Friday, March 10, 2017

'When someone virtuous turns away from virtue to commit iniquity, and dies'- Ez 18:21-28 (Friday of the First Week of Lent)

March 10, 2017

Friday of the First Week of Lent
Lectionary: 228

Reading 1 Ez 18:21-28

Thus says the Lord GOD:
If the wicked man turns away from all the sins he committed,
if he keeps all my statutes and does what is right and just,
he shall surely live, he shall not die.
None of the crimes he committed shall be remembered against him;
he shall live because of the virtue he has practiced.
Do I indeed derive any pleasure from the death of the wicked?
says the Lord GOD.
Do I not rather rejoice when he turns from his evil way
that he may live?

And if the virtuous man turns from the path of virtue to do evil,
the same kind of abominable things that the wicked man does,
can he do this and still live?
None of his virtuous deeds shall be remembered,
because he has broken faith and committed sin;
because of this, he shall die
You say, "The LORD's way is not fair!"
Hear now, house of Israel:
Is it my way that is unfair, or rather, are not your ways unfair?
When someone virtuous turns away from virtue to commit iniquity, and dies,
it is because of the iniquity he committed that he must die.
But if the wicked, turning from the wickedness he has committed,
does what is right and just,
he shall preserve his life;
since he has turned away from all the sins that he committed,
he shall surely live, he shall not die.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 130:1-2, 3-4, 5-7a, 7bc-8

R. (3) If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?
Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD;
LORD, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
to my voice in supplication.
R. If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?
If you, O LORD, mark iniquities,
LORD, who can stand?
But with you is forgiveness,
that you may be revered.
R. If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?
I trust in the LORD;
my soul trusts in his word.
My soul waits for the LORD
more than sentinels wait for the dawn.
Let Israel wait for the LORD.
R. If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?
For with the LORD is kindness
and with him is plenteous redemption;
And he will redeem Israel
from all their iniquities.
R. If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?

Verse Before the Gospel Ez 18:31

Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, says the LORD,
and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit.

Gospel Mt 5:20-26

Jesus said to his disciples:
"I tell you,
unless your righteousness surpasses that
of the scribes and Pharisees,
you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven.

"You have heard that it was said to your ancestors,
You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment.
But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother
will be liable to judgment,
and whoever says to his brother, Raqa,
will be answerable to the Sanhedrin,
and whoever says, 'You fool,' will be liable to fiery Gehenna.
Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar,
and there recall that your brother
has anything against you,
leave your gift there at the altar,
go first and be reconciled with your brother,
and then come and offer your gift.
Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court.
Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge,
and the judge will hand you over to the guard,
and you will be thrown into prison.
Amen, I say to you,
you will not be released until you have paid the last penny."

1874 To choose deliberately - that is, both knowing it and willing it - something gravely contrary to the divine law and to the ultimate end of man is to commit a mortal sin. This destroys in us the charity without which eternal beatitude is impossible. Unrepented, it brings eternal death. -Catechism of the Catholic Church
There was a fellow named Bill who was a drug user and heavy alcoholic, drinking morning till night — while somehow holding a job in construction. He had a wife and kids. But he grew so desperate — so deranged — he decided to kill himself.The night before his planned suicide, after saying prayers with his children — acting as if all was normal — he fell asleep and lapsed into an incredible “dream.” Was it really a dream, or a preview? (You can watch his testimony below.)
“All of a sudden, I’m in hell,” said Bill. “When I say ‘hell,’ I mean this cave. The cave is humongus — I can’t even describe it. Over to my left there’s like this two-mile-wide crater, with orange, yellowish, reddish flames coming up and the screams are millions at a time, and the thought that hit my head was, that’s where Hitler is, that’s where a lot of people leading people to death are.
“Where I was was on this, like, ledge. There were two cave entrances there. I didn’t go into them but I could see them. There were demons and people screaming all over. A demon would grab my arm and pull and rip my arm off where I’d see the veins hanging and the skin and the blood. He’d pull it off and a couple second later it would be back on again and he would do the same thing all over again, looking at me, laughing, because he just wants to see the fear and fright on my face.
“In front of me stood — the only thing I can describe it as is a monster: like four feet wide, huge shoulders, with huge claws and he would just go like this and wham, hit me and rip my stomach, and my whole insides would fall out. [The demons] were content to do this forever. You absolutely knew that in your heart. The chaos for me was the separation from God. I could pray all I want but I couldn’t get my prayers up to him. It’s over.”


"It's All True" Dave's Visit to Heaven - FULL TALK

If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?

If you, O Lord, mark iniquities, who can stand?


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