Dear Friends of the Kolbe Center,
Glory to Jesus Christ!
In a previous newsletter we saw that the great writer G. K. Chesterton wittily exposed many of the absurdities of the molecules-to-man evolution hypothesis, but without defending the literal historical truth of the sacred history of Genesis that the evolutionary myth was vying to replace. It is no surprise, then, that Chesterton belonged to a circle of gifted writers, including J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis, who devoted a great deal of time and talent to creating imaginary worlds with imaginary histories, including, in Tolkien’s case, a mythical account of the origins of man and the universe.
If, on the other hand, we survey the entire history of God’s people, as set forth from Genesis to the Second Book of Maccabees and from the Gospel of Matthew to the Book of Revelation, we do not find one single example of a saint or prophet drawing inspiration from or inspiring his followers with made-up histories, myths or fantasies. All that we find on the lips of God’s saints and prophets are the true histories of God’s dealings with His people and their enemies, from the sacred history of Genesis down to their own day. We see a great example of this in the Second Book of Maccabees in the account of the confrontation between Judas Maccabeus and the godless tyrant Nicanor.
But when Nicanor understood that Judas was in the places of Samaria, he purposed to set upon him with all violence, on the sabbath day.
And when the Jews that were constrained to follow him, said: Do not act so fiercely and barbarously, but give honour to the day that is sanctified: and reverence him that beholdeth all things:
That unhappy man asked, if there were a mighty One in heaven, that had commanded the sabbath day to be kept.
And when they answered: There is the living Lord himself in heaven, the mighty One, that commanded the seventh day to be kept.
Then he said: And I am mighty upon the earth, and I command to take arms, and to do the king's business. Nevertheless he prevailed not to accomplish his design (2 Maccabees 15:1-5).
Here we see, right from the start, that the Jewish remnant who united behind Judas Maccabeus regarded the Sabbath unquestioningly as of divine institution. The godless Nicanor knows nothing of the divine institution of the sabbath because he is part of the great mass of humanity who have forgotten the revelation handed down from Adam and the Patriarchs to Moses. Consequently, he has lost the “fear of the Lord” that accompanies the memory of God’s revelation of His six-day creation of all things and seeks to replace the worship of the Creator with the worship of himself.
So Nicanor being puffed up with exceeding great pride, thought to set up a public monument of his victory over Judas.
But Machabeus ever trusted with all hope that God would help them.
And he exhorted his people not to fear the coming of the nations, but to remember the help they had before received from heaven, and now to hope for victory from the Almighty.
And speaking to them out of the law, and the prophets, and withal putting them in mind of the battles they had fought before, he made them more cheerful:
Then after he had encouraged them, he shewed withal the falsehood of the Gentiles, and their breach of oaths.
So he armed every one of them, not with defence of shield and spear, but with very good speeches, and exhortations, and told them a dream worthy to be believed, whereby he rejoiced them all.
Now the vision was in this manner. Onias, who had been high priest, a good and virtuous man, modest in his looks, gentle in his manners, and graceful in speech, and who from a child was exercised in virtues holding up his hands, prayed for all the people of the Jews:
After this there appeared also another man, admirable for age, and glory, and environed with great beauty and majesty:
Then Onias answering, said: This is a lover of his brethren, and of the people of Israel: this is he that prayeth much for the people, and for all the holy city, Jeremias, the prophet of God.
Whereupon Jeremias stretched forth his right hand, and gave to Judas a sword of gold, saying:
Take this holy sword, a gift from God, wherewith thou shalt overthrow the adversaries of my people Israel.
Thus being exhorted with the words of Judas, which were very good, and proper to stir up the courage, and strengthen the hearts of the young men, they resolved to fight, and to set upon them manfully: that valour might decide the matter, because the holy city, and the temple were in danger.
For their concern was less for their wives, and children, and for their brethren, and kinsfolks: but their greatest and principal fear was for the holiness of the temple.
And they also that were in the city, had no little concern for them that were to be engaged in battle.
And now when all expected what judgment would be given, and the enemies were at hand, and the army was set in array, the beasts and the horsemen ranged in convenient places,
Machabeus considering the coming of the multitude, and the divers preparations of armour, and the fierceness of the beasts, stretching out his hands to heaven, called upon the Lord, that worketh wonders, who giveth victory to them that are worthy, not according to the power of their arms, but according as it seemeth good to him.
And in his prayer he said after this manner: Thou, O Lord, who didst send thy angel in the time of Ezechias, king of Juda, and didst kill a hundred and eighty-five thousand of the army of Sennacherib:
Send now also, O Lord of heaven, thy good angel before us, for the fear and dread of the greatness of thy arm,
That they may be afraid, who come with blasphemy against thy holy people. And thus he concluded his prayer.
But Nicanor, and they that were with him came forward, with trumpets and songs.
But Judas, and they that were with him, encountered them, calling upon God by prayers:
So fighting with their hands, but praying to the Lord with their hearts, they slew no less than five and thirty thousand, being greatly cheered with the presence of God.
And when the battle was over, and they were returning with joy, they understood that Nicanor was slain in his armour.
Then making a shout, and a great noise, they blessed the Almighty Lord in their own language.
And Judas, who was altogether ready, in body and mind, to die for his countrymen, commanded that Nicanor's head, and his hand, with the shoulder, should be cut off, and carried to Jerusalem.
And when he was come thither, having called together his countrymen, and the priests to the altar, he sent also for them that were in the castle,
And shewing them the head of Nicanor, and the wicked hand, which he had stretched out, with proud boasts, against the holy house of the Almighty God,
He commanded also, that the tongue of the wicked Nicanor should be cut out, and given by pieces to birds, and the hand of the furious man to be hanged up over against the temple.
Then all blessed the Lord of heaven, saying: Blessed be he that hath kept his own place undefiled.
And he hung up Nicanor's head in the top of the castle, that it might be an evident and manifest sign of the help of God.
And they all ordained by a common decree, by no means to let this day pass without solemnity:
But to celebrate the thirteenth day of the month of Adar, called in the Syrian language, the day before Mardochias' day (2 Maccabees 15:6-37).
Here we see that even the dream that inspires the followers of Judas is not a fantasy, but a true vision of the historical martyr and holy high priest Onias and of the historical prophet Jeremias who had rebuked the Judeans of old for their forgetfulness of the sacred history of Genesis. Judas does not exhort his troops to recall an imaginative story of heroism, but the true history of God’s miraculous intervention on behalf of the city of Jerusalem through the avenging sword of his holy angel. And when God grants victory to the Maccabean forces, Judas immediately strives to make sure that his historic victory is remembered by all future generations, so that they, too, will be inspired to fight for the honor and glory of God against all His enemies.
As a final note, it seems quite providential that Our Lady of Fatima chose to visit her three child witnesses on the 13th day of the month, as it was on the 13th day of the month of Adar that God used Queen Esther to rescue His people from annihilation at the hands of Haman and it was on the same day of the same month that He used Judas Maccabeus to save His people from destruction at the hands of the tyrant Nicanor. In light of God’s fondness for types, might we not see in this a foreshadowing of an even greater victory of God’s people over their enemies through the intercession of Our Lady of Fatima, the Queen of Heaven, and through the leadership of a great Christian military commander, perhaps even drawn from the ranks of a newly-converted Russia?
Everything I have written in this newsletter serves as a preamble to the announcement of an extremely important new article on the Kolbe website by Mike Gladieux, an article which will soon be followed by an even more important and comprehensive book on Biblical archaeology by the same author. If our children and grandchildren are raised to believe in the literal historical truth of the sacred history of Genesis and of all of the historical books in the Bible, they will not need to draw inspiration from fantasy novels. They will find all of the inspiration that they need to fight for the reign of Christ Our King in the sacred history of the Bible and in the true histories of the holy martyrs and saints of the Church. Please watch for the announcement of the publication of Mike’s new book and share it with as many of your friends and relatives—especially your young adult Catholic friends and relatives—as you can.
Through the prayers of the Mother of God, may the Holy Ghost nourish our souls with His Word and with the lives of His Saints, and may He make us valiant warriors for Christ our King!
Yours in Christ through the Immaculata in union with St. Joseph,
P.S. We are happy to announce the publication of a new textbook by Pamela Acker and colleagues entitled Biology: A Traditional Catholic Perspective. This textbook is a Christmas gift to countless Catholic families who have long been hoping and praying for a textbook that gives a comprehensive treatment of biology in harmony with Catholic doctrine in faith and morals. In the words of veteran biology teacher, Daylight Origins Magazine editor, and internationally renowned defender of the traditional Catholic doctrine of creation, Anthony Nevard, “In my opinion, any student who absorbs the material in this book will be really well informed on the subject in preparation for higher studies, and for the challenges of life as an educated citizen and Catholic parent. I could see this being the definitive text for Catholic home schoolers and as a back-up and counterbalance at home for biology students subjected to secular courses in public schools.”
P.P.S. We have decided to hold our 2022 annual leadership retreat at the headquarters of the Apostolate for Family Consecration in Bloomingdale, Ohio, again this year, from Sunday, August 28, until Saturday, September 3. For more information or to obtain a registration form, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.