Jesus reveals the stunning truth of the Almighty Father in the Lord’s Prayer. Every Catholic man can grow in happiness by building the Virtues of Observance and Prayer so he can draw closer to the Almighty Father through the Our Father and by growing in the Virtue of Duty so he can strive to be a heroic Catholic father.
1st Week of Lent – Tuesday – Mt 6:7-15
After condemning conspicuous piety and teaching men the appropriate way to pray, fast and give alms in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus now gives men the glorious Our Father. In preparation, Jesus first condemns “showy” prayer done in public by hypocrites to get noticed and condemns repetitive “prayers” pagans babbled to their numerous false gods in their futile attempts to get at least one false god to respond.
Jesus turns to the model for Christian prayer, the Our Father. Calling God “Father”, Jesus reveals God’s purposeful intention to be understood and approached by men as a loving “Father”, confirming the essential human need for fathers as leaders, protectors, and providers, and for patriarchy as the ideal model for the family, the Holy Catholic Church and society. The Father’s name is to be “hallowed”, a reminder of The 2nd Commandment requires the Holy Name of God is to be held in highest esteem. Jesus reasserts the reality of the Father’s Kingdom, that men are to pray for the Father’s Kingdom (again, a patriarchy), and for His Will to be obediently accepted by all people on earth.
Jesus emphasizes man’s dependence on God the Father in daily life. He teaches men are totally dependent on the Father for daily bread, including bodily nourishment (everyday food) and spiritual nourishment (the supernatural bread of the Eucharist). The Greek word, epiousios, a word Jesus invented and not found elsewhere in ancient Greek, is commonly translated as “daily” (“daily bread”) but the Catechism suggests “super-essential” (CCC 2837) is a more accurate translation of Jesus’ revelation of man’s need for the life-saving blessing of the Eucharist. In a stunning call to perfection and a grave warning, Jesus reveals God will forgive men for their trespasses in the same way that men forgive the trespasses of other men. Jesus ends with the plea to the Father to protect men from temptation, a veiled reference to Satan’s action in the world: Matthew’s version ends with “and deliver us from [the] evil [One]”
Be awed by Jesus Christ
Be awed by Jesus, the Divine Priest, as He teaches men to pray the Our Father: Son of the Father, Jesus has Divine Knowledge as to how the Father prefers to receive prayers; He embeds the mysterious word, epiousios, a prophecy of the Sacrament of the Eucharist; the perfection of Justice, Jesus reveals that men will be rewarded or punished (Vindication, a part of Justice) based on if they forgive others or not.
Draw close to the Father through the Our Father
Realize: Jesus, through His preaching and personal example, urges every Catholic man to draw close to God the Father.
Believe: Reflect upon the astounding power of the Our Father (CCC 2759-2865).
Pray: Jesus, Son of the Father, help me build the Virtues of Observance and Prayer (parts of Justice) so I observe and honor Your Father and draw close to Him by praying the Our Father each day of my life.
Strive to be a heroic Catholic father
Realize: In these dark times when God the Father and fatherhood is denied and denigrated, Jesus’ purposeful gift of the Our Father needs to be zealously prayed to help reestablish the centrality of fatherhood in the family, the Church and society.
Believe: Reflect upon your duty to Commit to be a Catholic father (CCC 2214; 2221-2231).
Pray: Almighty and Most Gracious Father, help me build the Virtue of Duty/Responsibility (a part of Justice) so I commit to be a heroic Catholic father, strive to fulfill the duties and disciplines of Catholic fathers and lead my family to serve Your Father.