“So when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle, so that she could fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to her place where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time. Then from his mouth the serpent poured water like a river after the woman, to sweep her away with the flood. But the earth came to the help of the woman; it opened its mouth and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. Then the dragon was angry with the woman, and went off to make war on the rest of her children, those who keep the commandments of God and hold the testimony of Jesus.” (Revelation 12:13-17)
I watched a video by Taylor Marshall this morning (There is a War on Christianity) regarding a tweet from President Trump acknowledging that there is a war on Christianity. I thought of the scripture quoted above about the war that the original serpent wages against the children of The Woman of Revelation 12. Those children keep the “commandments of God and hold the testimony of Jesus.”
I don’t know about you, dear reader, but I am convinced that we are living in apocalyptic times. The end times may still be a bit ahead of us but the whole spiritual climate of the world seems deteriorating fast. A dark cloud is setting upon mankind. Ours is not merely a time when things are apocalyptic enough, like Berlin in the summer of 1945. No, this time the entire world is in it at the same time.
A flood of wickedness surrounds those of us who are trying to live according to God’s commandments as given to us by Jesus Christ. No matter where we live, we are affected by an anti-Christian sentiment that is gradually translating into actions. Important figures in politics, the media, the arts, business, are expressing themselves against Christ shamelessly. To compound the damage, many of our Bishops have deserted the faithful. We have enough proof of that: a good number of them have secretly embraced immoral lifestyles and are leading the faithful in the path of perdition. The serpent won’t fight against those because they are already his. That is why Saint John explains: “those who keep the commandments of God and hold the testimony of Jesus.” The Woman (the Church) has faithful and unfaithful children. The devil is pressed for time, he no longer inhabits the eternal realms. For that reason, he concentrates his efforts in attacking those who are loyal to Christ.
This impure river that comes from the mouth of the ancient serpent is the antithesis of that other river mentioned in Revelation 22.
“Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever.” (Revelation 22:1-5)
Notice that the advent of the Kingdom is symbolized by this other river, a river of purity that emanates from the Throne of God. The image reminds us of the first Psalm:
“Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers;
but his delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree
planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither.
In all that he does, he prospers.
The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.” (Psalm 1:1-4)
The river violently coming out of the serpent’s mouth brings trouble upon the world: lies, death, pestilence, famine, impurity, infirmities and all kinds of wickedness. It is the exact opposite of the peaceful river of life coming from the Throne of God and the Lamb. The purpose of the impure river is to thwart God’s purpose and destroy those whom God wants to benefit. It does not work well for the serpent. The Great Eagle and the Earth come to the rescue of God’s people. That is the beginning of total war against those who follow God’s law.
One could understand our current predicament this way: we have been enduring the devilish flood of wickedness for many decades, perhaps a century or more. The world is now awash in immorality of all kinds, vicious violence, blatant corruption, and rejection of any form of order. But the serpent does not have enough power to sustain that effort for long. Nature will not be turned upside down to favor evil. The frustrated devil will spend his strength to achieve nothing. That won’t stop him from continuing the war against Christianity and life. Yet that war won’t last forever, only three and a half years later the Kingdom of God will be born.
The infiltration of the Catholic Church and all the leading institutions of the Western World is represented by the very nature of that river of impurity. Some of the manifestations have been appearing gradually during the last 500 years: In politics a crescendo of anti-God disorder: Liberalism, Socialism, Communism, Fascism, Anarchism all of them propose a world without God where the very idea of man is abolished, we are already hearing predictions of a post-human world. A series of revolutions have been hurled upon mankind to prepare the world for that horrible future: Atheism, Evolutionism, Materialism, the Sexual Revolution, Radical Feminism, Class Struggle, and many other intellectual fads designed to divide people and destroy the lives of thousands.
In the Church, the infiltrates have managed to cause confusion with instruments like Liberation Theology, Modernism, immorality among the clergy, and other terrible maladies that seem to have taken control of ecclesiastical institutions in the same way that the political, financial, and social institutions of the West were conquered. We are living in the middle of the all-out attack, the flood of darkness coming from the mouth of the serpent.
This present situation will end as suddenly as the storm that terrified the disciples in the middle of the sea of Gennesaret. Christ appears to be sleeping but he is not unaware of what is going on. At one point, Christ will stand before his enemies and will stop them. The storm will end as soon as he utters the order: “Enough!” We can’t possibly be discouraged or lose our peace. We must hold on to the faith even if all our leaders fail. This is the time to remember:
“Do not put your trust in princes, in mortal men, who cannot save. When their spirit departs, they return to the ground; on that very day their plans come to nothing. The Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them is the LORD, who remains faithful forever.” (Psalm 146: 3-5)
The darkest moment of any night is right before the sunrise. Christ our sun must not be far from us.
“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)