Saturday, March 03, 2007
They forsook him, and fled
Matthew 26:55In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me.
56But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled.
This Easter Sunday our church will be performing a multimedia drama of the passion, crucifixion, and resurrection during the worship service. I was asked to participate in the drama, and I agreed to serve, although acting is not exactly in my blood.
I was assigned a role of one of the many anti-Jesus mob, and somehow I knew that would be the case. This is a role that most Christians would have trouble with, and yet knowing the production to be an evangelical tool for Our Lord, I committed to be obedient and fulfill my responsibility. I knew it would take prayer, but I also knew that however difficult the task might seem, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."
Today was the third rehearsal, and as I walked in the church, my determination had not lessened. But as the rehearsal started, I couldn't find the strength to "get into the role" as the director was exhorting us to do. Regardless of the fact that this was just a drama, an evangelical tool, a re-enactment that has probably been done a million times since the actual event, I couldn't take the shame of participating in driving Our Lord to his cruel and painful death.
I called the pastor over, apologized for my inability to carry through, and quietly left the rehearsal, avoiding the looks of any whom might have been wondering.
On the way home, it occurred to me that I was experiencing something of the shame that the disciples must have felt that cold, cruel morning. Why back down from the responsibility, while knowing full well Jesus needs a witness who will stand by him? Many times I've imagined that had I been there, I would have defended Him to the death.
Now I know that I was just being prideful. I would have slunk off into the night with the rest of them.