July 10, 2023

Homily Two for the Fifth Sunday of Matthew - The Demon and the Demonized (Metr. Hierotheos of Nafpaktos)

Homily for the Fifth Sunday of Matthew 
The Demon and the Demonized
By Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos and Agiou Vlasiou
The Gospel reading that was read today at the Divine Liturgy, referred to the miracle that Christ performed in the country of the Gergesenes, when he healed two demon possessed men. We will focus on two points that we need to pay particular attention to.

The first is that which has to do with the demon. With this word the devil is declared, who is a special person and was previously an angel, but through his pride he became an angel of evil, a devil who constantly separates God from men and men from God.

In the passage we heard today it is written that many demons entered the body of two unfortunate people and spoke through them. Thus, we have a meeting of Christ with demons. There is no relationship between them, as they themselves said: "What have we to do with You, Jesus, You Son of God?" (Matth. 8:29). Yes, there is a huge difference. Christ is love, while demons are possessed by hatred towards people and creation. Christ is the truth, while demons are spirits of delusion. Christ benefits people, while demons abuse them.

The Church teaches that Christ, with His incarnation, defeated the devil, death and sin. The Evangelist John writes: "For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil" (1 Jn. 3:8). After all, this can also be seen from what the demons said to Christ: "Have you come to torment us before the time?" (Matt. 8:29). Christ defeated the devil with the Cross and His Resurrection, but His final victory and the suffering of the devil will take place at the Second Coming. Until then He lets him tempt the people and thus the will of the people is tested, so that they can enjoy the prizes of their struggles.

The second is that there are possessed people, those who let them enter their soul and body. In this specific case, i.e. in today's Gospel passage, it seems that the demons had also entered the brains of those people, and were thinking and speaking instead of them. It is fearsome to see such a sight. Man, the most beautiful creation of God, to become a slave of demons, a subject of dark spirits, a slave of passions!

The entry of demons into man is through the intrusive thoughts, which turn into desires and end up in sins and passions. The passions are the malignant spiritual tumors in the psychic organism. Through sins and passions, the devil gains dominion over man, abolishes his spiritual freedom and distances him from God. The Evangelist John will write that everyone who sins is of the devil, is a child of the devil. In fact, he writes that there are some points that distinguish the children of God from the children of the devil. What are these? He writes: "Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother" (1 Jn. 3:10). This means that the one who wrongs people and does not love them is a child of the devil.

We live in an era in which there are many personal and social problems, upheavals and disturbances in the social space. To solve these problems, people struggle and various anthropological, sociological, psychological, etc. sciences are developed. Of course, we cannot deny their contribution, especially when we live in a declining society, but it must be emphasized that the main cause of the malaise is the polemics of the devil, but mainly his effect on people who are defenseless, who do not want to be protected by the Grace of God. Therefore, we must fight, with the Grace of God, against the devil in the area of the senses, imagination, intrusive thoughts and desires, and not allow him to enter our inner space in order to be free.

Source: Translated by John Sanidopoulos.

Become a Patreon or Paypal Supporter:

Recurring Gifts

Contact Form


Email *

Message *