I remember reading a good Catholic commentary on the book of Revelation. It was part of the series Catholic Commentary on Sacred Scripture. I remember reading in Revelation that God gives people several chances in the end times to repent before God decides to enact the final judgment.
At the end of the commentary is a section on grace and judgment.
The commentator wrote about how to balance grace and judgment in evangelization. That in Christian circles these days, there’s much talk on grace and not enough on judgment. As if talking about judgment repulses people from the Christian message.
I remember reading that repentance is the turning away from sin toward God.
This should be Catholicism 101.
Food for thought.
That people, in response to the gift of faith; should turn away from sin and work hard in their life long conversion process in order to act in ways better pleasing to God.
Philippians 2:12 says work out your salvation with fear and trembling.
This, and a grace I received; causes me to think and reflect. I’d like to share with you the fruits of this contemplation.
In my experience, repentance feels like a deep sorrow for sins and a drive to not do it anymore. The grace I received was: Focus and draw on repentance when the urge to sin comes upon me.
I know, I know. Many people these days don’t want to feel judged and many actively try to avoid anything that causes them to think and feel that God judges them for what they do. Instead, they focus on the grace and the forgiveness of God.
That’s one of the problems facing 21st century American Christianity.
For Saint Paul says in 2 Corinthians 5:10 that we all come before the judgment seat of Christ for what good and evil we do in the body.
Saint James says that faith alone doesn’t save. That we have to put in the work in cooperation with God.
That means it’s imperative on us to reform ourselves and our lives to be able to stand before Christ in confidence.
Another grace I received a few months ago was the appalling sense that many people are walking straight into hell; happily chatting away with each other on the way while wearing chains led by the devil.
Meanwhile, I was trying to talk to people and tell them what was happening.
I felt an immense sadness and compassion for these people.
I don’t want to see people going to hell. That’s one reason why I’m an apologist and evangelist for the Faith. I want to save people from hell.
Here’s my point:
God judges us for what good and evil we do. If we turn to God with repentance for our sins, we receive the forgiveness and grace from God. But: We have to keep working at it and every time we sin, that we repent and work harder to do better not to sin again.
That’s why we have the Sacrament of Confession.
It’s a two punch combo, this judgment and grace.
We’re going to be judged, so we repent. When we repent, we’re forgiven. But: We must keep working at it as a continuing life long process of conversion.
That’s actually one of the many reasons why I’m Catholic. The Catholic Faith is premised on this one two punch combo backed with grace aided human effort of conversion from sin.
I can’t just believe and it’s all good. As Saint James says: Even the demons believe and shudder. The demons believe, but are they saved by this faith?
No. They don’t repent and change their ways. Thus, they are not saved.
Repentance is the basis. We have to be honestly repentant for our sins and put in the work to better please God.
I remember a homily given by Father last Sunday. In this homily, I received a grace that we must abide in God, Who is love, goodness and truth. We abide in Him and He abides in us when we walk in love, goodness and truth.
Love God and love each other as Christ loves us, people.
Please. Your eternity is riding on this.
I hope my sharing with you all will help you in your walk with Christ.
God bless you and Mary keep you all.