Second Sunday in Lent – Series C
Jesus, warned to flee Herod’s threat, is not intimidated. He has his own authority which Herod cannot touch. But his authority is the authority which will find its fullness in the cross. Jesus reigns with hands pierced and a crown of thorns jammed down upon his brow. His is the authority of the crucified. He has set his face to Jerusalem where he will die. But the city and its inhabitants will be desolate and one day will see Christ anew when they cry out “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD.” To come in that name is to come in the authority of the Most High.
We often confuse authority and power and imagine that because Jesus has authority all should go well with those who follow him. Jesus surely will exercise his power for us. This can manifest as an expectation of great and small things. He will cure my cancer, or he will provide me a convenient parking space. Things sometimes do work out for us, but if it doesn’t, that does not mean God is against us. Rather, in our suffering and humiliation, God may be working something for Christ’s kingdom. The theologian of glory will end up almost always working the logic backward. If things don’t go well for me, it must be because we have messed up.
The Christian confesses the blessings of God when they come. But we also acknowledge that sin has worked great wickedness which often touches me. In effect, the logic is broken here. I thank God for the good stuff but do not blame Him for the bad stuff. The theologian of glory will not be able to break the logic.