Wednesday, March 15
At that hour Jesus said to the crowds, “Have you come out with swords and clubs to arrest me as though I were a bandit? Day after day I sat in the temple teaching, and you did not arrest me. But all this has taken place, so that the scriptures of the prophets may be fulfilled.” Then all the disciples deserted him and fled.
It must have been like watching a train wreck coming. Day after day Jesus stood in the holiest places proclaiming “this is what the kingdom of Heaven looks like” while castigating the Jewish leaders for their selfishness, hypocrisy, and lack of compassion. The collision was inevitable. Its timing was not. They could have arrested him in public, in the light. Instead, they came under the cover of night, away from the crowds, and with swords and clubs.
It is easy to assume Jesus could make his proclamation in the face of threat because of his divinity. But that may discount his humanity. What does it take to clearly define one’s self, and then calmly move into the inevitable consequences? Jesus’ basic message of love, compassion and justice did not change when confronted with swords and clubs. Even the inevitability of death did not sway him.
God of light, clear our vision, embolden our voices, deepen our faith, and strengthen our trust in your love and your promise to bring life out of death. Amen.
The Rev. Carol Jeunnette