“On the first day of Unleavened Bread”
Read the Text: Mark 14:12-72
Jesus gathers His disciples for the final time. He brings them all, including the one who has chosen to betray Him / them / GOD’s mission. Like Sunday, Jesus sends two into town to prepare the way. And it goes as He suggests. Then they get together and eat.
They break bread. They eat. They drink. Then they leave for the Mount of Olives. And here Jesus declares:
You will all become deserters
Just like that. Deserters all.
Peter’s protests mimic our own. Peter is always our stand-in. Surely I won’t desert Jesus, we say. Surely I would keep awake. Fools.
What if we already have? What if we are the deserters now? What if the design is Jesus, alone in death. Alone in the tomb. Alone for when it empties.
As we heard yesterday:
wherever the good news is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will be told in remembrance of her.
-the good news, the gospel, is the story of this woman.
-the good news is the story of a man testifying to GOD’s blessing in his life in front of everyone at church.
-the good news is our witness to the subtle reminders of love’s loss to death and profound anniversaries.
Our desertion of Jesus is in mistaking Jesus for something else: an object, belief, icon, superhero, conqueror. Deserting Jesus at His greatest moment, we the humbled, the fearful, the angry, the depressed, the disillusioned. We are not with Him in His triumph of humility. Like Peter, the cock crows for us more than once. Do we even notice?
[This is Part 5 of a series of meditations for Holy Week. If you haven’t, you might want to start from the beginning.]