The Gospel reading from the Mass for Tuesday of the 17th Week of Ordinary Time is Matthew 13:36-43.

Pausing in His “Sermon of Parables” about the Kingdom of Heaven in Matthew 13, Christ responds to His disciples’ private request to explain the Parable of the Weeds among the Wheat. As with all Christ’s parables, mysteries are revealed in short, somewhat cryptic stories.

In the Parable of the Weeds among the Wheat, the Householder (Christ) sows good seed (the sons of the Kingdom) on His field (the world). The enemy (the Devil) sows weeds (the sons of the Devil). The Householder (Christ), unwilling to sacrifice the wheat (the sons of the Kingdom), will send His reapers (the Angels) at the harvest (the Judgment) to bring the wheat (the sons of the Kingdom) to His barn (Heaven) and to bind up the weeds (the sons of the Devil) and cast them into the furnace of fire (Hell) “where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

With directness, Christ confirms reality. God has complete dominion over the world. God loves and protects His men. God allows Satan and his “sons” to exist. In the Spiritual Combat of life, men are attacked by Satan and Satan’s men. God promises to judge the good and the evil, with Angels playing a key role. God’s sons, the righteous, will be blessed in the Father’s Kingdom. Those who follow Satan will be condemned to an excruciating Hell. God wins and Satan loses.

Awed by Jesus ChristSon of God, Christ confirms the reality of God’s absolute dominion, Satan, Heaven and Hell, Spiritual Combat, Angels, Judgment and eternal joy and punishment. Divine Judge, Christ will save the righteous and condemn the evil.  Divine King, Christ builds His Church and the priesthood by instructing the disciples privately.

Being a Heroic Catholic Man

1)  Much of what Christ says in this passage has recently been downplayed or ignored in the Church. Reflect on the Awed by Jesus Christ section above, letting the truth of Christ’s grave warning about the Last Four Things (Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell) permeate your soul.

2) In rebellion against God, the modern culture has “dumbed down” Satan: as a goofy Halloween character, as a good guy on TV and movies, fictionalized for entertainment in horror films, etc. The result is that many deem Satan to be a myth and to be ignored; this suits Satan’s purposes. Christ directly reveals the reality of Satan; a man who doesn’t take Satan seriously doesn’t take Christ seriously. Review the Catechisms’ teaching on Satan/Demons (CCC 391-395, 2850-2854) and pray for Christ to protect you, your family and all Christ’s children from Satan and Satan’s converts.

3) As with Satan, the modern culture trivializes Angels; baseball teams, lingerie models, fictional characters “earning their wings”, etc.  Reflect on the Catechism’s teaching on Angels (CCC 328-336) and pray for Christ to help you draw closure in the protection of your Guardian Angel.

Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers

Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Sorrowful Mysteries

Daily Devotion – The Guardian Angels

Virtue of the Day – Justice

Corporal Work of Mercy – To clothe the naked

Spiritual Work of Mercy – To counsel the doubtful