Saturday, August 17, 2013

Not My Will ..

Of course it wasn’t what I wanted, how could you think such a thing? It isn’t a pleasure at all, you know, but I’m a leader, and sometimes leaders have to take responsibility and do the things that nobody wants to do. It’s part of the heavy burden of responsibility we leaders have to carry, the burden of office that weighs us down so heavily. We don’t please ourselves, we do what is best for everyone. That’s why we have to be careful to look after ourselves so vigilantly, what would happen if we were too sick, too tired, too weighed down with the petty, bothersome details of daily life to have the energy to do what has to be done when the crisis comes? Oh, don’t look at me like that, you know it would be chaos for Israel if we didn’t step in and do the hard stuff! I didn’t do it for myself, I did it for us; sacrificing this Jesus was one of the most sacrificial things I have ever done. I risked getting my hands dirty for the good of the nation. It truly was expedient that one man should die for the people – look how many lives I saved.

The trouble began up in Galilee, where most such troubles start. You know as well as I do that nothing good ever comes from there. Anyway, the Pharisees heard the rumours and went bustling up there to see if their precious law was being broken. Healing on the Sabbath? They didn’t seem to get that the important thing was that people were getting excited about him healing on the Sabbath. That’s what we have to avoid: excitement, popular movements, anything that destabilises the balance of power. Rome doesn’t like that, and Rome is the one we must placate. We can’t afford any Messiahs, once it goes to their heads they’re not the only ones who end up on crosses, so do a significant number of their followers, and then Rome starts tightening the screws a little more ... You have no idea how much delicate negotiating we have to do just to keep the peace. So, of course it’s expedient that one man should die ...

Sorry, I’m repeating myself. Where was I? Oh yes, we started keeping an eye on him after that – but he was a slippery customer. Our scholars would spend ages thinking up clever questions to trap him and show him up to the people, so that they’d forget about him, and every single time he’d manage to come up with an answer that slid him safely out again. It was infuriating! Someone must have schooled him well. Oh no, the wisdom couldn’t have come from him, he was just a peasant from Nazareth, and you know what they say about that place! And there were rumours that his mother ... you know ... it wasn’t nine months after the wedding ... no better than she should be ...

In the end we had a lucky break, one of his followers came to do a deal with us. Do you think I enjoyed dealing with a low life like him though? The things we leaders have to dirty our hands with to keep the people safe! And this Judas was an idiot! After it was all over he came snivelling back to us and wanted to hand back the blood money! As if we’d want it! And what did he think we were going to do? Give his “Master” a nice little talking-to? Hardly! We had him where we wanted him, and we were going to crush that problem once and for all!

What’s that you say? Oh yes, I’ve heard those rumours, but they can’t possibly be true. Dead is dead. We Sadducees know that the dead don’t rise at all, let alone in this world! No, the only power we have to worry about is Rome, and that’s why we priests are so careful to guard our own power. We do it all for you.

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