Gospel Reflections

Mark 14:1-15:47

Feast Day Reflection by Sister Masako Mayake

Published: March 27, 2018

But the chief priests stirred up the crowd, so that he should rather release Barabbas to them. So they cried out again, “Crucify Him!”  Then Pilate said to them, “Why, what evil has He done?”  But they cried out all the more, “Crucify Him!”  So Pilate, wanting to gratify the crowd, released Barabbas to them; and he delivered Jesus, after he had scourged Him, to be crucified.  Mark15

Who crucified Jesus? 

In a recent book, the author said that the crowd who came to listen to Jesus and welcomed Him with palm and the crowd who cried out “Crucify Him!” are different groups. In short,  supporters of Jesus and supporters of Barabbas.  But, in my eyes, they can be the same crowd.  The crowd noticed, and was suffering from, the injustice of the society, and longed for the change. In Jesus and in Barabbas, they expected a strong leader who could change the situation.

Many people are always looking for someone in whom to entrust the change.  Usually they follow and back up those who give a simple speech, show the strong means and promise the quick solution.  Barabbas might be just such a leader.

How about Jesus?  He shows the way which starts from our own change, looks poor and weak and it is a long winding way to finish.  It is difficult to believe and wait with patience and hope.  Jesus asks the ordinary people to change the situation with changing themselves.  He also asks us to join hands, even with the “enemy.”  Though it is a harder and a longer way than trusting somebody, it makes them open their eyes to great possibilities.

Is this a story somewhere in the ancient time?  No. Nowadays, we can see these “crowds” everywhere and can hear the voices saying “Crucify Him!”  We are a “crowd,” when we read Gospel in the rite of the holy week and say “Crucify Him!” . Every time I say “Crucify Him!”  as one of a crowd, I find the crowd in myself.  So, especially in this season of the Lent, I pray that we can follow the way Jesus walked.    




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