Thursday, 17 April 2014

Lent day 42 - waging peace

Translations don't always cut it. In Matthew 27, some translations say Jesus was crucified with two robbers, but this falls short. Bandits sounds similar, but banditry wasn't in the Robin Hood sense. It involved plunder of villages. Perhaps terrorist might capture it more in modern parlance. The usual word for robber as we might think of someone who picks pockets or breaks and enters for a few things that are easy to carry away is the word from which we get kleptomaniac.

So the two men Jesus was crucified with were men of violence, but Jesus was a man of peace.

Just as these brigands planned their raids, Jesus planned his death. So, if we want to model peacemaking (such that the cross was) and non-violently, we need to be deliberate. Jesus was crucified with the violent, and hence we can't and shouldn't remove ourselves from people who might share our concerns but not our methods. But more and more, intelligent and thoughtful non-violence needs to be waged in an age where individuals and bureaucracies quickly turn to violence of rhetoric and actions, we need to model something different, just as Jesus did.

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