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Monday, January 22, 2001

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St. Vincent

Hebrews 9:15, 24-28
Psalm 98
Mark 3:22-30

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"Now He has appeared at the end of the ages to take away sins once for all by His sacrifice." —Hebrews 9:26

Jesus' "death has taken place for deliverance from transgressions" (Heb 9:15). "Christ was offered up once to take away the sins of many" (Heb 9:28). "You can depend on this as worthy of full acceptance: that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" (1 Tm 1:15). The essence of Jesus' mission is to save sinners.

Today, it has become unfashionable to talk about sin. We don't want to put people on a guilt trip, sound judgmental, or be negative, so we don't talk about sin. For example, we don't often tell those involved in homosexual activity or fornication that they are sinning. Rather, we suggest condoms. Pastors don't tell their congregations that their churches lack funds because many members are sinning by not giving what God wants them to give. Rather, the pastors often figure out a way to raise funds without calling their people to repent.

When we don't talk about sin, we warp God's plan of salvation and come to the false conclusion that we don't need Jesus, His death, and the shedding of His blood that much. Let's repent and call sin "sin," not a fault or shortcoming. Let's hate sin and love sinners. Let's realize that a brief guilt trip which leads to repentance is much better than a trip to hell forever. Let's speak of sin, repentance, Confession, and especially of Jesus' loving forgiveness.

Prayer:  Father, "thoroughly wash me from my guilt and of my sin cleanse me" (Ps 51:4).

Promise:  "Sing to the Lord a new song, for He has done wondrous deeds." —Ps 98:1

Praise:  The Lord stored the tears of the martyr St. Vincent in His flask and recorded them in His book (see Ps 56:9).

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Edward J. Gratsch, July 15, 2000

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 17, 2000