Friday, March 6, 2015

...Da Mihi Virtutem Contra Hostes Tuos!


In the book of Judges, Chapters 6 - 8, is found the history of Gedeon. Gedeon was God's instrument in delivering Israel from the Madianites. It is well known that Israel was a type of the Catholic Church. Anywhere in the Psalms where Israel is mentioned, a parallel can be drawn to the Church. This is one reason that the Little Office is so necessary today.

Most people know the story, at least in part. Israel had been disobedient and came under the power of the Madianites. They were exposed to the worship of Baal and made to participate in this false worship. Gedeon was called by an Angel of God:

[11] And an angel of the Lord came, and sat under an oak, that was in Ephra, and belonged to Joas the father of the family of Ezri. And when Gedeon his son was threshing and cleansing wheat by the winepress, to flee from Madian, [12] The angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said: The Lord is with thee, O most valiant of men. [13] And Gedeon said to him: I beseech thee, my lord, if the Lord be with us, why have these evils fallen upon us? Where are his miracles, which our fathers have told us of, saying: The Lord brought us Out of Egypt? but now the Lord hath forsaken us, and delivered us into the bands of Madian. [14] And the Lord looked upon him, and said: Go in this thy strength, and thou shalt deliver Israel out of the hand of Madian: know that I have sent thee. [15] He answered and said: I beseech thee, my lord, wherewith shall I deliver Israel? Behold my family is the meanest in Manasses, and I am the least in my father' s house.

And the Lord told Gedeon:

That night the Lord said to him: Take a bullock of thy father' s, and another bullock of seven years, and thou shalt destroy the altar of Baal, which is thy father' s: and cut down the grove that is about the altar:
[26] And thou shalt build an altar to the Lord thy God in the top of this rock, whereupon thou didst lay the sacrifice before: and thou shalt take the second bullock, and shalt offer a holocaust upon a pile of the wood, which thou shalt cut down out of the grove. [27] Then Gedeon taking ten men of his servants, did as the Lord had commanded him. But fearing his father' s house, and the men of that city, he would not do it by day, but did all by night. [28]And when the men of that town were risen in the morning, they saw the altar of Baal destroyed, and the grove cut down, and the second bullock laid upon the altar, which then was built. [29] And they said one to another: Who hath done this? And when they inquired for the author of the fact, it was said: Gedeon the son of Joas did all this. [30] And they said to Joas: Bring out thy son hither, that he may die: because he hath destroyed the altar of Baal, and hath cut down his grove.
So, the false sacrifice was destroyed and the Sacrifice that was acceptable to God was offered. The Lord was to use Gedeon to destroy the Madianites and free Israel - THE CHURCH - from the oppressors. But, small as it was compared to the forces of the Madianites, God did not want to even use these. He insisted in reducing the number of Gedeon's men to just 300! 
And the Lord said to Gedeon: The people that are with thee are many, and Madian shall not be delivered into their hands: lest Israel should glory against me, and say: I was delivered by my own strength. [3] Speak to the people, and proclaim in the hearing of all, I Whosoever is fearful and timorous, let him return. So two and twenty thousand men went away from mount Galaad and returned home, and only ten thousand remained. [4]And the Lord said to Gedeon: The people are still too many, bring them to the waters, and there I will try them: and of whom I shall say to thee, This shall go with thee, let him go: whom I shall forbid to go, let him return. [5] And when the people were come down to the waters, the Lord said to Gedeon: They that shall lap the water with their tongues, as dogs are wont to lap, thou shalt set apart by themselves: but they that shall drink bowing down their knees, shall be on the other side.
[6] And the number of them that had lapped water, casting it with the hand to their mouth, was three hundred men: and all the rest of the multitude had drunk kneeling. [7] And the Lord said to Gedeon: By the three hundred men, that lapped water, I will save you, and deliver Madian into thy hand: but let all the rest of the people return to their place. [8] So taking victuals and trumpets according to their number, he ordered all the rest of the multitude to depart to their tents: and he with the three hundred gave himself to the battle. Now the camp of Madian was beneath him in the valley. [9] The same night the Lord said to him: Arise, and go down into the camp: because I have delivered them into thy hand.
Why only 300?
lest Israel should glory against me, and say: I was delivered by my own strength.
Then God gave the victory to Israel and the Madianites were destroyed because God caused them to fight amongst themselves and destroy each other!
And Gedeon, and the three hundred men that were with him, went into part of the camp, at the beginning of the midnight watch, and the watchmen being alarmed, they began to sound their trumpets, and to clap the pitchers one against another. [20] And when they sounded their trumpets in three places round about the camp, and had broken their pitchers, they held their lamps in their left hands, and with their right hands the trumpets which they blew, and they cried out: The sword of the Lord and of Gedeon; [21] Standing every man in his place round about the enemies' camp. So all the camp was troubled, and crying out and howling they fled away. [22] And the three hundred men nevertheless persisted sounding the trumpets. And the Lord sent the sword into all the camp, and they killed one another, 
This, I believe, is a type of our current situation and it should give us great HOPE! The True Church, those keeping the FAITH are oppressed by those offering false sacrifice to a false god. But God raises up a man, unknown, of lowly station and tells him to lead the battle to free Israel. But first, God gets rid of 22,000 out of 22,300 (98.7%) of the soldiers, those who were afraid or otherwise unworthy for the battle, to show that it would be God himself Who gave the victory. Then He made the 300 to make noises and sound trumpets, which frightened the Madianites cause fear. Then God made them to begin killing each other. GOD DID IT ALL! using the few soldiers that were NOT AFRAID who were led by a GENERAL from a lowly station. 
The Apostasy in which we are living seems to have eliminated about 99% of the Catholics from the fold. I do not know if this is an exact number, but it gives an idea of the devastation. The point is, only a small remnant remains. This is the pattern that God has used MANY TIMES - think of Lepanto, the siege of Vienna, the Soviet Union pulling out of Austria after their Rosary Crusade. 
God WILL restore His Church. He HAS raised up the GENERAL already and SHE has sounded the battle cry. The Blessed Virgin Mary is our GENERAL and SHE will overthrow all heresies including the heresy of heresies - modernism.  Many times in the Little Office the refrain is prayed:
Dignare me laudare te, Virgo Sacrata       
Deign that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin

Da mihi virtutem contra hostes tuos.       
Give me strength against thine enemies.
In the end, Her Immaculate Heart will Triumph - The Great Event is a CERTAINTY! But we must be prepared to MAKE SOME NOISE! and have the HEART of a SOLDIER of CHRIST. Make some noise with the ROSARY and the LITTLE OFFICE, wear the armour of a soldier of Christ - the Brown Scapular, a Crucifix, a Miraculous Medal, etc. Do your daily duty and make sacrifices. And then keep your eyes upon the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts and wait for them to act. As we pray during the Hour of Sext in Psalm 122:
2 Behold, as the eyes of servants * are on the hands of their masters,
3 As the eyes of the handmaiden are on the hands of her mistress * so are our eyes unto the Lord our God, until He have mercy upon us.
4 Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us 
Let's keep our eyes on Jesus and Mary!