March 8, 2020
BBC Report dated February 20: “In an effort to deal with the sex scandals rocking the Roman Catholic Church, the Pope has convened an extraordinary summit of bishops in Rome. This follows his recent, unprompted, admission that priests had exploited nuns as “sex slaves” at a convent in France. Pope Francis decided to call this global conference after discussions with the so called C9. This is the group of nine cardinal advisers who were appointed soon after Francis was elected. The Pope is under serious pressure to provide leadership and generate workable solutions to what is the most pressing crisis facing the modern Church. Stories of abuse have emerged in every corner of the world. And the Church has been accused of covering up crimes committed by priests, leaving its moral authority in tatters. Pope Francis must also confront the assumptions, attitudes and practices that have allowed a culture of abuse to flourish. The extent of this challenge may prove overwhelming. “Over 1,000 child victims were identifiable from the Church’s own records,” he wrote, with “credible allegations against over 300 predator priests”. The report, which is more than 1,000 pages long, covers the past 70 years – and the examples are horrific. In the diocese of Scranton, a priest raped a girl and when she became pregnant arranged for an abortion. The priest’s line manager, his area bishop, wrote a letter. “This is a very difficult time in your life and I realize how upset you are,” he wrote. “I too share your grief.” The letter was not addressed to the girl, but the priest. In another diocese, a priest visited a seven-year-old girl in hospital after she had undergone a tonsillectomy – and raped her. In another, a priest abused a nine-year-old and then rinsed out the boy’s mouth with holy water “to purify him”. The report concluded that predatory pedophiles had been able to abuse children because the Church hid their activities by moving accused clerics on to other parishes and not reporting their offences to the police.”
This news article gives us an idea why Jesus EQUATES LUST to ADULTERY. The act of adultery begins in the SINFUL HUMAN HEART. Adultery NEVER HAPPENS in a VACUUM; it is always the by-product of a DIRTY THOUGHT LIFE.
In this sermon, Jesus declares to us His RADICAL SOLUTION to LUST in TWO POINTS:
I. THE SINFUL EYE
1. SOLUTION: GOUGE it OUT
2. REASON: BETTER to LOSE THE EYE than for the BODY to go to hell.
II. THE SINFUL HAND
1. SOLUTION: CUT it off
2. REASON: BETTER to LOSE THE HAND than for the BODY to go to hell.
When it comes to SIN, we need to be RUTHLESS with our hearts. Let us allow the GOSPEL to perform this RADICAL SURGERY in our hearts that we might become the KIND of PERSON God intends us to be.