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The Meaning of Death and Triumph Over Death
For some time now our theme will be life after death, and our present meditation will be on the meaning of death and triumph over death. Sacred Scripture is unrelenting in it’s emphasis on the passing character of this life. There is a realism about death in the Bible. It runs counter to the philosophy on unbelief which either denies or ignores the fact that our stay on earth is only a short prelude to eternal life after death.
Hell and Purgatory
As we have been doing, we are covering our final master theme on the last things: death, judgment, heaven, and this evening hell and purgatory.
Salvation of the Infidel
The problem of how persons outside Judeo-Christianity can be saved has troubled theologians for centuries, and the final solution is still a matter of speculation. Certainly God wills all men to reach their heavenly destiny.
The Mystery of Redemption
Christianity has meaning only on the presupposition of sin. Mankind, we believe was in need of redemption because mankind had sinned deeply, universally and seriously, even unto death. The gravity of the sin demanded a corresponding price of redemption: nothing less than God becoming man to suffer and die on the cross for our salvation. One of the mysteries of salvation history is how to explain what seems to be unexplainable.
Death, Judgment and Hell
Our meditations for today will be understandably sobering ones. Our present reflection is on death, judgment and hell. Over the years our modern Jesuit Generals have warned us never to give the spiritual exercises without speaking on death, judgment and hell. As an obedient son of St. Ignatius, I am sharing these three important reflections with you this evening.
The Doctrine of Purgatory
When we speak of the souls of the just in purgatory we are referring to those that leave the body in the state of sanctifying grace and are therefore destined by right to enter heaven. Their particular judgment was favorable, although conditional: provided they are first cleansed to appear before God. The condition is always fulfilled. The poor souls in purgatory still have the stains of sin within them. This means two things. First, it means that the souls have not yet paid the temporal penalty due, either for venial sins, or for mortal sins whose guilt was forgiven before death. It may also mean the venial sins themselves, which were not forgiven either as to guilt or punishment before death.
The Second Coming of Christ / General Judgment
Much has already been seen in the week that we have been reflecting about Christ’s return to the world in His glory on the last day. However, there is some value in looking more closely at what is called the "Parousia". Jesus repeatedly foretold that he would come back to the earth in visible form. The son of man, he said, is to come with his angels in the glory of his father and then he will render to every one according to his conduct.

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