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  • Writer's pictureThe Hermit of Antipolo

Commissioned by Christ (Modernism Part 76)

May 12, 2024Today’s gospel: Mark 16:15-20


       The commissioning of the apostles right before Jesus ascended into heaven gives us three very crucial aspects of faith and our ministry, that are today being assaulted by modernism in the Church. As all Christians are disciples of Jesus and sent forth to proclaim the Kingdom, we too are commissioned as apostles (those send forth).

     First, Jesus says, “Go into the world and proclaim the gospel to every creature.” (v.15). Modernists tell Christians today not to proselytize. But to proselytize is to make converts. It is the very mission of the Church. Further, modernists look on good news as just doing good to others, especially the poor. But the good news is salvation in Jesus. Its intent is the salvation of souls, not just looking to human well-being or saving the planet.

       Second, Jesus says, “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved” (v.16a). This is about belief in Jesus and his resurrection, that he is the Messiah, Savior and Lord, and integration into the life of the Church through baptism. But modernists say that all religions lead to the divine. They do not. There is salvation only in one name, and that is Jesus. There only one true Church, and that is the Catholic Church (I would include the Orthodox).

      Third, Jesus says, “whoever does not believe will be condemned.” (v.15b). Belief in Jesus, with repentance and putting one’s faith in him, leads to salvation, while disbelief leads to condemnation. But modernists say there is no condemnation. That all, including unrepentant sinners and atheists, are part of the communion of saints. That there is no hell, or if there is, that no one is in it. That upon death, we just go “poof” and disappear. But the truth is there is an afterlife, and salvation ultimately is about making it to heaven to live eternally with our Father.

      There are other aspects. Jesus says that “signs will accompany those who believe” (v.17a).

        One, “in (his) name they will drive out demons” (v.17b). Modernists today no longer speak of spiritual warfare. But the reality is that a war is raging in the heavens and on earth between God and Satan. To modernists the war is on poverty, environmental degradation, physical conflict. These of course are important for Christians to address. But behind all the wrong things happening is an evil being, Satan. He is the one real enemy.

        Two, “they will speak new languages.” (v.17c). The gift of tongues is one of nine spiritual gifts given to the Church to help in her mission. Modernists today no longer speak of tongues, nor of the other spiritual gifts listed in 1 Corinthians 12. What a loss for the Church! There are even some clerics who demean or condemn tongues as demonic. They obviously have not read the scriptures.

      Three, “they will pick up serpents with their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them.” (v.18a). Jesus protects those who do his mission. Of course this is not about deliberately picking up a deadly serpent or drinking poison to prove that one is immune from harm, as that would be testing the Lord and will not give his protection. Further, harm, including suffering and pain, does come to his missionaries, but to the extent that the Lord allows and for a greater good. But modernists totally negate the supernatural. This is wrong, as spiritual work engages the spiritual power of God, which is what totally defeats the works of the enemy.




      Four, “they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” (v.18b). Many healings have happened through the hands of God’s holy servants, including many instances through the years of raising the dead. But modernists negate supernatural healing, but instead rely on deadly experimental drugs such as with COVID-19. They rely on so-called “science” or “consensus of experts” but neglect the promises of God.

       So now Jesus has gone up to heaven and taken his seat at the right hand of God (v.19). But his work goes on. Through his holy people. These are his disciples, apostles and missionaries. The apostles in his time understood, and “they went forth and preached everywhere” (v.20a). And Jesus kept his promises, as “the Lord worked with them and confirmed his word through accompanying signs.” (v.20b).

         Listen not to modernists who twist the gospel, but only to Jesus.

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