Irritable Jesus isn’t someone we recognize. At least, we don’t readily envision Jesus as the short-tempered, fed-up, tired-of-people type.
The Gospels take us behind the scenes. Jesus, having a literal mountain top experience, is back home for a time.
The presence of the Divine, familiar souls..Jesus glows with exhilaration. Even the conversation sounds like party planning: his departure. This is homecoming, right?
But once the lights are turned out and the old friends are headed home, Jesus sounds anything but thrilled. His tone is scolding; His words scalding.
If the Gospels were mere hagiography, the epic hero would remain unchanged. But in a real life, like the one we read about in Scripture, real people react to bad news.
Like the news that your best friend will betray you. That your closest friends will desert you. That your enemies will shame you: mock you, spit on you , beat you. They’ll hang you naked, stuck to a post by nails, where you’ll be suffocated to death while suffering from anemia and dehydration due to blood loss, in front of loved ones, racial haters, and curious creepy types who enjoy watching people tortured.
That’s the news. That’s how you’re going out. That’s the send off from the public you loved with healing, and forgiveness, and restorative wisdom given at times you were completely exhausted or grieving the death of a close cousin.
Someone should tell God to get out of this abusive relationship.
But they’ll say they’re sorry. Sure they will. Don’t all abusers? They don’t know why they did it. They love you so much.
Here are some gifts. Will that make it better?
Take some money for missionaries.
I’ll be at church 3 times next month instead of just 1.
See, I’m over here at the service project, on a Saturday.
But then it happens again.
The cheating on God with other obsessions . The lying about it. Covering up. The rage fights. The screaming.
It’s God’s fault and God knows it!
Just stay in your place, God!
Do what you’re told!
Stay outta my business!
I’ll do what I want!
You really need to get out of this relationship, God. Humans are not good to you. Have some self respect, Most High. You need to affirm the Divine You. You deserve better…
Jesus feels it. Deeply. The anger. The confusion.
Just before the Cross moment, it’s decision time.
Are you breaking up with us, God?
Are you giving up on the marriage? Is the long, ugly separation finally going to end in divorce?
Let this cup pass from me
Only natural that God, in flesh, wants out. Who needs co-dependent, destructive, hurting relationships?
But God, divine, knows something.
Your will be done
The difference between God in an abusive relationship and you and I in abusive relationships…
We can’t change the abusive broken deceiver-hurters into new, whole, healed selves.
God says, from Calvary, “…but I can.”
9:37 On the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, a great crowd met him.
9:38 Just then a man from the crowd shouted, “Teacher, I beg you to look at my son; he is my only child.
9:39 Suddenly a spirit seizes him, and all at once he shrieks. It convulses him until he foams at the mouth; it mauls him and will scarcely leave him.
9:40 I begged your disciples to cast it out, but they could not.”
9:41 Jesus answered, “You faithless and perverse generation, how much longer must I be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here.”
9:42 While he was coming, the demon dashed him to the ground in convulsions. But Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, healed the boy, and gave him back to his father.
9:43a And all were astounded at the greatness of God.