FOR OR AGAINST GOD

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

OUR THEME FOR 2017

(Part 24)

FOR OR AGAINST GOD

March 23, 2017

Today’s gospel:  Luke 11:14-23

Jesus laid forth a basic principle of unity, or rather disunity. “Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste and house will fall against house.” (v.17b). If a Christian community or parish or the Church herself is fragmented, with factions within the one body against another, it will not stand. It will be weakened and even overcome by the enemy.

This is important to realize as we do God’s work, especially the work of evangelization, which engages us in spiritual war, in direct conflict with the evil one. The enemy is united in its resolve to destroy what is of God. The enemy is focused, deliberate, persistent. The enemy is strong. And the evil one is expert in fomenting strife and disunity among our ranks.

On our own, even if we were united, we cannot withstand the assaults of the evil one. But praise be to God that we are on the side of Christ, who is the stronger man. “But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him, he takes away the armor on which he relied and distributes the spoils.” (v.22). Jesus has already overcome the strong enemy.

So are we really on the side of Christ? Are we actively on the side of Christ? Are we striving for holiness? Are we engaged in spiritual warfare? Our position can only be either-or. We cannot be lukewarm, neither hot nor cold. Jesus himself tells us, “Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.” (v.23). If we do not engage in the work of evangelization, striving to gather the lost sheep, then we participate in the work of the enemy, who keeps them scattered.

*     *     *