Both the reading from Hebrews and today’s Gospel deal with God’s judgment and the salvation of souls. In the First Reading we hear of Christ’s new covenant with mankind, that we no longer need to make yearly sacrifices to ensure our salvation. God, in His love for us, became man and offered His own blood for the eternal salvation of souls. In Christ’s new covenant we are able to share in His death and resurrection. The author of Hebrews reminds us, “Christ, offered once to take away the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to take away sin but to bring salvation to those who eagerly await him.” Christ’s death allows hope to reign in the world, just as our Gospel acclamation states, “Our Savior, Jesus Christ has destroyed death and brought life to light through the Gospel”. The resurrection is the Good News and it is through God’s love for His creation that we are able to share in that Good News!

In the Gospel, the scribes who see Christ casting out demons accuse Christ of being possessed by Satan, thereby denying His goodness: “By the prince of demons he drives out demons”. Jesus’ rebuttal is pretty simple; He tells the Pharisees that it would not make sense for Satan to drive out his own demons, all that would do is weaken Satan’s power for “If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.” That is applicable to not only Satan but also to those who wish to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. When the Body of Christ is divided, when we lack charity and fail to love our brothers and sisters in Christ, we lose sight of our ultimate end–Heaven! If we are not consistently, actively seeking Heaven, we run the risk of falling into the sin of unbelief. 

These readings seem appropriate today, the Day of Prayer for the Legal Protection of Unborn Children. As we pray for the protection of all unborn children and as we mourn for the all those lost to abortion, we can remind ourselves that hope reigns in our world.

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