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HOW WE CAN ESCAPE FROM ETERNAL DEATH?

Father Francis's picture
Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time

Gen. 19:15-29 & Mt. 8:23-27

Divine justice demanded that the sinful cities of Sodom and Gomorrah be destroyed. But because of His great love for Abraham, God spared his nephew, Lot, and his family until his wife disobeyed God's command and was turned into a pillar of salt.

This story has been included in the Bible to illustrate God's justice and mercy. In His justice He will destroy evil, not always in a natural calamity, but in His own way and in His own time. In His mercy He will save the good, and that, too, He will accomplish in His own way and in His own time. We cannot escape from natural death but He will give us the opportunity to escape from eternal death. Just as God wished to save Lot and his family out of His love for Abraham, He wants us to be saved from eternal death out of His love for His Son.

The apostles, as we see in today's Gospel, feared death by drowning. Jesus appeared to be unconcerned, mysteriously sleeping at the height of a freak storm. He was disappointed that His apostles did not have complete trust in Him but despite this He did calm the winds and the waves. In the Bible the waters are often a symbol of ultimate destruction, as for example in the great flood of Noah's time. The real storms of life which we must fear are not those of nature, but those of evil which can bring everlasting death.

Abraham was the saviour of his family. God saved them because of him. We have a Saviour in Jesus Christ. He is greater than Abraham. Faith in Him, even when He seems far away or asleep, will save us from the violent forces which can bring eternal death. That really is all that matters.

Lord Jesus, may we realise that even in the greatest dangers You will never abandon us, if only we have the faith to believe in You and try to live as You would wish.

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