Palm Sunday brought a predictable message for the season, that of John 12 – Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem.
The preacher used it as his sermon’s text at the church I attend in the school’s library.
I listened, then went home.
Used to be this was a favorite time of year for me.
But this year it just is. Seems dull, especially the past two weeks when I broke a New Year’s Resolution and once again became ill.
And yet The Gospel of John, Chapter 12 passage seems to be everywhere, as in the worship service.
I hacked and coughed my way through the rest of Sunday, passed out from allergy medicine and then awoke in time for a budget-planning session. My home budget had to be revised since a hospital’s garnishment has cut my take-home pay to $460 every two weeks.
Yes, I was unfortunate enough to fall ill without health insurance a few years back and it caught up with me. Big time.
So all this was on my mind, plus other personal issues. I didn’t sleep well.
I awoke about 2:30 a.m. EST Monday and “The Gospel of John” was on TBN. Not one of my usual channels to watch, but I had a dream I wanted to get rid of and didn’t want to pick up the Bible. So I flipped about the television channels and settled on the “Gospel of John” where it was close to the Chapter 12 passages.
Jesus kept eluding crazed mobs bent on stoning him after his talk of “I and the Father are one” and then raised Lazarus from the dead.
Then there was this scene where Mary washed Jesus’ feet in perfume costing a year’s wages. Judas said to Jesus the perfume could have been sold and the money used to feed to poor, but Jesus said to leave her alone. That passage there says a lot – better read in its entirety as I’m trying to cut to the chase.
- Six days before the Passover, Jesus arrived at Bethany, where Lazarus lived, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.
- Here a dinner was given in Jesus’ honor. Martha served, while Lazarus was among those reclining at the table with him.
- Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus’ feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.
- But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him, objected,
- “Why wasn’t this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year’s wages. “
- He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.
- “Leave her alone,” Jesus replied. “[It was intended] that she should save this perfume for the day of my burial.
- You will always have the poor among you, but you will not always have me.”
- Meanwhile a large crowd of Jews found out that Jesus was there and came, not only because of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead.
- So the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well,
- for on account of him many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and putting their faith in him.
See – the religious rulers of the time not only want to take Jesus out, but now Lazarus as well.
The film’s portrayal of the rulers wanting to kill Lazarus struck me, as it showed Lazarus peering anxiously out the window at a gathering mob. He has a look on his face like “what have I gotten myself into, following this Jesus?”
I tuned out after Jesus came riding in on the donkey with a crowd throwing palms before him. I know the Bible doesn’t say what became of Lazarus, but I know where Jesus went.
I hope like Lazarus, Jesus can resurrect me – quick, before Easter Sunday.
I need to know what I’ve gotten myself into.