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THE MESSIAH: PRINCE OF PEACE Peace, a PDF Print E-mail
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Monday, 30 November 2009 07:34
THE MESSIAH: PRINCE OF PEACE Peace, a gift of God. It is lost through sin, pride and insincerity. Peace is one of the great goods constantly implored from God in the Old Testament. It is this gift that is promised to the people of Israel as a reward for their fidelity (Lev 26:6), and it is seen as a work of God (Is 26:12) from which flow uncountable benefits. But real peace came to the world only with the coming of the Messiah. That is why at the Nativity of Our Lord the angels proclaim it, singing: Glory to God in the highest and peace on earth to men of good will (Luke 2:14). Advent and Christmas are especially opportune times for the growth of peace in our hearts; they are also times to pray for peace in this world, torn as it is by conflict and widespread dissension. Behold: the Lord is coming in power - to bring peace to his people and give them eternal life (Divine Office, Antiphon). Isaiah reminds us in the first reading of the Mass that in the Messianic era the wolf shall live peacefully with the lamb, and the leopard lie down with the kid, and the calf and the lion and the beast of the field dwell together (cf Is 11:1-10). With the Messiah’s coming, the peace and harmony the world knew at the beginning of creation are restored and a new order is inaugurated. The teaching of Our Lord constitutes the good news of peace (Acts 10:36). And this same peace is also the treasure he has passed on to his disciples in every age: Peace I leave you; my peace I give you; not as the world gives it do I give it you (John 14:27). Earthly peace, which comes from love of our fellow-man, is a type and a result of the peace of Christ issuing from God the Father. The incarnate Son himself, the Prince of peace, reconciled all men to God through his cross. In his own flesh he killed hatred, and after he had risen he poured out the Spirit of charity into the hearts of men (Second Vatican Council, Gaudim et spes, 78). The peace of God completely transcends an earthly peace, which can so easily be superficial and unreal, stemming often from selfishness, and not at all incompatible with injustice. Christ is our peace (Eph 2:14) and our joy. Sin, on the other hand, sows nothing but loneliness, anxiety and sadness in the soul. Christian peace, so necessary for apostolate and good fellowship, is the product of interior order, of a consciousness of our own failings and virtues, of unfailing respect for others and a complete confidence in God, who, we know, will never abandon us. It is the consequence of humility, of awareness of our divine filiation and of the struggle against our own passions, which tend al ways towards disorder and disruption. The sincere confession of our sins is one of the main ways God has given us to recover the peace that has been lost through sin or by the failure to correspond with his grace. Peace with God, the result of justification and the rejection of sin; peace with our fellow-men, the fruit of love dispersed by the Holy Spirit; peace with ourselves, the peace of conscience proceeding from victory over our passions and over evil (John Paul II, Address to UNIV-86, Rome, 24 March 1986). The recovery of peace, if it has been lost, is one of the best signs of love for those around us, and its acquisition also the first task in preparing our hearts for the coming of the infant Christ. With permission from Scepter UK. Short excerpt from IN CONVERSATION WITH GOD by Francis Fernandez. Available at SinagTala or Totus Bookstore 723-4326 or at www.totusbookstore.com (info@totusbookstore.com) To subscribe or unsubscribe, please email info@defensoresfidei.com. The DEFENSORES FIDEI FOUNDATION actively spreads Ecclesial Information, Catechetical Instructions and Apologetics in pursuit of making good Catholics better Catholics. Any contribution to help this apostolate is heaven-sent and now TAX-DEDUCTIBLE (in USA). Please visit us at www.defensoresfidei.com.
 

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"The biggest cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid people are so sure about things and the intelligent folks are so full of doubts."~~Bertrand Russell