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Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Original Justice according to Saints and Princes



Original Justice:


To theologians Original justice is defined as the human condition before original sin destroyed the perfect harmony, between creature and Creator, between man and woman, as well as the first human couple and all of creation.

Adam and Eve held a special participation and esteemed place in the earthly paradise of the Garden of Eden. The glue that held this utopian harmony together was God’s intimacy. Without this, creation was left in disorder, confusion and a finite existence.

This is all well established theology in the Catechism of the Catholic Church. However, is it feasible to assume these principles that form the history of humanity, can possibly explain the very worst of human behaviour as well as the very best? To be more precise the inexplicable ideologies of hate like Racism and anti-Semitism to the more mild symptoms of narcissism, all with the innate capacity to cause violence and murder to the innocent!

The faith of the faithful, whom are often martyred by hate regimes, hold the Word of God in the highest esteem. The Bible is a means of living our lives in a way that leads to being with God in spirit. Therefore, if occurrences and events of human history can be explained using sound faith and reason prescribed by Holy Scripture, then religion could be viewed as a means not a end to moral justice.


 

Human Nature:

All the evil in the world is caused by Original sin. Adam and Eve committed a personal sin, but this sin affected our human nature. Sin propagates all mankind within every person’s nature. A nature deprived of its original holiness and justice.

The universality of the book of Genesis tells us that Adam and Eve were given dominion over creation, to tend and nurture it. Undoubtedly that this grace was initially given as a sign of great love for man and woman made in His own image and likeness. But original sin severed this special bond, for God to remove Himself from tending to our needs and wants. By breaching this Original justice humanity is sentenced with affliction throughout their mortal lives. Although, Genesis describes the effects on body and creation, the book of Revelation mentions the curse to our souls when chapter 12:17 states: “Then the dragon was angry with the woman, and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and bear testimony to Jesus.

So how does this affect our day to day lives?

The Cain Effect:

Cain’s relationship with his brother manifests how this love for God, hatred of sanctity, collides. Often in pain and suffering, and even death. After God favours Abel’s offering, Cain tricks his only brother to go to a remote place where he slays him in apparent rage of envy. God confronts Cain, like He did with Adam, “What have you done?” Cain responds with a question “I do not know, am I my brother’s keeper?” God punishes Cain and in time answers the question through His only Son Jesus Christ.

What is particularly telling from the wrongdoer’s response is their sense of justice! that implies 'Am I not entitled innocence!' The serpent lied to Eve in the Garden when he said your eyes will be opened and you will be like gods. Trick them to believe that a new level of privilege and status amongst all creation is possible if you only break God's commandment. At Babel their descendants attempted to realise this pledge in exile in the wilderness, but is refuted by the true God.
One can draw the conclusion that this tainted special relationship in the eyes of the Almighty encompasses having the perception of not being able to do no wrong!

Cain murders his younger brother because his mentality is in a state of extreme privilege. 

God loves mankind to such an extent that our nature is spoilt by entitlement. And God empowers his highest ranked archangel to such a degree that he becomes jealous of his competition, mankind.
God doesn't take anything away from this state of original justice as punishment. Consequently, Cain displays the first narcissistic tendency as a murderer of his male sibling of righteousness. Leading to Babel where his descendants signal their unrighteous intentions.

The Babel Effect:

The story of Babel highlights man’s desire to find eternal harmony in the kingdom of Heaven, by using his own means and will. Genesis chapter 11 says “the whole earth had one language and few words”. They appeared to operate on a belief of if superior creatures from space ever visited earth, the first question they will ask, in order to assess the level of civilisation, is “Have you built a city and a tower to reach the heavens yet?” So God comes down from heaven. He saw what was afoot and caused them such bewilderment that they dispersed leaving their self-esteemed plans incomplete. The path to power and glory is thwarted through confusion.

The key to the mystery of Babel is in the word ‘language’. To read the passage in the context of “language of faith in man”, the errors of man’s ways are revealed. Reassuringly, when God finds a problem He goes on to provide a solution! The remedy to Babel in particular is religion and the Church, established in the Upper room at Pentecost (Act 2:1-7).

Light begins to shine in the darkness of confusion, as the language of faith in God embodied through the Holy Spirit is poured out (ccc.239). Acts 2:1-6).

This  is why sins against the Holy Spirit (Mark 3:29) cannot be forgiven because it represents an affront of the will of God and hence forms a crime against natural justice. Crimes like Racism, Anti-Semitism, and other ideologies of based on hatred and the lie.  

The universality of natural justice is established when Jesus defeats death on the Cross with love  and obedience of God’s will.

Original Justice according to a Saint:

This perspective is summed up in a sentence by one of the greatest saints to serve the Church;

"All our justice is stained in Your eyes. I wish, then, to be clothed in Your own Justice and to receive from Your Love the eternal possession of Yourself. I want no other Throne, no other Crown but You, my Beloved!"
St Therese of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face.

Original Justice according to a Narcissist:

To a narcissist the senses of reality, collectively are rooted within 'Original' justice and distorted in original sin, indicative of the actions of Cain and possess all the ambition of the peoples of Babel.

Niccolò Machiavelli's book "The Prince" is an insightful example of a Cain-like attitude to your neighbour and the other in realms of politics and business.

The disorder of a Narcissistic Personality involves arrogant behavior, a lack of empathy for other people, and a need for admiration-all of which must be consistently evident at work and in relationships. People who are narcissistic are frequently described as cocky, self-centered, manipulative, and demanding. Narcissists may concentrate on unlikely personal outcomes (e.g., fame) and may be convinced that they deserve special treatment. Related Personality Disorders: Antisocial, Borderline, Histrionic. Narcissism is a less extreme version of Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Narcissism involves cockiness, manipulativeness, selfishness, power motives, and vanity-a love of mirrors. Related personality traits include: Psychopathy, Machiavellianism.

Narcissists tend to have high self-esteem. However, narcissism is not the same thing as self-esteem; people who have high self-esteem are often humble, whereas narcissists rarely are. It was once thought that narcissists have high self-esteem on the surface, but deep down they are insecure. However, the latest evidence indicates that narcissists are actually secure or grandiose at both levels. Onlookers may infer that insecurity is there because narcissists tend to be defensive when their self-esteem is threatened (e.g., being ridiculed); narcissists can be aggressive. The sometimes dangerous lifestyle may more generally reflect sensation-seeking or impulsivity (e.g. bullying, risky sex, bold financial decisions).

The most distinct feature of a soul remote from God is their belief of ownership of creation and denial of the Creator as opposed to the Faithful who are servants of God’s will. Particular examples are the principles of Communism and of Pharaoh’s refusal to let the Israelites have freedom (Exodus 4:21).
Their hearts are cold and hardened to emotion. Power and authority is their heart's desire.

The events of the holocaust demonstrates such a psyche and thirst for a warped sense of justice that serves the sinners whim for power, wealth and discrimination to the detriment of the presumed inferior.

Conclusion:

The misconception of the impact of Original Sin upon humanity I feel is a major oversight by theologians and philosophers. Wars, conflicts, discrimination and ideologies of hated are self-evident reminders of as our Lord describes the phenomenon as the bursting of “old wineskins”.
Genesis 3:21 describes our first parents being clothed in animal fur to cover their exposed and rebellious indignation.

Jesus Christ becomes our new wineskin that holds both old and new wine (Matt 9:16-17) produced from fruits in God’s vineyard (Luke 20:9-19).
As we celebrate the feast of the Transfiguration we consider the new cloak of He who is Justice itself. Who radiates the magnificent splendour and glory of “the Man” made in God’s image and likeness (Luke 9:29). The "Cornerstone" of all creation, and it's journey toward our beloved destiny.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

‘Just’ What Authority does the ‘Good Samaritan’ have to Save us? ...All!

 
Prologue:

The popular parable of the Good Samaritan [Luke 10:25-36] highlights the Christian view on kindness towards fellow man or woman in their time of need. However, could this inconspicuous narrative reveal a much fuller meaning of salvation? First let’s set the framework for this reflection. Man cannot save himself! [Luke 23:39] To be saved must be ordained from the Almighty, God the Father.

Psalm 37:39 says The salvation of the righteous comes from the Lord; he is their stronghold in time of trouble.”

Salvation’s History (refer to Outline Charts below);


It all starts from a certain cry:

A voice cries!: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken”. Isaiah 40:3-5; Matt 3:2

Basic Premise: The path of salvation commences with the cry of Abel the Just for Justice; and ends with the cry of Jesus for compassion.
Evolution of Salvation History: Battle for Justice

 
 
Battle for Justice Commentary:

The prophecy God pronounces in Genesis 3:15 “I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your offspring and hers”. In the end good and evil will be judged then will be separated (Matt 25:31-34). If we fulfil God’s commandments as the Good Samaritan duly did then we will be saved. Therefore it is reasonable to assume that the offspring of the woman can be defined by the parable’s message. We know that the ‘woman’ cannot be Eve (Gen 2:23), but a ‘woman’ born again by the powers used in Genesis to form the earth in the beginning. Thereby the basis of this theological account is to show a pattern of how as man through Cain forced God away from himself, God commenced to lay the seed that would bring him back, for 'our hearts are restless until they rest in thee' (Matt.11:28, Isa.28:12).  

After Abel was slain for being righteous and his blood cried out from the ground (Gen 4:10). God commences on a spiritual journey to defeat man’s sinfulness and to bring him back to perfection. From the ‘Great Flood’, Noah and his family, Righteousness (Gen 6:9) has strived be victorious over unrighteousness. The parable can be viewed as an outline of how to live righteously. Moses and Jesus lead the people as Holy Scripture states in victories of both the mortal (bodily) and immortal (spiritual) aspects of mankind. With God’s plan of salvation then fulfilled, we have an opportunity to accept God’s offer to be saved. For those who wish with all their hearts to enter paradise must do so by changing their heart, in a fashion like the “penitent thief” on his cross (Luke 23:42-43). The merits of salvation are surely found not so much in the literal meaning of God’s commandments, but how they are served in the heart, spiritually.

The Hebrew Bible tells us of how God’s people, Abraham’s descendants, struggle serve the Lord as slave in Eygpt. God therefore commands Moses to lead them to exile into the wilderness, to find a promise land of milk and honey. The power of God is used to guide and protect the Israelites, who carry the seed of righteousness in blood and faith. Jericho represents a fortified city of sin, symbolically housing the serpent’s descendants, signifying the dominion on earth that had to be destroyed to enter the Promised Land.

After the miraculous and decisive victory, God tells Joshua of his oath. His proclamation indicates that this event is a major milestone in history of salvation over man’s mortality. For the city to raise again that cursed man would have to pay the price God had paid in Adam and Abel. The new city God establishes is at the price of His only begotten Son (refer to Table 6.)

The next phase was to defeat sin spiritually began with birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Consequently Jesus’ mission starts at the wedding feast at Cana, when he produced his first miracle of changing water into wine. John the Baptist prepares his path by calling people to repentance and renewal. To be baptised is a personal ‘fiat’ in the name of God, in the wilderness in the river Jordan.

Jesus has immense compassion treats the faithful as friends not servants (John 15:15; 2 Chron 20:7; Isaiah 41:8), is a blessing to others (Matt 11:4-6) and teaches the ways of God the Father. His mission is fulfilled with his death on the Cross and the giving up of his spirit into His Father’s hands. His Resurrection merits the creation of a new heaven and a new earth for the righteous to prosper for all eternity.

God’s authority to create and destroy according to His will, accomplishes a new beginning where everything is made new again (Rev 21:5). The nation of Israel’s active participation was plainly crucial to accomplish this decisive victory for all eternity; allowing for our own free-will to work together in righteousness to save souls by obeying God’s will through faith and good works. “Not my will, but your will be done.”

 Parable’s Perspective on Salvation:

The parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:26-37) describes how salvation is merited. That is by tending to the needs of your neighbour who is mortally wounded whilst travelling to Jericho. If we interpret this journey in the context of the Book of Joshua, then they are akin to a faithful Israelite on their way to destroy the city of sin, a pilgrimage for righteousness sake. Hence, assume that the journey is one of faithful sanctification, validating the primary commandments of devotion to serving God’s cause for our lives.    

We can look upon the fallen victim as being in a mortally wounded state caused by sin and the effects of sinners or robbers. Whose intention is to deprive God the joy of being united with his creation made in his image. It is useful also to view Christ’s journey to Jericho as suffering the same fate, left mortally dead on the Cross.   

The Robbers are the wicked sinners, the unrighteous who use what limited authority they have with violence, to tempted, demoralise and ensnare their victims to fall into being dispossessed of their virtue and innocence, namely their dignity endowed by God.

The passersby represent the self-righteous, who are cold-hearted (Matt 3:7-8) and tepid, although faithfully travel towards Jericho with good intentions, fail to serve justly, having a subjective, and inward-looking form of sanctification.

The Good Samaritan, are the righteous, who faithfully serve God’s commandments, with full divine authority to heal and inspire them to persevere on the right path. There are three persons who justly fulfil this virtuous role. Firstly, God the Father, who receives his only, begotten Son upon the resurrection. After which Christ’s authority is used to establish his Church, to cleanse our own sins, in the form of oil and wine for anointing and redemption by the precious Blood. Lastly, the faithful who are tasked imitate God to tend to our neighbours sins using his grace merited on the Cross. Thereby achieving due unity and oneness with God, in a similar affiliation as Adam was with Eve (Gen 2:24). Excellent examples that demonstrate this point are the Jewish mitzvot and Mother Teresa’s missionaries in serving the poor. This person is true to their responsibility as an active steward in a civilised society crying to be blessed with prosperity.

The Innkeeper represents the Church (ccc.1465) as  distributors of the sacraments that allows grace to heal within the house of the Lord. Also to act with responsibility as servants to those in spiritual need, particularly the poor and a basis for evangelisation of the 'Good News'!

Payment for services rendered (Luke 10:35) presently and at the end of Time, when you will be judged according to the likeness of Christ’s heart for God and his neighbour (1 John 2:29). Two Denarii was given for the present. This is translated to; a few days lodgings in societal terms; Jesus’ Body and Blood (Matt 26:26-29) in our Saviours terms and a new Heaven and Earth in God the Father’s Kingdom (Rev 21:1).

Subsequently when viewed in this light main points can be noted which increase our merit of being saved. These are:

·         Journey to Jericho is a pilgrimage to become sanctified before God;

·        Our neighbour is anyone who requires help to live a more holy life and journey towards sanctification;

·        The Good Samaritan seeks to assist the sinner to be more righteous by using moral support or encouraging them to be an active within the Church and evangelising the faith.

·        The innkeeper’s are spiritual physicians addressing all wounds from sin applying the Church's doctrine.

·        Another benefit of the parable is to define what constitutes virtue. As, are we not tasked to use the gifts given by God as we consider suitable, to satisfying his Will.

Biblical References supporting Theme:

Comparable themes between Hebrew & Christian Bibles
Nos.
Mortal Victory - Hebrew
Immortal Victory – Christianity
1
A call for Israelites to follow
Isaiah 40:3-5
A call for Nations to repentance
Matt 3:2
2
The angel’s sword.
Josh 5:13
Christ’s sword of Judgement
Rev. 2:16
3
Ark of the Covenant
Josh 6:6
Virgin Mary, Mother of God, Ark of the New Covenant
Luke 1:35; Rev 12:5-6; CCC. 2676
4
7 days encircling Jericho
Josh 6:3-4
7 days of Creation
Gen. 1;2:1-3
5
City of Sin Destruction
Josh 6:17
New Heaven & Earth
Rev. 21:1-8
6
Oath: Cursed be the man who builds a new Jericho, paying the price of his first born & youngest son.
Josh 6:26
Cost of the new city of Holiest was His only begotten Son.
Matt 3:17; Gen 4:10-11
7
Jerusalem
Zech 8:3
New Jerusalem
Rev 21:9-27
8
Render True Judgment
Zech 7:9-10
Sheep will be separated to Goats
Matt 25:31-46

Conclusion:

This more objective interpretation of this parable highlights how salvation can be viewed more fully as well as more practically. The emphasis being that love is best expressed with action. Not merely to be loved but to love.

Christ completed mission reflects the righteousness, pleasing to God the Father. Therefore ‘to do likewise’ (Luke 10:37) we can be assured to imitate perfection, the kind that saves us all! 

History is full of man’s victories and catastrophes forming the rise and fall of nations, races and empires. Life is full of people who seek military solutions. Yet the ‘meaning of life’ remains elusive or vague to those outside organised religions. I hope that this earnest attempt to depict the means of salvation in a more coherent way, serves to boost the faith and encourage peaceful relations between not only Judeo-Christian religions, but also all Abrahamic-based faiths.

To succeed in serving your neighbour in the true sense, “Fraternity” is very much at the heart of all relationships we encounter each and every day.

‘Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love’. 1 John 4:8.