One Minute Reflection – 29 September – The Feast of the Dedication of the Archangel St Michael – Apocalypse 1:1-5, Matthew 18:1-10 – Scripture Search here: https://www.drbo.org/
“At that time, the disciples came to Jesus, saying, ‘who then is greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven?’ And Jesus called a little child unto Him, set him in their midst and said, ‘Amen I say to you, unless you turn and become like little children, you will not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven. Whoever, therefore, humbles himself as this little child, he is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven. And whoever receives one such little child for My sake, receives Me.’” – Matthew 18:1-5
REFLECTION – “We must seek for reasons for individual sayings and actions of the Lord. After the coin was found, after the tribute paid, what do the Apostles’ sudden questions mean? Why precisely “at that time” did the disciples come to Jesus saying, “Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven?” Because they had seen that the same tax had been paid for both Peter and the Lord. From the equal price, they inferred that Peter may have been set over all the other Apostles, since Peter had been compared with the Lord in the paying of the tax. So they ask, who is greater in the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus, seeing their thoughts and understanding the causes of their error, wants to heal their desire for glory, with a struggle for humility.
He called a child to Him to ask its age or to show the image of innocence. Or perhaps, He actually set a child in their midst — He Himself, Who had not come to be served but to serve — to show them an example of humility.
Whoever humbles himself like this child, he is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven. Just as this child, whose example I show you, does not persist in anger, does not long remember injury suffered, is not enamoured inordinately by the sight of a beautiful woman, does not think one thing and say another, so you too, unless you have similar innocence and purity of mind, will not be able to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Or it might be taken in another way: “Whosoever, therefore, humiliates himself like this child, is greater in the Kingdom of Heaven,” so as to imply that anyone who imitates Me and humiliates himself following My example, so that he abases himself, as much as I abased Myself in accepting the form of a servant, will enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” – St Jerome (343-420) Priest, Monk, Translator of the Scriptures, Father and Doctor of the Church (Commentary on Matthew 3).
PRAYER – O God, Who assign according to a wondrous order, the duties of Angels and men, mercifully grant that our life on earth be guarded by those who continually stand in Thy presence and minister to Thee in Heaven. Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).