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Monday. [II Cor. 5:10–15; Mark 1:9–15] The Lord began His sermon thus: The time is fulfilled, and the Kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the Gospel. At the end of the ages it will also be said: the time is fulfilled, the kingdom is at hand; but this statement will not be followed by repent ye, and believe but “come out to the judgment.” The time for repentance and labours of self-improvement is ended; let ev?eryone give an account of what good or evil things he did in his bod?y. And so, while there is time, hurry to use this time unto your salvation. The Father’s embrace is open for the acceptance of all who come with a sincere feeling of contrition about the past, and with a desire to serve God henceforth by zealous fulfill?ment of His holy commandments. For each of us the end of this age is death: it is the door to the other life. Look into it more often and deter?mine for yourself more truly: what then? And having determined this without pitying yourself, begin laboring to prepare what is not ready, to enter the place where joy is unending. Labor to push aside all that could give the servants of outer darkness the right to prevail over us and carry us away to their realm, from whence there will no longer be a way out.
Saint Theophan the Recluse