When Jesus announced his intention to go to Jerusalem, he was telling His Disciples that he was going on a crime spree, because to defy the law of the land in the way He intended to do was, in fact, a crime, and one punishable by death. Since Emperor Constantine, we have come to view Christians as law-abiding good citizens. It would have been impossible in Jesus' time to see Him in this way. Jesus was going to directly confront the law. In this chilling passage, we see Jesus as The Bad Guy -- the criminal who broke the law. This is the way Jesus died, as a criminal.
In thinking about this, my mind went to another criminal who was executed -- the Lutheran Pastor and martyr, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, hanged by the Nazis a month before they surrendered. Bonhoeffer gave us the phrase "cheap grace".
Has contemporary Christianity prettied itself up such that it can no longer claim the grace that God pours out freely? Come join the congregation of Community Presbyterian Church of Bellefonte Kentucky for the third part of our burglar series, Who is this burglar, anyway?
Community Presbyterian Church of Bellefonte, Kentucky, was built on the casting floor of a 19th Century iron blast furnace. We use "The Casting Floor" as an image for the power of the Spirit to form us. Visit us at http://communitypresbyterian.org.