Metropolitan Hilarion: the meaning of some of Christ’s words was opened only with time

© RIA Novosti / Vladimir Astapkovich in fotobanka of the Department for external Church relations of the Moscow Patriarchate Metropolitan Hilarion of VolokolamskMetropolitan Hilarion: the meaning of some of Christ’s words was opened only with time© RIA Novosti / Vladimir Astapkovich the image Bank

Portrait of Jesus Christ in the gospel of John «very significantly» different from his portrait in the other three evangelists, however, and «the Parallels are many,» and in all four Gospels reflected the process of understanding the life and work of Christ. This opinion was expressed by the head of the Department for external Church relations (DECR) of the Moscow Patriarchate Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk.

Metropolitan Hilarion speaks at the presentation of the fifth book – the «lamb of God» — from his six-volume series, «Jesus Christ. The life and teaching» in the House of the book «Medvedkovo».

Answering questions of readers, the DECR Chairman noted that the preaching of Jesus Christ was very diverse. Thus, the «SYNOPTIC Gospels» (Matthew, Mark and Luke — ed.) there are many parables of the Savior, the meaning of which sometimes even his closest disciples could not immediately understand.

«Jesus Christ, in some cases, his parables explained, and in some cases, apparently, he did not explain. That is, he told, people listened to them, and each of this parable heard something. That’s how we listen to music: some people like it more, someone less, someone hears and cries, someone hears and laughs, and the human soul this music responds. But the meaning of what Jesus Christ said, it is not always immediately clear,» — said the Hierarch.

He also cited the example of an episode from the gospel of John, which describes the expulsion of Jesus Christ the merchants from the temple. According to Metropolitan Hilarion, the disciples of Christ saw it, but the meaning of this act is not understood, and only after the Savior’s resurrection, they remembered the words of one of the prophets said of Christ: «the Zeal of Thine house hath eaten Me up».

«This process of remembering what Jesus said and did, in the light of his resurrection and even in the light of the life of the Church, opened the eyes of the witnesses of what happened, the meaning of what was happening. <…> Even when Jesus Christ was resurrected, when the Church recognized in him incarnate God, when these legends for a long time existed in oral form and only then were put on paper, — during all this time continued this process of remembering, of understanding. And this process is reflected in the pages of the Gospels,» — said the representative of the Church.

According to him, the three evangelists — Matthew, mark, and Luke — «have understood the story in quite close to each other», while the Evangelist John «reveals the other side of the Ministry of Jesus Christ.»

«John complements what we are told by the evangelists-forecasters. And miraculously, when we read all four Gospels, we see that each Evangelist emphasizes some points that it was important to him. But it’s not four different people, it is four portraits of the same person. Portrait of John differs significantly, but we still recognize the same Jesus Christ, which they say forecasters,» said Metropolitan Hilarion.

He added that in his book «Jesus the Christ. The life and teaching» often indicates «the Parallels between the fourth gospel and the SYNOPTIC Gospels that there is.» «And these Parallels are many. They are not always visible at first glance, but they are much more than it might seem,» concluded the author.

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