In his weekly general audience earlier today at the Vatican, Pope Benedict XVI told a crowd of 8,000 that the image of a future world devoid of evil and described in the scriptures is possible if faithful take the side of God, building a culture of love and justice.
After noting that today ends the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, which had been the focus of much of his work recently, the Pope returned to his ongoing catechesis on the Psalms, this time reflecting on the second part of Psalm 143, which he called "The king's prayer."
Benedict explained that this Psalm "sings of the final goal of history, when the voice of evil will finally be silent." It also makes mentions "of evildoers, seen as oppressors of the people of God and of their faith.”
He pointed out however, that “this negative aspect is followed by the positive, to which far greater space is dedicated, that of the new and joyful world that is about to come into being.”
“This”, he said, “is the true 'shalom,' the messianic 'peace,' a luminous horizon expressed in a series of images drawn from daily life: for us too, these can become an expression of hope for a more just society."
The Pope then reflected on these images which include that of "the family based on the vitality of the generations," that of "economic life, the countryside and crops," and finally "the city, in other words the entire civil community finally enjoying the precious gift of peace and of public order."
"This picture”, he said, “of a different but possible world is entrusted to the work of the Messiah and of His people. All together we can put this project of peace and harmony into effect, bringing an end to the destructive action of hatred, violence and war.”
The Holy Father said that before this can come about however, “it is necessary to make a choice, taking the side of God, of love and of justice."
He said that this reference is "to the new covenant announced by the prophets and consummated in Christ, to the new man, to the hallelujah of a life renewed and redeemed, to the novelty of Christ and His Gospel."