Today’s “Responsorial Psalm” appearing just before the Gospel reading is a portion of Psalm 95, one of my very favorites for pure contemplative prayer. We don’t need to try to answer anything, or figure anything out, but simply remain quiet our as we ponder the words and marvel at the great majesty, power and glory of God.
The Response for each verse for participants at Mass is that beautiful call to not rebel and resist God when we hear Him, but with tender hearts, like soft welcoming soil for the seed of God’s Word [Jesus] we are to “implant” in our heart so it can take root, grow, transform us into a branch on the Divine Vine:
“If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts.”
I’ve reproduced the entire Psalm and will keep my comments to a minimum this morning, offering just one observation that connects the Psalm to today’s Gospel.
The very first sentence invites us to “…cry out to the rock of our salvation,” which ties in with the Gospel for today, where Jesus asks His disciples “Who do people say I am?” then, “Who do YOU say I am?” with Peter’s response: “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
A person gets a sense reading that Gospel that Jesus had previously envisioned that very moment happening, when he first called the famous fisherman Simon, son of Jonah, when he “renamed” Simon “Peter,” which literally means “rock” in Greek.
But here is an important question, especially when, as a Roman Catholic, I see Pope Francis standing with a Rothschild and seemingly endorsing the UN 2030 Agenda moving the world toward an undemocratic global tyranny.
IS PETER THE “ROCK”? OR IS THE “ROCK” WHAT PETER SAID?
The answer is clearly the latter – the declaration by Peter that Jesus is the only Son of God.
That is why that if Pope Francis was to grow horns and declare a special feast day for satan, I’d still not abandon the teaching of the Catholic Church, which is the “Magisterium” – the foundational doctrines and teachings that have come down through the ages in tact, faithful to the authentic teachings of Jesus, which represents that immovable “Rock” that we must hold fast to – the Truth that saves us: our belief that Jesus is our Lord and Saviour.
This is the “rock” that is the foundational Creed of the Church: the declaration that Jesus is the Lord, the son of God, the messiah, the Christ (“anointed one”) and our redeemer who gave up his life in a sorrowful, tortuous passion for love of us, so we might be saved from the corruption and death that comes from enslavement to sin.
The Greek word used for “Peter” is Petros, meaning “a little rock” or pebble that you can throw, whereas the “Rock” upon which Jesus said he would build His Church that the Gates of Hell would not prevail against was “Petras” meaning AN UNMOVABLE rock or cliff:
That is what we must hold fast to in these times of confusion and great deception – the solid foundation upon which we must build our house:
“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.” [Matthew 7:24-25].
“Jesus, we praise you for your great glory, seated at the right-hand of our Father in heaven, and we await your return. Until then, pour forth your Spirit so we may abide in your heart, think your thoughts, be inspired with your great love and mercy, and be empowered to work for the greater glory of God to bring others news of the salvation you offer, and the promise of eternal life with God, where peace and joy and justice will reign in the community of love which is the redeemed family of God and all the angelic hosts of heaven.” Amen