“Mirror of the Passion” Lent devotion for March 19, 2022. Photo by Tumisu on Pixabay.
Now the men who were holding Jesus in custody were mocking him as they beat him. They also blindfolded him and kept asking him, “Prophesy! Who is it that struck you?” (Luke 22:63-64)
We learn how to mock others at a very young age. We taunt the kids in preschool, “You can’t catch me!” We imitate others with a whiny voice. We slap labels on each other like “stupid,” “ugly,” “fat,” and “dummy.” We master all this before we even get to elementary school.
We spend a lot of time teaching our children to be respectful. We teach them to encourage others, speak well of them, and explain everything in the kindest way. We help them learn treat others as they would like to be treated.
And then we turn around and mock those who can’t get around very well, who stutter when they talk, who have certain political leanings, can’t control their children, creep along in the center lane of the highway, seem to wander aimlessly through the grocery store, etc., etc., etc.
So it should be no surprise that Jesus would be mocked. This is a king? This is your master? This is your Savior? You’ve got to be kidding. That’s the best you’ve got? An ordinary carpenter from Nazareth in Galilee with some kind of Messiah complex?
Well, just look in the mirror. We mock other faiths. You worship that fat statue of the Buddha? You really believe you could be reincarnated as a cow or a bug or something? You’re basing your faith on one man’s vision of some golden plates? You really believe we’re descended from ancient aliens?
It seems like everyone else’s faith is laughable. So is ours, I guess. Wait, you say Jesus came back from the dead? That same guy who walked on water? And turned water into wine? Don’t you think that’s kind of out there? I completely understand why someone might make fun of the things I believe.
Oh, and they beat Jesus while they were mocking him. Like the bully who pushes you down on the playground and then laughs when you skin your knees. Or trips you in the lunchroom, sending your food flying while everyone laughs.
That’s what our world is like. That’s the world that Jesus stepped into.
It is humbling to realize that we are among the ones who make it that kind of a world. We do plenty of mocking. We’re in on it. We’re in on the shame and humiliation Jesus endured. That’s me in the mirror.
It’s a cruel world, Lord. And I help make it that way. Lord, have mercy.