10 Sep 2021

This Week Letter – September 12, 2021

0 Comment

Jesus asked them, “And who do you say that I am?”

Today’s Gospel is another lesson that Jesus teaches to all listeners, both to the apostles to whom the above question was addressed and to us today.

Jesus knew the hearts of his disciples very well, so this question was to help them understand the spiritual path more than to test the rumors about him.

Peter replied on behalf of the other disciples, “You are the Messiah.” This answer, as we hear, was not revealed to him through “flesh and blood,” but was given to him by the Father who is in heaven. (Mt 16:17). It contains, as in a seed, the future proclamation of faith of the Church. But now Peter did not understand the profundity of Jesus’ messianic mission, with the new meaning of the word Messiah. Today, he is running after his own imagination, the dream of a great liberating Messiah, who would live up to the expectations of the people by imposing his power on all of them.

How many people today would like the Lord to impose His power and change the world immediately. We, too, want a God who will be strong in the world and transform everything according to our ideas and needs. And Jesus, the humble Servant of God, turns the crowd’s expectations upside down and follows the path of humility and suffering.

This is what we must constantly learn: accept Jesus in the truth of his mission and reject all expectations that are too human.

That is why Jesus explains to the disciples that the Messiah will suffer a lot and will be killed, and after three days he will rise again. Then Peter begins to exhort his Master not to speak of suffering and death, and that everything will be well, humanly speaking. Jesus’ reaction is exceedingly strong: “Get out of my sight, Satan.” – literally in the Greek original: “Get (behind) me, Satan”. It is not up to you to show me the way; I go my own way and you should follow me. Thus, Peter learned what it really meant to follow Jesus. It is a demanding rule: one must be able, if necessary, to renounce the whole world in order to save the most important values, save the soul, save faith in God. This is a great lesson for us. God chooses the way of changing hearts in suffering and humility. And we, like Peter, must constantly convert. We must follow Jesus, not before him: it is He who shows us the way.