On Sunday, it was pointed out that I have great enthusiasm for the Story. That talking about Jesus and what is going on here gets me going. It does. Part of it has to do with learning it, and that I keep learning it. Part of it has to do with my own experience. And part of it has to do with this little idea that there is more here than I was told.
Of my lifelong friends, I have a good portion that are practicing Christians. But nowhere near a majority. More of my friends don’t go to church than do. Here’s one big reason: we have trouble answering the simple, but central question of our faith: why did Jesus die? Because for most of us, myself included, the phrase “for my sins” doesn’t cut it.
This Holy Week, as we walk toward Jerusalem with Jesus, today overturning the tables, tomorrow teaching at the Temple, and so on, let us wrestle with that simple question. Wrestling with the challenge of what Jesus is showing us in public outbursts and quiet moments with His friends. May we wrestle with what is going on in the Story, and what is going on here, in our lives. That we may come to a deeper, more troubling truth about Jesus than we were taught in Sunday School and in countless “feelgood” sermons. That, like Jesus, we are walking to our deaths.
And like Jesus, death isn’t the end.