Resurrection and salvation are special phenomena for Christians of any denomination. All the more, they are significant for Ukrainian Christians. Christianity is not just a religion. Such an understanding is very narrow and, frankly, primitive. Christianity is a way of life. It is the victory of good over evil. This is the essence of morality. Jesus Christ taught us in the two commandments that he left us, to love God and our neighbor as ourselves. That’s is the essence of Christianity. All other prescriptions or commandments, including the “law of Moses” or “Church dogma” are secondary. They may be conducive, but they are relevant for us today only as they evolve from the subsequent or prior commandments of Jesus Christ.
Today’s war in Ukraine is a struggle for the life of our people. It is also an extreme competition for the victory of good over evil. It is like Jesus’ Way of the Cross for our people, which must end with the Resurrection. Jesus came to earth to save the world from original sin and to introduce spiritual morality and goodness into the world. In the process of his messianic work among the people, he encountered various manifestations of evil, diabolical actions such a killings, and the not so laughable pharisees, which would seem to be not so harmful or heinous, but, in fact, no less damning and widespread as the grievous sinners. Jesus did not overcome these phenomena in the long term because man is free to make mistakes, but he did manifest that one must believe in good, in God, and the constant struggle against evil. He emphasised that indifference and more so impudence are also sins.
We see today how these manifestations of evil pervade the whole world. Moscow and not only its government but also the people are the personification of evil through a culture of imperialism. Ukraine’s bard Taras Shevchenko described the Muscovites (Russians) are “evil people”. Yet this does not mean that a Muscovite child is evil at birth. However, as a result of Moscow’s imperial culture, in many cases it grows into an evil Muscovite. This is how he is brought up by his evil Muscovite mother who grew up in the bosom of the empire and is willing today to give birth to sons so that they fight for the empire.
Supplementing this evil there is what is considered a lesser evil, but still an evil – a kind of arrogance or indifference to blatant evil, considering oneself defiantly special or exceptional.
We Ukrainians are called by Jesus today to fight against these manifestations of marginal evil as well, diplomatically and through the example of our heroism. We continue to fight against the main egregious evil of Russian imperialism, but we also struggle against modern manifestations of indifference and a sense of exceptionalism, which is noisily preached in particular in America. There is an almost bizarre example of this, today’s assumption that is for the month of April, by Russia, the world’s worst aggressor of the chair of the UN Security Council. Argumentation would be unnecessary. There is no need to talk about a global morality or irony here. There has never been a better case made for the need for UN reform.
The resurrection and victory of Jesus over death, as well as good over evil, manifested itself in the last year in the world: Ukraine passed the test of its defence, military capability proved itself more than capable despite global predictions. Seeing this, the freedom-loving democratic states of the whole world came to the defence of Ukraine not only in word but also in deed, by
delivering not only humanitarian aid but also lethal weapons. Some came because they felt they could be next. But most came because it was the right thing to do. Recently, the International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for Vladimir Putin for war crimes. This has caused concern even in countries forcibly indoctrinated to be friendly to Putin.
At this time, the triumph of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ manifests itself not only in a historical or spiritual context, but in today’s not only political, but also humanitarian and politically strategic order. Ukraine and its people are victims of this Cross, but it and its people are primarily the executors of the Resurrection and the victory of good over evil. Apparently, in this case, the Lord chose us and gave us a daunting task. We are fulfilling this assignment.
Therefore, let us carry out our beautiful Easter traditions, paint our eggs, bless our baskets with deep faith and hope. I’m not a preacher. I am just a Ukrainian Christian who believes that the Lord chose us to be His instrument in the victory of good over evil.
Christ Has Risen! Indeed He Has!
April 8, 2023 Askold S. Lozynskyi