May 24, 2020 - Bashans 16, 1736
Commemoration of St. John the Evangelist
On this day the church commemorates St. John the Evangelist and his preaching in Asia Minor, the city of Ephesus, and the cities that are around it. Commemorates, the afflictions that he suffered and what befell him from the evil men who worshipped idols until he brought them to the knowledge of God and delivered them from the error of Satan by his teachings. The miracles that God performed through him. The writing of his Gospel, uttering in it with the eternity of the Son and His incarnation. His ascension to heaven in the Spirit, he saw the heavenly ranks and heard their praising and wrote about it in the book of Revelation.
This was during the reign of Emperor Domitianus (Domitian), when he exiled St. John, after he placed him in a cauldron filled with boiling oil, and was not harmed, to the island of Patmos, where he wrote the book of Revelation.
After Domitian had been killed in the year 96 A.D., St. John returned to Ephesus. He found some heretics of the Nicolaitans (Rev. 2:6) who taught that Christ's birth was a natural birth from both Joseph and Mary. For this reason, he wrote his Gospel to refute their heresy.
St. John had ardent zeal for the salvation of sinners. Once he saved a youth, delivered him to the bishop, and told him: 'I entrust you with the safe keeping of this soul,' but the youth, because of his bad conduct and the evil company that he kept, spoiled his morals and he became the head of a band of robbers. When St. John returned, he asked the bishop about the young man, who expressed his sorrow to St. John for the condition that became of this young man and told him what had happened. St. John rode a horse, took with him a guide, and travelled to his place. When he arrived to that place, he was caught by the thieves and they took him to their leader. When the leader saw St. John, he knew him, and was ashamed and tried to flee. St. John told him: 'My son, be merciful to yourself, because the door of hope is still open for your salvation, and I will be your intercessor before the Lord Christ.' Then, the young man wept, returned repenting, and St. John administered to him the Holy Communion to strengthen him.
The biography of St. John is written under the 4th day of Tubah. This feast is a commemoration for his evangelism, and also because on this day a church was consecrated after his name in the city of Alexandria. May his prayers be with us and glory be to God forever. Amen.