The Plot to Kill Jesus
45 Therefore many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what Jesus did,believed in him. 46 But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. 47 Then the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the Sanhedrin.
“What are we accomplishing?” they asked. “Here is this man performing many signs. 48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and then the Romans will come and take away both our temple and our nation.”
49 Then one of them, named Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, spoke up, “You know nothing at all! 50 You do not realize that it is better for you that one man die for the people than that the whole nation perish.”
51 He did not say this on his own, but as high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the Jewish nation, 52 and not only for that nation but also for the scattered children of God, to bring them together and make them one. 53 So from that day on they plotted to take his life.
In his “Letter from Birminham Jail”, Martin Luther King calls out religious leaders who want him to be quiet to keep the peace. (read it here: Letter from a Birmingham Jail) “They”, the local clergy , the “Godly People”, see him as an outsider coming in that will, no doubt, disturb the peace. As Claire Booth Luce said, “No good deed goes unpunished.” More equal rights are about to come to America, do her citizens celebrate? Better for one man to die than many to lose privlege.
What is our fear? Will God not still provide? We are always so afraid of losing what we have, as if it is ours to begin with. From a biblical point of view, is it not from God? I have to admit, I fear losing my family, my house, my job, my car, my coffee mug, my chocolate, my cell phone, and my laptop.
Jesus has just raised Lazarus from the dead. Does the world celebrate? A few do. Others, they plot to take Jesus life. Afraid for their own lives and the fear of the Romans, the religious leaders, the “Godly People” plot to take Jesus out.
Even the religious leaders look out for themselves. They can say it is “for the people”, but mostly its for themselves. As we vote today, frankly I think it’s true of many politicians as well. So many of the ads leading up to elections have played on our fears. Why? Fear sells. Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King is in jail, and will be shot. Jesus will go to a sham trial and be crucified. All by people and for people who were afraid that what they had would be taken away from them.
And yet, Jesus forgives.
What are you afraid of losing? Do you live out of this fear?
Prayer: Lord give us strength, wisdom, and true freedom to move beyond our fears, especially our fears of losing what you have blessed us with. Release us into a life of hope and trust in you. Amen.