Thought of the day
2/8/2019 6:09:38 AM

John the Baptist, martyr for the truth


"The sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory to come that will be revealed in us" (Rm 8:18). Who then does not labor in every way to arrive at such a glory as to become a friend of God, as to rejoice at once with Christ, as to re­ceive the divine rewards after earthly torments and punishments? If it is glorious for the soldiers of this world to return to their fatherland triumphant after vanquishing the enemy, how much better and greater is the glory for one who, after over­coming the devil, returns triumphant to heaven, and after laying him low who had formerly deceived us, brings back the trophies of victory there whence Adam, the sinner, had been ejected? To offer the Lord the most acceptable gift of an uncorrupted faith, an unshaken virtue of the mind, an illustrious praise of devotion?... To become co-heir of Christ, to be made equal to the angels, to rejoice with the patriarchs, with the apostles, with the prophets in the possession of the heavenly kingdom? What persecution can conquer these thoughts, what torments can overcome them?... The lands are shut off in persecutions, heaven is open... How great a dignity and, how great a security it is to go forth hence happy, to go forth glorious in the midst of difficulties and affliction! For a moment to shut the eyes with which men and the world are seen; to open them immediately that God and Christ may be seen!... If persecution should come upon such a soldier of God, virtue made ready for battle will not be able to be overcome him. Or if the summons should come beforehand, the faith which was prepared for martyr­dom will not be without its reward... In persecution God crowns loyal military service; in peace purity of conscience is crowned.