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Worldliness is a slow slide into sin

Friday, 31 January 2020



As he reflected on the day’s First Reading in which King David fell into temptation, the Holy Father warned against the sin of worldliness during his homily for Mass at Santa Marta. The Pope noted that David had slipped into a comfortable life which was unperturbed even in the face of the most serious sins. He had forgotten that he had been elected by God. Furthermore, he had chosen to commit murder, killing Uriah for the adultery with his wife Bathsheba, and then continued his normal life quietly and his heart had not moved. The Pope wondered how the great King David who was holy and had done so many good things and who was united with God, could have done that; this took time to happen, David slipped slowly. Indeed, he said, there are sins of the moment, such as uncontrollable anger, and then there are sins that one slips into slowly with the spirit of worldliness. It is the spirit of the world that leads one to do such things as David did, as if they were normal, losing the awareness of sin.

Pope Francis pointed out that this problem of worldliness is not simply a problem of the past and that it exists today too and gave the example of a recent incident in Argentina in which some rugby players killed a young man in a nightlife fight. Sometimes we need “a slap of life” to stop sliding into sin, just like it took the prophet Nathan sent by God to show David his mistake. The story of the fall of King David should make us realize that the same can happen to us, the Pope said, as he invited Christians to think about the spiritual atmosphere of their life. He concluded the homily by asking the Lord to send us a prophet such as a neighbour or a son or parent to “slap” us a little when we find ourselves slipping into an atmosphere where everything appears to be lawful.

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