Brothers and sisters:
“Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer greatly from the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised. Then Peter took Jesus aside and began to rebuke him.”
As so often with the Apostles in the Gospels their struggles and weaknesses (that we share) are shared for our benefit. All became great saints except one, who abandoned hope rather than abandon himself to the mystery of God and His mercy. It may seem amazing to us that Peter had the impetus to rebuke Jesus. Just a few verses earlier the Holy Spirit inspired his proclamation of the Divinity of Jesus as “Son of the living God” (Matthew 16:16). Just a few verses later Jesus will entrust Peter and two other Apostles with His Transfiguration (Matthew 17). This gives a clue to Jesus’ mercy in the severity of His rebuke. Jesus loved Peter, of course, and did not want Peter to become puffed up because of the Holy Spirit at work in him. He needed to know who he was and who God IS, and when he goes astray on this, Jesus corrects it sharply. Peter cannot “go it alone” on his own preferences and human way of seeing things. He must rely on the Holy Spirit and the guidance given by the Lord. And he must take up his cross: “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me” (Matthew 16:24). Perhaps it is recognition of this reality that can make fear an obstacle. We must let go of the fear and trust completely in God.
In Christ, son of Mary,