Fr. Voigt,"A Defeated Devil"
Pride hates to lose and the proudest of all God's creations, Lucifer, is so bright and so exalted that he just cannot fathom a loss.
Driven into the desert by the Holy Spirit, our Lord spent forty days and nights fasting and praying over the Will of the Father. The eternal plan for our salvation must begin with a duel between the Word Incarnate and the Devil. There are no two ways to go about this struggle which exists in all God's creation. Salvation is the result of a struggle between our desire to do the good which God intends or to seek selfish satisfaction contrary to the will of God.
So they pair off and the devil makes the first move. In effect, the devil works on the sensual level of man's instincts: vain glory and hunger. Do you want to know how to gather in the crowds? I can tell you what to do. Feed them, give them the freebies they desire. Satisfy their egos. Now the subtle temptation to our Lord, "If you are the Son of God,..." If he bites on this apple of pride, satan wins. It is a fact that people will rush to the hand that gives a free handout. Jesus could be a Bread King and the people would love Him. But the answer of the divine heart of our Lord is quite a blow to Satan's first attempt: "Not on Bread alone does man live but on every word that comes from the mouth of God." The Word conquers with the Word. He refuses to gather souls into the kingdom through bribery. The Father has a greater plan than that.
In the second temptation, the devil takes a different approach but continues to pull our Lord into the pride trap "If you are the Son of God...." You can gather in the sheep by following the Word of God and casting yourself down from this pinnacle for the psalmist says that the angels will gather you up so that not even your smallest toe will be stubbed. In other words, do you want to save souls then entertain them. Everyone is amazed by the magician's feats. If you are the Son of God then you can fly and the people will gasp in awe and cry out: "Do it again we like it." Jesus You can be a super star. Jesus rejects the devil with the simple statement: "Thou shalt not tempt the Lord, thy God." The Word again conquers with the Word.
The Devil did not give up but now puts forth the culmination of all his tricks. Upon the highest mountain all the glory of the kingdoms of earth are revealed to Jesus. Now the issue becomes clear as day. If you but adore me, I will place all this in your hands. You can be a dictator; you can be a King; You can be a president. Whatever you want but just worship me. The devil played the political card and the Word of God conquers again with the Word of Truth.
"Begone satan, the Lord alone shalt thou worship." When the temptations were over the angels came and ministered to Jesus.
Today the Mystical Body has fallen into each satanic trap. Instead of being focused on breaking the Word of Truth with the multitudes we worry about giving entitlements to the people. Our bishops concern themselves with immigration instead of correcting the abuses within the country of origin. People flee from place to place because they seek the easy life that the West seems to promote. It will not bring them the salvation they desire.
Consider the constant quest of the Novus Ordo liturgists who want to entertain the sheeple in the pews with the latest song bent with a Christian theme. These committees worry about the song selections while the souls are riddled with worldliness and saturated by selfish sin. The Church was a "house of prayer" and now has become an entertainment and social hall.
Finally, the committee structure has swallowed the leadership of the shepherds. The committees determine the five year plan for the parish. Politics has become the new theological trend. The Word of God has now been subordinated to the Word of the world. Now the Catholic world has been overtaken by the handmaids of satan, the Jewish power machine. Politics is the game of the Jew who wish to enslave the world to their master, Lucifer. The battle is raging on and we must recognize the temptations as they exist in the world today and do battle in the manner our Lord exemplified: prayer, fasting, almsgiving. Our devotion to our Blessed Mother drives us to the penance required to save souls from the depths of hell. Let us understand and enter the battle these forty of Lenten grace.
In the hearts of Jesus, Mary and Joseph,
Fr. Richard Voigt