Jesus reveals Satan’s attacks, Peter’s denials and that men must engage in the spiritual battle. Every Catholic man can grow in happiness by building the Virtue of Studiousness so he can be guided by the Spirit and Tradition when reading Scripture and by pursuing the Virtue of Magnificence so he can always be prepared to heroically engage in the spiritual battle.
See: Holy Week – The Passion of Our Lord – Sunday – Cycle C – Lk 22:14-23:56
After washing the Apostles’ feet and Judas’ departure to betray Jesus at the Last Supper and giving the Apostles the new commandment to love one another, Jesus now begins to prepare the Apostles for their awful coming abandonment of Him during the Passion.
Simon Peter, already agitated by Judas’ betrayal, perhaps speaking for all the Apostles, worries about being separated from Jesus. Jesus confirms that Peter will indeed follow Him, a veiled reference to Peter’s coming martyrdom and resurrection. Jesus reveals that all of the remaining apostles will abandon Him “this very night” (Mt 26:31). Jesus reveals that Satan has asked to cause Peter to fall away and that Jesus has prayed that Peter will not lose faith and be a leader who strengthens the rest of the Apostles. Peter makes the brash promise that he will “lay down his life” for Jesus and Jesus offers a rebuke with a question, “Will you really lay down your life for Me?” Jesus reveals the terrible truth that Peter will deny Him three times before the cock crows. Peter emphatically responds that he will never deny Jesus and the other Apostles say the same (Mk 14:31).
Mercifully choosing not to correct Peter, Jesus now turns to help the Apostles to be prepared and on guard for the coming persecutions in the spiritual battle. In contrast to when He sent them on the evangelization mission without provisions (Mt 10:9-10), Jesus affirms they need to use all their spiritual resources using the analogy of a purse, bag, a sword. The Apostles believe He means material things and confirm they have two swords, missing His point and frustrating Him. Later, Jesus will rebuke Peter’s violent use of a sword during the Agony in the Garden (Lk 22:49-51).
Be awed by Jesus Christ
Be astounded by the Divine Knowledge of Jesus: Divine Prophet, Jesus reveals the reality of Satan and Satan’s plans to attack Peter, the fact that Peter will deny Him with astonishing precision (3 times, when the cock crows), and the desperate need for the Apostles to be prepared to take up the heroic and magnificent work of the spiritual battle so they can survive Satan’s attacks.
Be guided by the Spirit and Tradition when reading Scripture
Realize: Just as the Apostles misinterpret Jesus’ words as guidance to commit violence, many men attempt to read and interpret Jesus’ words in Scripture through their own or others’ false interpretations, falling into sin by turning away from Jesus and His Holy Catholic Church; every Catholic man is called to read and interpret Holy Scripture guided by the Holy Spirit and through “the living Tradition of the whole Church.”
Believe: Reflect upon How the Holy Spirit Interprets Scripture (CCC 109-119).
Pray: Almighty Father, help me grow in the Virtue of Studiousness (a part of Temperance) so I build a life-long daily discipline of reading Scripture, guided by the Holy Spirit through Your Holy Catholic Church, and grow in holiness.
Heroically engage in the Spiritual Battle
Realize: Jesus reveals the startling truth that Satan exists, fervently desires to attack and corrupt Christ’s men, and that His men must always take up the magnificent work of the spiritual battle.
Believe: Reflect upon the Spiritual Battle (CCC 405, 407-409, 921, 1496, 2015, 2516, 2573, 2725, 2752).
Pray: My Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, help me build the Virtue of Magnificence (a part of Fortitude) so I can more vigorously engage in the heroic spiritual battle against Satan’s many temptations and magnificently strive to reject sin and grow in holiness every day of my life.