Is God Warning Us?
By Paul A. Nelson
We Catholics are all over the map regarding what we believe, and there are some very interesting ideas about what kind of man Jesus was. I've heard Him described as a 1960s hippie-type individual who promoted peace, love, inclusiveness, acceptance, understanding and passivity. But does that mean there are no caveats (conditions) to observe when practicing those virtues?
We are called to follow and practice the Ten Commandments, the Beatitudes, and all of Christ's teachings during His brief three-year ministry on earth. Are we to deviate from the constant and immutable teachings of the Church and conform our lives to this secular world? Absolutely not.
Yes, Christ taught us to love one another, and he constantly said, "Peace be with you." But He also frequently warned us about what our eternal destination would be if we failed to live a Christian life. Did He ever get angry when he saw injustice and wrongdoing? He sure did. Remember what he did when the temple was being profaned by turning it into a marketplace? He chastised those individuals, even turning over their tables in righteous anger.
Our God is a loving and merciful God, but He is also a Just GOD. What would a loving earthly father do when his children have done wrong? He would punish them in order to teach them not to repeat their wrong actions; but he would forgive them and continue to love them. God is no different; His fervent desire is that we join Him in Heaven when we leave this earth. His love for us is at a level we can't even comprehend. Our Lord continues to give us chance after chance to repent of our sins -- But it seems that we human beings just keep finding new ways to offend Him.
The world -- especially our country -- is in complete chaos now because of COVID-19 and the unbelievable civil unrest. We have had a severe loss of religious freedom, which is unprecedented. There is a level of hate for our duly-elected President that is nothing short of diabolical. In my humble opinion, and in the opinion of many others, God is trying to get our attention. Would He actually punish us for our sins? Well, if human history is any indication, the answer is an unequivocal YES.
If you are one who believes that in the end we will all go to heaven, I implore you to study and learn Christ's teachings better. Reading Christians Must Reunite; Now is the Time will give you a good start. There are many, many good and holy priests, bishops and theologians who believe we are in the midst of a divine chastisement for our myriad sins. I agree with them, and I will offer some of their quotes. My friend and mentor in the faith, Cardinal Raymond Burke, recently made the following statement:
"Many with whom I am in communication, reflecting upon the present worldwide health crisis with all of its attendant effects, have expressed to me the hope that it will lead us -- as individuals and families, and as a society -- to reform our lives, to turn to God Who is surely near to us and Who is immeasurable and unceasing in His mercy and love towards us. There is no question that great evils like pestilence are an effect of original sin and of our actual sins. God, in His justice, must repair the disorder which sin introduces into our lives and into our world. In fact, He fulfills the demands of justice by His superabundant mercy."
Roberto de Mattei, a highly regarded Catholic historian, has written several wonderful books on the faith. In his recent book, Love for the Papacy & Filial Resistance to the Pope, he had this to say on page 191:
"Certainly the blessed hour of victory will be prededed by a great chastisement, because the contemporary world has not followed the example of the inhabitants of Nineveh, who were converted and saved, but rather that of the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah, who refused to convert and were annihilated. The theology of history tells us that God rewards and punishes not only individual people but also collectives and social groups: families, nations, civilizations. But while individuals have their reward or their chastisement sometimes on earth but always in eternity, nations -- which do not have eternal life -- are punished or rewarded only on earth."
Are we living in a present day Sodom and Gomorah due to our agreement with and involvement in extremely sinful actions? It's been feeling that way to me for years now, and I think the evil in our society is accelerating rapidly. We all need the prayers of Our Lady and all the saints, and it is incumbent on us to do what we can to fight the evil going on. We can, most importantly, pray more, vote as true Catholics, and speak up when we see wrong happening in our once great country and in our much-afflicted Church. I pray that those of you who may be sick get well and that everyone else stays healthy. Now would be the time to increase your faith and reliance on God. Remember that we are the Church Militant, soldiers of Christ, and we need to fight the good fight.
God bless you all.