Sunday, May 17, 2015


     It was a tense, turbulent time in the 1st century. The Jewish people were once again under the rule of a foreign government. The Roman Empire was the most powerful the world had seen. They ruled with an iron hand. No one questioned the authority of the Emperor, least of all a poor, Jewish, preacher from Nazareth.
     Jesus was roaming the countryside, proclaiming a new day. This was an apocalyptic message that things were going to be different under God’s new way. The Old Law was going to make way for the New Law, one proclaiming love, compassion, equality, and freedom. Freedom from slavery, sexism, lack of health care, illness, and loneliness. And it was he, Jesus, who was going to lead us to this promised land.
     For obvious reasons, the Roman government was not happy with this. From the very beginning, those in power saw Jesus as a threat to their continued rule. From his birth to his death, we was a threat to the Roman government, who viewed him as a revolutionary, and would eventually hang him on a cross, with the inscription “thief”, meaning “subversive,” nailed above his head, hanging him between two Zealots, also seen as revolutionaries and a threat to the Roman government.
The Roman government thought they were tough, and that they had solved the matter. Then, the impossible happened. From death, Jesus defeated the all-powerful Roman Empire. He triumphed over repression, hatred, racism, sexism, military might, the powerful money people, and even death. Despised and thought of as a traitor by the Jewish people as well as the Roman government, he ushered in a new day. Hope and victory over each of our impending deaths would prevail in the new age.
     Now, here we are once again listening to the apocalyptic messages of climate experts, political experts, and even honey bees, warning us of impending doom.  If we claim to be Children of God, we have to take these messages seriously. We would be called to give our all towards a day of freedom, celebration, and triumph over despair, evilness, and darkness. We need to understand that in calling ourselves Christians, we are doing so in the name of Christ, who never once flinched in proclaiming a new day, one where we are all equal in God’s name, and given an equal chance to become the best persons we can each become.

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