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We are back in the days of paganism…..Wisdom Chapter 14 January 29, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Bible, catachesis, Christendom, General Catholic, mortification, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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Mankind never changes.  We will always remain disfigured by Original Sin.  Thus, there have always been grave problems in all human societies. Even the very pinnacle of Christendom in the 12th and 13th centuries was not without grave problems, wars, and persecutions.

Still……we have plainly departed from that glorious historical construct known as Christendom.  It is no more, or at best, there are a few bare fragments of it remaining, slowly withering, it seems.

We have, as a culture, over the past few centuries, regressed tremendously.  Oh, with regards to technology, there have been great advances, almost all accomplished in the 19th or early 20th centuries (the pace of technological advance seems to have slowed dramatically over the past 70 or 80 years, almost all advances simply being simply developments of core breakthroughs made long ago). But socially, morally, the culture has regressed.  To many minds, we appear to be headed into a new paganism.  In fact, in many ways, it is already here.

So while I recognize that the words of Solomon from Wisdom Chapter 14 were inspired by God and have had applicability in all times, they appear to have a special resonance today.  When Solomon wrote, he was describing the evils of the Canaanites who so frequently lured the Israelites into grave acts of debauchery, into rejection of their Lord for evil demons.  We are surrounded by Canaanites today, luring our young away with their festivals of bacchanalia and tempting them to believe false gods of their own creation.

See if you can see any parallels in the below with the culture we are faced with today:

9 But to God the wicked and his wickedness are hateful alike.

10 For that which is made, together with him that made it, shall suffer torments. [An interesting commentary.  What bearing, if any, should this have on “love the sinner, hate the sin?”  What is man but the sum total of his actions?  Then again, I would not like to be judged so stringently.]

11 Therefore there shall be no respect had even to the idols of the Gentiles: because the creatures of God are turned to an abomination, and a temptation to the souls of men, and a snare to the feet of the unwise.

12 For the beginning of fornication is the devising of idols: and the invention of them is the corruption of life.

13 For neither were they from the beginning, neither shall they be for ever.

14 For by the vanity of men they came into the world: and therefore they shall be found to come shortly to an end…….

22 And it was not enough for them to err about the knowledge of God, but whereas they lived in a great war of ignorance, they call so many and so great evils peace. [Another very insightful commentary.  Very applicable to today]

23 *For either they sacrifice their own children, or use hidden sacrifices, or keep watches full of madness, [And even in times of “peace” in this country, we slaughter our innocents by the millions, as occurs every day around the world. We are awash in blood, and don’t even know it.]

24 So that now they neither keep life, nor marriage undefiled, but one killeth another through envy, or grieveth him by adultery:

25 And all things are mingled together, blood, murder, theft, and dissimulation, corruption and unfaithfulness, tumults and perjury, disquieting of the good,

26 Forgetfulness of God, defiling of souls, changing of nature, [gender identity?] disorder in marriage, and the irregularity of adultery and uncleanness.

27 For the worship of abominable idols is the cause, and the beginning and end of all evil.

28 For either they are mad when they are merry: or they prophecy lies, or they live unjustly, or easily forswear themselves.

29 For whilst they trust in idols, which are without life, though they swear amiss, they look not to be hurt.

30 But for both these things they shall be justly punished, because they have thought not well of God, giving heed to idols, and have sworn unjustly, in guile despising justice.

31 For it is not the power of them, by whom they swear, but the just vengeance of sinners always punisheth the transgression of the unjust.

————–End Quote————–

It is always critical to remember that Solomon, for all his wisdom (and it is certainly on display above), still fell into the same idolatry and evil he describes above, because he fell into lust.  So many are ruined by lust – whether it be for money, food, power, or the abuse of the marital faculty.  That is why practicing penance is so absolutely vital: penance and self-denial are the remedy for our disordered appetites, they build up in us a resistance to them.

The process of societal rejection of penance, which voluntary suffering and gift of self had created Christendom, started under protestantism. Luther, a man given to many uncontrolled appetites, twisted Scripture to his own destruction and found many people willing to join him in “finding” that the Bible actually did not recommend penance (so much for take your cross, and follow Me).  From that point today it has been more or less a straight line of decay and dissolution till we arrive at today, where the very notion of self-denial is utterly alien to almost everyone.,

Comments

1. Barbara Hvilivitzky - January 29, 2015

Good idea always to link the past with the present! How do we learn otherwise?
What I take from this is that first comes the worship of idols, THEN comes the sins (in general).
What idols do we worship today? Sports figures, movie stars, politicians, scientists, theologians, the Pope, writers, artists, chefs?????
From this worship of idols come sins: envy, lust, gluttony, sloth, anger, and of course worsening loss of Faith.
As you point out, there is nothing new under the sun!
Barbara

2. TG - January 29, 2015

Tantum, I’ve always wondered about whether Solomon was saved. From what I read in the Bible, I can’t tell that he repented. Do you know? (Am I missing something.)

3. MFG - January 29, 2015

You make son interesting observation that technological achievements have slowed in the last 70 years.

A lot of the scientific breakthroughs can be attributed to Catholic monks and scientists in centuries past who with cleaner souls had illumination to penetrate deep into the mechanics of Gods creation. Today’s secular scientists, no matter how bright , can be spiritually blinded by sin and fail to make magnificent breakthroughs. That’s why 2015 life isn’t much different than 1945 (cars, asphault, suburban, tv’s, life-no flying cars). But 1945 is way different than 1875.

It’s no coincidence that Macro scientific breakthroughs stopped with the man on the moon in 1969-the same year the sexual revolt peaked or was fully unleashed at Woodstock.

If science was conducted by devout and holy souls, imagine where we would be today.

Tantumblogo - January 29, 2015

No offense, MFG, but I would argue that the moon landings were just engineering. They involved no major scientific or even technological breakthroughs (but did involve heroic engineering and systems planning).

To me, some of the last major scientific breakthroughs were made in the 40s with quantum physics and the discover of the transistor. Integrated circuits involved ways to tie together and manufacture transistors en masse, it was not really a new discovery. Large scale rockets a la V-2 were also a development of the 40s, or even late 30s. The Saturn V was a massively scaled and refined V-2. Even von Braun admitted as much.

Yes, I agree, I believe the pace of breakthrough has slackened tremendously due to the collapse of Christendom.

MFG - January 30, 2015

Actually you strengthen our point by saying breakthroughs peaked much earlier than 69. In fact it makes it scarier to think we went from horse and buggy to the foundations of space travel in less than 50 years.

4. Branch - January 30, 2015

And isn’t it the rejection of the cross and self-denial that is behind the “mercy” push today? Instead of a violation of God’s law, divorce and remarriage is refashioned as a victim category or solely the status of those who are wounded. We are all wounded!

If Christ is only the Divine Physician, who “caresses,” then the vast majority of the New Testament and, by implication, the Old, are bizarre contradictions to this “way of Jesus.”


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