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Tues, 5/19/20: "The ruler of this world has been condemned"

Daily Mass Readings can be found: [HERE].

There's a lot going on in our first reading from Acts of the Apostles (Acts 16:22-24). Paul and Silas are beaten, stripped, and imprisoned for their faith. But that doesn't end their ministry. In fact, it makes a certain ministry possible, where it was highly unlikely before.

That abuse allowed them to enter into the dark experience between jailer and prisoner, and evangelize both. By the end of this passage, the jailer and all his family were baptized; another example of how tribulation cannot destroy the faith, but it can spread it to new places.

It's also another example of what divinity looks like in this fallen but redeemed world. As Saint Paul increases in holiness, he comes to resemble more and more the crucified Lord whom he serves. In his own body (cf. Colossians 1:24), he spiritually fulfills the sentiment of Saint John the Baptist, from so many years before: "He (Christ) must increase; I must decrease" (cf. John 3:30).

Truly, Jesus Christ continues to increase in Saint Paul, until he will have the boldness to eventually say, "I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life that I live now, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me" (Galatians 2:20).

That is the Law of the new order established through Jesus Christ, which endures forever. The old order has fallen away, "because the ruler of this world has been condemned" (cf. John 16:11).


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