As I read through Jesus’ capture, what struck me the most had nothing to do with Jesus. It had to do with Judas. I think it’s so easy to skim over and move forward with the narrative, but Judas hanged himself. We have the act of suicide in scripture. Before Jesus was even nailed to the Cross — a tree — we would be told that Judas hanged himself from a tree.
How telling. The narrative of these two trees are not unrelated. One spells out shame, grief, loss … and the other gives us bravery, hope, renewal. Judas’ life, even in the act of betrayal, was still used to show us something. We are told of suicide and I see Jesus taking on the heavy yoke. We are told of denial and I see stoicism in the face of death.
On another note…
Something I read this morning in my meditation has stuck with me:
“According to Mark, Jesus did not die for the sins of the world. The language of substitutionary sacrifice for sin is absent from his story. But in an important sense, he was killed because of the sin of the world. It was the injustice of domination systems that killed him, injustice so routine that it is part of the normalcy of civilization. Though sin means more than this, it includes this.”
Lord, help me remember. Help me to see you outside of a church building today. I can find the representation of the broken (AND HEALED!) body of Jesus in the marginalized.