Philippine Asian News Today Vol 19 No 18 - Page 24

RELIGIOUS 24 Wisdom from the Word Ben Berto He answered and said to them, “When it is evening you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red’; 3 and in the morning, ‘It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ Hypocrites![a] You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times. 4 A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet[b] Jonah.” And He left them and departed. Matthew 16: 2-3 NKJV The Lord Jesus Christ was teaching and healing the people when the clerics of the day, the priest, the Pharisees and Sadducees, came to him, demanding a sign to prove that he was the Messiah. They probably want a visible and audible sign from the Father, although they must have heard His proclamation at Jesus’ baptism. “This is My Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” They did not believe in Jesus in spite of the signs and wonders that he was performing. The sick were healed, the dead raised to life, and the evil Moments Fr. Jerry M. Orbos, SVD The story is told about an army general who arrived in heaven and was given a subdued welcome. The same happened to a Marine general. But when a police general arrived, he was given a rousing welcome complete with a marching band. Grumbling, the first two generals complained to St. Peter about the glaring difference. Whereupon St. Peter said: “Let it be for now. Let us celebrate, for this is the first time a police general made it here.” In today’s Gospel (Mt. 20, 1-16), Jesus tells His disciples: “Thus, the last will be first, and the first will be last.” Who indeed can know the mind of God? And who are we to impose upon God our own standards and measures? Let us stop complaining, grumbling, and comparing ourselves with others. Let us focus on God, not on each other, in our journey to His heart. Those who always PHILIPPINE ASIAN NEWS TODAY September 16 - 30, 2017 The Signs of the Times spirits were cast out, and the Good News of the Kingdom was being preached by the Lord Himself. And they had the temerity to say that Jesus is casting out demons through the power of Beelzebub or Satan himself. And they still want a sign from heaven! In the past three months, we have been witness to successive hurricanes, typhoons, earthquakes, wars and rumours of wars. We have seen the effects of the mighty winds and earthquakes that caused untold destruction, misery and death. There has been no end of wars. In Joel 3: 9-10 we read “Proclaim this among the nations: “Prepare for war! Wake up the mighty men, Let all the men of war draw near, Let them come up.0 Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruning hooks into spears; Let the weak say, ‘I am strong.’” The rearming of nations is growing by leaps and bounds. Right now, “the mice are roaring” (refer to the movie, The Mouse That Roared”, threatening the big animals(nations or people). People are starving in Africa due to drought. People are dying from epidemics of AIDS, Malaria, Dengue, and the mouse North Korea is threatening the United States with nuclear annihilation. The weak are saying they are strong. We still have a war going on in our country, not only against the Maute Group, but also against the Communist arm New People’s Army. There is also a war against drugs all over the world in general and our country in particular. The president is determined to win the war and there is a lot of collateral damage. This pains the heart of God, and the Christians are crying, How long O Lord? These are all the signs of the Lord’s coming. St. Paul wrote to Timothy, his protégé, about the last days. He said, 3 “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, u n h o l y ,  3  u n l o v i n g , unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, 4 traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!”  This why the gospel is being preached to these people because if they listen and turn to the Lord and let Him change their ways to righteousness, the earth will be lighted up in His glory when He comes to redeem His people from the clutches of the Evil One, the Devil who caused all the miseries n this world. No person, no matter how bad he or she is, is beyond redemption. Jesus, when talking with Nicodemus in the night interview said, “ For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” This is the Christians hope, and this is why we preach the Word because we want every one to be saved. Time will come when God will finally close the door of probation for all of us, just like when He closed the door of Noah’s Ark seven days before the flood. He said, 11 “He who is unjust, let him be unjust still; he who is filthy, let him be filthy still; he who is righteous, let him be righteous[a] still; he who is holy, let him be holy still.”12 “And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with