Catholic Men’s Daily Devotional and Bible Study – 1st Week of Advent – Monday – Matthew 8:5-11
Continuing to demonstrate His miraculous power after the Sermon on the Mount, Christ enters Capernaum and encounters a Roman Centurion, a soldier who commanded about a 100 soldiers. The Centurion, in a startling act of humility, begs Christ for help, explaining that his servant is paralyzed and in great distress. Undaunted by Jewish laws that limited interaction with Gentiles, Jesus agrees immediately to “come and heal” the servant.
The Centurion calls Jesus “Lord”, asking Him to perform a healing miracle from a distance because of the Centurion’s unworthiness and because Jews were not supposed to enter a Gentile’s house (Acts 10:28). The Centurion has complete trust in Jesus’s authority and supernatural power to perform miracles from afar.
Jesus “marveled” (one of the few times recorded in the Gospel) and announces to the crowd that the Gentile Centurion’s faith exceeds any expression of faith by Jews. Shockingly, Jesus proclaims that Gentiles will be saved (i.e. from the east and west) and many Jews will not be. Jesus credits the Centurion’s belief and He miraculously and instantly heals the servant from afar.
Awed by Jesus Christ – Son of God, Christ has absolute authority and power over Creation. Omniscient, Christ can diagnose an illness from afar and has the knowledge to cure it. Divine Physician, Christ has the supernatural power to change the physiology of a person from afar. Divine Judge, Christ reveals many will judged as unworthy of the Heavenly Banquet. Son of Man, Christ has incredible stamina, keeping up a grueling pace of travel, speaking and healing.
Being a Heroic Catholic Man
1) Trillions are spent on health care each year on legions of medical workers, diagnostic equipment and drugs. Reflect on the truth that the Son of Man has the supernatural power to simply heal any illness with His Will.
2) A key reason for the Catholic “man-crisis” is that many Catholic men are not moved by the false feminized Jesus so often portrayed; men will not follow a false feminized Christ. Consider the ultimate Man, the Almighty King and how the Roman warrior humbles himself before Christ. During this first week of Advent, commit to grow in your respect for Our Almighty King.
3) Millions of Catholic men have gone cold in their faith or lost it completely. Does Christ “marvel” at your faith? Pray that He send the Holy Spirit to help you grow in faith like the Centurion’s during this Advent.
Spiritual Practices – Include in Today’s Prayers
Sacred Mystery of Rosary – The Joyful Mysteries
Daily Devotion – The Souls in Purgatory
Virtue of the Day – Prudence
Corporal Work of Mercy – To give drink to the thirsty
Spiritual Work of Mercy – To instruct the ignorant