“What profit is there for one to gain the whole world yet lose or forfeit himself?”

In today’s gospel reading from Luke (9:22-25), Jesus, speaking to His disciples, predicts His passion, death, and resurrection.  With this image of suffering in mind, Jesus addresses to all around Him the difficulties they will encounter if they faithfully follow Him.  Jesus speaks of self-denial, burdens that must be borne, and even the possibility of the loss of life, all for His sake.  Not a very attractive vision, except that all of this leads to the follower’s eternal soul being saved.  Death leads to life.  Dying in the little opportunities for mortification that arise throughout each day.  Dying because of the ridicule or viciousness aimed at us by a society which is losing any moral standard whatsoever.  And, God forbid, the possibility of our blood being shed to uphold our beliefs.  The time has come to get off the fence.  There is no room for compromising.  There is no room for being tepid.  Remember the words of God in the last book of the Bible: “But because you are lukewarm and neither cold nor hot, I will begin to vomit you out of my mouth.” (Rev 3:16)  A lurid image, and a wake-up call.  Are you still dozing?


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