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Friday, June 28, 2002

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St. Irenaeus

2 Kings 25:1-12
Psalm 137
Matthew 8:1-4

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"By the streams of Babylon we sat and wept." —Psalm 137:1

"In the tenth month of the ninth year of Zedekiah's reign, on the tenth day of the month" (2 Kgs 25:1), the Babylonian army advanced against Jerusalem. "On the ninth day of the fourth month" (2 Kgs 25:3), the Israelite nation had possibly the worst day in its history. Famine gripped the city of Jerusalem (2 Kgs 25:3). Its inhabitants were even reduced to cannibalism. King Zedekiah was arrested. His sons were slain before his eyes. Then he was bound with fetters and exiled to Babylon (2 Kgs 25:7). About a month later, the temple and the city of Jerusalem were torched (2 Kgs 25:9). Its walls were torn down, and its people exiled.

When the worst day of your life happens, when unspeakable atrocities are committed against you, turn to Jesus. He can cure the lepers (see Mt 8:3), drive out demons, and raise the dead. "There is no salvation in anyone else, for there is no other name in the whole world given to men by which we are to be saved" (Acts 4:12). Jesus invites us: "Turn to Me and be safe, all you ends of the earth, for I am God; there is no other!" (Is 45:22) Jesus loves us more than we love ourselves. He knows what it is to be hurt, rejected, and even crucified. Jesus calls us: "Come to Me, all you who are weary and find life burdensome, and I will refresh you. Take My yoke upon your shoulders and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble of heart. Your souls will find rest" (Mt 11:28-29). In your pain, come to Jesus, our only Savior.

Prayer:  "Jesus, my Lord, my God, my All!"

Promise:  "Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him and said, 'I do will it. Be cured.' " —Mt 8:3

Praise:  St. Irenaeus, one of the early Church fathers, wrote a five-volume work that crushed forever the heresy of Gnosticism.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape on Jesus the Redeemer on audio AV 50-3 or video V-50.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, December 4, 2001

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 10, 2001