Ordinary Time Week 18: Thursday

“Then he strictly ordered his disciples to tell no one that he was the Messiah.” (Matthew 16:20)

Origen of Alexandria comments on this verse from the Gospel proclaimed at Mass today:

”What he intended when he forbade them to publicly declare him Christ is clarified in part by “From that time Jesus began to show his disciples how he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders” and the following thoughts. At the right time and in the right way, he proclaimed to those who knew that Jesus was Christ, Son of the living God (the Father had revealed this to them), that rather than believing in Jesus Christ already crucified, they should believe in Jesus Christ soon to be crucified. So also, instead of believing in Jesus Christ already risen from the dead, they should believe in “Jesus Christ soon to be raised from the dead.”

“Having put off from himself the principalities and powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in the cross.” If anyone is ashamed of the cross of Christ, he is ashamed of the agency by which these powers were defeated. The one who both believes and is assured of these things should, more appropriately, glory in the cross of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Through that cross, when Christ was crucified, the principalities (among them, I think, was also the prince of this world) were publicly humiliated and paraded before the eyes of the believing world.” (Commentary on Matthew, 12)

Draw near to Your servants, O Lord,
and answer their prayers with unceasing kindness,
that, for those who glory in You
as their Creator and guide,
You may restore what You have created
and keep safe what You have restored.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son,
who lives and reigns with You
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Glory to the Father
and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning,
is now, and will be forever. Amen