Come, Lord Jesus Maranatha! Part 6
The proclamation of the Gospel with special attention to the conversion (enlightenment) of the Jews are important building blocks to prepare the coming of the Lord in love. This can take up all of our time, because a fruitful proclamation also requires a corresponding way of life. Who would like to stand before the Lord one day and be told that although they passed on good words, they lacked inner strength because word and testimony were too far apart!
The first meditations this week spoke of keeping our lamps burning like the prudent virgins (cf. Mt 25:1-13), which is done through good works, and using our talents for the kingdom of God.
In the first meditation last Sunday, I also drew attention to very serious signs which herald the approach of the Lord.
One such sign is apostasy. This is not only error, but a turning away from the faith and the basic truths of the faith. It is not difficult to perceive this apostasy, especially in those countries where the faith has been proclaimed for a long time. It is also spreading in the Church and this is particularly tragic, because who should give guidance to the people of the world if it is not done through the empowered proclamation of God-appointed shepherds and enlightened disciples of the Lord?
When such apostasy from the faith occurs on a massive scale, as is the case at present, this prepares the way for the Antichrist. This one, an instrument of Satan, will establish his rule for a time before the return of Jesus and deceive people as to his true intentions.
If our heart is not bound to God and remains firmly anchored in the true faith, it is easily deceived. It cannot then distinguish the voice of the true shepherd from the wolves, for the latter – as a famous fairy tale has it – have eaten chalk to disguise themselves.
Vigilance against possible anti-Christian efforts
Even if no one knows the exact hour of the Lord’s return (cf. Mt 24:36), there are signs that can be identified and that warn us to be extremely vigilant. The massive apostasy is clearly one of them.
As already mentioned in my lecture on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0qypGkOdk4), it is particularly important to be aware of the increasing anti-Christian atmosphere in which we live and not to close our eyes. It serves to prepare for the coming of the Antichrist, who will try to pervert the reign of Christ. In view of the current efforts to form a kind of global government, which are repeatedly mentioned from various sides, we have to be very careful that such attempts do not serve to prepare the way for an anti-Christian ruling structure, which can then easily be taken into service by a corresponding person.
In concrete terms, for example, we must be vigilant against the state measures of Covid 19, when elementary civil rights are restricted under the premise of protecting the population from the spread of a pandemic. This happens almost everywhere in the same way, as if with the WHO, for example, there is now an authority that largely prescribes the measures and the governments follow almost in unison.
The Covid issue and the way in which the virus is dealt with must be our own concern, for we cannot unquestioningly accept everything that is decreed by governments and institutions which themselves partly promote anti-Christian policies. There must be no servile submission from us Catholics here. This also applies to the Church leadership, which must not become a stooge of politics under any circumstances. It is called to assess the present situation in the light of God and to give clear help to the faithful in the sense of discernment of spirits. Cooperation with the state and corresponding worldwide institutions is only right if one does not get into a kind of complicity and strive for things that are not in accordance with the faith. Even the appearance of such cooperation must not be given in order not to unsettle the faithful and also not to give the state indirect moral support for measures that are at least questionable and in the worst case dangerous.
In all real danger, turn our gaze to the Lord.
We do not need to be frightened by the danger – despite our perception of it. However, it is also not to be relativised and must not be overlooked. Perhaps the Antichrist even appears as a great “humanist” and seems to do things that everyone can consider good. However, the hidden reality is different. Things are not done to glorify God and serve people, but to bind and influence people!
Let us hold fast to this: the return of the Lord is a reason for great joy and hope. To hasten towards Him, the Lord, as a loving bride is a telling image of how the Church should be. May the call: “Come, Lord Jesus, Maranatha” awaken us all, so that we do not miss his return and he finds us awake and serving in his kingdom when he comes. What a joy and comfort that will be to him!