This translation of John’s sermon has most of the old English and antiquated terms updated, but there is one that is just too glorious to change, so I will just tell you what it means now, so that you can translate it in when we get there. The term is “fare sumptuously”, and what it means is this, fare refers to things that are meant to be eaten, you’ll see that term on a menu sometimes, and sumptuous refers to extravagance and magnificence. So, the permission given in using this terminology is to partake of this extravagant feast with abandon. No one will be left hungry, so get in there and have your fill.
There is one more reason why I have chosen to share this sermon this morning. The Christian faith, and the Church, the Bride of Christ has come under some serious scrutiny in this last while. We often refer to deconstruction and have taken note of how many have left the faith. Many are disillusioned and have lost hope, and with some good thought. But in this sermon, on this day, we have hope, we have a solid foundation, we have an ancient tradition that shows us that all is not lost! In this message we are brought back to the Beautiful Gospel, the hope of Christ within us, and the power of his sacrifice on our behalf. We are reminded that Christ came for all, that the table is laden with sumptuous fare, and no one will go hungry!
John Chrysostom’s Pascal Sermon
The Lord is risen.
He is risen indeed!
IF there are devout and God-loving people here, let them enjoy this beautiful radiant festival. If there are prudent servants, enter joyously into the Lord’s joy.
Whoever may be spent from fasting, enjoy now your reward.
Whoever has toiled from the first hour, receive today your just settlement.
If any came after the third hour, celebrate gratefully.
If any of you arrived after the sixth, have no misgivings, you have lost nothing.
If some have been as late as the ninth, come forward, do not be at a loss.
If any of you have arrived only at the eleventh hour, do not be dismayed for being late.
FOR The Master is gracious;
He accepts the last even as the first;
He gives rest to those of the eleventh as well as to those who have labored from the first;
He is lenient with the last while looking after the first; to the one He gives, to the other He gives freely;
He accepts the labors and welcomes the effort; honors the deed, but commends the intent. So, all of you, enter into the joy of our Lord:
first and second, share the bounty.
Rich and poor alike, celebrate together.
Sober or heedless, honor the day.
Those who fasted, and those who did not, rejoice today.
The table is full, everyone fare sumptuously.
The calf is fatted; no one go away hungry.
Everyone, savor the banquet of faith; relish the riches of God’s goodness.
No one need lament poverty, for the kingdom is seen as universal.
No one need grieve over sins; forgiveness has dawned from the tomb.
No one need fear death; the Savior's death has freed us from it.
While It’s captive He stifled it.
He despoiled Hell as He descended into it; it was angered when it tasted His flesh. Foreseeing this, Isaiah proclaimed: "Hell was angered when it met You face to face below." It was angered because it was abolished
It was angered because it was mocked
It was angered because it was slain.
It was angered because it was shackled.
It received a body and encountered God.
It received earth and came face-to-face with heaven.
It received what it saw and fell by what it could not see.
Death, where is your sting?
Hell, where is your victory?
Christ is risen and you are overthrown. Christ is risen and demons have fallen. Christ is risen and angels rejoice.
Christ is risen and life rules.
Christ is risen and not one dead remains in the tomb. (Not EVEN ONE!)
For Christ, having risen from the dead, has become the first fruits of those that slept. To God be the glory and the dominion, forever. Amen.