ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Avoiding the Error of the Unprincipled

Updated on June 2, 2022

“No thief, however skillful, can rob one of knowledge, and that is why knowledge is the best and safest treasure to acquire.“ ~ L. Frank Baum

In today’s 1st Reading (2 Peter 3:12-15, 17-18) Saint Peter is downright apocalyptic, urging those in his midst to “wait for and hasten the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved in flames, and the elements melted by fire.” He goes on to speak of the new Heaven and the new Earth, a term that, to my knowledge, is only used elsewhere biblically in the Book of Revelation, the ultimate prophetic scriptural text. He urges them to be found without blemish on the day when his friend Jesus returns, to be “on guard not to be led into the error of the unprincipled,” thus falling into instability and confusion. For Saint Peter, it was always about knowing and acknowledging the enemy, the relentless “roaring lion” (1 Peter 5:8), he who is forever on the prowl for new souls to devour; he speaks of course about Satan.

It’s interesting that the church today would celebrate the Feast Day of Saints Marcellinus and Peter, 4th Century Martyrs of the Church. Marcellinus was a priest, Peter an exorcist. With regard to the latter’s treacherous occupation, I can’t help but think of the words of Michael Brown in his foreword to Father Dwight Longenecker’s provocative new book “Immortal Combat” when he asks “Do those at the helm of Catholicism roam the hinterlands, commanding demons to leave the afflicted, as Jesus and his Apostles did?” He goes on to lament the fact that there would seem to be little to no instruction on matters pertaining to demonic manifestations; we instead rely on movies to explain such things. Spiritual warfare is rarely even contemplated much less addressed with the attention it so warrants. It would seem that there are more canon lawyers ~ substantially more ~ then there are exorcists in today’s Catholic Church, a troubling sign of the times for sure. Whenever I met someone who does not even believe in Satan’s existence, my concern for that individual immediately heightens. How can one win a battle which he or she does not ever know that they are engaged in?

To indulge in the tragic “error of the unprincipled” that Peter warned of could have devastating consequences for the fate of our eternal soul. We must seek to constantly grow in knowledge, a gift of the Holy Spirit. To grow in grace and in the knowledge of Jesus, we must immerse ourselves in scripture, commit ourselves to the cultivation of a vibrant prayer life, and pursue the corporal and spiritual works of mercy that Jesus insists are a prerequisite to eternal life (Matthew 25:31-40).

It means reading a good spiritual book in favor of the latest hit novel every now and again. Or turning off cable news or Netflix to instead watch EWTN at least an hour or so every week. In a similar vein I am a huge proponent of Catholic Radio. As Saint John Paul II once said “if Saint Paul we’re alive today, he’d be evangelizing on Catholic Radio. Might I recommend AM1160 The Quest, a Catholic Radio Station near and dear to me. In addition to streaming it online you can download the App and listen to The Quest no matter the time, the day or the location. Simply go to the App Store and search on “The Quest Atlanta.” There is no change for this amazing App; before you know it, you’ll be listening to the most prominent Catholic Voices on the scene today, growing in the spiritual gifts of wisdom and knowledge in the process. It means Eucharistic Adoration, again, at least one hour a week. Entering into the mysteries of the Holy Rosary, preferably every day.

The spiritual gift of knowledge opens the door to understanding, another coveted gift of the Holy Spirit. As Albert Einstein once said, ”Any fool can know. The point is to understand.” In this day and age, the ability to discern truth from trickery is more vital than ever. You can be assured there is always someone looking to promulgate more complex and diabolical methods with which to spread lies and deception

For the enlightened Catholic, tbe pursuit of knowledge is a never ending journey. Until we bask in the radiant splendor of Jesus’ face, we will never achieve a complete and total view of divine revelation. We know however that God freely and generously gives the Gifts of the Spirit to all those who pursue them. As is the case with every intimate and meaningful relationship, the joy is in the journey. Pursue knowledge of Jesus and knowledge of our faith with great zeal and joy. For in the words of Maya Angelou “I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better”

“Saints Marcellinus & Peter, Martyrs for our faith, pray and intercede for us“


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)