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Thursday, February 28, 2008

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Jeremiah 7:23-28
Psalm 95
Luke 11:14-23

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one hell of a lent

"If it is by the finger of God that I cast out devils, then the reign of God is upon you." —Luke 11:20

Lent is imitating Jesus as He fasted forty days in the desert. Here Jesus defeated Satan by overcoming his temptations. During this Lent, we too should be overcoming Satan's temptations. Furthermore, by repentance and healing, we can be totally freed from any demonic manipulation or influences in our lives. Then we can attack Satan and drive him out of those around us (see Lk 11:14). We can disarm and despoil him (Lk 11:22). Finally, we can destroy Satan's strongholds in our society and world (2 Cor 10:4).

Every day of Lent should mark another catastrophe for Satan. Systems he has painstakingly developed for generations and centuries will be destroyed within a few hours. Satan will be furious as he sees thousands of his demons vanquished by weak human beings empowered by the very Spirit of God.

Understandably, Satan dreads Lent. It brings back memories of the "bad old days" when he was definitively defeated by Jesus Christ. Lent is not only a time for "refreshing" Satan's memory, but also an opportunity to give him new memories of defeat at the praying hands of Jesus' disciples. This Lent, "quickly crush Satan" under your feet (Rm 16:20).

Prayer:  Father, give me a good, old-fashioned, Satan-stomping Lent.

Promise:  "Jesus was casting out a devil which was mute, and when the devil was cast out the dumb man spoke." —Lk 11:14

Praise:  When Robert remembers how Jesus set him free from his addiction, he cannot help but tell others (Acts 4:20).

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our leaflet Lent and the Renewal of Our Baptismal Promises, or order our tapes Baptismal Promises, a four-tape audio series starting with AV 83-1 or the two video tapes V-83 and V-84.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 14, 2007

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