Ad Jesum per Mariam

Ad Jesum per Mariam
...if you genuinely wish to reach a high level of prayer in all honesty and without falling into the traps that the devil sets for those who pray, SAY your Rosary everyday... St. Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Pharisees Not Damned! And the Parousia (Luke 17:20-25)

20 Asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God was to come, he gave them this answer, 'The coming of the kingdom of God does not admit of observation
21 and there will be no one to say, "Look, it is here! Look, it is there!" For look, the kingdom of God is among you.'
22 He said to the disciples, 'A time will come when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of man andwill not see it.
23 They will say to you, "Look, it is there!" or, "Look, it is here!" Make no move; do not set off in pursuit;
24 for as the lightning flashing from one part of heaven lights up the other, so will be the Son of man when his Day comes.
25 But first he is destined to suffer grievously and be rejected by this generation.

In this Gospel story of St. Luke, we were told that the Pharisees asked the Lord when the Kingdom of God would come. This question of the Pharisees is very peculiar or mysterious for it seems that they do not know what the Kingdom of God is, they are asking the Lord when it would come. I think the Lord Jesus is laughing interiorly in this question of the Pharisees. We can imagine that Jesus Christ thought to Himself: "What an unintelligible question from you, Pharisees! Do not you know that the Kingdom of God existed before and still exists, and the Kingdom of God is within you? Among you? Existing in the midst of you? Reigning among you?" Jesus Christ may seem taken aback and lowered His eyebrows because, of the Pharisees' question. The Lord can't believe what was asked of Him! He can't imagine that such "holy" persons like the Pharisees will ask Him that question! Maybe Jesus Christ thought that the Pharisees were joking, for the Lord seemed read their minds that they are imagining that the Kingdom of God will be sent from heaven like a descending palace, like a descending helicopter, landing on earth. The Pharisees were looking and in search of the manifestation of the Kingdom of God. They are in search of something that will tell to them that, "Ah! Here is the Kingdom of God! Here it is! It is now here! It came! Let us rush and welcome and receive the Kingdom of God!
But they are completely wrong for the Lord replied that the coming of the Kingdom of God, the Kingdom of heaven, and the Kingdom of the Lord cannot be observed. Why? Because the Kingdom is here already! The Kingdom existed and still exists before the Pharisees eyes and senses! Why? Because the Kingdom of God is within you! Among you! 
Don't search for it! All you have to do is to be sensitive enough that the Kingdom of God is now here! It is within you! 
It is very peculiar and mysterious also that the Lord Jesus Christ did not become angry to the Pharisees. The Lord was somewhat in good mood towards them. The Gospel is indeed a funny one! The Lord Jesus is gentle indeed. He answered them calmly and peacefully and in a very friendly way: "For behold, the Kingdom of God is among you." What a mystery! What a miracle! We know that the Pharisees were the Lord Jesus "hated" in His time. They are also the "suki" or receiver of the Lord's wrath and anger and sermons and thundering words that makes their faces turn to red of shame and disgust from the "arrogance" of the Lord. But in the Gospel story, what a contrast! He answered them that the Kingdom of God is among or within the Pharisees! Wow! I can't believe it! What is the meaning of this?
We know that the Pharisees are the priests of the Lord that time. We know that they are the Church authorities before. But still, despite their hardness of heart, they are still the priest of God. They are still the one who works for God. They are still the priests of God - Whom God also loves. God loves them also. God loves the Pharisees despite of their stubbornness. They are still God's priests! It is indeed true, that the Kingdom of God is within us and among us! The Kingdom of God - of Love and Mercy is among us!
Then we are told of St. Luke that the Lord turned and said to His disciples that the days will come when they will remember the Lord Jesus' days here on this earth. They will longingly hope for the Lord - for His coming and His glory. 
In here He warned them that they must be on guard and vigilant against those false persons that tell that the Son of Man is here and came already - that is the Parousia - the Second coming of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ showed them how frightening and majestic fear He would come in glory. The day of the Lord will indeed come, but it will not be determined by false prophets and false witnesses. But the Lord Jesus Christ also added that before these things will happen, "first he must suffer greatly and be rejected by this generation." He will suffer greatly from the Pharisees He answered with gentleness in the first story of the Gospel, he will also suffer from His disciples - all of them will be the cause of God's great suffering. Jesus Christ will be rejected so that the prophesy might be fulfilled: "The Lord rejected by the builder has become the cornerstone."
Here are some points to consider:
1. The Kingdom of God is among us. If it is so, and truly is, then it is up to us if we will surrender to God ourselves for His Kingdom and to serve Him. Let us live righteous lives in order to be called worthily indeed the Kingdom of God is among us.
2. We must be sensitive enough that the Kingdom of God is among us. 
3. Let us be on guard and vigilant against the false prophets and false witnesses.
4. Let us go to the Sacrament of Confession (confess your mortal sins!) and solidly live not to sin mortal sins again - this will strengthen the Kingdom of God and will mitigate the hurts the Lord Jesus receives from all of us - the sins that hurts Him and His Body, the Church.
5. Let us not reject Jesus Christ. Let us allow him to live in us because He is for us. "If God is with us, who can be against us?"
6. Let us longingly hope for the glorious coming of the Lord! Let us do it with vigilance.
"Jesus, I trust in You." "O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee."
Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam!

Mary H. Distributist

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