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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

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St. Augustine

2 Thessalonians 2:1-3, 14-17
Psalm 96:10-13
Matthew 23:23-26

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are you expecting? (see aug. 27)

"On the question of the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to Him..." —2 Thessalonians 2:1

The Thessalonians had been seduced into becoming agitated and terrified because they thought the world was about to end (2 Thes 2:2). Some Thessalonians even quit their jobs because they thought they had only a few days left on the earth (2 Thes 3:7ff). Also, some of the Corinthians divorced their unbelieving spouses, possibly because they expected the Lord to come and the world to end at any minute (1 Cor 7:12ff). These early Christians were wrong in their reaction to the possibility that the world would end. However, they were not wrong in expecting the world's end and Christ's return.

The worst mistake we can make is to ignore the fact that Jesus will come back to earth at a time we least expect (Lk 12:40). "The day of the Lord will come like a thief, and on that day the heavens will vanish with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and all its deeds will be made manifest. Since everything is to be destroyed in this way, what sort of men must you not be! How holy in your conduct and devotion, looking for the coming of the day of God and trying to hasten it!" (2 Pt 3:10-12)

The early Christians had one word on the tips of their tongues. They repeatedly cried out "Maranatha!" ("Come, Lord Jesus!") (Rv 22:20; 1 Cor 16:22) to which the Lord responds: "Yes, I am coming soon!" (Rv 22:20)

Prayer:  Come, Lord Jesus, come!

Promise:  "First cleanse the inside of the cup so that its outside may be clean." —Mt 23:26

Praise:  While in his final illness, St. Augustine had the seven penitential psalms (Ps 6, 32, 38, 51, 102, 130, 143) hung on his bedroom wall so he could read them in a spirit of repentance.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 15, 2017

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