He Will Come Again

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Sometime back, we had  posted an article titled ‘Will He Come Again?’. We never had any  doubt that He will come again to  judge the living and  the dead. Then, why should we  have framed it as a question rather than as an affirmation? Because many around us, especially many Christians, do not have that  solid faith to confess this elementary Christian teaching; that  our Lord will  come again!  We are  saying it in the Apostles’ Creed, we are repeating it  many times in the Holy Mass, we recite it at the beginning of the Rosary. Yet, when it comes to a point where we have to assert  our faith in the  second coming of Jesus Christ, many  of us do waver.

So we have to start from the scratch, though in the eleventh hour it is  awkward  to  return to the  basic catechism of the Church.  When we say that we are in the eleventh hour,  bear in mind that we are fast approaching the  finishing point  about which  we   discuss now. ‘If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing  in the  Spirit, any compassion  and sympathy’ ( Phil.2:1), then reassert in your hearts that  our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ will come again. Well, it is the belief of every Christian, what is so special about  us, you might ask.  We need to clarify  it. Everybody believes that Jesus Christ will come some day. For many, it  is  something to happen after thousands of years. The other day, I was talking to a Catholic priest. When the discussion  slipped into the  topic of second  coming,  he bluntly told me; ” Hey, it  is not going to happen in the near future. May be a thousand years  from now”.  Such is the level of  our awareness in the gospel and teachings of the Church.

Some other  people  might ask; “Where is the promise of his coming?”  For them everything goes on as usual. They do not find any  reason to believe that the second coming of Jesus Chirst is nigh. My  advice to the readers is that they should not be carried away by this seemingly innocuous question. You are not the first person to  hear  this question, nor are they the first persons to ask it. When St Peter wrote his second Epistle, he had in mind those  who are going to ask  this question  in the coming years and centuries. “First of all you must understand this, that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and indulging their own lusts, and  saying; “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since our ancestors died, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation!” (2 Peter 3: 3-4).

What we must understand from the words of Peter is that  when scoffers challenge us with such questions, end times are at hand. The very fact that people  started doubting about the promise of  Christ’s second coming  is one of the  major proofs that we are living in the  end days.  Instead of 

using the euphemism of ‘doubting the promise of Christ’s second coming’  we better use the single word ‘apostasy’ in its place. It takes us directly to  St Paul’s narration of the end times. ‘Let no one deceive you  in  any way; for that day will not come unless the rebellion comes first and the lawless one is revealed, the one destined for  destruction’ (2 Thess. 2:3). Paul says that  rebellion should happen first followed by  the man of sin (the  lawless one)  revealing himself. What does rebellion mean  in this context?  Reading further, we will get  its explanation.  It is  the word used  to denote man’s actions against God, in other words apostasy.

Now let us look at what Jesus says in this regard. It is better to start with his  famous lamentation about the  last generation. “And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” ( Luke 18:8).  Jesus is warning us  that  in the end times  many people will  lose their faith. They will exchange the truth of  God with the  falsity of  Satan who offers them anything they like  but deny the most important thing, which is eternal salvation.

And what will happen when  we lose our faith? Anything can happen. We are created in the  image and likeness of  the  Eternal God and when we  distance ourself from the fellowship with  God   by slipping from faith, anything can happen.  Jesus warns of certain specific  consequences of falling from faith.  ‘Then many will fall away, and they will betray one another and hate one another.  And many false prophets  will arise and  lead many astray.  And because of lawlessness, the love of many  will grow cold’ ( Mathew 24:10-11)

What do  you think? Or rather what do you feel when you look around? Are you not  convinced that we are  living in the end times? If not, at least

listen  to what St Pope John Paul II has to say. During the Eucharistic Congress held at Philadelphia  in the 1970s, he remarked; “We are now facing the final confrontation between the Church and the anti-church, between the gospel and the anti-gospel, between Christ and the antichrist”.

Was it his personal opinion? Never. Because the  Catholic Church teaches  exactly the same thing in  its Catechism. ‘Before Christ’s second coming, the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the “mystery of iniquity” in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh’ ( CCC 675). Everything from  second coming of  Jesus Christ and persecution of the Church and  largescale  apostasy preceding it  are  part of  Church’s unchanged  teachings. Further  CCC 680 teaches that ‘the triumph of Christ’s kingdom will not come about without one last assault by the powers of evil’. If a learned and saintly man like  Pope John Paul II could  discern the signs of the times four and a  half decades ago, what prevents us from reading those signs  that are getting more and more   visible in these days!

It takes us to another level where we have to think  about the final battle between  the Church and the anti-church, between the gospel and the anti-gospel and between Christ and the antichrist.  Perhaps it is  more easy now to   understand  the current events  in the light of this prophesied final battle.  It is my belief that the world has by now split into two camps; one for Christ and the  other  against Christ. One for gospel and  the other against gospel. One for the Church and the  other against  the Church.  This final battle is unfolding  before our   own eyes. We cannot be  silent spectators here. We are  the last generation  destined  not only  to witness  this fierce battle  but to take part in it  too.  Jesus has clearly warned us that those who are  not with   him are against him. So we have to take a stand. Either for or  against Christ.

When national governments  enact laws against  christian faith, when they promote murder of the  unborn, when they orchestrate wars for no reason, when  they appease everybody else at the  expense of  Christians, when  they welcome everything except  what is Christian,  which side would  you  align yourself to?  If you are  expecting Christ it needs  preparations.  If you are   expecting  the antichrist, there is no need of   any preparations.

If you are with  the gospel, it  needs a life according to  the gospel. If  you are anti-gospel go as usual. If you are with the  Church, believe what the Church  teaches. If you are anti-church you are free to believe whatever you like. 

We have heard umpteen number of messages and warnings from  heaven  especially during the past few years. All of  them stress the importance  of getting ready for our great   meeting with  Jesus, who is to come soon.  This   is a wake up call to all those who  are waiting for  that great event. Leave the worldly  things and  return to prayer. Holy Communion is the surest  weapon to  defeat  our enemy who  would otherwise  charge towards  us.  To those who have not  yet consecrated their lives to the Immaculate Heart of  the Blessed Virgin,  we request again to  realise its importance.  Our Lady has  promised that not a single soul consecrated to her Immaculate Heart will  be lost.  Our Lady winds up  the series of her   messages to Fr Stefano Gobbi which lasted for  a quarter century with these words. ” All has been revealed to you” (message  no 604 dated 31st December 1997). True, the  apparitions and messages  of the Blesed Virgin  describe   the shape of things to come in the  end  times. We can   ask  her  help in  these  days  of great confusion preceding the glorious second coming of our Lord.

Most important, always be in a state of grace. Our lamps should be  ready with oil  at all  times because the bridegroom could come any moment.

May the Holy Spirit enlighten our souls to  read the signs of the times and  prepare  us to  greet our  Lord when he descends from heaven.

Let us pray to the Holy Spirit through the intercession of  our Blessed Mother.

‘Come, Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well-beloved Spouse.’

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