Week 20:
The Lord’s Day

“From now on a household of five will be divided, three against two and two against three ...” (Luke 12:52.)

Saint Ambrose of Milan offers the following insight on this verse from today’s Gospel proclamation:

“Even according to the letter, a religious explanation is not lacking for those with a devout understanding. We think a deeper meaning should also be explained. He added, “There will be from now on five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three.” Who are these five, when the exposition given seems to be of six persons, father and son, mother and daughter, mother-in-law and daughter-in-law? The same woman can be understood as both mother and mother-in-law, because she who is the mother of the son is the mother-in-law of his wife. According to the letter, the reason for the number is not absurd. It is evident that bonds of nature do not bind faith, because children are obedient in faith because of the duty of piety.

It also seems suitable to explain this meaning with a mystical interpretation. One man is one house, because each is the house of either God or the devil. A spiritual man is a spiritual house, as we have in the epistle of Peter, “Be also as living stories built up, a spiritual house, a holy priesthood.” In this house, two are divided against three and three against two.” (Exposition on the Gospel of Luke, 7.)

O God,
Who have prepared for those who love You
good things which no eye can see,
fill our hearts, we pray,
with the warmth of Your love,
so that,
loving You in all things and above all things,
we may attain Your promises,
which surpass every human desire.
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