Fellowship of Saints and Sinners

Fellowship of Saints and Sinners


“In the Name of Love”- Station 4

"Christ Mocked" - Hieronymous Bosch, 15th century

So they arrested Jesus, took him off, and brought him into the high priest’s house…The men who were holding Jesus began to make fun of him and knock him about.  They blindfolded him. “Prophesy!,” they told him. “Who is it that’s hitting you?”  And they said many other scandalous things to him.  

When the day broke, the official assembly of the people, the chief priests and the scribes came together, and they took him off to their council. “If you are the Messiah,” they said, “tell us.”

“If I tell you,” he said to them, “you won’t believe me.  And if I ask you a question, you won’t answer me.  But from now on the son of man will be seated at the right hand of God’s power.”

“So you’re the son of God, are you?,” they said.

“You say that I am,” he said to them.

“Why do we need any more witnesses?,” they said. “We’ve heard it ourselves, from his own mouth!”-Luke 22: 54, 63-71

The chief priests and the  scribes knew about God’s truth and justice– so much so that they saw themselves as mediators of that truth and justice for the rest of the world.

But it’s dangerous hubris to set ourselves up to be God’s mouthpiece.  We end up putting things into God’s mouth that God never actually said.  We end up twisting truth and justice into pale, diabolical versions of themselves.

Maybe it’s this kind of thing that can cause even the best of people to mislead themselves into thinking that torture in the name of justice- be it “just war” or the pursuit of truth- is not only okay but commendable.  Maybe this explains the fact that our nation of America, which still describes itself overwhelmingly as “Christian,” could condone the practice of water boarding in its interrogation methods.  When we think God is on our side, we can get away with rationalizing a whole lot of things.

The good news in all of this is that Jesus thankfully doesn’t allow Himself to be coerced.  God’s living, breathing, walking Justice- God’s “Truth”- is also very much in full ownership of Himself.  He won’t let us actually define who He is, even as He won’t force Himself on us.  He won’t let us torture Him into unconditional submission, even as He lets us breathe threats down His neck, taunt Him and eventually crucify Him.

Love Itself requires this of Jesus.  Love and Love alone- not the handcuffs we place on Jesus- is what ultimately binds Him to the cross.

In keeping with my love for 80′s music, here’s U2 live in 1984 singing “In the Name of Love.” Bono’s hair style is itself worth a peek: YouTube Preview Image



Previous Posts

Thoughtful Christians—They're Around, Via Fare Forward
The cover story from the latest (July/August) issue of Christianity Today offers a refreshing antidote to all the gloom and doom that often accom

posted 2:39:15am Aug. 27, 2014 | read full post »

New Job, New Book
You may have noticed that I've not shown up at this intersection during the last week or so.  A new job, and, with the new job, the promise of a new book projec

posted 2:49:05am Aug. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Mental Health Break—The Wittenburg Door
If you're not already familiar with the online humor magazine The Wittenburg Door, now you are: think The Onion marries Reformed Christian theology and they have a wickedly funny child with an aptitude for making you laugh at most things religion-related in this world.  A "thank you" to saint and s

posted 11:41:16am Aug. 16, 2014 | read full post »

What You Are Saying Re: Driscoll
My last post generated some helpful, constructive input from fellow saints and sinners who read it.  Thank you, all. Saint and sinner Bruce writes:  You know I respect you and appreciate your writing, but I think this is a pride issue, not an evangelical issue. The Catholic Church, Lutherans, P

posted 2:49:05pm Aug. 15, 2014 | read full post »

Mark Driscoll's Fall: A Day of Reckoning for Evangelicals?
[CORRECTION NOTE: An earlier version of this article suggests Mark Driscoll has in fact now resigned; this is in

posted 10:46:15am Aug. 13, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.