrating these irrefutable facts that do not accept misleading interpretation, elucidation, or diligence. We believe in the words of Jesus to his disciples and followers of the Church in every place and time that he will stay with them, as promised at the end of the Gospel according to St. Matthew, " I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20).
God bless these sacred days, and increase the blessings and grace of your times and give you his peace and tranquility.
I wish you a very Happy Easter
Gregorios Yohanna Ibrahim
Metropolitan of Aleppo
3 April 2012