St Luke 22:47-62

St Luke 22:

47 Adhuc eo loquente, ecce turba: et qui vocabatur Judas, unus de duodecim, antecedebat eos, et appropinquavit Jesu ut oscularetur eum. 48 Jesus autem dixit illi: Juda, osculo Filium hominis tradis? 49 Videntes autem hi qui circa ipsum erant, quod futurum erat, dixerunt ei: Domine, si percutimus in gladio? 50 Et percussit unus ex illis servum principis sacerdotum, et amputavit auriculam ejus dexteram. 51 Respondens autem Jesus, ait: Sinite usque huc. Et cum tetigisset auriculam ejus, sanavit eum. 52 Dixit autem Jesus ad eos qui venerant ad se principes sacerdotum, et magistratus templi, et seniores: Quasi ad latronem existis cum gladiis et fustibus? 53 Cum quotidie vobiscum fuerim in templo, non extendistis manus in me: sed hæc est hora vestra, et potestas tenebrarum.54 Comprehendentes autem eum, duxerunt ad domum principis sacerdotum: Petrus vero sequebatur a longe. 55 Accenso autem igne in medio atrii et circumsedentibus illis, erat Petrus in medio eorum. 56 Quem cum vidisset ancilla quædam sedentem ad lumen, et eum fuisset intuita, dixit: Et hic cum illo erat. 57 At ille negavit eum, dicens: Mulier, non novi illum. 58 Et post pusillum alius videns eum, dixit: Et tu de illis es. Petrus vero ait: O homo, non sum. 59 Et intervallo facto quasi horæ unius, alius quidam affirmabat, dicens: Vere et hic cum illo erat: nam et Galilæus est. 60 Et ait Petrus: Homo, nescio quid dicis. Et continuo, adhuc illo loquente, cantavit gallus. 61 Et conversus Dominus respexit Petrum, et recordatus est Petrus verbi Domini, sicut dixerat: Quia priusquam gallus cantet, ter me negabis. 62 Et egressus foras Petrus flevit amare.

[47] As he was yet speaking, behold a multitude; and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near to Jesus, for to kiss him. [48] And Jesus said to him: Judas, dost thou betray the Son of man with a kiss? [49] And they that were about him, seeing what would follow, said to him: Lord, shall we strike with the sword? [50] And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.[51] But Jesus answering, said: Suffer ye thus far. And when he had touched his ear, he healed him. [52] And Jesus said to the chief priests, and magistrates of the temple, and the ancients, that were come unto him: Are ye come out, as it were against a thief, with swords and clubs? [53] When I was daily with you in the temple, you did not stretch forth your hands against me: but this is your hour, and the power of darkness. [54] And apprehending him, they led him to the high priest' s house. But Peter followed afar off. [55] And when they had kindled a fire in the midst of the hall, and were sitting about it, Peter was in the midst of them.[56] Whom when a certain servant maid had seen sitting at the light, and had earnestly beheld him, she said: This man also was with him. [57] But he denied him, saying: Woman, I know him not. [58] And after a little while, another seeing him, said: Thou also art one of them. But Peter said: O man, I am not. [59] And after the space, as it were of one hour, another certain man affirmed, saying: Of a truth, this man was also with him; for he is also a Galilean. [60] And Peter said: Man, I know not what thou sayest. And immediately, as he was yet speaking, the cock crew.[61] And the Lord turning looked on Peter. And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, as he had said: Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. [62] And Peter going out, wept bitterly. 

Commentary (Catena Aurea)

CHRYS. For just as incurable wounds yield neither to severe nor soothing remedies, so the soul when once it is taken captive, and has sold itself to any particular sin, will reap no benefit from admonition. And so it was with Judas, who desisted not from His betrayal, though deterred by Christ by every manner of warning. Hence it follows, And drew near to Jesus to kiss him. 

CYRIL; Unmindful of the glory of Christ, he thought to be able to act secretly, daring to make an especial token of love the instrument of his treachery...

PSEUDO-AUG. For to Peter were delivered the keys of the kingdom of heaven, to him were entrusted an innumerable multitude of people, who were wrapped up in sin. But Peter was somewhat too vehement, as the cutting off the ear of the High Priest's servant ant betokens. If he then who was so stern and so severe had obtained the gift of not sinning, what pardon would he have given to the people committed to him? Therefore Divine Providence suffers him first to beholden of sin, that by the consciousness of his own fall he might soften his too harsh judgment towards sinners. When he wished to warm himself at the fire, a maid came to him, of whom it follows, But a certain maid beheld him, &c. 

AMBROSE; What means it, that a maid is the first to betray Peter, whereas surely men ought the more easily to have recognized him, save that that sex should be plainly implicated in our Lord's murder, in order that it might also be redeemed by His Passion; But Peter when discovered denies, for better that Peter should have denied, than our Lord's word should have failed. Hence it follows, And he denied, saying, Woman, I know him not.

AUG. What ails you, Peter, your voice is suddenly changed? That mouth full of faith and love, is turned to hatred and unbelief. Not yet awhile is the scourge applied, not yet the instruments of torture. Your interrogator is no one of authority, who might cause alarm to the confessor. The mere voice of a woman asks the question, and she perhaps not about to divulge your confession, nor yet a woman, but a door-keeper, a mean slave.

AMBROSE; Peter denied, because he promised rashly. He does not deny on the mount, nor in the temple, nor in his own house, but in the judgment-hall of the Jews. There he denies where Jesus was bound, where truth is not. And denying Him he says, I know him not. 

It were presumptuous to say that he knew Him whom the human mind can not grasp. For no one knows the Son but the Father. Again, a second time he denies Christ; for it follows, And after a little while another saw him, and said, You were also one of them.

AUG. And it is supposed that in the second denial he was addressed by two persons, namely, by the maid whom Matthew and Mark mention, and by another whom Luke speaks of. With respect then to what Luke here relates, And after a little while, &c. Peter had already gone out of the gate, and the cock had crowed the first time, as Mark says; and now he had returned, that, as John says, he might again deny standing by the fire. Of which denial it follows, And Peter said, Man, I am not. 

AMBROSE, For he preferred to deny himself rather than Christ, or because he seemed to deny being of the company of Christ, he truly denied himself. 

BEDE; In this denial then of Peter we affirm that not only is Christ denied by him who says that He is not Christ, but by him also, who, being a Christian, says he is not.

AMBROSE; He is also asked a third time; for it follows, And about the space of one hour after, another confidently affirmed, saying, Of a truth this fellow also was with him.

AUG. What Matthew and Mark call after a little while, Luke explains by saying, about the space of one hour after; but with regard to the space of time, John says nothing. Likewise when Matthew and Mark record not in the singular but in the plural number those who conversed with Peter, while Luke and John speak of one, we may easily suppose either that Matthew and Mark used the plural for the singular by a common form of speech, or that one person in particular addressed Peter, as being the one who had seen him, and that others trusting to his credit joined in pressing him. But now as to the words which Matthew asserts were said to Peter himself, Truly you are one of them, for your speech betrays you; as also those which to the same Peter, John declared to have been said, Did not I see you in the garden? whereas Mark and Luke state that they spoke to one another concerning Peter; we either believe that they held the right opinion who say that they were really addressed to Peter; (for what was said concerning him in his presence amounts to the same as if it had been said to him;) or that they were said in both ways, and that some of the Evangelists related them one way, some the other... 

AMBROSE; That is, I know not your blasphemies. But we make excuse for him. He did not excuse himself. For an involved answer is not sufficient for our confessing Jesus, but an open confession is required. And therefore Peter is not represented to have answered this deliberately, for he afterwards recollected himself, and wept.

BEDE; Holy Scripture is often wont to mark the character of certain events by the nature of the times in which they take place. Hence Peter who sinned at midnight repented at cock-crow; for it follows, And immediately, while be yet spoke, the cock crew. The error he committed in the darkness of forgetfulness, he corrected by the remembrance of the true light. 

AUG. The cock-crow we understand to have been after the third denial of Peter, as Mark has expressed it. 

BEDE; This cock must, I think, be understood mystically as some great Teacher, who rouses the listless and sleepy, saying, Awake, you righteous, and sin not.

CHRYS. Marvel now at the case of the Master, who though in He was a prisoner, had exercised much forethought for His disciple, whom by a look He brought to Himself, and provoked to tears; for it follows, And the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter.

AUG. How we should understand this requires some careful consideration; for Matthew says, Peter was sitting without in the hall, which he would not have said unless the transaction relating to our Lord were passing within. Likewise also, where Mark said, And as Peter was beneath in the hall, he shows that the things he had been speaking of took place not only within but in the upper part. How then did our Lord look upon Peter? not with His bodily face, since Peter was without in the hall among those who were warming themselves, while these things were going on in the inner part of the house. Wherefore, that looking upon Peter seems to me to have been done in a divine manner. And as it was said, Look you, and hear me, and Turn and deliver my soul, so I think the expression here used, The Lord turned and looked upon Peter. 

BEDE; For to look upon him is to have compassion, seeing that not only while penance is being practiced, but that it may be practiced, the mercy of God is necessary.

AMBROSE; Lastly, those whom Jesus looks upon weep for their sins. Hence it follows, And Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said to him, Before the cock crow, you shall deny me thrice. 

And he went out, and wept bitterly. Why did he weep? Because he sinned as man. I read of his tears, I do not read of his confession. Tears wash away an offense which it is shame to confess in words. The first and second time he denied and wept not, for as yet our Lord had not looked upon him. He denied the third time, Jesus looked upon him, and he wept bitterly. So then if you will obtain pardon, wash away your guilt in tears. 

CYRIL. Now Peter did not dare to weep openly, lest he should be detected by his tears, but he went out and wept. He wept not because of punishment, but because he denied his beloved Lord, which was more galling than any punishment.

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