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Wednesday, April 22, 1998

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Acts 5:17-26
Psalm 34
John 3:16-21

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escaped, armed, and dangerous

"We found the jail securely locked and the guards at their posts outside the gates, but when we opened it we found no one inside." —Acts 5:23

The Sanhedrin thought the apostles were locked in jail, but actually they were in the Temple preaching "to the people all about this new life" in Jesus (Acts 5:20). The public school system thinks it has its teachers' faith and prayers locked up in a jail of laws forbidding evangelization and prayer in public schools. However, some public school teachers, and even principals, are obeying God rather than men (Acts 5:29). "With full assurance, and without any hindrance whatever," they are preaching "the reign of God" and teaching "about the Lord Jesus Christ" (Acts 28:31).

Business and the mass media think they have a lock on our culture. They have imposed on us the religion of secular humanism. They intolerantly and militantly ostracize anyone who doesn't follow the party-line. Nevertheless, Christians are letting their light shine (Mt 5:14-16), even in the darkest corners of the "culture of death."

The world thinks Christians are in prison. While many of us are imprisoned and most of us look imprisoned, some Christians have let the Lord secretly free them. As Jesus rose from the dead and emerged from the tomb, some Christians are no longer shut up "in the grip of the enemy" but are moving "about at large" (Ps 31:9). Watch out, world! Some Christians have been secretly sprung from jail. The Lord has set them "free in the open" (2 Sm 22:20). They will turn this world right side up (see Acts 17:6), as they witness for the risen Christ. They will light a fire on this earth (Lk 12:49). Watch out! Some Christians have escaped. They are armed and extremely dangerous.

Prayer:  Father, make me a much greater threat to the devil.

Promise:  "God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him may not die but may have eternal life." —Jn 3:16

Praise:  Martha faithfully ministers Jesus to prisoners several times each month (see Mt 25:36).

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 26, 1997

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 1997