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(Part 189)


July 23, 2016

Today’s readings:
Jeremiah 7:1-11
Matthew 13:24-30

One big problem in our Church today is that we fight not only an enemy without but also an enemy within. There are many who should be our allies but who have allied themselves with the other side. They might be what you would describe as the weeds among the wheat. Even as God’s people strive to bear fruit for the Kingdom, they drag the Church and her mission down. “When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well.” (Mt 13:26).

This is truly unfortunate. Some of the enemy within are those who regularly go to Church. They may be very nice people who even serve in parishes and chanceries, but their views are in contradiction to authentic Church teaching. We must be wary of them. “Do not put your trust in these deceptive words: ‘The temple of the Lord! The temple of the Lord! The temple of the Lord!” (Jr 7:4).

Who are the enemy within? They are those who “murder” (Jr 7:9a), being in favor of abortion. There are those who “commit adultery” (Jr 7:9b), including those who are divorced and remarried. There are those who “follow other gods” (Jr 7:9d), embracing secular humanism, modernism, hedonism, cultural Marxism, contraceptive imperialism and all the other diabolical isms of the world.

These Catholics are among the lost sheep, whom we need to reach, according to our work of the New Evangelization. What needs to happen? We go not only into the darkness in the world, but to our own parishes and churches. “Stand at the gate of the house of the Lord and proclaim this message there: Hear the word of the Lord, all you of Judah who enter these gates to worship the Lord!” (Jr 7:2).

What do we want to cause to happen? First, bring the enemy within to repentance and thus help restore them to God. “Reform your ways and your deeds so that I may dwell with you in this place.” (Jr 7:3). Only then would their presence in the Church be pleasing to God. “Only then will I let you continue to dwell in this place” (Jr 7:7a). What would be crucial aspects of such reformation?

  • “if each of you deals justly with your neighbor” (Jr 7:5b). This is giving others the respect and love due to them as children of God.
  • “if you no longer oppress the alien, the orphan, and the widow” (Jr 7:6a). This is doing justice to the poor and the least.
  • “if you no longer shed innocent blood in this place” (Jr 7:6b). This is rejecting abortion.
  • “or follow after other gods to your own harm” (Jr 7:6c). This is rejecting the deadly isms of the world.

The enemy within must change their ways, especially in their support of abominations such as abortion and same-sex relationships, for they stand under the Lord’s condemnation. “But look at you! You put your trust in deceptive words to your own loss! Do you think you can steal and murder, commit adultery and perjury, sacrifice to Baal, follow other gods that you do not know, and then come and stand in my presence in this house, which bears my name, and say: ‘We are safe! We can commit all these abominations again!’?” (Jr 7:8-10).

If they persist, then there will be a reckoning at the end of time. Jesus says, “then at harvest time I will say to the harvesters, ‘First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles for burning; but gather the wheat into my barn.’” (Mt 13:30b). The weeds go to hell, and the wheat go to heaven.

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