“The glorious freedom of the children of God”
The Holy Spirit has asked us to go straight to the essential things on this Pentecost letter: the urgent need for conversion, renouncing first of all to our personal sin.
« Now you must repent and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, and so that the Lord may send the time of comfort » says Peter Act 3,19 Once freed from sin, the Holy Spirit may be able to establish the kingdom of God in our hearts ; Paul says « Do not use your member as arms of injustice on the service of sin » Rom 6,13 « So get rid of all the old yeast, and make yourselves into a completely batch of bread » 1 Cor 5,7-8
To acknowledge sin. « If we say we have no sin in us, we are deceiving ourselves, and refusing to admit the truth…To say that we have never sinned is to call God a liar » Jn, 1, 8-10 The real struggle we have to lead is against sin and not against our regrets for having sinned. The first step on our ‘exodus’ from sin is to acknowledge our sin, to recognize the way it is terribly serious, and to awake ourselves from the sleep into which we have been lead by the worldly « exhalations ».
To repent from Sin. While a person keeps sin inside him or her, and refuse to recognize it, he or she is consumed and becomes sad. Since one decides to confess his/her sin to God, one experiments again peace and happiness. The Holy Spirit is already at work on the fact of repentance itself. « At last I have admitted to you that I have sinned. No longer concealing my guilt I said, ‘I will go to Yaveh and confess my fault’. And you, you have forgiven the wrong I did, have pardoned my sin ». Ps 32,2
Then, on the right time, a wholesome sorrow of repentance could then flow from man’s heart. It would come while he sees the work of sin on him by contemplating the passion of Christ. The tears of the Holy Sprit would flow to wash the heart. The awesome aspect of repentance is that while a person denounces himself , God comes to be on his side, He becomes his defender from the accusations, even those coming from his own heart Jn, 3,20
Willingly break out with sin. « Enough ! » « All you need is to say ‘yes’ if you mean ‘yes’, ‘no’ if you mean ‘no’. Anything more than that comes from the evil one » Matt 5,37
It means to make the clear and lasting decision of not committing sin anymore….specially that sin which is different from others, the one which opens the gates. That sin to which we are more attached on a cryptic way. That sin we confess but not being really willing to say « enough »…. I can put an end to its kingdom through my decision. Our « enough » has to implicate not only sin, but the occasion of sin as well to be really sincere. Escape this occasions.
To destroy the « body of sin ». « We must realize that our former selves have been crucified with him to destroy this sinful body and to free us from the slavery of sin » (Rm 6,6) We have to understand that the “body of sin” about which refers St. Paul and the « heart of stone » about which speaks Ezekiel, is in fact the heart that we have created ourselves with the steadiness of our complicity with sin. Repentance and the resolution of not sinning anymore were not complete and absolute. This stone and my will became one, only the Blood of Christ can turn it into dust !
This personal « body of sin » becomes the collective « body of sin », explained by psalm 4,3 « You men, why shut your hearts so long, loving delusion, chasing after lies » The Church has been bestowed with the power of forgiving all sins on the name of Jesus Christ and by the might of the Holy Spirit. « Anyone (Jesus) who in this life has bodily suffered has broken with sin ». (1 Peter, 4,1) Jesus, who is the sacrifice of pure worship to the Father has destroyed by his suffering, death and sin. Worship is « anti-sin ». It destroys man’s pride. He or She who worships God, sacrifices to him or her the most pleasant victim : «his own glory ». The fundamental sin, that is self-glorification, is overcome.
Worship is then a powerful means of destroying the « body of sin ». The opposite for sin is not virtue, but the sacrifice of worship. Then we will go from « glory to glory ». as St. Paul says. We will go from Easter to Easter, and the Holy Spirit will inebriate us with His gifts to make flourish the New Pentecost of Love.
Father Cantalamessa « Life on the Lordship of Christ » Chapter 7.
The Alléluia-France’s concil