Saturday December 2, 2023

Second Coming of Christ

Good News Reflections:
Making scripture meaningful to your daily life
by Terry Modica


“Beware that you do not become spiritually lazy from temptations and the anxieties of daily life, or else the day of the Coming of the Son of Man will catch you by surprise like a trap…. Be spiritually alert every moment of every day, and pray for the strength to remain holy and thus escape the imminent tribulations and to stand redeemed before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:34-36 paraphrased)


Good News Reflection for:

Saturday of the 34th Week in Ordinary Time
December 2, 2023

Today’s Readings:

Daniel 7:15-27
Dn 3:82-87
Luke 21:34-36
bible.usccb.org/bible/readings/120223.cfm
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:
bible.usccb.org/podcasts/audio/daily-mass-reading-podcast-december-2-2023

Are we in the “End Times”?

We live in a “post-Christian era”. This is especially noticeable in countries (like my own) that have a history of enjoying Christ’s influence on our laws and social standards. However, living in a secular culture can become good news! Here’s why: As St. Paul said (Romans 5:20), “Where sin abounds, grace abounds all the more.”

We’ve entered an era when it’s common for Christians to straddle the fence between holy living and worldly ideas. Let’s face it, this is our fallen nature. But it’s not who God re-birthed us to be during our baptisms. Our true nature now, as adopted children of God, is holiness — living distinctly on Christ’s side of the fence.

Meanwhile, Satan’s minions have been working hard to steal us away from our saintly destiny.

In the late 1980s, after the publication of my book Overcoming the Power of the Occult (see gnm.org/terry-modica-author/overcoming-the-power-of-the-occult), at a speaking engagement on this topic, I met a man who had been raised in Satanism but was saved by Christ during his college years. He had been groomed since infancy to become an influence on Christians to win souls for Satan by luring them away from Christ. As a high priest of Satanism, he had attended Princeton University to become a Presbyterian minister.

We became friends, and he told me his story so that I could write about it. Several months of interviewing him became a book about intergenerational Satanism and Christ’s victorious power over evil, written as a novel to fictionalize and protect his identity from Satanists who wanted to destroy him for converting to Christ. Entitled Victor, this suspense-filled, page-turner novel is available as an ebook @ gnm.org/terry-modica-author/victor.

He taught me that, since the early 1900s, there’s been a strategic plan by Satanists to infiltrate all positions of influence, from television and movies to politicians and judges and Christian pastors. The plan has been to convince as many people as possible that good is evil and evil is good.

Have you heard the story about how to cook a frog before he can jump out of the pot to safety? Start with comfortable water and turn up the heat so slowly that the frog doesn’t notice the change. And then it’s too late. That’s what has happened for more than a century, gradually acclimating the people in society and even in our churches. And now here we are in an era when Christian truths about moral issues (homosexual marriage and transgenderism are recent example) are considered evil and evil is considered good.

Does this mean we’re in the “End Times”?

In today’s Gospel passage, Jesus makes it clear that we need to stay spiritually alert to the traps of evil influences. We’re supposed to be growing in holiness so that the world today experiences Christ in us. Instead of hoping that the Second Coming of Christ will soon rescue us by driving out all evil, we should be driving out evil, together, as his body on earth.

The good news about the infiltration of the mindset of “evil is good and good is evil” is that grace is available, ready to abound all the more. Those of us who throw ourselves fully onto the side of Christ are free to access the grace that conquers evil.

Whether or not we’re nearing the end of the End Times, we’re all on the same battlefield. We’re all called to be warriors for Christ. We are called to overcome evil as the victors that our baptism graced us to be. Whenever we ignore this grace and let temptation win, we’re Satan’s victims. Escaping requires repentance and the Sacrament of Confession.

“Be spiritually alert every moment of every day, and pray for the strength to remain holy and thus escape the imminent tribulations and to stand redeemed before the Son of Man.”

For more about Catholic teachings on “end times”, may I suggest these three articles from our WordBytes site:

© 2023 by Terry A. Modica

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