Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Choice. At what price?

Pro-abortion rally
Shall I give my first-born for my transgression; the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?
 – Micah 6:7
What is the price that we pay for the "freedom to choose"? Because all freedom comes at a cost. We must sacrifice something. We are, after all, finite beings. And we can't have it all.

Ultimately, is sexual liberation (or freedom) worth the price? Is it worth sacrificing an unborn child – through the practices of contraception and abortion – in exchange for sexual pleasures? Is chastity an unbearable burden?

We certainly can muster the necessary self control if society demands it of us. We don't go around thinking that we should be allowed to hit anyone that we are angry with. Why do we think having sex with anyone we feel attracted to is any more acceptable?

Is it because this is the message that is imparted to us daily by society? Not just through laws, but also through the images that our culture surrounds us with – on TV, in the movies, on the internet, in the lyrics of songs, in magazines and newspapers.
Save me, O God!
For the waters have come up to my neck.
I sink in deep mire,
where there is no foothold;
I have come into deep waters,
and the flood sweeps over me.

 – Psalm 69:1-2
When Jesus saw the filth that filled the Temple in Jerusalem, he fashioned a whip from cords and drove out the money-changers. Our bodies are a temple. In fact, they are the true temples. In each of us resides the Holy Spirit – whether we acknowledge its presence or not.

"Zeal for thy house has consumed me"

Shouldn't we protect the temple of our bodies? Shouldn't we only open the door to what is good and pure? And shouldn't we lock and bar the door against all that is unholy?

We've all seen a typical horror movie scene in which a group of people are locked in a house and there are some monstrous creatures that are trying to penetrate that house and prey on those inside.

That house represents your body. And those monsters are Satan's demons which are trying to destroy your soul – in this case in the form of fornication, adultery and pornography.

We have allowed Satan to enter into our bodies and take control of our souls. We need Jesus' help to expel the demons from our holy temples; our bodies.

In the time of the "sexual revolution" there was a very popular and influential book titled "Our bodies, ourselves". The message was very seductive. You should have complete freedom to do whatever you want with your body, because it belongs to you. (It must have been something similar to this that Satan whispered into Eve's ear in the Garden of Eden.)

But our bodies do not belong only to ourselves. They are a gift from God; and are meant to be a temple dedicated to His worship.

Once we lose sight of this, we begin to wander through our lives; like lost souls in search of some meaning that isn't there. We seek satisfaction in physical pleasure, but this is like an addiction that requires ever increasing doses of drugs to achieve the same high. And ultimately we end up like the addict; who shoots up without experiencing any pleasure, but only to satisfy a physical craving for the drug that enslaves him.
You shall eat, but not be satisfied...
You shall sow, but not reap...

 – Micah 6:14-15
In contrast, Jesus promises us the gift of living water.
"Whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst; the water I shall give will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life."
John 4:14
Jesus told his disciples: "Do not worry about your life and what you will eat, or about your body and what you will wear. For life is more than food and the body more than clothing." [Luke 12:22-23] He did not need to speak to them about the dangers of sexual pleasures, because they were already very familiar with these teachings from Moses and the prophets. His message was that the spiritual life is much more important than the physical life.

In the book "Light of the World: The Pope, The Church and The Signs Of The Times", Pope Benedict XVI echoes Christ's message (p. 61).
You see, man strives for eternal joy; he would like pleasure in the extreme, would like what is eternal. But when there is no God, it is not granted to him and it cannot be. Then he himself must now create something that is fictitious, a false eternity.

This is a sign of the times that should be an urgent challenge to us, especially as Christians. We have to show – and also live this accordingly – that the eternity man needs can come only from God.
As a society we have conducted an experiment spanning multiple generations to determine whether it is better to live with God or without God. The results have shown that life without God is a total failure. We must respect this fact and make changes on a personal level – and as a society – to welcome God back into our lives.

We must welcome Jesus into the temple of our bodies. And let him drive out the filth that has found an abode there. After Jesus had driven the money-changers from the Temple, his disciples recalled this verse from scripture.
For zeal for thy house has consumed me,
and the insults of those who insult thee have fallen on me.

 – Psalm 69:9
These words could apply equally well today to Pope Benedict XVI. He has demonstrated his zeal for defending the Church from its detractors. And as a result he has been the victim of insults from those who seek to destroy Christianity.

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