You Will Die

Started by TerrorDæmonum, May 11, 2022, 01:45:25 PM

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Quote from: Ecclesiasticus 7:40
In all thy works remember thy last end, and thou shalt never sin.

Quote from: Luke 12:16-34
And he spoke a similitude to them, saying: The land of a certain rich man brought forth plenty of fruits. And he thought within himself, saying: What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits? And he said: This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and will build greater; and into them will I gather all things that are grown to me, and my goods. And I will say to my soul: Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years take thy rest; eat, drink, make good cheer. But God said to him: Thou fool, this night do they require thy soul of thee: and whose shall those things be which thou hast provided?

So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich towards God. And he said to his disciples: Therefore I say to you, be not solicitous for your life, what you shall eat; nor for your body, what you shall put on. The life is more than the meat, and the body is more than the raiment. Consider the ravens, for they sow not, neither do they reap, neither have they storehouse nor barn, and God feedeth them. How much are you more valuable than they? And which of you, by taking thought, can add to his stature one cubit?

If then ye be not able to do so much as the least thing, why are you solicitous for the rest? Consider the lilies, how they grow: they labour not, neither do they spin. But I say to you, not even Solomon in all his glory was clothed like one of these. Now if God clothe in this manner the grass that is today in the field, and tomorrow is cast into the oven; how much more you, O ye of little faith? And seek not you what you shall eat, or what you shall drink: and be not lifted up on high. For all these things do the nations of the world seek. But your Father knoweth that you have need of these things.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his justice, and all these things shall be added unto you. Fear not, little flock, for it hath pleased your Father to give you a kingdom. Sell what you possess and give alms. Make to yourselves bags which grow not old, a treasure in heaven which faileth not: where no thief approacheth, nor moth corrupteth. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Quote from: James 4:13-17
But who art thou that judgest thy neighbour? Behold, now you that say: Today or tomorrow we will go into such a city, and there we will spend a year, and will traffic, and make our gain. Whereas you know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is a vapour which appeareth for a little while, and afterwards shall vanish away. For that you should say: If the Lord will, and if we shall live, we will do this or that.

But now you rejoice in your arrogancies. All such rejoicing is wicked. To him therefore who knoweth to do good, and doth it not, to him it is sin.

Quote from: Imitation of Christ, Chapter 23
Of the Thoughts of Death

Very quickly must thou be gone from hence, see then how matters stand with thee; a man is here today and tomorrow he is vanished. (1 Machabees 2:63). And when he is taken away from the sight he is quickly also out of mind. Oh, the dullness and hardness of man's heart, which only thinks of what is present, and looks not forward to things to come. Thou oughtst in every action and thought so to order thyself as if thou wert immediately to die. If thou hadst a good conscience thou wouldst not much fear death. It were better for thee to fly sin than to be afraid of death. (Daniel 13:23). If thou art not prepared today how shalt thou be tomorrow? Tomorrow is an uncertain day; and how dost thou know that thou shalt be alive tomorrow? (James 4:14).

2. What benefit is it to live long when we advance so little? Ah! long life does not always make us better, but often adds to our guilt. Would to God we had behaved ourselves well in this world even for one day! Many count the years of their conversion; but oftentimes the fruit of amendment is but small. If it be frightful to die, perhaps it will be more dangerous to live longer. Blessed is he that has always the hour of death before his eyes and every day disposes himself to die. (Ecclesiasticus 7:40). If thou hast at any time seen a man die think that thou must also pass the same way.

3. In the morning imagine that thou shalt not live till night; and when evening comes presume not to promise thyself the next morning. Be therefore always prepared, and live in such a manner that death may never find thee unprovided. Many die suddenly and when they little think of it: "Because at what hour you know not the Son of man will come." (Matthew 24:44). When that last hour shall come thou wilt begin to have quite other thoughts of thy whole past life; and thou wilt be exceedingly grieved that thou hast been so negligent and remiss. (Wisdom 5:6).

4. How happy and prudent is he who strives to be such now in this life as he desires to be found at his death. For it will give a man a great confidence of dying happily if he has a perfect contempt of the world, a fervent desire of advancing in virtue, a love for discipline, the spirit of penance, a ready obedience, self-denial, and patience in bearing all adversities for the love of Christ. Thou mayest do many good things whilst thou art well, but when thou art sick I know not what thou wilt be able to do. Few are improved by sickness; so too they that travel much abroad seldom become holy.

5. Trust not in thy friends and relations, nor put off the welfare of thy soul to hereafter; for men will sooner forget thee than thou imaginest. It is better now to provide in time, and send some good before thee, than to trust to the help of others after thy death. (Matthew 6:20). If thou art not now careful for thyself who will be careful for thee hereafter? The present time is very precious; "Now is the acceptable time: now is the day of salvation." (2 Corinthians 6:2). But it is greatly to be lamented that thou dost not spend this time more profitably in which thou mayest acquire wherewith to live forever. The time will come when thou wilt wish for one day or hour to amend, and I know not whether thou shalt obtain it.

6. O my dearly beloved, from how great a danger mayest thou deliver thyself! from how great a fear mayest thou be freed if thou wilt but now be always fearful and looking for death! Strive now so to live that in the hour of thy death thou mayest rather rejoice than fear. Learn now to die to the world that then thou mayest begin to live with Christ. (Romans 6:8). Learn now to despise all things that then thou mayest freely go to Christ. Chastise thy body now by penance that thou mayest then have an assured confidence. (1 Corinthians 9:27).

7. Ah fool! why dost thou think to live long when thou art not sure of one day? (Luke 12:20). How many thinking to live long have been deceived and unexpectedly snatched away! How often hast thou heard related that such a man was slain by the sword; another drowned; another falling from on high broke his neck; this man died at the table; that other came to his end when he was at play. Some have perished by fire, some by the sword, some by pestilence, some by robbers: and thus death is the end of all, and man's life passeth suddenly like a shadow. (Ecclesiastes 7:1).

8. Who will remember thee when thou art dead, and who will pray for thee? Do now, beloved, do now all thou canst, because thou knowest not when thou shalt die; nor dost thou know what shall befall thee after death. Whilst thou hast time heap to thyself riches that will never die! (Matt. 6:20). Think of nothing but thy salvation, care for nothing but the things of God. Make now to thyself friends, by honoring the saints of God, and imitating their actions, that when thou shalt fail in this life they may receive thee into everlasting dwellings. (Luke 16:9).

9. Keep thyself as a pilgrim, and a stranger upon earth, to whom the affairs of this world do not in the least belong. (7 Peter 2:11). Keep thy heart free and raised upwards to God, because thou hast not here a lasting abode. Send thither thy daily prayers, with sighs and tears, that after death thy spirit may be worthy to pass happily to Our Lord. Amen.

Practical Reflections

To fear death, and not to avoid sin, which alone can make it really terrible, is to fear it unavailably for salvation; for, as Christians, we ought to dread it so as to make the fear of it the motive and rule of a good life. The great secret of dying happily is to live always in the same state in which we hope to die, and in which we desire that God may find us when our last hour shall have arrived. We should therefore do all the good and practice all the virtues now which we shall then wish to have done and practiced. Endeavor to die daily to some one of all those things which, when thou departest hence, thou must leave forever. Happy the Christian who dies often in spirit ere he quits the flesh. His death shall be holy and precious in the sight of God.


Knowing that I shall certainly die, but ignorant of the day, of the hour, and of the state of my soul, in which I shall depart hence, I beseech Thee, most blessed Saviour, by the merits of Thy sacred Passion, to prepare me for that awful moment. Assist me to become diligent in my employments, faithful to Thy graces, attentive at my prayers, regular in frequenting the Sacraments, and constant in the performance of those good works, and in the practice of those virtues which are proper for my state: that so, through Thy merits, I may experience consolation in my last moments, and leave this valley of tears in the assured hope of salvation. Grant that I may ever persevere in Thy grace, seek in all things to please Thee, and breathe only Thy love: for living thus, my Jesus, by Thee, for Thee, and like unto Thee, it will be at all times most advantageous for me to die, that I may never offend Thee more, but see, love, and enjoy Thee for all eternity Amen.

Quote from: Introduction to the Devout Life
Meditation Five: Death

  • Place yourself in the presence of God.
  • Entreat His grace
  • Imagine yourself to lie in extremity on your deathbed, without hope of recovery.

1. Consider the uncertainty of your dying day. O my soul, some day must thou quit this body. When will it be, summer or winter? In town or in the country? By day or night? Will it be suddenly or after due warning? Will it be in sickness or by an accident? Wilt thou have time to confess thy sins or not? Will thy spiritual father be present to assist thee? Alas! Of all this we know nothing; this only is certain, that die we must, and that for the most part sooner than we expect.

2. Consider that then the world is at an end, so far as regards you; there is none any more for you. Everything will be reversed, all pleasures, vanities, worldly joys, and vain attachments will then appear as mere phantoms and vapours. We is me, for what delusive trifles have I offended my God! Then will you discover that you have forsaken God for nothing! On the other hand, how beautiful and desirable will good works and devotion then appear; why have you not followed on that holy and blessed road? Truly at that hour sins which before seemed as trifles will wax great as the mountains, and how faint, how weak, will your devotion then appear!

3. Consider the painful and final farewell which your soul must take of this lower world. It must take leave of wealth, of vanities, vain society, of pleasure, of amusements, of friends and neighbours, of parents and children, of husband and wife, in short of everything earthly. Last all it must take leave of the body, which it will leave pale and sunken, forsaken, hideous, and vile.

4. Consider the haste with which that body will be hidden beneath the ground, and when that is done the world will scarcely bestow another thought upon you. Will in your turn be forgotten, as you have forgotten others. God rest his soul, will be said, and no more. O death, how unsparing, how pitiless thou art!

5. Consider that when the soul quits the body, it must go either to the left hand or the right. Whither will yours go? Which will be its path? Even such as it has chosen whilst on earth.

Quote from: Catechism of the Council of Trent

"The Resurrection of the Body"

That in this Article the resurrection of mankind is called the resurrection of the body, is a circumstance which deserves special attention. It was not, indeed, so named without a reason for the Apostles intended thus to convey a necessary truth, the immortality of the soul. Lest anyone, despite the fact that many passages of Scripture plainly teach that the soul is immortal, might imagine that it dies with the body, and that both are to be restored to life, the Creed speaks only of the resurrection of the body.

Although in Sacred Scripture the word flesh often signifies the whole man, as in Isaias, All flesh is grass, and in St. John, The Word was made flesh; yet in this place it is used to express the body only, thus giving us to understand that of the two constituent parts of man, soul and body, one only, that is, the body, is corrupted and returns to its original dust, while the soul remains incorrupt and immortal. As then, a man cannot be said to return to life unless he has previously died, so the soul could not with propriety be said to rise again.

The word body is also mentioned, in order to confute the heresy of Hymeneus and Philetus, who, during the lifetime of the Apostle, asserted that whenever the Scriptures speak of the resurrection, they are to be understood to mean not the resurrection of the body, but that of the soul, by which it rises from the death of sin to the life of grace. The words of this Article, therefore, as is clear, exclude that error, and establish a real resurrection of the body.