July 2, 2013 by mattfradd
The Rosary,” wrote Blessed Pope John Paul II, “precisely because it starts with Mary’s own experience, is an exquisitely contemplative prayer. Without this contemplative dimension, it would lose its meaning.”
Pope Paul VI wrote that “without [this contemplation,] the Rosary is a body without a soul, and its recitation is in danger of becoming a mechanical repetition of formulas and of going counter to the warning of Christ: ‘And in praying do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do; for they think that they will be heard for their many words’ (Mt 6:7).’”
Because of this, it is vital that Christians familiarize themselves with the Scriptures in order to meditate on the mysteries of the life of Christ.
Below is the third Luminous mystery. To see other mysteries, click here.
The Proclamation of the Kingdom of God (Matthew 10:7-16)
After Jesus “gave [the twelve disciples] authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every infirmity” (10:1), he sends them to the “lost sheep of the house of Israel” (10:6) to proclaim the kingdom of heaven. He orders them to heal the sick, raise the dead and cast out demons.
In his book Jesus of Nazareth, Pope Benedict tells us that “[t]he phrase ‘Kingdom of God’ occurs 122 times in the New Testament” and that “99 of these passages are found in the three Synoptic Gospels, and 90 of these 99 texts report words of Jesus.”
What is the kingdom of God? The Church Fathers identified three harmonizing dimensions: 1) The first dimension is the Christological dimension. 2) The idealistic or mystical dimension, and 3) The ecclesiastical dimension.
The Christological Dimension
Here we see that “the Kingdom is not a thing, it is not a geographical dominion like worldly kingdoms. It is a person; it is he. On this interpretation, the term ‘Kingdom of God’ is itself a veiled Christology. By the way in which he speaks of the Kingdom of God, Jesus leads men to realize the overwhelming fact that in him God himself is present among them, that he is God’s presence.”
The Idealistic/Mystical Dimension
Here we see that the kingdom of God resides in the heart of man. Quoting Church Father Origen, Pope Benedict writes, “[T]hose who pray for the coming of the Kingdom of God pray without any doubt for the Kingdom of God that they contain in themselves, and they pray that this kingdom might bear fruit and attain its fullness. For in every holy man it is God who reigns [exercises dominion, is the kingdom of God]…. So if we want God to reign in us [his Kingdom to be in us], then sin must not be allowed to reign in our mortal body (Rom 6:12)…. Then let God stroll at leisure in us as in a spiritual paradise (Gen 3:8) and rule in us alone with his Christ (Patrologia Graeca II, pp. 495f).” 
The Ecclesiastical Dimension
Here we see that the kingdom of God is “a present, although mixed, reality, that will be perfectly realized at the end of history.” 
This current mixed state can be seen as the Church on earth, which grows in the field of the world with both weeds and wheat until the harvest, when Christ says he will “tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned. But gather the wheat into my barn” (Mt 13:30). The barn can be seen as the Church in heaven, toward which the kingdom of God on earth is journeying.
One wonders how the apostles felt about the mission Jesus was sending them on. Were they excited? Apprehensive? Were they worried about looking foolish? Every miracle performed by Christ and the apostles is a sign of a deeper reality. After all, the sick who were healed would get sick again, and the dead who were raised had to die again.
This fourth luminous mystery challenges us to reflect upon our own desire (or lack thereof) to proclaim the kingdom of God. As Catholic Christians we have the unmerited privilege of guiding our peers, both Catholic and non-Catholic, to the sacraments Christ gives us. It is through these sacraments that Christ continues to heal the sick and raise the dead, sometimes physically but always spiritually
 Ibid., 40; brackets and ellipses are Pope Benedict’s.
 Scott Hahn, Catholic Bible Dictionary, s.v. “Kingdom.”