Gospel: John 5: 1-24
1 AFTER these things was a festival day of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
2 Now there is at Jerusalem a pond, called Probatica, which in Hebrew is named Bethsaida, having five porches.
3 In these lay a great multitude of sick, of blind, of lame, of withered; waiting for the moving of the water.
4 And an angel of the Lord descended at certain times into the pond; and the water was moved. And he that went down first into the pond after the motion of the water, was made whole, of whatsoever infirmity he lay under.
5 And there was a certain man there, that had been eight and thirty years under his infirmity.
6 Him when Jesus had seen lying, and knew that he had been now a long time, he saith to him: Wilt thou be made whole?
7 The infirm man answered him: Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pond. For whilst I am coming, another goeth down before me.
8 Jesus saith to him: Arise, take up thy bed, and walk.
9 And immediately the man was made whole: and he took up his bed, and walked. And it was the Sabbath that day.
10 The Jews therefore said to him that was healed: It is the Sabbath; it is not lawful for thee to take up thy bed.
11 He answered them: He that made me whole, he said to me, Take up thy bed, and walk.
12 They asked him therefore: Who is that man who said to thee, Take up thy bed, and walk? 13 But he who was healed, knew not who it was; for Jesus went aside from the multitude standing in the place.
14 Afterwards, Jesus findeth him in the temple, and saith to him: Behold thou art made whole: sin no more, lest some worse thing happen to thee.
15 The man went his way, and told the Jews, that it was Jesus who had made him whole.
16 Therefore did the Jews persecute Jesus, because he did these things on the sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered them: My Father worketh until now; and I work.
18 Hereupon therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he did not only break the sabbath, but also said God was his Father, making himself equal to God.
19 Then Jesus answered, and said to them: Amen, amen, I say unto you, the Son cannot do any thing of himself, but what he seeth the Father doing: for what things soever he doth, these the Son also doth in like manner.
20 For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things which himself doth: and greater works than these will he shew him, that you may wonder.
21 For as the Father raiseth up the dead, and giveth life: so the Son also giveth life to whom he will.
22 For neither doth the Father judge any man, but hath given all judgment to the Son. 23 That all men may honour the Son, as they honour the Father. He who honoureth not the Son, honoureth not the Father, who hath sent him.
If you believe, He who welcomed the thief will welcome you also.
Faith is the ascent of the soul to a truth. I you want to know what advantage the soul gains from it, listen to what the Lord says:
“Whoever hears my word and believes Him who sent me, has eternal life: he does not come into judgement but has passed from death to life.”
The righteous in ancient times, in order to find favour with god, had to struggle for many years. They achieved it after having served God for long and with heroic efforts; Jesus grants it to us in an instant.
It is true. If you believe that Jesus Christ is Lord and that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. Jesus on the cross on Calvary welcomed the thief to Paradise. He will welcome you also.
St Cyril of Jerusalem