Much Ado About Nothing . . .

Luke 6:35-36 NASB – 35 “But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil [men.] 36 “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

What are evangelicals expecting to get out of all these protests that led up to the violence a week ago? An overturned election? A second day to vote? Voter reform? Vindication? Justice? Proof that they heard from God and was sure that our current president would serve two terms?

Once again we are called to LOVE OUR ENEMIES.

I had a conversation with a close friend who suggested I read what was actually said at the national protest. I did but there was something very important missing in the transcript that I encourage all Bible readers to understand . . . CONTEXT. The transcript does not reflect all the social media posts leading up to the expectations for the day, nor does the transcript reflect the emotions behind the words spoken, nor the mood of the hearers of the crowd, and nor what followed. An old saying I learned in seminary was that a text with out a pretext or a post-text was out of context. So our words without the events that led up to the moment or the rash actions that followed are out of context. The crowd’s actions that followed clearly enunciated the meaning extracted from the speech.

What happened when Christ was crucified? You had a group of Israelites being lorded over by the Romans, whipped into a frenzy by the religious leaders that a fraud was being committed by letting Jesus off the hook. Last week you had a group of disgruntled conservatives, whipped into a frenzy by the prophets and religious leaders who all said God told them Trump was to be the president and the elections were stolen, to go after those who said other wise. Are we yet to see a pattern when religious leaders attempt to interfere with politics? Both sets of religious leaders were zealous for their nation. Both were wrong.

  • John 11:47-48 NASB – 47 Therefore the chief priests and the Pharisees convened a council, and were saying, “What are we doing? For this man is performing many signs. 48 “If we let Him [go on] like this, all men will believe in Him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.”

The religious leaders could not see that God wanted to do something bigger than keep their place or their nation.

  • John 11:51-52 NASB – 51 Now he did not say this on his own initiative, but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, 52 and not for the nation only, but in order that He might also gather together into one the children of God who are scattered abroad.

I am contending that our current religious leaders are over looking the need to “love your enemies” in order to keep their political agenda alive. But even Christ from the Cross when crucified still replied:

  • Luke 23:34 NASB – 34 But Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.” . . .

Jesus did not beleive a counter protest was necessary for God to achieve his purposes, just love and forgiveness.

And what did our president do for the six hours while the mayhem unfolded . . . nothing. At any point he he could have stepped in and said “this is not right, God wants us to love and forgive even if the election was not right” just as Christs’ trial and crucifixion was unjust. But the man the religious leaders are so sure is God’s appointed man of the hour, sure missed a great opportunity to be like Christ and calm the crowd by preaching love and forgiveness. This may sound extremely naïve, but that is just how forgiveness sounded to the disciples and religious leaders of Jesus’ day, as well who were concerned that there nation was about to be stolen from them. The unspoken theology is that political activism is more prudent to promote Christian values than love and forgiveness.

Jesus said to expect nothing in return for love and forgiveness . . . and our president did nothing in response. So it seems last week was indeed much ado about nothing.

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