Living in the Two Hearts

My Spiritual Insights and Musings

Archive for September, 2015

Coming Soon: Chapter 10… A Brief Look Back

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on September 11, 2015

How are those prayers coming for the 54 day novena coming?

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“Each year, more than 1 million abortions are performed in the U.S. Not only that, but one could argue that the United States, more than any other country in the world, has contributed to the international spread of abortion… as murder, abortion is a sin that cries out to God for punishment (see Gen 4:10). Making matters worse, it involves the murder of a completely innocent and helpless child by the will of [their] own parents.

“It’s a wonder, then, that the United States…still exists! I suggest that the only reason we haven’t been wiped off the face of the earth is because, again, now is a time of mercy. Truly, God is showing unbelievable restraint and mercy. He’s giving us some time to REPENT and CRY OUT for mercy… eventually something has to give…There’s a reason Mary is on the move, leading the second greatest push for her consecration here in America.” (Fr. Michael Gaitley, The Second Greatest Story Ever Told, pg 184, emphasis added by me.)

We have sinned and are in bondage to our sin...

We have sinned and are in bondage to our sin…

A RETURN TO A FAMILIAR NUMBER – 144,000

Rev 14: 1 Then I looked, and lo, on Mount Zion stood the Lamb, and with Him a hundred and forty-four thousand who had His name and His Father’s name written on their foreheads.

A quick review of the number – 144,000 from Revelation chapter 7, verses 4-8, and Barber p108:

The number is the representation of the lost tribes of Israel who live in the Gentile lands thanks to the first dispersal of the people when judgment fell on the Northern kingdoms of Israel back in the 722BC by Assyria. And though in 587BC Babylon took the South, with Babylon, captives were taken and thus a remnant few were able to return some 40+ years later to rebuild Jerusalem. The North never did return and it is them whom the 144,000 represent. But as we’ve said before, the Bible has layers of meaning which is why a literal translation is often not possible. So, here is a new layer of meaning to that same number.

HISTORICAL

IJD – Jerusalem is about to be leveled by the Roman legions because the occupants of the land have abased themselves to a degree of wretchedness that only God’s judgment can purify.

Yet at the same time, not all of the people were in this sad state. There were still those who adhered to the Message of the Messiah and lived out the Law – of which the Messiah, Jesus, was the fulfillment of. This re-mention of the 144,000 reminds the reader that:

“…not all have bowed to the beast and received his image. Some are marked with the sign of the Lamb.” (Barber, 178)

So let’s get really specific here. Who are these new representatives and what clues do we have in the text to give us this answer? Let us read on, dear friends!

Rev 14:2-3 And I heard a voice from heaven like the sound of many waters and like the sound of loud thunder; the voice I heard was like the sound of harpers playing on their harps, and they sing a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and before the elders. No one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from the earth.

 

Rev 6:9

multitudes before the throne of God ~source: Google Images

Music playing, voices raised in song and praise, before the THRONE of God, surrounded by His “four living creatures” and the “elders” – which we know from Sacred Scripture are the 12 Apostles (see Mt 19:28).

So they are celebrating “something” before the THRONE of God with the Bishops and Angels… HOLY MASS! That must mean these are no ordinary folks, and actually the verse does say:

“No one could learn that song except the hundred and forty-four thousand”

This would make perfect sense if one examines the Traditional form of the Mass – the Latin form – because there are parts that only the priest says and only he knows what he says. The rest of us are not privy to those specific parts.

In the new form of the Mass, the same does still apply to special parts that only the priest says, but thanks to (bad/good) formation in Seminary, we do often hear what he is saying and are now in a way “privy” to what the priest alone says.

Regardless, the passage points in that direction that this new segment of the “number” are set aside for priestly duties. But let’s read on before we jump to conclusions…

Rev 14:4a It is these who have not defiled themselves with women, for they are chaste;

A clear definition of masculine virginity… okay, another point for them being priests…

Rev 14:4b it is these who follow the Lamb wherever He goes;

They are true followers of Christ… another point…

Rev 14:4c …these have been redeemed from mankind as first fruits for God and the Lamb, and in their mouth no lie was found, for they are spotless.

They are the “first fruits” and “spotless”, set apart for God’s purposes? Sure sounds like it. Oh, then, Consecrated = spotless, set apart, made sacred for God alone… Kind of like a fulfillment of the Mosaic Law:

“All male children who open the womb the first time shall be consecrated to God.” ~Exodus 13:1-2

 

The Apocalypse: "the book of the heavenly liturgy...standard for [Church's] own liturgy." ~Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), "The Spirit of the Liturgy", c.2000.

The Apocalypse: “the book of the heavenly liturgy…standard for [Church’s] own liturgy.” ~Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI), “The Spirit of the Liturgy”, c.2000.

Male and chaste, set aside for God, redeemed from mankind, spotless and worshiping before the THRONE of God… that clinches it!

“This, therefore, depicts the Church as the ‘kingdom of priests’ established by Christ. This image is further strengthened by the fact that they are given the role of the Levitical priests, who sang in the temple of God.”

Not only that, but the passage also further suggests in keeping with the Mosaic Law:

“…the saints are called the ‘first fruits’. In the Old Testament the first fruits were to be an offering to the Lord (cf. Ex 34:26). Those who ‘have been redeemed’ have offered themselves to God as a sacrificial offering.” (Barber, 180)

So this new part of the 144,000 remnant few fulfill the Davidic set-up where David established the priesthood of his kingdom – a prefigurement to the Kingdom of Christ (see Lk 1:31-33) – where there were twenty-four divisions of priests to serve AND sing in the temple (see 1Chron 24-25; Barber, 84).

ON THE TOPIC OF PRIESTLY CELIBACY

Recently there has been a lot of discussion about the celibate priesthood and whether or not the Church should follow suit with the Protestant churches and allow her priests to marry.

I just like to point out a few obvious things: First: It was the forefathers of the Protestant churches that broke away from the ONLY Church Christ established – the Universal (Catholic) Church. Therefore, they are currently in heresy, and Christ promised that His church would never fall into heresy (cf. Mt 16:18c).

Second: It was Jesus Himself who established the celibate priesthood:

Peter said in reply, “Lo, we have left everything and followed You.” …

Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you… everyone who has left houses, brothers or sisters, or fathers and mothers or children or lands, for My Name’s sake, will receive a hundred fold, and inherit eternal life. ~Mt 19:27, 28a, 29

Many of the Apostles had families, businesses and property. Peter certainly stands out as example of this since we read that Jesus used his house in Capernaum as His base of operations while He preached. And that during that time Jesus even healed Peter’s mother-in-law from what reads like a high fever (cf. Mt 8:14-15), to which she was so grateful that she waited on Him. The next verse tells of people bringing their sick to Peter’s house so that Jesus might cure them.

Remember the story of the paralytic who was lowered on a stretcher through a roof ? That was Peter’s roof they dismantled (see Mk 2:1-12)! So those who had families, they left their families to follow after Jesus. They did not marry new wives and begin new families. They remained chaste and many died a martyr’s death.

Third: “Christ Himself foretold of the ministry of celibate men in the Church saying, ‘there are some who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom” (Mt 19:12). Eunuchs were usually entrusted with the wives of the king in the ancient world (cf. Esther 2:14). Following this tradition, Catholic priests remain celibate, as to them the Bride of Christ, the Church, is especially entrusted. (Barber, 181; see also Lk 18:28-29 and 1Cor 7)

This brings up a final point, not related to Celibacy, but more to do with the priesthood:

Jesus did not establish this priesthood with any of the women who also followed Him. And there were quite a number of women, as Luke’s Gospel account tells us, who did follow Jesus as He preached:

…and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary, called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out [incidentally, this proves she was not the woman caught in adultery in Matthew’s Gospel.] and Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others who provided for them [Jesus and the 12, see verse 1] out of their means. ~Lk 8:2-3 (emphasis added)

A woman is not a man, and cannot be “a eunuch for the sake of the kingdom”, therefore, women cannot be priests. And those who are have joined the ranks of the heretics and may God have mercy on their souls! And woe to those priests who have traded their priestly celibacy to engage in adultery and/or sodomy. Your souls are also in grave jeopardy. But I digress…

 

"Paul a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle..." Romans 1:1

“Paul a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle…” Romans 1:1

HEAVEN’S WARRIORS

These celibate men, set aside for God, have also another connection with Ancient Israel in her soldiers. According to Leviticus 15:16; Deut 23:10; 1Sam 21:5; 2Sam 11:11, soldiers who were to go into battle were forbidden to have sexual relations, they had to remain chaste if Israel were to have success on the battlefield. And like these soldiers:

“…the saints in heaven…represent God’s arm, which fights against the enemy on earth through the celebration of the heavenly liturgy. The prayers of the saints effect the judgments from God that are then sent to destroy the enemy.” (Barber, 181)

Continue Reading… So what about the wicked?

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