Acts of the Apostles 12:24-25.13:1-5a.
The word of God continued to spread and grow.
After Barnabas and Saul completed their relief mission, they returned to Jerusalem, taking with them John, who is called Mark.
Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Symeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen who was a close friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them."
Then, completing their fasting and prayer, they laid hands on them and sent them off.
So they, sent forth by the holy Spirit, went down to Seleucia and from there sailed to Cyprus.
When they arrived in Salamis, they proclaimed the word of God in the Jewish synagogues. They had John also as their assistant.
May God have pity on us and bless us;
may he let his face shine upon us.
So may your way be known upon earth;
among all nations, your salvation.
May the nations be glad and exult
because you rule the peoples in equity;
the nations on the earth you guide.
May the peoples praise you, O God;
may all the peoples praise you!
May God bless us,
and may all the ends of the earth fear him!
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 12:44-50.
Jesus cried out and said, "Whoever believes in me believes not only in me but also in the one who sent me,
and whoever sees me sees the one who sent me.
I came into the world as light, so that everyone who believes in me might not remain in darkness.
And if anyone hears my words and does not observe them, I do not condemn him, for I did not come to condemn the world but to save the world.
Whoever rejects me and does not accept my words has something to judge him: the word that I spoke, it will condemn him on the last day,
because I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me what to say and speak.
And I know that his commandment is eternal life. So what I say, I say as the Father told me."
“Whoever sees me sees the one who sent me”
Many religions invoke God as "Father". The deity is often considered the "father of gods and of men". In Israel, God is called "Father" inasmuch as he is Creator of the world. Even more, God is Father because of the covenant and the gift of the law to Israel, "his first-born son" (Ex 4:22). God is also called the Father of the king of Israel (2S 7:14). Most especially he is "the Father of the poor", of the orphaned and the widowed, who are under his loving protection (Ps 68:6)...
Jesus revealed that God is “Father” in an unheard-of sense: he is Father not only in being Creator; he is eternally Father by his relationship to his only Son who, reciprocally, is Son only in relation to his Father: "No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and any one to whom the Son chooses to reveal him." (Mt 11:27). For this reason the apostles confess Jesus to be the Word: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (Jn 1:1); as "the image of the invisible God" (Col 1:15); as the "radiance of the glory of God and the very stamp of his nature" (Heb 1:3).
Following this apostolic tradition, the Church confessed at the first ecumenical council at Nicaea (325) that the Son is "consubstantial" with the Father, that is, one only God with him. The second ecumenical council, held at Constantinople in 381, kept this expression in its formulation of the Nicene Creed and confessed "the only-begotten Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, light from light, true God from true God, begotten not made, consubstantial with the Father".