24 Sunday in Ordinary Time ‘b’
Evil is truly present in the world; Satan is present. It is not only a character in the movies and horror stories. And Satan will always try to manipulate us and convince us to act against God’s will. At times those manipulations are so clever that it is hard to distinguish what is right and what is wrong. In the gospel reading for today, Peter, who obviously loves his Master and wants to save Him from any pain and harm, rebuked Him when He predicted His upcoming suffering and death. “Get behind me, Satan. You are thinking not as God does, but as human beings do.” Very strong words to Peter! But I think that they were not so much addressed directly to Peter, but to Evil One who spoke through Peter. Jesus knew exactly what He must undertake, but Peter didn’t understand all this. So, Satan used that weakness of Peter’s heart and tempted him to rebuke Jesus. We need to be always watchful and careful because the same Satan knows the weaknesses of our hearts, and will use that in order to get us to act against God’s will.