Nikolai Velimirovich“The earth quaked, rocks were split” (St. Matthew 27:51).

O, what a terrible reproach against mankind! Even dead nature recognized Him Whom men were unable to recognize.

All mute things trembled and began to protest, each in its own way and in its own language. The mute earth quakes–that is its language. The stones split apart–that is their language. The sun withholds its light–that is its language.

All of creation in its own way protested. For all of creation is submissive to Him, as it was to Adam at one time in Paradise, because all of creation recognizes Him as it did Adam in Paradise.

How is it that irrational creation knew Him and was obedient to Him, we do not know. It is some kind of inner instinct of irrational creation, which came to them from the word of God, by which they were created.

That instinct of irrational creation is more valuable than the mind of man when darkened by sin. Of all the things which are in existence, nothing is more blind than the mind of man when darkened by sin.

Not only does he not see what was created to be seen, rather, he sees that which is contrary to being, contrary to God, and contrary to the truth.

These are the degrees of the blindness; beneath blindness; these are numbers below zero. This is man of lower creation.

For when the priests of God in Jerusalem did not recognize their God, the storms and winds recognized Him; vegetation and animals recognized Him; the seas, the rivers, the earth, the stones, the stars, the sun and even the demons recognized Him.

O what kind of shame it is for mankind!

The earth quaked, the rocks split, the sun darkened, as much in anger as in sorrow. All creation grieved over the pain of the Son of God.

Protests and sorrow and fear! The whole of creation was frightened at the death of Him Who cried to them arise from nothing and rejoice in your being.

As though it wanted to say: with whom do we remain and who will now uphold us when the Almighty gives up the Spirit?

O brethren, let us be ashamed of this protest, these sorrows and this fear of the mutes of creation!

With repentance let us cry out to the Lord, the Victor: forgive, O Compassionate Lord, for indeed, whenever we sin and offend You, we do not know what we are doing.

Nikolai Velimirovich (1880-1956; Orthodox Church): Prologue from Ohrid, March 28th.

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