Friday, April 15, 2011

8. Jesus Before the Priests (Gay Passion of Christ series)

8. Jesus Before the Priests (from The Passion of Christ: A Gay Vision) by Douglas Blanchard

“Then the high priest tore his robes, and said, ‘He has uttered blasphemy.’” -- Matthew 26:65 (RSV)

The police arrested Jesus and took him straight to the priests -- the ones that Jesus had often accused of hypocrisy. They rigorously enforced minor laws, while neglecting the purpose of the law: justice, love and faith. They were like today’s church officials who put ministers on trial for blessing same-gender relationships or ordaining lesbians and gays. The priests interrogated Jesus for hours, trying to get him to say something that could be used against him. When they asked about his teachings, Jesus replied, Why ask me? Ask those who heard me. At that, an officer struck him, snarling, Is that how you answer the high priest?! The priests watched the violence with bland indifference. There were some good men among them, but they accepted their role as part of the system. They kept silent as evil triumphed again. Violence in God’s name was routine. The unthinkable had become normal.

God, I listen to YOU, even when it goes against what the priests say.

Next: 9. Jesus Before the Magistrate

More resources
The Banality of Evil from Triumph of the Market by finance professor Edward S. Herman

Jesus is sentenced to death (excerpt from “At the Cross” by Kittredge Cherry)
This is part of a series based on “The Passion of Christ: A Gay Vision,” a set of 24 paintings by Douglas Blanchard, with text by Kittredge Cherry

Click to go to the beginning
or view the whole series.

Scripture quotation is from Revised Standard Version of the Bible, copyright © 1946, 1952, and 1971 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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Trudie said...

I've just been reading Jimmy Creech's marvelous new account of his struggles to support GLBT people in the United Methodist Church in the late 1990's and into the new Millennium. Entitled "Adam's Gift", it speaks profoundly to so much of what this blog entry describes -- IN THE PRESENT. I'll review it at length when I've finished, but am already calling it a MUST READ. Jesus is indeed on trial over and over again in every so-called Christian church where his teachings are totally ignored in favor of power politics and fear-driven fanaticism.

KittKatt said...

I’m so excited about Jimmy Creech’s new book “Adam's Gift: A Memoir of a Pastor’s Calling to Defy the Church’s Persecution of Lesbians and Gays” that I immediately added it to the Jesus in Love Bookstore . Thanks, Trudie, for alerting me to it.

Your comment reminds me of Rev. Janie Spahr’s multiple trials in the Presbyterian Church for being a lesbian minister. How could I have missed that connection while writing the text for this painting?! I revised the text to make a reference to today’s church trials over ordination and same-gender commitment ceremonies.

Trudie, this is your best comment ever in terms of sparking me to instant action!