Christian life is a daily battle against the Devil
“Christian life is a constant battle against the Devil, who really exists and is not the stuff of legend, Pope Francis said in a homily last week.
The battle is not easy, because the Evil One’s traps and temptations are many, and ‘the Devil is not tossing flowers at us’, but ‘flaming arrows’ aimed to kill, the Pope said at a morning Mass in the Domus Sanctae Marthae, where he lives.
There are three ‘enemies of Christian life’, Pope Francis said: ‘The Devil, the world and the flesh’, in other words, the carnal passions that are ‘the wounds of Original Sin’.
‘But this generation, and many others, made people think that the Devil was a myth, a character, an idea, the concept of evil,’ the Pope said, according to Vatican Radio.
‘The Devil exists and we have to fight against him. Paul says so – I’m not the one saying it. The word of God says it,’ the Pope added, referring to the day’s reading from St Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians (6:10-20), which calls on believers to ‘stand firm against the tactics of the Devil’.
Even believers ‘are not too convinced’ the Devil exists, he said, or else ‘we are a bit lazy in the fight and we let ourselves be led by our passions, by temptations. It’s because we are sinners – all of us… However, do not be discouraged. [Have] courage and strength because the Lord is with us’ and supplies all we need for battle, the Pope said.
Because the Devil is ‘the father of lies, the father of deception’, Christians must arm themselves with the ‘armour of God – the truth’.
Earlier in the week hundreds of exorcists gathered in Rome for a convention organised by the International Association of Exorcists. In a message Francis said their work showed the Church’s care for ‘those who suffer because of the work of the Devil’.”
– This article was published in the Catholic Herald newspaper, issue November 7 2014. For subscriptions please visit http://www.catholicherald.co.uk (external link).