Monday, April 18, 2011
When the great crowd of the Jews learned that he was there, they came not only because of Jesus but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. So the chief priests planned to put Lazarus to death as well, since it was on account of him that many of the Jews were deserting and were believing in Jesus.
The next day the great crowd that had come to the festival heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem. So they took branches of palm trees and went out to meet him, shouting,‘Hosanna!Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord—the King of Israel!’Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it; as it is written:‘Do not be afraid, daughter of Zion. Look, your king is coming, sitting on a donkey’s colt!’
His disciples did not understand these things at first; but when Jesus was glorified, then they remembered that these things had been written of him and had been done to him. So the crowd that had been with him when he called Lazarus out of the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to testify. It was also because they heard that he had performed this sign that the crowd went to meet him. The Pharisees then said to one another, ‘You see, you can do nothing. Look, the world has gone after him!’John 12:9-19
Tonight the moon is full and whether we can see the glowing, smiling orb or not, things might just get complicated. People who work in hospitals report a rise in emergency admissions during a full moon. It seems that more women go into labor during a full moon. And some believe that those who have a tendency towards violence and mental illness, loose control during this time. I don't really know. I do know that whatever moved people to madness and anger, to plot revenge and terror, whatever it is, it was at work in this season. People who one day were cheering and aching to get near are now the ones who would take a a life, plot revenge and contemplate murder and destruction.
The religious leadership was watching all that went on. They heard about the resurrection of Lazarus and plotted to kill Lazarus so they could stun the crowd into silence. But there was no silence when miracles abound, and since they cold not silence the crowds they plotted to silence Jesus permanently. Their very human jealousies and anger rose up and found a way during the holiest of seasons to get rid of the most blessed gift from God any of them had ever received.
Today, I ask God to help me remember that jealousy and anger are normal human reactions, like the tides rising to the full moon. Help me also, God, to let go of jealousy and anger and to not give any time to plotting or revenge. Help me to see the great gifts around me and to rejoice in the face of Christ in everyone around me this day.