Pride is a Lie


Truth is eternal. Consequently, it makes no difference who speaks it, or when it is spoken: it will ever remain true. Those who love the truth are doing nothing more than loving God Himself reflected in the truth. And, for this reason, it is wisely said that `humility is truth.'

Because this is so, the proud man must then be a liar and the truth is not in him. Pride is the sin of Satan. It is the manifestation of a will that is turned upon itself and away from God. Another way of expressing this is to speak of "self-love" or, being "self-centered." To those who are self-centered, all things and everyone else is viewed only as something useful to flatter the disordered self-love of the proud man.

The proud man, of necessity, must surround himself with those who flatter him and distance from him who would shatter his illusions with the truth.

Disordered self-love is the common phenomenon of original sin. Original sin being, of course, the first act of willful disobedience to God. Because we are all born without the supernatural right order that is called the "state of grace," we are all born into this world as "enemies of God" and "slaves of Satan." The only exception to this rule, and indirectly so, is the Blessed Virgin Mary who was preserved from original sin from the moment of her conception.

I say, "indirectly" because the Blessed Virgin was preserved from this sin because she was destined from all eternity to be the vehicle through which the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity would enter our existence of time and space.

The consequences of original sin remain even after the sin itself has been taken away. We find this to be true even in our human relations. When the law is broken, the trespass may be forgiven, but the consequences remain: the bank robber may be sorry for his deed, but his regret does not remove the punishment incurred by the offense. The Church teaches that even after sin is pardoned in the tribunal of confession, there still remains the `temporal punishment due to sin.' For example: If a thrown stone breaks a window, the fact that the culprit expresses sorrow for the act does not repair the broken window. Who must repair the window? Surely, the burden does not lie with the owner of the house; it lies with the one who threw the stone.

Ours has become a strange society where the victim is viewed as the culprit and the victimizer is the unfortunate one. What an inversion of right order! Of course, this distortion of justice is gladly accepted by the perpetrators of injustice.

St.Augustine of Hippo was a North African, born in the Roman province of Numidia. He was born in 354. He was made a bishop in 395. In his masterpiece, City of God, he writes: "When man `lives according to man' and not `according to God' he is like the Devil." He continues by pointing out that "when a man lives according to truth, he lives not according to himself but according to God. For it was God who said: `I am the truth.'(St.John 14,6)".

If a person is without supernatural grace, he can only live according to the Devil because the Devil fell from supernatural grace. Again, let us listen to St. Augustine: "When man lives according to himself, that is to say, according to human ways and not according to God's will, then surely he lives according to falsehood. Man himself, of course, is not a lie, since God who is his Author and Creator could not be the Author and Creator of a lie. Rather, man has been so constituted in truth that he was meant to live not according to himself but to Him who made him _ that is, he was meant to do the will of God rather than his own. It is a lie not to live as a man was created to live." (City of God, chap.4).

And for this reason, namely, that only those can live `according to God' who are learned and practiced in humility that the Psalmist says: "Every man is a liar." Every man is a liar in as much as he places his own will in opposition to the will of God. Such a man does not walk in the truth, but stumbles in his lie, falls in his lie and is consumed by his lie.

There is no greater insult to truth than the proud lie that would have us believe it labors in the service of God Who is Truth.

Every false religion is a lie. And, therefore, cannot in any way lead a soul back to Truth. Every heretic and schismatic is a liar _ even when he quotes Scripture or pretends to serve the Church in Her mission of salvation. These are the false teachers, the wolves in sheep's clothing, the false Christians.

Just as counterfeit money may look as good as the authorized thing, so too, the false teachers may deceive many by repeating familiar phrases and sounding `Catholic' _ but, they are counterfeit: they have no value in themselves and serve only to deprive those who listen and follow them of any supernatural grace.

The Church, guided by the Holy Ghost, correctly says through Her authorized exorcists: "You, Satan, are the teacher of all heretics!" If Satan is the teacher of all heretics, he must be teaching them false doctrine _ for this is what heresy really means _ and, therefore, these teachers are disciples of Satan. How then, can Satan's kingdom be divided? Even the Pharisees admitted that devils cannot cast out devils. Modernist Pharisees, however, seem to disagree with their spiritual ancestors. No one separated from the true Church has the power to cast out devils simply because they themselves are in league with the devils. No heretic can be humble; no schismatic can be humble. They can only be proud and, our Lord has stated that God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble. What, then, must be said of the current interest in exorcism? Liars cannot exorcise their Father! Even those who have not been cut off from the visible Church because of unrepented sin are unable to cast out devils until they themselves have the devil cast out of them through humble confession and contrition. The appearance of piety is not yet genuine piety. One perceives in the greatest Modernists the appearance of piety and virtue. But this is only cosmetic.

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