Our riches, honors, and pleasures will not help us in Hell but only increase our eternal torments

April 28, 2022 • 3 min

#BibleCommentary #Death #DoctorsOfTheChurch #Doctrine #FourLastThings #Hell #Justice #Morals #WhatTheSaintsSay

From The Sinner’s Guide, page 91
By Venerable Louis of Granada

Unhappy tongues which henceforth utter only blasphemies! Unhappy ears to be forever filled with sighs and lamentations! Unhappy eyes which will never gaze upon anything but misery! Unhappy flesh consumed in eternal flames!

Who can tell the bitter remorse of the sinner who has spent his life in pursuit of new pleasures and new amusements? Oh! how fleeting were the joys that brought such a series of woes!

O senseless, unhappy man! What do your riches now avail you? The seven years of abundance are past, and the years of famine are upon you. Your wealth has been consumed in the twinkling of an eye, and no trace of it remains.

Your glory has vanished; your happiness is swallowed up in an abyss of woe! So extreme is your misery that a drop of water is denied you to allay the parching thirst with which you are consumed. Not only is your former prosperity of no avail, but rather increases the torture of your cruel sufferings.

Thus shall the imprecation of Job be verified: “May worms be his sweetness,” which St. Gregory thus explains: “The remembrance of their past pleasures will make their present sufferings more keen; and the contrast of their short-lived happiness with this endless misery will fill them with rage and despair.”

They will recognize too late the snares of the evil one, and will exclaim in the words of the Book of Wisdom: “We have erred from the way of truth, and the light of justice hath not shone unto us, and the sun of understanding hath not risen upon us. We have wearied ourselves in the way of iniquity and destruction, and have walked through hard ways, but the way of the Lord we have not known.”

The contemplation of this terrible truth cannot but rouse us from our indifference and excite us to practise virtue. St. John Chrysostom frequently uses it as a means to exhort his hearers to virtue.

“If you would labor effectually,” he says, “to make your soul the temple and the abode of the Divinity, never lose sight of the solemn and awful day when you are to appear before the tribunal of Christ to render an account of all your works.

“Represent to yourself the glory and majesty with which Christ will come to judge the living and the dead.

“Consider the irrevocable sentence which will then be pronounced upon mankind, and the terrible separation which will follow it.

“The just will enter into the possession of ineffable joy and happiness; the wicked will be precipitated into exterior darkness, where there will be perpetual weeping and gnashing of teeth.

“They will be gathered like weeds, and cast into the fire, where they will remain for all eternity.”

Ah! then, before it is too late, let us save ourselves from this terrible misfortune by an humble and sincere confession of our sins—a favor that we will not receive on that day, for, as the Psalmist asks: “Who shall confess to Thee, O Lord! in hell?”

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