Download a Permanent Printable PDF Version of This Article.

Hope.

(From a 2012 Lent and Easter series of sermons on Catholic Virtues.)
http://www.CatholicAmericanThinker.com

”When Saul arrived in Jerusalem he tried to join the disciples, but they were afraid of him.”

Well, and who wouldn’t blame them? Saul had stood by approvingly while St. Stephen was murdered. Then he embarked on a one-man persecution of the disciples of Jesus, dragging men and women from their homes and throwing them into prison. Then, not content with ridding Jerusalem of these dangerous vermin, he had gotten letters of introduction to the synagogues of Damascus, and off he went to open a new front in his war on Jesus of Nazareth. So who could blame the disciples for not embracing Saul with open arms when he returned to Jerusalem claiming to be a believer? They were afraid of him, and given the circumstances that was to be expected.

On the other hand, didn’t the followers of Jesus have, by that time, ample experience with the unexpected? So much of what Jesus did had been unexpected by them, but anticipated by their own Scriptures. His suffering and death, such a shock to his disciples, had been predicted in several of the psalms and prophets. Likewise his resurrection. And so Jesus, as he appeared to them over forty days, explained things to them, opening their minds to the Scriptures that pertained to him.

You cold almost say that the Christian should expect the unexpected. You can definitely say that the Christian should never despair. If Saul was not hopeless, no one is hopeless; not with the Lord risen and actively intervening in the course of events, such as appearing to his arch-enemy in a flash to claim his conversion and life-long allegiance.

No one is hopeless, not with the Holy Spirit pouring out on all mankind, as the prophet Joel foresaw, opening the hearts of Jew and Gentile alike to faith, repentance, and a new life.

No situation is hopeless, not with the promise of Jesus that he, the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end of creation, will return to usher in the new creation. Hope is the hallmark of Christian faith. It is by hope that we look to God as the source of true happiness. It is by hope that we trust in Christ’s promise of eternal live. It is by hope that we confidently expect divine blessing. And so even in situations that the world would write off as hopeless, useless, time to throw in the towel, we continue to hope because of what God has revealed to us through Jesus Christ our Lord, and because the Holy Spirit, Whom He send to us, hass taken up his lively presence in our hearts.

When I consider that ancient pagan philosophers – Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, among hundreds of others – reasoned their way to the conclusion that the universe must have a Source who is self-actualizing, eternal, immaterial, and intelligent …
           (Thank you Michael Novak, No One Sees God, P. 195-96)

And when I consider that of all ancient tribes and peoples who had all kind of gods and goddesses only the Jews believed that there was one and only one God, eternal Creator of all things, and that out of His great compassion He had revealed Himself to His human creatures …

And when I consider how Jesus of Nazareth taught and acted in a way that not only summed up all that had been revealed to the Jews but brought it forward to the goal at which it was aimed …

And when I consider how the stories of his resurrection ring so true, with their frank portrayal of his disciples reluctance to believe and stubborn insistence on evidence …

I feel convinced, all over again, that it is true.

And furthermore, when I consider what Peter preached to his fellow Jews after the Holy Spirit had sent him and his fellow apostles out to witness to the world … why, if anyone should have despaired it should have been his listeners, who had put to death the author of life, had denied the Holy and Righteous One and demanded that a murderer be released to them. (Acts 3:14-15) If anyone’s situation could be hopeless, it would have been theirs. And yet even they were not beyond God’s mercy. God made allowance for the fact that they acted out of ignorance. But even if they had acted knowingly, their sins would be wiped away if they repented and converted.

When I consider these things – that God really does exist, that Christianity is true, that God’s infinite compassion encompasses even me – when I consider these things I feel hopeful.

Hope – the theological virtue by which we desire God – the eternal, infinite and merciful – as our true happiness.

Hope – by which we trust in Christ’s promise of eternal life, and in his power to give it to us.

Hope – which anchors our lives in the storms of this life because of its confident expectation of divine blessing, so confident that we can forget ourselves and what we want to squeeze out of the passing life and reach out to God Who is love, and Who gave us companions to love on this brief journey.

Love – another virtue, another sermon.

=====

Footnotes:

Smart-Assed Acronym Hover-Link Footnotes: For the convenience of those readers using devises that lack a mouse, these footnotes are provided for all webpages, in case any webpage contains any hover-links. (If you don't have a mouse, you can't "hover" it over a link without clicking just to see the simple acronym interpretation.)

SLIMC1 Secularist Liberal Intellectual Media Complex
GESGOEAEOT2 Gradually, Ever So Gradually, Over Eons And Eons Of Time
PEWAG3 Punctuated Equilibrium's Wild-Assed Guess
TTRSTF4 Them There Real Scientifical-Type Fellers
TTRSPTF5 Them There Real Smart Perfesser-Type Fellers
TTRSJTF6 Them There Real Smart Journalistical-Type Fellers
SNRTACBT7 Surely No Right Thinking Adult Could Believe Today
STNSEACPB8 Surely Today No Serious Educated Adult Could Possibly Believe
WDN9 We Don't Know
BMDFP10 Baboons, Mongrel Dogs, Filthy Pigs and ...
HBAACOTE11 Human Beings Are A Cancer On The Earth
ACLU12 Anti-Christian Litigation Union
FLORMPORIF13 Flagrant Liar, Or, Mindless Parrot, Or, Innocent Fool
MEJTML14 Marxist Ends-Justify-The-Means Liar
IEJTML15 Islamic Ends-Ends-Justify-The-Means Liar
MPAV16 Marxist Principles And Values
WBESSWG17 Wise, Benign, Elite, Super-Scientific World Governance
TRMITM18 The Reason Man's In This Mess
IYI19 Intellectual Yet Idiotic

Reference Material

Culture=Religion+Politics;  Who Are We?  Vic Biorseth

The Brilliantly Conceived Organization of the USA;  Vic Biorseth

Live Interviews

Return to the BLOG page

Return to the HOME PAGE

Respond to This Article Below The Last Comment

Comments

Respond to this WebPage immediately below the last comment. Or,
publish your own new WebPage.  


Date:   Sun Nov 30 2014
From:  Vic Biorseth
Comment:  

Changes pursuant to changing the website URL and name from 
Thinking Catholic Strategic Center to
Catholic American Thinker.

Pulled the trigger on the 301 MOVE IT option June 1, 2014. Working my way through all the webpages.  . 

Regards,

Vic


Language and Tone Statement

Please note the language and tone of this monitored Website. This is not the place to stack up vulgar one-liners and crude rejoinders.  While you may support, oppose or introduce any position or argument, submissions must meet our standards of logical rigor and civil discourse.  We will not participate in merely trading insults, nor will we tolerate participants merely trading insults.  Participants should not be thin-skinned or over sensitive to criticism, but should be prepared to defend their arguments when challenged.  If you don’t really have a coherent argument or counter-argument of your own, sit down and don’t embarrass yourself. Nonsensical, immoral or merely insulting submissions will not be published here.  If you have something serious to contribute to the conversation, back it up, keep it clean and keep it civil.  We humbly apologize to all religious conservative thinkers for the need to even say these things, but the New Liberals are what they are, and the internet is what it is. 

If you fear intolerant Leftist repercussions, do not use your real name and do not include email or any identifying information.  Elite Culturally Marxist Authoritarians cannot and will not tolerate your freedom of speech or any opposition to their own rigid pro-Marxist, pro-Islam, anti-Life, anti-Christian, anti-American, Globalist, anti-Nation, immoral, anti-white, racist intolerant and bigoted point of view. 

ADD COMMENT

Please note that all fields followed by an asterisk must be filled in.

Please enter the word that you see below.

  


Copyrighted Material


If you want to build a website like this one, this is how you do it.

SiteSell Hosting

Your Host, Vic Biorseth

Never be lukewarm.
Life itself demands passion.
He who is indifferent to God has already forfeited his soul.
He who is indifferent to politics has already forfeited his liberty.
In America, religion is not mere window dressing and citizenship is not a spectator sport.
Do not allow our common destiny as a whole people to just happen without your input. 
Seek the Truth; find the Way; live the Life; please God, and live forever.

Catholic American Thinker
Free E-zine Subscription

You will receive immediate email newsletters with links to new articles as they are published here.  Your email is perfectly secure here; we use it only to send you the
Catholic American Thinker
Newsletter
and absolutely nothing else.

Back Issues

Site Search

Keep This Website Going

"We belong to the Church militant; and She is militant because on earth the powers of darkness are ever restless to encompass Her destruction. Not only in the far-off centuries of the early Church, but down through the ages and in this our day, the enemies of God and Christian civilization make bold to attack the Creator’s supreme dominion and sacrosanct human rights.”--Pope Pius XII

"It is not lawful to take the things of others to give to the poor.  It is a sin worthy of punishment, not an act deserving a reward, to give away what belongs to others."--St. Francis of Assisi

Traditional Latin Tridentine Mass, offered at Assumption Grotto Church in  Detroit, Michigan.  Our deepest prayer, our highest form of worship, and the way God should be treated.

Find a Latin Mass

Note the Military Assault Rifle common to the American Founding Era.

Atheist Genesis:

In the beginning there was nothing, and nothing happened to nothing.
And then nothing accidentally exploded and created everything.
And then some bits of everything accidentally encountered other bits of everything and formed some new kinds of everything.
And then some bits of everything accidentally arranged themselves into self-replicating bits of everything.
And then some self-replicating bits of everything accidentally arranged themselves into dinosaurs.
See?

(See The Darwinism Pages)

If you can't find the page you're looking for, try the
SITE MAP.