Dec. 30, 2021
Thomas Becket was such a challenge to me that I decided I needed some sound direction. Our bishop, Chad Jones, is a scholar, is brilliant, and is very humble and accessible so I asked him how to view Becket in context. This is his kind response:
“Saint Thomas Becket is canonised as a saint and martyr for the Catholic Faith because he was killed in odium fidei, for the hatred of the Christian Faith. Saint Thomas was held in such contempt by King Henry II that he was assassinated at the King’s command. The Martyr of Canterbury withstood the power of the monarchy and refused to capitulate to demands of the King, edicts which violated the integral rights of the Church. In essence, Saint Thomas died in defence of the integrity and rights of the Church against the attempted usurpation of the same by the secular state. The ‘holy blissful martyr’ as Chaucer described him was willing to lay down his life to protect his flock from secular power interference. He spoke truth to power and died for it willingly.” (in odium fidei = hatred of the faith)
So now I – and we – have a better understanding of Thomas’s martyrdom. Just wanted to share this with you.
1John 2: 1-17
My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:
2And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
3And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
4He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
5But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
6He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.
7Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the beginning.
8Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.
9He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now.
10He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.
11But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.
12I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name’s sake.
13I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.
14I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.
15Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
17And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
Verses 15 and 16 is our constant fight – to put God first before anything else. “Lead us not into temptation …”; everything around us is temptation, everything that pulls our attention away from seeking the kingdom is temptation – from cell phones to stadium tickets, from cars to swimming pools, from sneakers to tattooes and all the multitude of things that distract us and give us momentary happiness and then is gone. True joy is only found in God, in the life and words of Jesus, and with the Holy Spirit helping us to understand, to grow in the love of God, and to walk after Jesus the very best we can.