THE SERVANT GENERAL
OUR THEME FOR 2011
THE STRONG VERSUS THE STRONGER MAN
March 31, 2011
Today’s reading: Luke 11:14-23
today’s gospel, the strong man is Satan. He is fully
armed and guards his palace, keeping his possessions safe
(Lk 11:21). Satan is a powerful being, for he was Lucifer,
the greatest of angels, before he rebelled against God and
was thrown out of heaven and became Satan. Now he is implacably
set against God and committed to destroy whatever is of God.
He has dominion over the whole world (1 Jn 5:19), and zealously
protects what is his, while continually assaulting the kingdom
of God in order to expand his territory.
we do the work of evangelization, we are thrust into combat
against this kingdom of darkness. The intent of evangelization
is to bring souls from out of Satan’s dominion and into
the kingdom of God. As such, to evangelize is to assault the
kingdom of darkness. As such, evangelizers come face-to-face
with Satan himself.
the greatest of angels though now fallen, Satan still is powerful.
On our own we cannot defeat him. How then do we cope? We can
only do so in the strength of God. It is Jesus who is the
stronger man. It is he, who through us his human instruments,
attacks and overwhelms the enemy, takes away his armor and
distributes the spoils (Lk 11:22).
Now in this war, there is no middle ground. You are either
with Jesus or against him (Lk 11:23a). Why is that? If we
are good people, trying to do no wrong to our neighbor, and
in fact perhaps doing some good in the world, but we do not
evangelize, then by our inaction (evangelization), we allow
the situation of Satan’s dominion over the world to
persist. If the world is under the dominion of Satan, and
the only way to set his captives free is through the work
of evangelization, then our failure to evangelize results
in souls remaining under captivity to Satan. Then we serve
Satan’s interests and not God’s. Then in effect
we are not with Jesus but against him.
so Jesus also says that “whoever does not gather with
me scatters.” (Lk 11:23b). If we do not work to gather
God’s flock and bring them back into His sheepfold,
then we in effect are responsible for keeping them scattered,
easy prey for the wolf or devouring lion.
God reiterates His original call to us in CFC-FFL to be His
evangelizers and missionaries. Every CFC-FFL member is to
be an evangelizer. We exist to evangelize and do mission.
If we do not evangelize, then we in effect align ourselves
with the camp of the enemy. If we are not an active combatant
on the side of God, then we are not even just neutral in the
war, but become a collaborator, perhaps unwittingly, on the
side of Satan.
we evangelize. But in assaulting the kingdom of the strong
man, we rely fully on the stronger man, Jesus. Once we start
relying on ourselves, then we make ourselves weaker, and ultimately
cannot withstand the counter-assault of Satan.
we face the work of this third millennium, with 30 years of
experience under our belt, let us always look to Jesus. In
our work of evangelization, let us always look to be able
to say, “My God is now my strength!”
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Theme for 2011-Part26 [PDF]