Ugliness is `beauty' and beauty is ugliness. `Error' is whatever you don't want to hear; `truth' is whatever serves your purpose. This is the picture of today's undisciplined society.
Although the Scriptures warn of the coming of many false teachers and false prophets, one cannot but believe that the times predicted by St. Paul are upon us: "For there will come a time when they will not endure the sound doctrine; but having itching ears, will heap up to themselves teachers according to their own lusts, and they will turn away their hearing from the truth and turn aside rather to fables" (2 Tim. 4, 3-4).
But, such false teachers already plagued the Catholic community much to the confusion of its members and to the scandal of outsiders. In his Epistle to Timothy, St. Paul urged his beloved disciple to act energetically against the separatist teachers.
St.Paul urges the young bishop, Timothy: "Hold to the form of sound teaching which thou hast heard from me in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus" (Tim.1, 13).
He then adds: "Guard the good trust through the Holy Spirit, who dwells in us" (Ibid. 14, 4).
How important is it to beware of false teachers? St. John writes to the first Christians: "Beloved: All that is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith" (1 John 5, 4).
If, therefore, the faith is corrupted with false notions or doctrines, it is no longer the true and sound faith that comes to us through the Holy Spirit.
In writing to Titus, St. Paul urges and encourages him to exhort in sound doctrine and to confute opponents as is the rightful duty and authority of bishops: " ..holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, that he may be able to exhort in sound doctrine and to confute opponents" (Titus 1, 9).
As in the time of St. Paul, so too in our own time we find that ".. there are also many disobedient, vain babblers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision" (Titus 1, 10).
Are these to be left free to spread their errors? Does `freedom of speech' include a freedom to corrupt good morals, and is a sound discipline implemented to protect the unwary or the weak an example of `totalitarianism'? It is a deceptive ploy to speak of an "open society" where anything militating against the overall ambitions of a group is viewed as "totalitarian."
Some immoral individuals have cowed the civil courts with the argument that their lucrative immorality is `protected by the Constitution.' Imagine: The Constitution of the United States of America is used to protect immorality, and to assure its profitable undermining of moral values!
Placing vice on the same level as virtue, error on the same level with truth, erases all boundaries between the two opposites.
St. Paul thought differently: He bravely stands up to the disobedient, to the vain babblers and deceivers, and especially to those of the `circumcision' _ that is, the Jews.
St. Paul sees the ultimate purpose of all such deception: base gain: "These must be rebuked, for they upset whole households, teaching things that they ought not, for the sake of base gain" (Titus 1,11).
According to St. Paul, these kinds of people are to be rebuked: "Hence rebuke them sharply that they may be sound in faith, and may not listen to Jewish fables and the commandments of men who turn away from the truth" (Ibid. 1,13).
And as a clear condemnation of the man-made laws concerning koshering, St. Paul says: "For the clean all things are clean, but for the defiled and unbelieving nothing is clean; for both their mind and their conscience are defiled. They profess to know God, but by their works they disown Him, being abominable and unbelieving and worthless for any good work" (Ibid. 1, 15-16).
St. Paul is speaking here of the distinction between clean and unclean meats in the Mosaic Law which was abrogated by the Gospel.
It is obvious that today nothing is clean for the defiled and unbelieving. For, more and more things of daily use are unscrupulously subjected to rabbinical koshering. And this, not only for the blind adherents of their false doctrines, but this outrageous lust for base gain is being imposed upon Christians and non-believers alike.
One cannot but muse: Are the bombs being dropped on Christians in Yugoslavia `koshered'? If they are, then we ought to consider them `clean'?
False teachers have this in common: While being ready to destroy each other, they are still willing to unite against what is true!
And, while united against truth, they hypocritically ask the same question Pontius Pilate asked when he handed the Son of God over to the Jews to be crucified:
After all, "What is truth"?
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