It is particularly important to keep in mind the first diabolic snare, which holds back so many souls in the slavery of Satan: it is the lack of reflection, which makes one lose sight of the end of life.
The demon shouts to his prey: “Life is a pleasure; you must grasp all the joys that life gives you “.
Jesus instead whispers to your heart: ‘Blessed are those who mourn. “(See Mt 5: 4) …” To enter heaven you must become violence “(see Mt 11, 12) …” Who wants to come after me, deny himself, take his cross every day and follow me “(Lk 9:23).
The infernal enemy suggests to us: “Think of the present, because with death everything ends!”.
But the Lord exhorts you: “Remember the very new (death, judgment, hell and heaven) and you will not sin”.
Man takes a large part of his time in many affairs and demonstrates intelligence and subtlety in acquiring and preserving worldly goods, but then he does not even use the crumbs of his time to reflect on the much more important needs of his soul, for which he lives in an absurd, incomprehensible and very dangerous superficiality, which can have frightening consequences.
The demon leads one to think: “Meditating is useless: lost time!”. If today many live in sin it is because they do not reflect seriously and never meditate on the truths revealed by God.
The fish that is already finished in the fisherman’s net, as long as it is still in the water, does not suspect that it has been captured, but when the net emerges from the sea, it struggles because it feels near its end; but it’s too late now. So the sinners …! As long as I am in this world they have fun happily and do not even suspect that they are in the diabolical web;they will notice it when they will no longer be able to remedy it … as soon as they enter eternity!
If so many people who lived without thinking about eternity could return to this world, how would their lives change!
WASTE OF GOODS
From what has been said so far and especially from the story of certain facts, it is clear what the main sins that lead to eternal damnation, but keep in mind that it is not only these sins that send people to hell: there are many others.
For what sin did the rich epulone end up in hell? He had so many goods and wasted them in banquets (waste and sin of throat); and moreover he remained obstinately insensitive to the needs of the poor (lack of love and avarice). Trembling then some rich who do not want to exercise charity: even if they do not change their lives, the fate of the rich epulon is reserved.
The IMPURITIES ‘
The sin that most easily leads to hell is impurity. Says St. Alphonsus: “One goes to hell even for this sin, or at least not without it”.
I remember the words of the devil reported in the first chapter: ‘All those who are in there, no one excluded, are there with this sin or even just for this sin’. Sometimes, if forced, even the devil tells the truth!
Jesus told us: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Mt 5: 8). This means that the impure people not only will not see God in the other life, but even in this life they can feel the charm, so they lose the taste of prayer, slowly lose their faith even without realizing it and … without faith and without prayer they perceive more why they should do good and flee evil. Thus reduced, they are attracted to every sin.
This vice hardens the heart and, without a special grace, drags to the final impenitence and … to hell.
God forgives any fault, provided there is true repentance, that is, the will to put an end to one’s sins and to change one’s life.
Among a thousand irregular marriages (divorced and remarried, cohabiting) perhaps only someone will escape hell, because they normally do not repent even at the point of death; in fact, if they were still alive they would continue to live in the same irregular situation.
There is tremendous thought that almost everyone today, even those who are divorced are not, consider divorce as a normal thing! Unfortunately, many now reason as the world wants and no longer as God wants.
A sin that can lead to eternal damnation is sacrilege. Unfortunate he who sets himself on this path! He commits sacrilege, who voluntarily hides some mortal sin in Confession, or confesses without the will to leave sin or flee from the next occasions. Almost always, those who confess in a sacrilegious manner also perform the Eucharistic sacrilege, because they then receive Communion in mortal sin.
Tells St. John Bosco …
“I found myself with my guide (the Guardian Angel) at the bottom of a precipice that ended in a dark valley. And here is a huge building appearing with a very high door that was closed. We touched the bottom of the precipice; a suffocating heat oppressed me; a fat, almost green smoke and flames of blood flames rose above the walls of the building.
I asked: ‘Where are we?’. ‘Read the inscription on the door’. the guide answered me. I looked and saw written: ‘Ubi non est redemptio! , that is: `Where there is no redemption! ‘, Meanwhile I saw plunged into that abyss … first a young man, then another and then some others; everyone had written their sin in the face.
The guide told me: ‘Here is the prevailing cause of these damnations: the bad comrades, the bad books and the perverse habits’.
Those poor boys were young that I knew. I asked my guide: “So it is useless to work among the young people if so many do this end! How to prevent all this ruin? “-” The ones you saw are still alive; but this is the current state of their souls, if they died at this moment they would certainly be here! “said the Angel.
After we entered the building; we ran with the speed of a flash. We turned into a vast and gloomy courtyard. I read this inscription: ‘Ibunt impii in ignem aetemum! ; that is: `The wicked will go into the eternal fire! ‘.
Come with me, “the guide added. He took me by the hand and led me to a door that opened. A kind of cavern appeared before me, immense and full of a terrifying fire, which far surpassed the fire of the earth. I can not describe this cavern with human words in all its frightening reality.
Suddenly I began to see young people falling into the burning cave. The guide told me: ‘Impurity is the cause of the eternal ruin of so many young people!’.
– But if they have sinned they have then also confessed.
– They confessed, but the faults against the virtue of purity have confessed them badly or completely silenced. For example, one had committed four or five of these sins, but he only said two or three. There are some who have committed one in childhood and have never confessed it to shame or have confessed it badly. Others did not have the pain and the intention to change. Someone instead of doing the examination of conscience sought the right words to deceive the confessor. And who dies in this state, decides to place himself among the guilty not repented and will remain so for all eternity. And now you want to see why God’s mercy has brought you here? – The guide lifted a veil and I saw a group of young people from this oratory that I knew well: all condemned for this guilt. Among these there were some who apparently had good behavior.
The guide told me again: ‘Preach always and everywhere against impurity! :. Then we talked for about half an hour on the conditions necessary to make a good confession and concluded: ‘You have to change your life … You have to change your life’.
– Now that you have seen the torments of the damned, you must also try a little hell!
Out of that horrible building, the guide grabbed my hand and touched the last outside wall. I uttered a cry of pain. When the vision stopped, I noticed that my hand was really swollen and for a week I wore the bandage. “
Father Giovan Battista Ubanni, a Jesuit, says that for years a woman, confessing, had kept a sin of impurity. Arriving there, two Dominican priests, who had long been waiting for a foreign confessor, asked one of them to hear his confession.
Once out of the church, the comrade told the confessor that he had observed that, while that woman confessed, many snakes came out of her mouth, but a larger snake had only come out with her head, but then came back again. Then also all the snakes that had come out returned.
Obviously the confessor did not speak of what he had heard in Confession, but suspecting what could have happened he did everything to find that woman. When he arrived at his home, he learned that she had just died back home. Knowing this, that good priest became sad and prayed for the dead. This appeared to him in the midst of the flames and said to him: “I am the woman who confessed this morning; but I made a sacrilege. I had a pity that I did not feel like confessing to the priest of my country; God sent me you, but with you I let myself be overcome by shame and immediately the Divine Justice struck me with death as I entered the house. Rightly I am condemned to hell! “. After these words the earth opened and was seen to fall and disappear.
Father Francesco Rivignez writes (the episode is also reported by St. Alphonsus) that in England, when there was the Catholic religion, King Anguberto had a daughter of rare beauty who had been asked in marriage by different princes.
When asked by his father if he accepted to marry, he replied that he could not because he had made a vow of perpetual virginity.
The father obtained the dispensation from the Pope, but she remained firm in her resolve not to use it and to live in the house. The father satisfied her.
He began to live a holy life: prayers, fasts and various other penances; he received the sacraments and often went to serve the sick in a hospital. In this state of life he became ill and died.
A woman who had been her educator, finding herself one night in prayer, heard a loud racket in the room and immediately saw a soul with the appearance of a woman in the midst of a great fire and chained among many demons …
– I am the unhappy daughter of King Anguberto.
– But how, you damned with such a holy life?
– Rightly I’m damned … because of me. As a child I fell into sin against purity. I went to confession, but the shame closed my mouth: instead of humbly accusing my sin, I covered it so that the confessor did not understand anything. The sacrilege has been repeated many times. On my deathbed I told the confessor, vaguely, that I had been a great sinner, but the confessor, ignoring the true state of my soul, forced me to expel this thought as a temptation. Shortly thereafter, I was condemned for all eternity to the flames of hell.
That said he disappeared, but with so much noise that seemed to drag the world and leaving in that room a repulsive smell that lasted several days.
Hell is the testimony of God’s respect for our freedom. Hell shouts the constant danger in which our life is found; and cries in such a way as to exclude any lightness, constantly cries to exclude any hastyness, every superficiality, because we are always in danger. When the episcopate announced to me, the first word I said was this: “But I’m afraid to go to hell.”
(Card. Giuseppe Siri)