Lent 2 :: What kind of skin?

“Go and tell that fox…”

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Herod?

Jesus had much thicker skin than I do. If someone told me that the president wanted to kill me, I would be gone so fast. Not Jesus. Tough guy. Nothing rattled him: “Why should I care if Herod wants me dead? I’ve got things to do: demons to cast out, people to heal. Let me get about my work and leave off with this clever, sly fellow!”

I guess one needs a skin of armor if you’re gonna be the savior of the world. He’s been castigated by the religious leaders and authorities. Whole towns have tried to get rid of him. Now Herod wants to do the same. Gotta be a tough, no-nonsense kinda guy to weather all that. That’s Jesus.

Right?

Now hold on a bit. This tough, straight-talking, unafraid savior is also someone who laments over the fate of the city at the heart of his proclamation: “How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!” He looks upon his beloved Jerusalem and poignantly mourns its failure to listen to him and to change. The tough guy is brought almost to tears by a people who would not accept his offer of new life.

I guess his skin wasn’t so thick after all. It was soft, malleable, full of love. Human.

RCL Lectionary for the Second Sunday in Lent


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