Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Lenten Homily: Jesus & Pilate

Here is my latest Wednesday Lenten homily.
I worked to address and counter the anti-Semitic way that John's Gospel is sometimes read by Christians, and proclaim the Gospel in one short message.

Read it here.


  1. I appreciate your commitment to confront the the antisemitic-ant-Judaic nuances in the Fourth Gospel; for too long Christian and Lutheran pastors have fueled the flames of antisemitism and anti-Judaism. Much progress has been made, and shall be made in the future to improve our relationship with the Jewish people and their faith.
    You speak in your sermon about the religious authorities of Judea as the most responsible sector of society contributing to Christ's crucifixion. However, I would qualify that a bit and state that it was likely only SOME of the Judean authorities, centred in Jerusalem who were involved.
    If you haven't already, and if there is one in your area, I would encourage you to join a dialogue group of Jews and Christians, it has proven to be very enriching for me, I am also a Lutheran pastor.

    Blogspot blog: Dim Lamp Two
    Wordpress blog: Dim Lamp

  2. Dim Lamp,
    Thank you! You are right - we see even in the Gospels that some Pharisees and other religious leaders had various reactions to Jesus. I do think the ultimate responsibility for Jesus' crucifixion resides in the Roman rulers. The Jewish leaders who handed Jesus over to Pilate did so, it seems, because of a fear that Jesus would bring Roman destruction to Israel. After the raising of Lazarus, listen to Caiaphas' words (John 11):

    47 So the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the council, and said, "What are we to do? This man is performing many signs. 48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy both our holy place and our nation." 49 But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, "You know nothing at all! 50 You do not understand that it is better for you to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed."