By Jim Orcutt, Co-Founder of My Brother's Keeper

These personal reflections on the Monday gospel represent my insight of Christ’s message as viewed through the lens of my life experience. It is my hope that others will be inspired to reflect upon their views as well.
Date: March 27, 2015
March 27, 2015

Gospel JN 10:31-42

The Jews picked up rocks to stone Jesus.
Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from my Father.
For which of these are you trying to stone me?”
The Jews answered him,
“We are not stoning you for a good work but for blasphemy.
You, a man, are making yourself God.”
Jesus answered them,
“Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, ‘You are gods”‘?
If it calls them gods to whom the word of God came,
and Scripture cannot be set aside,
can you say that the one
whom the Father has consecrated and sent into the world
blasphemes because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’?
If I do not perform my Father’s works, do not believe me;
but if I perform them, even if you do not believe me,
believe the works, so that you may realize and understand
that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.”
Then they tried again to arrest him;
but he escaped from their power.
He went back across the Jordan
to the place where John first baptized, and there he remained.
Many came to him and said,
“John performed no sign,
but everything John said about this man was true.”
And many there began to believe in him.

Reflection:

“The Jews picked up rocks to stone Jesus.” These people were angry. They were preparing to kill Jesus for something he said.

Jesus responds to their anger by saying, if you don’t believe my words, then believe in me because of the miracles you have seen me perform.

That line of reasoning also falls on deaf ears with the Jews because they do not want to believe in Jesus.

On the surface, it would seem their anger was fueled by Jesus’ claim that he was sent by God.

However, the deeper reason for their anger was fear of change. Jesus was challenging customs and traditions that had formed their way of life for centuries.

Catholics should be able to sympathize with this fear. Many of us can remember Vatican II, in the 1960’s, when change came about in the Church; turmoil and controversy came with it.

Much has been written concerning a person’s willingness to live in the worst of circumstances rather than face their fear of change, their fear of the unknown.

When confronted with these fears, our human tendency, as it was with the Jews of Jesus’ day, can often be to try to control the situation, to do all we can to maintain the status quo.

But, efforts at control often lead to conflict because we do not have control over others or circumstances.

When my fear turns to anger, I need to “put down the stones” and have the presence of mind to realize that the antidote to fear is faith and then to “Let go and let God.”

“Peace is what I leave with you; it is my own peace that I give you. I do not give it as the world does. Do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid.” John 14:27



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