“‘You see, there is nothing you can do;
look, the whole world is running after him!'”
(John 12: 19, The Jerusalem Bible)
Him being Jesus, the Christ, the Son of Man, Son of God, Miracle Worker, Messiah, King of Kings . . . , but not mounted on a war horse followed by legions of warriors brandishing double-edged swords, not at all what the Pharisees, the self-righteous, the set apart, expected.
What General of Angel Armies would enter Jerusalem riding sidesaddle on the colt of a donkey, comfy on the cloaks of his disciples and followed by the Displaced, the Unclean, the Castaways, Derelicts–the hungry and the thirsty, strangers naked and ill, prisoners, lepers, the lame, the blind, the demon-possessed, women and children . . .
laying palm branches in the path that led to Jerusalem, Jesus’s communion supper with his disciples, washing their feet, servant leadership, his anguish in the Garden of Gethsemane, his betrayal, denial, humiliation, torture, crucifixion, death, burial, and resurrection–the Easter Story, Jesus the self-sacrificial lamb dying as expiation for the world’s sin Jesus assumed on the cross, becoming the greatest of sinners, despairing, forgiving, conquering Death and Sin, salvation offered for all people: For God So Loved The World–the world, the world, the world. . . .
Today, Sunday, April 5, 2020: our world brought together to its knees by the pandemic Coronavirus COVID-19, world of courageous people rising to this crisis, so many sequestered, alone, but paradoxically alone together–the isolation, aloneness Jesus knew first hand, telling his disciples, preamble to his priestly prayer–
“‘Listen; the time will come–in fact it has come already–
when you will be scattered, each going his own way
and leaving me alone.
And yet I am not alone,
because the Father is with me.
I have told you all this
so that you may find peace in me.
In the world you will have trouble,
but be brave:
I have conquered the world.'”
(John 16: 32-33, The Jerusalem Bible)
In this our hour, let us be brave, be at peace. Let us love one another.