Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Catholic Defender: The Kingdom in Distress?

The Catholic Church was founded by Christ nearly 2,000 years ago and still bear the marks that reveal it's founder (One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church).

The Old Testament offers clues that point to the Catholic Faith from different avenues of approaches. Daniel 2:44 states, "In the lifetime of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that shall never be destroyed or delivered up to another people; rather, it shall break in peaces all these kingdoms and put an end to them, and it shall stand forever".

This kingdom that Daniel refers to was founded by Christ. The Catholic Church proclaims this kingdom through the authority of the apostolic witness.

Matthew 16:19 Jesus states, "I will give you (St. Peter) the keys to the KINGDOM of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven. Whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven".

There are other denominations however, who believe that Christ did not establish a church or a kingdom on earth but will do so when he returns at the Parousia (Second Coming).

In other words, they are still awaiting for the kingdom to be established. They take Revelation 20:4 literally that Christ will set up a thousand year reign.

The Catholic Church does not believe this passage to be literal, "Like the other numerical values in this book, the thousand years are not to be taken literally; they symbolize the long period of time between the chaining up of Satan (a symbol for Christ's resurrection-victory over death and the forces of evil) and the end of the world. During this time God's people share in the glorious reign of God that is present to them by virtue of their baptismal victory over death and sin" NAB footnotes to Rev 20:1-6.

Daniel 2:44 seems to indicate Christ prophesied would establish his kingdom. He is the "Rock" that breaks statue into pieces. Matthew 13 seems to agree with this assessment, "Then, dismissing the crowds, he (Jesus) went into the house. His disciples approached him and said, 'Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field'. He said in reply, 'He who sows good seed is the Son of Man, the field is the world, the good seed the children of the KINGDOM. The weeds are the children of the evil one, and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvesters are angels. Just as weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels and they will collect out of his KINGDOM all who cause others to sin and all evildoers. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the KINGDOM of their Father".

Jesus established his kingdom nearly 2,000 years ago.

Through Baptism and Confirmation,we become son's and daughters of God. Even so, we must continue to pick up our cross and follow him.

The Kingdom of God is provisional in that we must keep his commandments.

Just as in the day of Moses who dealt with the rebellion of Korah, Kohath, Dathan, and Abiram, so it is today that people openly dissent from official Catholic teaching.

Hosea 4:6 warns, "My people perish for want of knowledge! Since you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you from my priesthood; Since you have ignored the law of your God, I will also ignore your sons".

1 John 2:4 states, "Whoever says, 'I know him', but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him".

Matthew 18:6-7 warns, "Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. Woe to the world because of things that cause sin! Such things must come, but woe to the one through whom they come"!

Think about what Jesus just said?

Isaiah 5:20 warns, "Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil, who change darkness into light, and light into darkness".

1 Timothy 1:8-10 warns, "We know that the law is good, provided that one uses it as law, with the understanding that law is meant not for a righteous person but for the lawless and unruly, the godless and sinful, the unholy and profane, those who kill their fathers or mothers, murderers, the unchaste, sodomites, kidnappers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is opposed to sound teaching, according to the glorious gospel of the blessed God, with which I have been entrusted".

Our Country is legalizing the acts of the Sodomites (homosexuals) allowing them to serve in the Military.

Jesus will hold those accountable for legalizing this along abortion. Think about the musicians, Hollywood, all those who participate in drugs and loose living.

Sports figures who are not good role models, the list goes on and on.

All this even though the Kingdom of God is in our midst. People are rebelling, in Arizona, a Bishop finally discredited a Catholic Hospital for conducting an abortion.

There are "Catholics" who support abortion, pornography, homosexuality who are greatly compromised with the world.

The devil has planted his seed among the vineyard, but in the end, God will prevail and so will his Church. God so loves us, "See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father" (Matthew 18:10).

Our politicians, our media, many of our own family members do not regard much for the Lord or his Church. We can make a better difference for our young people offering them the truth. Many of them are crying out for the truth.

The true message of Christmas is the hope for a better world because the Lord did establish his Kingdom, and it is right here in our midst!

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