As little kids you would sometimes hear, “my dad can beat up your day…oh yeah, no he can’t… yes he can… no he can’t”. It was important to little kids because you always wanted someone to have your back…who would be there to defend you. Your dad was that person. Today, we still need someone who has our back. When things get tough, we need to have someone who is going to set things right and take care of us.
As you look around the world today it can seem that there’s no one who’s got our back, who will set things right. Evil can seem like it’s winning the day. Where is “dad” to come in and punch the devil in the nose. Is the devil stronger than God?
Today’s gospel reading from Luke 11:14-23, shines some light on this situation. After Jesus cast out an evil spirit from a man, there was a big discussion on “who’s in charge”. One sentence caught my eye. Jesus said “ if it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. (Luke 11:20) I can picture God, with his overwhelming power, simply lifting his little finger to take care of Satan and his cohorts.
God is not intimidated by Satan. God is the creator and Satan is a creature…no contest. The Catechism of the Catholic Church sheds some light on this situation, “The power of Satan is, nonetheless, not infinite. He is only a creature, powerful from the fact that he is pure spirit, but still a creature. He cannot prevent the building up of God’s reign. Although Satan may act in the world out of hatred for God and his kingdom in Christ Jesus, and although his action may cause grave injuries – of a spiritual nature and, indirectly, even of a physical nature- to each man and to society, the action is permitted by divine providence which with strength and gentleness guides human and cosmic history. It is a great mystery that providence should permit diabolical activity, but “we know that in everything God works for good with those who love him.” (CCC,Par. 395)
So, let’s not get nervous as we see all the evil in the world …. from the wars and rumors of war, sin abounding…. you know the list. God is in charge and in his perfect time, God will say ENOUGH ! At some point, the Lord God Almighty is going to stand up and say ENOUGH ! What a day that will be.
In the meantime, we need to do our part. Let us serve the Lord with gladness. We need to love and honor God and love our neighbor as our self. The outcome is assured. Our heavenly father is watching over everything and at the right time, he will simply “lift a finger” to defeat the devil…partially now and fully when he returns to the blast of trumpets. Jesus gives us some hints in the 24th chapter of Matthew’s gospel of what this will be like…. “they will see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory; and he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.” (Mt. 24:30-31)
No one knows the time of Christ’s return, so we need to be ready at all times. Let’s stay close to the Lord and share his great love with all we meet. And in the meantime, we must not be discouraged at the seeming victories of the evil one. Remember the back of the book, the end of the story .… CHRIST WINS !!!