Zechariah 12:10-11;13:1 Galatians 3:26-29 Luke 9:18-24
The first reading is a prophecy about the fountain that will purify God’s people. In the second reading, Paul says that through Baptism we are made heirs of the promise to Abraham. In the Gospel, Peter acknowledges that Jesus is the Messiah. Jesus foretells his Passion, offering a challenge to his disciples to take up their crosses and follow him.
While Jesus is the Messiah and Savior, as foretold in prophecy, he calls his followers to a life of suffering and sacrifice with him, not the comforts of an earthly Kingdom. He calls us to die to self by putting the needs of others first before our own. The reward He offers is nothing less than eternal happiness.