Thursday, March 24, 2011

Lent Reading: Thoughts on Day 14

Today's readinf was from Dietrich Bonhoeffer's book Meditations on the Cross, the chapter entitled "Judas" based on Matthew 26:45-50.

No quote today - there was no single pithy sentence or phrase that captured the thoughts triggered by today. My own summary might be "Jesus is SO MUCH the King of Kings, that Satan could only harm him by using one of His own."

If you look through the gospels, the people or the Jewish leaders or the pharisees try to kill Jesus again and again. But each time, he walks away unharmed. The fact is that Jesus, as God incarnate, is ultimately invulnerable to any outside force. (Even Death, ultimately, is powerless as on the cross "Jesus gave up his spirit". It could not be taken from him.)

And yet, Jesus had to die in order to save us. So, Satan is given an instrument for that task, without being given the power directly. Jesus delegates to the Twelve - and later to his disciples in general - Power to cast out demons, heal the sick, and do miracles. It is THIS power - his OWN power - that can harm him. And ultimately, that is the tool Satan uses. He enters Judas, and uses that delegated power to betray Jesus and hand him over to earthly authorities. And those authorities - also empowered only by God - hang Jesus on a cross.

We, given the gift of free will, tend to underestimate the sovereignty of God. But the fact is that His absolute Sovereignty and our Free Will are not in conflict. God let's us choose, but has created the universe to channel our free choices to his freely chosen ends. Even the end of his own death on a cross.

No comments: