Saturday, May 5, 2012

I Have Conquered (Jn. 16:33)

If Jesus was able to stave off his opponents, it was not by the force of arms, violence or deception, but simply by the force of truth and love.  You can observe how the Church of Christianity has prospered throughout history.  In fact it had been through the sacrifice of many lives (martyrs).  Jesus, who only used the attraction of love, gentleness and truth had not forced people to follow Him or His Church, even till our days at present.  There is respect for the religious convictions of people (see Jn. 6).

            It’s of course important we look at the facts of history and events.  People gravitate towards goodness and truth.  Hence, we can ask Catholics what made them select membership in Catholicism when there are many other religious denominations, Christian and otherwise.  I guess people look at the attraction of reality, truth and facts.  Even the fact that Christianity stands on the historical evidence of miracles and the Resurrection of the Lord Jesus and the multiple miracles in the life of the Saints, mostly documented, is argument enough that can attract the simple or the reasonable-minded people to join their ranks.  You have only to look around and study the pages of history.  There is reason enough for those encouraging words of Jesus: “In the world you will have trouble but be brave: I have conquered the world” (Jn. 16:33). 

            There is strong reason why we should desire to belong to Jesus and His Church, to which He referred, saying: “Simon son of Jonah, you are a happy man!  Because it was not flesh and blood that revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.  And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.  I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven.  Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven” (Mt. 16:17-20).  It would be a source of comfort to any person, after all the search for the truth, to be able to discover and belong to that authentic Church to which Jesus refers in the biblical quotation cited above.  After all, so many claim to have the truth, but which group shows those marks which identify and derive them from the original which Jesus founded upon the apostles producing many saints, teaching the same doctrines everywhere and serving the whole of the human race, rich or poor, young and old, irrespective of race and color.  Remember that Jesus talks of extraordinary signs or miracles accompanying and confirming the believers in the true faith (see Mk. 16:17-20; Lk. 10:17-20).

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