Category: Bible Study

THE FIRST DETACHMENT?

“Have no love for the world, nor the things that the world affords.” —1 John 2:15 In traditional Catholic spirituality, we emphasize the virtue of detachment from the world’s prideful desires, for “the world with its seductions is passing away but the man who does God’s will endures forever” (1 Jn 2:17). Those called to the consecrated life are to be exceptional examples of the detachment from the world which all Christians should have. For example, Anna “was constantly in the temple, worshiping day and night in fasting and prayer” (Lk 2:37). In traditional Western materialism, we tend to emphasize...

THE ETERNAL FAMILY REUNION

“Christ’s peace must reign in your hearts.” —Colossians 3:15 We want to celebrate Christmas with our families. Therefore, Christmas is especially difficult for us if a loved one has died in the last year. However, we have the great hope of our families getting together for the eternal happiness of heaven. We will have a family reunion in heaven in the not too distant future, and if the Lord has His way, not one family member will be missing (see Jn 6:39; 1 Tm 2:4). For your family to stay together for an eternity of Christmases, you must: Repent of...

CONFORMED TO CHRIST

Herod “ordered the massacre of all the boys two years old and under in Bethlehem.” —Matthew 2:16 Each baby boy killed that morning over two-thousand years ago in Bethlehem died because he was mistaken for Jesus. The soldiers who killed the Holy Innocents in Bethlehem thought they were killing Christ, or someone who could be Jesus. To the killers, the children were indistinguishable from Christ. The child-martyrs we call the Holy Innocents are thus a model to us. We are to bear the light of Christ in our lives to such an extent that Jesus called us “the light of...

EYE IN THE SKY

“He saw and believed.” —John 20:8 Today the Church celebrates the feast of St. John the Evangelist. John is the author of the fourth Gospel, three letters in the New Testament, and the Book of Revelation. He is one of the twelve apostles and remained with Jesus at the foot of the cross as He was crucified. God blessed St. John with a special gift—a heavenly perspective on the plan of salvation. His Gospel especially emphasizes the divinity of Christ. I find the following image helpful when explaining the divine viewpoint of St. John’s Gospel. Picture Jesus standing in the...

CHRISTMAS IS WAR ON THE WORLD

“Then they rushed at him as one man, dragged him out of the city, and began to stone him.” —Acts 7:57-58 Most families have special Christmas traditions. On the second day of Christmas, the Catholic family traditionally recalls the brutal murder of St. Stephen, the first martyr. Why recall such a gruesome event, especially at Christmas time? The original purpose of Christmas was to challenge the lifestyle of the world by intentionally trying to ruin the pagans’ festivities. In the third century, the Romans set their sun-god festival for December 25. They had the date years before Christians formally celebrated...

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