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Thursday, November 22, 2001

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St. Cecilia


1 Maccabees 2:15-29
Psalm 50
Luke 19:41-44

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will you ever deny him?

"The officers of the king in charge of enforcing the apostasy came to the city." —1 Maccabees 2:15

The Seleucid king tried to enforce an apostasy on the Jews. Roman emperors repeatedly tried to enforce apostasies on the early Christians. This continues to happen as Chinese Communists oppress Christians, Muslims terrorize Christians in Sudan and several other nations, and secular humanists express their intolerance of Christians in the Western world. These many attempts to enforce apostasies will culminate in the mass apostasy led by the antichrist at the end of the world (2 Thes 2:3ff).

We will not deny Christ if we are like Mattathias. He refused to be manipulated "in the slightest degree" by threats and bribes (1 Mc 2:22). He courageously "answered in a loud voice" that he would not be influenced by popular opinion (1 Mc 2:19). Mattathias and his whole family were united in their resolve to keep the covenant with the Lord (1 Mc 2:20). Mattathias was zealous (1 Mc 2:24) and willing to leave behind all his possessions in order "to live according to righteousness" (1 Mc 2:28-29).

Are you "apostasy-proof"? Will you take the pressure, or will you fold? Are you like Mattathias? Would you leave your lifestyle behind to save your life in Christ?

Prayer:  Father, I give up my life for Jesus (Lk 9:24).

Promise:  "Offer to God praise as your sacrifice and fulfill your vows to the Most High; then call upon Me in time of distress; I will rescue you, and you shall glorify Me." —Ps 50:14-15

Praise:  St. Cecilia stood up for Christ by refusing to sacrifice to pagan gods, for which she was sentenced to death.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert A. Stricker, May 8, 2001


Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 18, 2001