"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." Indeed! St. Paul is talking about you and me, poor miserable sinners living in the 21st Century, on the very eve of the final manifestation of the Antichrist. As I see it, time is speeding up and evil is growing at an exponential rate. So how can we hope to endure unto the end, when the flow of time shall come to a screeching halt and we shall all stand naked before the dread Judgment Seat of Christ?....Only by the grace of God, which is given to all those who strive and struggle for salvation.
In today's Gospel, the rich ruler turned sorrowfully away when he was told there was one thing lacking: he must sell everything he owns, give the money to the poor...and come follow Jesus. This was the one thing he could not do, however, because he was so enraptured and caught up in this transitory, earthly life that he could no longer break free from the bonds that enslaved him.
But just consider: while it is true that none of us are rich in worldly possessions, we are, nevertheless, no less bound to the distractions of this earthly life than the rich ruler. But Christ's command that we give up all that we apparently have for the sake of His Kingdom applies to every one of us.
It is impossible to serve two masters: either we dedicate our lives totally to Christ and His heavenly Kingdom, putting on the whole armor of God and fighting against the powers of darkness, or else our faith is a mere pretense and we shall in the end be cast from the presence of God.