Panay News

Christian suffering and death


IT’S very interestin­g to note that after Christ was rightly identified by Peter to be the son of the living God, and after Christ made Peter the rock on which the invincible Church would be founded, Christ proceeded to talk about his impending passion and death on the cross. (cfr. Mt 16, 13-23)

That, of course, astounded the basic truth of our faith so that we can disciples so much that Peter went avoid suffering unduly or suffering to the extent of saying, “God forbid, more than we ought. In other words, Lord! No such thing shall ever happen this truth of our faith enables us to to you.” For which, Peter received a suffer and die properly. sharp rebuke from Christ who also We all need to be reminded that went to the extent of saying, “Get all our suffering has a positive and behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle favorable aspect. It’s not all entirely to me. You are thinking not as God bad and negative, though in itself it does, but as human beings do.” will always be bad. But if viewed and

This gospel episode, of course, lived through our Christian faith, that tells us that if we truly follow Christ, is, with Christ, there is something in it then like him, we should not only that can give us a greater good. expect suffering and death but also Our pains and suffering are always welcome them. That’s because in the the result of sin, ours and those of first place we cannot avoid suffering the others. They are the necessary and death in this life, no matter how consequenc­e of our separation, much we try. But more importantl­y, whether temporary or permanent, if we have the same attitude Christ from God from whom all good things had toward his suffering and death, come. (cfr. Ps 16, 2; James 1, 17) We we know that our own would have a may not be the direct cause of our positive and redemptive value. own suffering, but in this world, we

This is what Christian suffering cannot escape the effects of sin, and and death is all about. It is a so we must be ready for them just consequenc­e of all our sins but is the same. now converted into a means of our We have to remind ourselves salvation, that is, if we suffer and die that we are not meant to suffer. Our with Christ. original as well as our ideal definitive

We need to understand well this state in heaven excludes suffering.

Our first parents, Adam and Eve, were in the state of original justice, where everything was in order and in harmony. No pain and suffering touched them, until they fell into sin.

And as the Book of Revelation would put it, in our definitive state of life in heaven “He (God) will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” (21, 4)

In this life, we have to expect and be prepared for the unavoidabl­e pain and suffering. And this means that whether we are guilty or not of our pains and suffering, all we have to do is to go immediatel­y to Christ who shows us how to handle our pains and suffering and who is ready to forgive us if ever we are guilty of suffering.

We should have this Christian attitude toward all our suffering and death in this world!/

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