title : September 2nd, 2018 Sun. Mass Sermon, by Fr Picot
name : silviadate : 2018-09-03 10:26:43hits : 145

20th after Pentecost
September 2nd, 2018

Dear Faithful,
Last Sunday St Paul warned us to walk in the spirit that we do not live according to the world. In the Gospel of last Sunday Christ uttered these deep words: “No man can serve two masters. You can not serve God and Mammon.” And again today St Paul urges us to live and act according to the Spirit and not according to the fashion of the World.

The world! What is it? First I will point what the world is not, then I will explain the definition of the world given by St John the Evangelist.

The word ‘world’ can mean simply the creation. In that case the world is the whole body of beings which are part of our life, here below. Some of these beings are only material ones, like stars, stones, etc... Others are material but with some kind of life: the vegetables and animals. Others have in addition a spiritual life and these are men. Finally there are purely spiritual beings that we call angels. This is the world. It means simply the Creation. In that meaning the world can not be evil since it is the work of God.

However in the Gospel and the Epistles the term ‘world’ is used with another meaning. Here ‘world’ means all the creatures which are under the devil’s power and help him in his designs. Our Lord calls the devil: ‘the prince of this world’.

St John gives a more detailed description of the world. He says that whatever is in the world is: concupiscence of the flesh, concupiscence of the eyes and pride of life. In other words the world’s motto is: Pleasure, Possession, Domination.

Pleasure, Possession, Domination summarize all the temptations and illusions which deceive the followers of the world. ‘Pleasure’, this is of course the common temptation for the mass of men. In simple words: the devil says to men: “follow me and you shall feel so great, so good.”

‘Possession’: this is the twisted response of the devil to a very natural need of man. We need to possess goods in order to sustain of life. But the devil twists this natural disposition, so that man craves for good, and for always more goods. To CRAVE for possession is a grave sin because man asks TOTAL satisfaction to creatures. Yet our total satisfaction can not be attained but in God.

‘Domination’. Finally the world is the place where men hate each other because they seek to dominate, to be the first, to be the one who is famous, to be the one who is honored etc... They all shout to each other and to God: “I shall not serve.”

Here we are, dear faithful. The world of Pleasure, Possession, Domination is absolutely opposed to Jesus Christ’s life and teaching: Carry your Cross, the spirit of poverty and humility.

Read again the Epistle of today. St Paul warns the Galatians against these 3 evil desires. About ‘Domination’ he says: “if someone thinks to be something by himself, he deceives himself. For indeed he is nothing.” Man is nothing compared with God. And whatever he is it is by God’s goodness. Then St Paul gives an advice to destroy in us the spirit of Domination. “Bear the burden of each other and thus you shall fulfill the law of Christ.”

At the beginning of the epistle St Paul says a word of the spirit of Possession: “having jealously to each other.” And again he advice to Galatians to overcome the evil spirit of Possession by fraternal Charity.

Finally he speak against ‘Pleasure’. “If you sow in the flesh, you shall harvest from the flesh corruption.” The remedy to the desire of sensual pleasure is the fear of eternal fire. For whatever is corrupted has to be destroyed by fire.

Let us ask of Our Lady the grace to know and to love the Cross of Jesus Christ which cleanses our sensuality, to know and love the poverty of Jesus Christ which cures our sick desire to possess to know and love the humility of Jesus Christ which shows us our nothingness before God.

+ Fr Picot

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