THE GOD-MAN THE FOUNDATION OF THE TRUTH OF ORTHODOXY
St. Justin Popovich (of Celije)
Orthodoxy is Orthodoxy through the God-man. And we Orthodox, by confessing the God-man, indirectly confess the Christ-image of man, the divine origin of man, the divine exaltation of man, and thus also the divine value and sacredness of the human personality.
All the truths of Orthodoxy emerge from one truth and converge on one truth, infinite and eternal. That truth is the God-man Christ. If you experience any truth of Orthodoxy to its limit, you will inevitably discover that its kernel is the God-man Christ.
Why is the God-man the fundamental truth of Orthodoxy? Because He answered all the questions that torture and torment the human spirit: the question of life and death, the question of good and evil, the question of earth and heaven, the question of truth and falsehood, the question of love and hate, the question of justice and injustice. In brief: the question of man and God.
Why is the God-man the fundamental truth of Orthodoxy? Because He proved in the most obvious way by His own earthly life that He is the incarnate, humanized, and personified eternal Truth, eternal Justice, eternal Love, eternal Joy, eternal Power: Total-Truth, Total-Justice, Total-Love, Total-Joy, Total-Power.
He brought down all the divine perfections from heaven to earth. And He did not just bring them down, but also taught them to us and gave us grace-filled power to transform them into our life, into our thoughts, into our feelings, into our deeds. Hence, our calling is to incarnate them in ourselves and in the world around us.
The God-man is each and every aspect of Orthodoxy, for He infinitely magnifies man. He elevates him to God; He makes him a god by grace. And He did this without reckoning man less than God, but filled man with all divine perfections. The God-man has glorified man as no other has. He has given him life eternal, Truth eternal, Love eternal, Justice eternal, Joy eternal, Goodness eternal, Blessedness eternal. Man has become divine majesty through the God-man.
While the God-man is the fundamental truth of Orthodoxy, the fundamental truth of every heterodoxy is man, or fragments of his being–reason, the will, the senses, the soul, the body, expertise.
Indirectly and directly, the God-man is everything in Orthodoxy, and thus man is in Him, but in heterodoxy there is merely man.
In its very essence, Orthodoxy is nothing other than the Personality of the God-man Christ extended across all ages, extended as the Church. Orthodoxy has its own seal and sign by which it distinguishes itself. It is the radiant Person of the God-man Jesus.
Everything that does not have that Person is not Orthodox.
To be Orthodox means to have the God-man constantly in your soul, to live in Him, think in Him, feel in Him, act in Him. In other words, to be Orthodox means to be a Christ-bearer and a Spirit-bearer...
Hence, the purpose of man is: to fill himself with the God-man, in His body–the Orthodox Church; to be transfigured in Him through grace-filled feats; to become omnipotent. Even while he walks prayerfully through the gloomy earthly anthill in the body, in his soul he lives above, where Christ Sits at the right hand of God, for his life is constantly stretched out between earth and heaven by prayers, like a rainbow that connects the summit of heaven with the abyss of earth.
To become immortal in Him by the power of the Holy Spirit, to become God, to become the God-man–this is the purpose, the true purpose of the whole human race. It is also the joy, the only joy in this world of boundless sorrow and toxic bitterness.