Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.
...our Ruling Class increasingly has trouble making elementary distinctions between Christians and all the rest of those religious riff raff with their silly terrorist beliefs. That spills over even into institutions Christian have historically inhabited and trusted, like the military, since the military is run by our Ruling Class. It will eventually spill over into policy.
In antiquity, this played out with both Catholics and heretics dying together at the hands of pagan murderers, whether mobs or state actors. Indeed, there are actually Arian heretics enrolled in the Roman martyrology making them saints of Holy Church because they died in the bonfire, arena, or mass execution. It will be interesting to see how the bodies and memories of Catholics and non-Catholic Christians will be tumbled together in the mass grave of history once the Culture of Death the West is building finally begins the slaughter it longs to inflict on the Christian world. Fine distinctions between Catholic and Protestant will not matter a bit. Nor will there be much effort to distinguish serious Jews from the rest of the names on the Liquidation List. But the main fury will fall on the Catholic Church. It might even involve some sort of satanic ecumenism with Radical Islam, before which the secular culture of death often cringes with spaniel-like deference. However it actually plays out, the basic pattern won't be terribly different from that which St. John described symbolically in the first century.
And another portent appeared in heaven; behold, a great red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and seven diadems upon his heads. 4* His tail swept down a third of the stars of heaven, and cast them to the earth. And the dragon stood before the woman who was about to bear a child, that he might devour her child when she brought it forth; 5* she brought forth a male child, one who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron, but her child was caught up to God and to his throne, 6 and the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God, in which to be nourished for one thousand two hundred and sixty days. 7* Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, 8 but they were defeated and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. 9* And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world--he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. 10* And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, "Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. 11 And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. 12* Rejoice then, O heaven and you that dwell therein! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!" 13 And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had borne the male child. 14* But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to the place where she is to be nourished for a time, and times, and half a time. 15 The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with the flood. 16 But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed the river which the dragon had poured from his mouth. 17 Then the dragon was angry with the woman, and went off to make war on the rest of her offspring, on those who keep the commandments of God and bear testimony to Jesus.
The devil is dull and not very creative: All the massive intellect of an angel perverted toward the incredible monotony of his repetitive hatred of Christ and his brethren. He never changes and he never learns. You can't learn when you have abandoned the good of the intellect and that's pretty much all an angel is. Fallen angels have thrust their intellects as far as they can toward Nothingness. So they are stupid as only the very clever can be. We, however, can change and learn. The way not to do that is to watch Dancing with the Stars and ponder the thoughts of Kim Kardashian. The way to do that is really pretty obvious: repent. Listen to Jesus. Pay attention to his word. Do what he says. It's not hard to figure out. It's just hard to do. But he gives us the Holy Spirit so we aren't left high and dry. And the saints are there in the heavenly bleachers to cheer us on and remind us that if they could run the race and win, so can we.