Catholic Men’s Daily Devotional and Bible Study – 16th Week in Ordinary time – Wednesday – Matthew 13:1-9
After withdrawing to avoid the murderous plans of the Pharisees, Jesus teaches the huge crowds that follow Him with a series of parables about the hidden mysteries of His Kingdom present in the Church. A parable is short story that uses familiar images to draw the willing to ponder a cryptic deeper truth. Christ uses parables to draw the humble to ponder and hunger for God and to conceal His teachings from the prideful and to pronounce judgment on those who reject Him.
Leaving the house, Christ went out to sit by the Sea of Galilee. Because of the crush of a great crowd that followed Him, He went out in a boat to teach those standing on the shore. Using His knowledge of natural acoustics and His robust voice, the thousands on the shore can hear Him.
Christ begins with the Parable of the Sower, using imagery very familiar to the crowd; all were familiar with agriculture and Jews would recall that the “Sower” often refers to God in the Old Testament (Isa 55:10-11; Jer 31:27-28). This magnificent parable describes the disposition of men to hear God, the Spiritual Combat, the confirmation of Satan’s work in the world and God’s expectations of men to be fruitful.
Awed by Jesus Christ – Son of Man, Christ uses His immense physical power and stamina to be heard by large crowds. Divine Teacher, full of Wisdom and the Greatest Orator, Christ uses compelling and memorable parables that draw on everyday experience to selectively teach those willing to hear. Divine Judge, Christ uses parables to reveal the truth about eternal reward and eternal punishment.
Being a Heroic Catholic Man
1) Today, the powerful have little to say and talk too much; they read their focus-group-tested speeches off teleprompters and have their voices amplified with loudspeakers. Marvel at the profound Wisdom that bursts forth from Christ and how His powerful manly voice can be heard by thousands despite the outdoor seaside setting.
2) In the busyness of working, being a husband and father and the many distractions of entertainment and sport, Catholic men often neglect Christ. Like the great crowds of men who were drawn to Christ during the Incarnation, choose to hear His call and draw close to Him; commit to take a Holy Hour in Adoration this week.
3) Christ purposefully gave the Parable of the Sower as a call to all men across time. Ponder what Christ is saying to you in the Parable of the Sower.
Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers
Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Glorious Mysteries
Daily Devotion – Saint Joseph
Virtue of the Day – Temperance
Corporal Work of Mercy – To visit the imprisoned
Spiritual Work of Mercy – To comfort the sorrowful