The constant danger of treachery and betrayal

By Fr. Roy Cimagala

THAT bible episode about King David and his rebellious son, Absalom, (cfr. 2 Samuel 18,9-19,3) perpetuates the narrative that treachery and betrayal will always be with us for as long as we live.

Even at the start of creation, some of the angels, headed by Lucifer, rebelled against God. Thus, they became devils, and Lucifer became Satan. Man himself in Adam and Eve, created in God’s image and likeness, preferred to obey the devil than to be faithful to God.

Cain killed his own brother Abel. Joseph, the son of Jacob, was sold by his own brothers. Saul betrayed David, and David also betrayed his own loyal soldier Uriah. Of course, the most classic of these cases is that of Judas against Christ himself. And we have not yet seen the end of all these.

We have to remember that this danger of treachery and betrayal is a fact of life. It would be good to remember this reality always if only to be properly guarded against it. Nowadays, to be a traitor and betrayer of God and of anybody is very easy and can also be easily hidden or rationalized. Thus, the need for extreme vigilance.

Today, with the riveting attraction of the new technologies, it’s almost invincibly impossible not to be a traitor and betrayer to God and to everybody else. And that’s simply because instead of giving ourselves to God and to everybody else, as love that is proper to us demands, we get easily trapped into the wiles of self-indulgence.

Practically everybody is hooked to the Internet, to the cellphones, to the social media, etc. While these new and powerful technologies offer a lot of good, they also occasion a lot of dangers. They are like a double-edged sword.

We should be wary of this phenomenon and do our best to be properly and adequately protected. For one, we should try our best that we be vividly aware of what the ultimate and constant purpose of our life is. With that awareness, let’s do everything to pursue that purpose in full steam ahead.

We need to rectify our intentions before, during and after doing anything. That way, we make sure we are on course to our true and ultimate destination. In this regard, we need to declare an unrelenting war against our self-indulgence which has become a very formidable problem we all have. Yes, this has always been a problem to us, but these days it is much more so.

Let’s make God the beginning and end of everything that we do. He should always be in our mind and heart, in our thoughts, intentions and desires, in our feelings and passions. He should always be in our deeds. And because of him and through him, the others should also always be in our mind and heart.

Without God and without others, let’s be convinced that we are actually lost, even if we feel that we are conquering the world and are having a grand time. Let’s do everything that God and others become the constant reference points of our life. They are meant to lead us to our true maturity, our fulfillment and perfection, our joy.

Thus, whenever we realize that our thoughts, intentions and desires simply revolve around ourselves, around our interests and what give us convenience, advantage, etc., let us react immediately and rectify ourselves. This is how we avoid the danger of treachery and betrayal.