April 12, 2017
Wednesday of Holy Week, A
When it was evening, he reclined at table with the Twelve. And while they were eating, he said, “Amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.” Deeply distressed at this, they began to say to him one after another, “Surely it is not I, Lord?” Mt_26:14-25
If you ever heard the expression, “the tension in the room was so thick, that you could cut it with a knife,” then you might have, just an inkling, of the mood in that upper room where Jesus shared His Last Supper with His disciples.
Those disciples had a feeling that something was amiss, but they just couldn’t put their finger on it. Passover was supposed to be a joyful celebration. And yet something about Joy was missing that night. Jesus was kind of somber. And then, there was all that talk about death.
But actually, when we come to think about it, it was probably JUST like that first Passover, where death was hanging in the air, and freedom was right around the corner. Or so it was said, as they hid themselves behind their blood-stained doorposts.
You see, those Egyptian Israelites had no idea what was coming either. And Moses may have sounded just as crazy to them as Jesus sounded to His disciples. But only time would tell.
For the disciples, everything about this Passover was odd: the secret upper room; Jesus washing their feet; and now, all this talk about betrayal.
Of course Jesus must have been full of anxiety, Himself, not only knowing what was soon, about to happen to Him, but also in his concern about the impact that His crucifixion would have on His beloved disciples.
I remember in Junior High School, waiting through 400-kids with last names that began with letters preceding my ‘P’, for that dreaded, TB-tine injection. It took all I could muster, not to pass out, before I ever got to the front of the line. Because, in the waiting, those six-tiny needles became a foot-long each.
Could we even fathom the thought of knowing the pain, the torture, that was waiting to befall Jesus? I think, sharing a meal would have been the last thing on my mind.
And then there was Judas. If you ever worked at a place, or lived in a community where you didn’t feel welcome, or your goals were just not working out, and you began to look for a change, but before you ever took that last step out the door, your boss or your landlord discovered your infidelity, then you might understand, a little bit of the feelings of Judas, that night.
He didn’t really want Jesus tortured or killed. He just didn’t understand the point of it all. And it certainly wasn’t going the way that HE had hoped it would. So instead of waiting to see what would happen next, like the other eleven, Judas took matters in his own hands. A little “I had it with you,” a little “maybe that’ll show you,” a little extra pocket money, earmarked all of Judas’ motives as not very “Christian!”
And the outcome of that decision was so devastating to Judas, that he couldn’t even live with himself any longer.
You see, brothers and sisters in Christ, this story of the Passion of Jesus is SO filled with emotion, it’s so filled with sorrow, and yet, it’s so filled with hope – when we truly understand it, that it’s actually hard to imagine how anyone could live without Jesus in their lives.
Our Joy is about to be fulfilled again, through this Holy Triduum, that begins tomorrow, and in the lives that we will continue to live, after Easter Sunday. Lives that are guided by the Holy Spirit, and filled with our Hope for eternal glory.
You see, God really does Love everyone, because we are ALL His beloved children. And Jesus has proven that fact, in every word and every action that He has offered for us!
_____________________end of post