2017 Mia Rodríguez
Edition, License Notes
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you, Laura Parra. Thank you for your incredible friendship and for
believing in this book.
this work, you will see ideas, concepts, and philosophies from my
other works. I reserve the right to plagiarize my own material. Some
impressions are worth repeating.
your knowledge, I am using the Living Bible Paraphrased
and also the King James one. If you are more comfortable with the
King James version, please feel free to replace the same passages
with that Bible. It’ll stand the test of truth.
composing this work I tried to connect the dots in a logical way,
within the gospels and Jesus’ obvious teachings—without
over-reaching as sometimes certain people seem do to push their own
you for joining me on this voyage. The journey to try to understand
in detail the amazing Jesus.
your eyes on Jesus, our teacher instructor. He was willing to die a
shameful death on the cross because of the joy he knew would be his
afterwards; and now he sits in the place of honor by the throne of
God. If you want to keep from becoming fainthearted and weary, think
about his patience as sinful men did such terrible things to him.”
I heard of you a long time ago,
Jesus supposed to be for all
even though I’m not exactly religious,
set dogma or boxed-in bias,
I, a traveler on this problematic earth,
still see the need to search
your incandescent spiritual truth.
I have to admit I’m perplexed,
just don’t understand
much horror being done in your name.
the past—hatred, the crusades, the inquisition, genocide and so
the present—hatred, divisiveness, judgement, genocide and so on.
this what your life meant to bring us?
this what you wanted for us?
forgive me for being a bit confused,
after you preached about:
humility, and love
the first stone if you haven’t sinned,”
thy neighbor as thyself,”
others as you would have them treat you.”
about your insistence on healing the sick?
where did the meaning of your love become confused?
have we taken the cruel path of self-righteous superiority?
Jesus, upon reading the gospels in full,
not in bits and pieces along with other biblical passages
we cherry pick and manipulate the meaning of,
not you, who confused us,
you at all
clear as unpolluted rainwater,
us!—we confused ourselves.
Moses gave us only the Law with its rigid demands and merciless
justice, while Jesus Christ brought us loving forgiveness as well.”
must be looking down upon us and agonizing. You didn’t teach us to
hate on one another. You were on earth in the flesh and you taught us
so very much. Did we learn anything?
self-awareness is sorely and tragically lacking.
we compartmentalize events in history, putting them in little boxes
that we don’t actually relate with our humanity like what happened
to you. BUT your story is the story of humanity. One we absolutely
should examine closely and learn from so that we stop repeating the
same mistakes over and over again.
that we’ve often made you into a sorry Jesus instead of pleading a
profound and deeply felt I’m sorry to you.
she gave birth to her first child, a son. She wrapped him up in a
blanket and laid him in a manger, because there was no room for them
in the village inn.” (Luke 2:7)
so many of us haven’t learned what you taught us from the very,
very beginning of your life on earth. When you came
into this world you had it extraordinarily difficult right from the
start. You were born in a humble place. Not in an opulent palace with
never-ending servants. Not in kingly robes of costly material
demanding attention. Not with a gold crown adorning your head,
proclaiming your superiority.
lesson should’ve taught us about materialism, shouldn’t it have?
we worship wealth. We may not want to admit to it or even face up to
it but we’re impressed by things—costly stuff
that’s supposed to tell us who others are or tell others who we
are. What a silly game with stuff!
that’s supposed to validate us.
us—as if God didn’t already validate us by choosing us to be
supposed to shove our importance in front of others. An appearance
of importance and not real importance like you taught
can only present a veneer that suffocates our very souls.
your humble birth and life prove our worth is not based on such
thorny ground represents the hearts of people who listen to the Good
News and receive it, but all too quickly the attractions of this
world and the delights of wealth, and the search for success and lure
of nice things come in and crowd out God’s message from their
hearts, so that no crop is produced.’” (Mark 4:18-19)
they were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream.
‘Get up and flee to Egypt with the baby and his mother,’ the
angel said, ‘and stay there until I tell you to return, for King
Herod is going to try to kill the child.’” (Matthew 2:13)
is it about us and power struggles? There was one so palpable from
the time you were born. Didn’t you, in the arms of your family,
have to flee to Egypt? Herod, the king of Judea, feared you. This
puppet king of Rome ordered a massacre of infants. Insecure of his
power, he wanted to stomp your light of hope out.
powerful people don’t give up power easily. Many of them will do
anything, anything, to keep it.
the truth of your words.
words becoming twisted, distorted, and unrecognizable from your
messages for an opposite Jesus. An anti-Jesus.
tree is identified by its fruit. A tree from a select variety
produces good product; poor varieties don’t. You brood of snakes!
How could evil man like you speak what is good and right? For a man’s
heart determines his speech. A good man’s speech reveals the rich
treasures within him. An evil-hearted man is filled with venom, and
his speech reveals it.’” (Matthew 12:33-35)
days later they finally discovered him. He was in the Temple, sitting
among the teachers of Law, discussing deep questions with them and
amazing everyone with his understanding and answers.” (Luke
is it so difficult for us to take a page from your book? As you grew
up you had a special ability to comprehend the Scriptures. Many of us
understand things through the filters of our insecurities and fears.
It’s easy to twist the words in the Bible and to find obscure
passages out of context to make us assuage our insecurities. This is
how distortions and illusions arise.
you have always seemed to be able to understand God’s grace without
the filter of fear.
studied, read, and learned, didn’t you? You became informed. Opened
your mind. Ate up knowledge so that no one could later twist your
mind with pretzels of lies. Twist passages. Twist meanings. Twist
became INFORMED which you would later absolutely need with the way
religious and other types of leaders would try to trick you. Destroy
child drinking up knowledge.
you grew up, you became a carpenter. You built things. Made things
instead of destroy them. How important was building versus
destruction to you?
Jesus had finished giving these illustrations, he returned to his
home town, Nazareth in Galilee, and taught there in the synagogue and
astonished everyone with his wisdom and his miracles.” (Matthew
Jesus went from Galilee to the Jordan River to be baptized there by
John. John didn’t want to do it.
isn’t proper,’ he said. ‘I am the one who needs to be baptized
Jesus said, ‘Please do it, for I must do all that is right.’ So
then John baptized him.” (Matthew 3:13-15)
do we confuse arrogance, roars, and bragging with confidence? With
ability? With strength?
before starting your ministry you went to John the Baptist, your
cousin who was preparing your way. You could’ve pounded your chest
and roared, “Hey, I’m Jesus! The Jesus you’ve all
been waiting for! I’m here!—bend your heads in worship.”
you got baptized. You kept your humility intact instead of going all
gladiator, all alpha male, all king of the jungle.
said you must do all that’s right. No parsing of words there. No
twist and turns to your message. Just clarity.
doing all that’s right includes being true to your humble
more lowly your service to others, the greater you are. To be the
greatest, be a servant. But those who think themselves great shall be
disappointed and humbled; and those who humble themselves shall be
exalted.’” (Matthew 23:11-12)
out of here, Satan,’ Jesus told him. ‘The Scriptures say,
‘Worship only the Lord God. Obey only him.’” (Matthew 4:10)
is it that you taught us about evil but we still don’t seem to have
a clue about it? The far reaches of it? The intricate web of trickery
and seductiveness? After the baptism, you spent forty days and nights
in the spiritual solitude of the desert. You already knew what was to
come and you must have been preparing yourself for the whole intense
reared its very ugly head with a three-way temptation. First,
he told you to turn stones into food. But even when you were starving
you told him that, “Man could not live by bread alone.” Second,
he wanted you to throw yourself from a pinnacle of the Temple so that
angels would disrupt your fall. You refused to put God through a
foolish test. Third, he stated that if you’d worship him, he’d
give you all the kingdoms of the world. You’d have none of that
because you’d only worship God.
what were you saying?
the spiritual is a necessity as much as any other need—food
included. Next, don’t test the goodness of God for a power trip.
God’s power is for enrichment and not for our obsession for
supremacy. Lastly, only worship God—not stuff, not
status, not wealth, not anything else. Be careful of not worshipping
people with these things either. This type of
worship—turning off the thinking process in order to adore, revere,
or venerate without critical contemplation because the object of the
worship represents what we think we want
or what we’re told we want.
with this lesson about adulation, it seemed obvious you also found
the kingdoms of earth unimportant. These earthly kingdoms that human
beings fight for, die for, manipulate for, and obsess
you mean to tell us that even in all their glory, they couldn’t
compare to a spiritual journey?
are our values?
upon the world for all its evils. Temptation to do wrong is
inevitable, but woe to the man who does the tempting. So if your hand
or foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. Better to
enter heaven crippled than to be in hell with both of your hands and
feet.”’ (Matthew 18:7-8)
Pharisees were indignant. ‘Why does your teacher associate with men
people who are well don’t need a doctor! It’s the sick people who
do!’ was Jesus’ reply.” (Matthew 9:11-12)
is it that we don’t apprehend about the way you chose your
disciples? You didn’t choose perfect individuals with no flaws as
there are no such human beings—you didn’t even pick perfectly
religious persons. Why did you choose such different kinds of people
to be your disciples?—of diverse backgrounds?
you teaching us about the tyranny of the sameness?—where
‘absolute power corrupts absolutely.’ Absolute
power of the sameness that stunts and stagnates our growth as human
beings. We are supposed to learn from one another, aren’t we?
you call upon Matthew—a tax collector, a profession reviled by
many? You dined with Matthew and other tax-collectors. The Pharisees,
a deeply religious sect, were absolutely scandalized that you would
keep such company.
you came to heal us from so many mind games of hatred, superiority,
and viciousness, right?
fact, didn’t you tell your disciples to be careful with the evil
am sending you out as sheep among wolves. Be as wary as serpents and
harmless as doves.’”( Matthew 10:16)
Beatitudes (Matthew 5:3-12):
are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.”
are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.”
are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they
shall be filled.”
are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.”
are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.”
are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.”
are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs
is the kingdom of heaven.”
“Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute
you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my
sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in
heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.”
we completely misunderstand the Sermon on the Mount? All that talk
about the meek, the merciful, the ones who mourn, the pure at heart,
the peacemakers, the ones striving for justice. Maybe you were
speaking in some sort of code? Maybe what you really meant was that
only certain people had to follow these
instructions—others were free to do the opposite like hating,
judging, and persecuting. Like being unmerciful, arrogant, and
hypocritical. Like shutting their minds with superiority
thinking that doesn’t bother to see a complete
picture because of one-dimensional myopic sight due to blinders that
prevent us from looking at all sides except our own. Or like being
killing, WAR-riors for you—just like you instructed your disciples
to be. Oops! That’s right—you didn’t give them such
instructions to be gladiators for you. In fact, you would give them
instructions to preach the good news, cast out evil spirits, raise
the dead, and heal the sick.
into account your teachings, it’s very important to empathize with
others to get to your core, your heart, isn’t it? Your teachings
can be summarized in the Golden rule.
for others what you want them to do for you. This is the teaching of
the laws of Moses in a nutshell.’” (Matthew 7:12)
criticize, and then you won’t be criticized. For others will treat
you as you treat them. And why worry about a speck in the eye of a
brother when you have a board in your own.’”(Matthew 7:1-3)
was your ministry actually about? Was it about harsh, cutting
judgement for the sinners? Was it about who was superior enough to be
your followers? Doesn’t seem like it.
you travel with your ministry preaching against religious hypocrisy
like superficial prayer and doing things for self-righteous sake?
Hypocrisy—focusing on someone else’s issues while completely
ignoring or excusing your own. This seemed a big deal to you.
can we have empathy for others if we can’t get beyond our own
hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophecy of you, ‘These people say they
honor me, but their hearts are far away. Their worship is worthless,
for they teach their man-made laws instead of those from
what pity he felt for the crowds that came, because their problems
were so great and they didn’t know what to do or where to go for
help. They were like sheep without a shepherd.” (Matthew 9:36)
is it that we don’t appreciate about the intricacies of empathy and
you perform miracles in your grand empathy and compassion for human
you raise people from the dead, cast out bad spirits, turn water into
wine, and even walk on water?
you feed many people with a few loaves and fish?
important was it for you that individuals share with one another? You
didn’t materialize food from the air. You got the fish and loaves
from the crowd and blessed the food. Then you parted the nourishment
and amazingly there was enough for everyone and there were even
leftovers. It never occurred to you to charge for the food, didn’t?
Make money off of it.
you heal the sick again and again? Maybe you should’ve charged
money for your healings instead of doing that socialistic act.
you once cure a man who was blind from birth? Your disciples asked
you if whether the sin lay in the man or his parents that he had been
born with that illness. Often human beings have a jerk
reaction—playing the blame game. Self-righteous judgmental shadow
thoughts. Whose fault is it? Fault—it often excuses us from helping
one another. Didn’t you make it crystal clear that the man’s
blindness wasn’t a punishment from God? You seemed trying to get
your disciples off that earthly mindset of revenge, self-righteous
criticism, and blame and onto godly love for His children—for His
your eye is pure, there will be sunshine in your soul. But if your
eye is clouded with evil thoughts and desires, you are in deep
spiritual darkness. And oh, how deep that darkness can be!”
my yoke—for it fits perfectly—and let me teach you; for I am
gentle and humble, and you shall find rest for your souls; for I give
you only light burdens.’”(Matthew 11:29-30)
is your example so very difficult for us to grasp? Your love? Your
you teach from the heart?
you teach with simple parables and ideas, so you would be understood
better? Didn’t you replace an “eye for an eye” with “turn the
you explain faith?
For if you had faith even as small as a tiny mustard seed you
could say to this mountain, ‘Move!’ and it would go far away.
Nothing would be impossible.’” (Matthew 17:20)
“Then he added, ‘Now go away and learn the meaning of this
verse of Scripture, ‘It isn’t your sacrifices and your gifts I
want—I want you to be merciful. For I have come to urge sinners,
not the self-righteous, back to God.’” (Matthew 9:13)
is it that we cling to certain ideas and behaviors so violently?
were being questioned by the Pharisees. You demanded—learn
the meaning. Learn. Unfortunately, a person can’t
learn with a locked mind. “It isn’t your sacrifices I want.”
Sacrifices and gifts—often the self-righteous way of claiming
want you to be merciful.” Imagine, mercy being way above sacrifices
and gifts. Mercy—compassion, empathy, sympathy. Acting humane.
I have come to urge sinners, not the self-righteous, back to God.”
Apparently, the self-righteous already think they’re with God. That
they’re right. Think the sinners aren’t worthy of
God. No mercy. But you thought differently.
your disciples, like most of us, sometimes had problems letting go of
certain superiority thought processes. Your disciples asked you which
of them would be greatest in heaven? You responded:
Unless you turn to God from your sins and become as little
children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. Therefore
anyone who humbles himself as this little child, is the greatest in
the Kingdom of Heaven.’” (Matthew 18:3-4)
“Then Jesus said to the Pharisees and teachers of the law, ‘I
have a question for you. Is it right to do good on the Sabbath day,
or to do harm? To save a life, or to destroy it.’” (Luke 6:9)
the powerful often do terrible things to keep their power? During the
growth of your ministry, powerful people were becoming nervous of
you. Your unorthodox ways didn’t gel with them. For example, when
you healed a man’s withered hand on the Sabbath you were deeply
different types of leaders felt threatened by you. Was it because you
broke the rules when necessary that the leadership couldn’t
tolerate you? You threatened the divide between Romans and Jews. The
Jewish citizens were under Roman control.
many Romans you were a troublemaker—an instigator who could cause
your followers to revolt against the Roman Empire.
this time, John the Baptist was imprisoned and beheaded. This of
course distressed you. You went off in solitude, but the crowds
certain point, you told your disciples not to tell anyone you were
the Messiah. You spoke about the horrible events that would
eventually occur to you. Peter shot off that that tragedy would not
happen to you and you reprimanded him. You made it clear that you had
to keep your thoughts straight because minds could be influenced and
manipulated by evil—even through well-intentioned individuals.
turned on Peter and said, ‘Get away from me, you Satan! You are a
dangerous trap to me. You are merely thinking from a human point of
view, and not from God’s.’” (Matthew 16:23)
“They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and
said, ‘All right, hurl the stones at her until she dies. But only
he who never sinned may throw the first!’” (John 8:7)
can’t we seem to learn the lessons of what you were trying to teach
religious leaders and the Pharisees? We compartmentalize those people
and don’t see how we have Modern-day Pharisees of different
cultures and backgrounds. We have certain religious leaders of every
religion making the very same errors you were trying to uncover then.
Anti-Semitism is based on not realizing the lessons you were trying
to teach us about ALL of us. ALL.
you keep preaching forgiveness as you saved a woman accused of
adultery from being stoned to death? In order to trick you, Jewish
leaders and Pharisees brought an adulterous woman to you to test what
you’d say since Mosaic Law called for to kill her.
a not a coincidence that the Pharisees chose an adulterous woman.
Adultery—a tremendous sin in their eyes. Especially from a woman.
They didn’t bring the male involved, did they? In their
self-righteousness they judged her and condemned her to death. No
empathy at all. None.
believed she deserved no mercy. But you believed differently—that
all people are flawed and need to balance their mistakes with
humility. That God’s rules were not for a gotcha mentality
but to help human beings navigate through life and to get along.
the Sabbath was made to benefit man, and not man to benefit the
went into the Temple, drove out the merchants, and knocked over the
money-changers’ tables and the stalls of those selling doves. ‘The
Scriptures say my Temple is a place of prayer,’ he declared, ‘but
you have turned it into a den of thieves.’” (Matthew 21:12-13)
many times did you have to put a stop to the greed,
self-righteousness, and misguidedness done in God’s name?
you arrived in Jerusalem for the feast of Tabernacles, you were
cheered. Then you were furious when you saw what was happening at the
Temple, so you took action and knocked over the tables.
Temple was no longer a place to connect with God, but a way for the
powerful to make wealth and excuse their greed. Excuse it!
he returned to the Temple and was teaching, the chief priests and
other Jewish leaders came up to him and demanded to know by whose
authority he had thrown out the merchants the day before.” (Matthew
“Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘It is almost impossible
for a rich man to get into the Kingdom of heaven. I say it again—it
is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich
man to enter the Kingdom of God!’
remark confounded the disciples. ‘Then who in the world can be
saved?’ they asked.
looked at them intently and said, ‘Humanly speaking, no one. But
with God, everything is possible.”’(Matthew 19:23-26)
you make it exceedingly clear what you thought of the corrupting
powers of wealth? Yet, we still worship it knowing full well we’re
not supposed to venerate money. Judge others by it. Not recognize
what’s deep inside of us.
you declared that it’s easier for a camel to go through the eye of
a needle than a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God, you were
handing us a huge warning—a very important one.
means power. Power can excuse evil. Excuse horrible acts. Excuse
greed. Excuse hatred. Excuse manipulation. Excuse an evil shepherd
misguiding the sheep for more power. More ravenousness. More money.
More, more, more.
why we have that critical saying, “Follow the money.”
disciples were as brainwashed as anyone else there (as we are today).
They were perplexed that a rich person had a slim chance of getting
into heaven. They just couldn’t fathom that important
individuals like the moneyed were in this position with God—not
important, not validated, not admired, and not automatically
deserving of heaven.
powerful to God.
cannot serve two masters: God and money. For you will hate one and
love the other, or else the other way around.” (Matthew 6:24)
the Pharisees met together to try to think of some way to trap Jesus
into saying something for which they could arrest him.” (Matthew
can’t we see what is so clearly in front of us? Why do we get so
myopic in our clinging to power? To our self-preservation? To
adversaries plotted against you. Many of your enemies were people in
power, and they conspired your destruction.
the Pharisees desperate to do away with you but frightened that the
multitudes accepted you as a prophet?
the point you made about them not about their precise religion or
ethnicity but their failure to want to understand?
we have the same failures today with people of diverse groups and
you accomplish such feats as breaking barriers by interrelating with
Samaritans and Gentiles?
Jesus saw what they were after. ‘You hypocrites!’ he exclaimed.
‘Who are you trying to fool with your trick questions?’”
replied, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and
mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. The second most
important is similar: ‘Love your neighbor as much as you love
yourself.’” (Matthew 22:37-39)
important it was love to you? After trying to trick you with more
questions, a lawyer asked what was the most important commandment in
the Laws of Moses. It’s no coincidence that love is centered in
both Commandments, is it? Not judgment. Not hatred. Not gotcha.
the other commandments and all the demands of the prophets stem from
these two laws and are fulfilled if you obey them. Keep only these
and you will find that you are obeying all the others.’” (Matthew
Samaritan! Foreigner! Devil!’ the Jewish leaders snarled. ‘Didn’t
we say all along you were processed by a demon?’”(John 8:48)
Pharisees and religious leadership certainly demonized you—called
you a foreigner. An other. That way they’d have an
excuse in their minds to do the worst to you.
still do that nowadays. In our obsession with the sameness we often
treat one another very badly and don’t have the integrity to call
it what it is—bias, bigotry, hate. Instead we double down on the
tyranny of the sameness and insist we’re following
the Pharisees and leadership following God’s plan when they were
lying, tricking, and demonizing you? Turning the tables and calling
you the liar? Projecting who they were onto you?
Pharisees replied, ‘You are boasting—and lying!”’ (John 8:13)
‘You pass judgment on me without knowing the facts…’”
seem of such little value to some people—then as well as now.
Ideology being more important to them. So they make up their own
facts as the powerful did to get rid of you.
they tell themselves they were doing right by God? Did they ever,
even for a single moment, question their own corruption?
you and God are truth, right? TRUTH. Not fake truthettes.
could condemn you for much and teach you much, but I won’t, for I
say only what I am told by the one who sent me; and he is Truth.’
But they still didn’t understand that he was talking to them about
God.’” (John 8:26-27)
said to them, ‘You are truly my disciples if you live as I tell you
to, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’”
if the truth shall set us free, do we so often insist on believing
truthettes, downright lies, fake ideas?
do we allow ourselves to be manipulated for power games? Why do we
insist on believing what we want to believe instead of
scratching out the truth?
our egos so fragile?
being right in our wrong than fixing a wrong into right?
do we get to the point of not wanting to open our eyes to the
truth—to knowing the difference between truth and lies?
can’t you understand what I am saying? It is because you are
prevented from doing so! For you are the children of your father the
devil and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer
from the beginning and a hater of truth—there is not
an iota of truth in him. When he lies, it is perfectly normal; for he
is the father of liars. And so when I tell the truth, you just
naturally don’t believe it!’” (John 8:43-45)
“Then Jesus said to him, ‘You Pharisees wash the outside,
but inside you are still dirty--full of greed and wickedness! Fools!
Didn’t God make the inside as well as the outside? Purity is best
demonstrated by generosity.’” (Luke 11:39-41)
can’t we decipher where we go so very wrong? You were patient with
the sinners but not with the religious leadership.
let them have it with a woe-to-you litany:
to you, Pharisees, and you other religious leaders. Hypocrites! For
you won’t let others enter the Kingdom of Heaven, and won’t go in
yourselves. And you pretend to be holy, with all your long, public
prayers in the streets, while you are evicting widows from their
homes. Hypocrites! Yes, woe upon you hypocrites. For you go to all
lengths to make one convert, and then turn him into twice the son of
hell you are yourselves.” (Matthew 23:13-15)
guides! Woe upon you! For your rule is that to swear ‘By God’s
temple’ means nothing—you can break that oath, but to swear ‘By
the gold in the Temple’ is binding! Blind fools! Which is greater,
the gold or the Temple that sacrifices the gold? And you say that to
take an oath ‘By the altar’ can be broken, but to swear ‘By the
gifts on the altar’ is binding! Blind! For which is greater, the
gift on the altar, or the altar itself that sanctifies the gift? When
you swear ‘By the altar’ you are swearing by it and everything on
it, and when you swear ‘By the Temple’ you are swearing by it,
and by God who lives in it. And when you swear ‘By heavens’ you
are swearing by the Throne of God and by God himself.” (Matthew
woe upon you, Pharisees, and you other religious leaders—hypocrites!
For you tithe down to the last mint leaf in your garden, but ignore
the important things—justice and mercy and faith. Yes, you should
tithe, but you shouldn’t leave the more important things undone.
Blind guides! You strain out a gnat and swallow a camel.” (Matthew
to you, Pharisees and you religious leaders—hypocrites!
You are so careful to polish the outside of the cup, but the inside
is foul with extortion and greed. Blind Pharisees! First cleanse the
inside of the cup, and then the whole cup will be clean.” (Matthew
to you, Pharisees, and you religious leaders! You are like beautiful
mausoleums— full of dead men’s bones, and of foulness and
corruption. You try to look like saintly men, but underneath those
pious robes of yours are hearts besmirched with every sort of
hypocrisy and sin. (Matthew 23:27-28)
woe to you, Pharisees, and you religious leaders—hypocrites! For
you build monuments to the prophets killed by your fathers and lay
flowers on the graves of the godly men they destroyed, and say, ‘We
certainly would never have acted as our fathers did.’ In saying
that, you are accusing yourselves of being the sons of wicked men.
And you are following in their steps, filling up the full measure of
their evil. Snakes! Sons of vipers! How shall you escape the judgment
of hell?” (Matthew 23: 29-33
“Then Jesus said to the crowds, and to his disciples, ‘You
would think these Jewish leaders and these Pharisees were Moses, the
way they keep making up so many laws! And of course you should obey
their every whim! It may be all right to do what they say, but above
anything else, don’t follow their example. For they don’t do what
they tell you to do. They load you with impossible demands that they
themselves don’t even try to keep.’” (Matthew 23:1-4)
there are times certain people who purport to be God’s most
faithful go so very wrong. You called Pharisees and the religious
leadership hypocrites, blind guides, blind fools, and vipers. You
released your full fury and frustration at them. Why? Why weren’t
you as patient with them as you were with others?
it because they were supposed to lead the sheep to God but were
protecting their own power instead? They were acting holy
while evicting widows from their homes. They self-righteously
followed the rules and ignored what was most important—justice,
mercy, and faith. They took care of their appearances but didn’t
care for their souls. Full of extortion, greed, hypocrisy, and evil.
Those who thought their morals were high were actually morally
woe to you Pharisees! For though you are careful to tithe even the
smallest part of your income, you completely forget about justice and
the love of God. You should tithe, yes, but you should not leave
these other things undone.’” (Luke 11:42)
blind guides, blindfolds, vipers.
said one thing and did another—excusing their own behavior but
condemning others. Blind guides—guiding without truth. Indeed, they
were so blind they couldn’t tell the difference between lies and
truths. Blind fools—fools for rejecting God’s truth of love and
mercy in return for Evil’s agenda of power and
manipulation. Vipers—Evil seducing the masses. Lying
to them but insisting it’s got the truth since evil often disguises
itself as goodness. Fakes it. FAKE. Then calls goodness fake.
leadership was trying to be saved by acts but the Bible says we’re
not saved by deeds—not by merely following the rules,
dotting-every-i and crossing-every-t.
Yet, Jesus said a tree is known by its fruit. So, is what we do
important because of what is in our heart?—instead of being
important to self-righteously proclaim superiority?
they busily plotted against you. Your enemies.
the Pharisees kept testing you, didn’t you continue warning your
disciples to beware of their mistaken teachings?
all who sound religious are really godly people. They may refer to me
as ‘Lord’, but still won’t get to heaven. For the decisive
question is whether they obey my Father in heaven. At the Judgment
many will tell me, ‘Lord, Lord, we told others about you and used
your name to cast out demons and to do many other great miracles.’
But I will reply, ‘You have never been mine. Go away, for your
deeds are evil.’” (Matthew 7:21-23)
if anyone tells you, ‘The Messiah has arrived at such and such a
place, or has appeared here or there,’ don’t believe it. For
false Christs shall arise, and false prophets, and will do wonderful
miracles, so that if it were possible, even God’s chosen ones will
be deceived. See, I have warned you.” (Matthew 24:23-25)
often heed so little to your warnings. Or if we do pay attention to
them, many of us twist your warnings to what we think/want
of their truth.
you teach about false prophets who would distort your message of love
into one of judgment, hatred for other people, lies masked by the
insistence of being truth, superiority thinking, and
overall damage. You warned us about the future, and we paid so little
attention. We failed to see the entirety of it. Only
seeing an us versus them application.
prophets? Turn a blind eye at their un-Christ-like behavior. They are
following the rules. Rules above mercy. Superiority for who follows
blind guides, blind fools, and vipers—your words, Jesus.
Christs will arise trying to fool people into thinking they are you.
Power games. You said you won’t come back in the flesh. Why come
back and be crucified again?
predicted persecution. Who is going to persecute whom? What excuse
will be used to do it? Will you be used as an excuse for it? Hate for
Jesus? Is it happening already?
We do that well, unfortunately. Persecute one another. We excuse
doing it for you or God.
a persecution that overextends and grabs at others—us
versus them? The tyranny of the sameness.
You know so much about persecution, don’t you? Persecuted by the
ruling Romans who were certain of their own superiority (superiority
thinking) to the others and also persecuted by
those absolutely certain in their wrongness that they were doing the
work of God—even lying, manipulating truth, and distorting the
honesty of God. Misinformation for the masses.
all this certainness.
of their right to persecute.
that the ends justified the means. That the us had the
self-righteous certainty to persecute the them.
The certainty that the persecution of God’s children
was rubber-stamped and mandated by a capricious parent/creator only
interested in pitting His creation against one another.
there will be persecution such as the world has never before seen in
all its history, and will never see again.” (Matthew 24:21)
‘“I will send you prophets, and wise men, and inspired
writers, and you will kill some by crucifixion, and rip open the
backs of others with whips in your synagogues, and hound them from
city to city, so that you won’t become guilty of all the blood of
murdered godly men from righteous Abel to Zechariah, son of
Barachiah, slain by you and the Temple between the altar and the
sanctuary.’” (Matthew 23:34-36)
can’t seem to care about ourselves or our earth.
prophesied earth-shattering events. Wars with nations and kingdoms
arising against one another. Famine. Earthquakes. Tragedies. But
won’t those horrors be of our own making? Destabilizing our world
through leaders we pick or don’t stand up to? What about
earthquakes and such? The destabilization of our environment?—like
tornadoes, hurricanes, tsunamis and the like having to do with our
it be you were actually giving us a hint about climate change? There
are those who will fight this notion tooth and nail. But the
connection of the dots may go this way:
gave us authority over Earth—some believe absolute domination but
because of Jesus’ non-alpha-male character, it sounds like we
should be caretakers of the planet. Protectors of it. Guardians of
we are destroying it with our own free-will. Denying what we’re
doing doesn’t change what’s happening—destabilizing the
environment. The only home we have.
apocalypse. Your return in the sky.
Jesus, if we have free-will can we avoid the apocalypse by following
your teachings? You said you didn’t know the time of the end—only
God knew. You, with your prophetic abilities, didn’t know.
it be because the time is up to us? We actually decide our own
destruction— with our own free-will? With the protection of the
environment in our own hands? With the building of more bridges than
bombs in our own hands? With smarts of deep thoughts and critical
thinking and reasoning on how to handle enemies and difficult
situations in our own hands?
all of us are on the same boat—a teensy, tiny planet called Earth,
shouldn’t all of us be trying to plug the hole instead of using
superiority thinking to separate us? Wasn’t working
together your way?—“Love thy neighbor as thyself.”
it all lies in our free-will, doesn’t it? Our fate. Our glory or
our destruction. Time to stop blaming God for what’s clearly in our
and earth will disappear, but my words remain forever. But no one
knows the date and hour when the end will be—not even the angels.
No, nor even God’s son. Only the father knows.” (Matthew
[Jesus] replied, ‘It is the one I served first. For I must die just
as was prophesied, but woe to the man by whom I am betrayed. Far
better for that one if he had never been born.’”(Matthew 26:
seems so little that we reason about your loving kindness and
explosive harshness. Who and what were they directed towards? Why?
the Last Supper, you shocked your disciples by telling them that one
of them would betray you. Each disciple wondered if it would be him.
Iscariot, one of the twelve apostles, had gone to the chief priests
and sold you out for thirty silver coins. Money. No one can serve two
masters, money and God, right?
left the room, having been identified as the one who would betray
you. Even though Judas betraying you was fate, he still didn’t get
a free pass. You said it would’ve been better if he was never born.
He sold you out for currency. How many of most do the same? Sell out
your teachings of mercy, humility, and love? Betray you with excuses
that are really about the gluttony of greed and power.
parted the unleavened meal after blessing it and gave it to your
disciples, declaring it was your body. Then you took a cup of wine,
gave gratitude for it, and shared it. Gratitude and sharing—good
the meal had been finished, you washed the astonished disciples’
feet? When Peter objected to it, you gave him another important
lesson on caring for one another.
since I, the Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to
wash each other’s feet. I have given you an example to follow: do
as I have done to you.’” (John 13:14-15)
‘“Then Jesus said to them, ‘Tonight you will all desert
me. For it is written in the Scriptures that God will smite the
Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’”
must have been such an agonizing burden to know what was going to
happen to you. The betrayals. The lies. The horror.
Peter insisted he would follow you even to death, you told him that
before the cock crowed he would deny you three times.
wanted to make certain your disciples knew the mountains before them.
The struggles with those who would think they were doing God’s
certain in their right.
right in their wrong.
have told you these things so that you won’t be staggered [by all
that lies ahead.] For you will be excommunicated from synagogues, and
indeed the time is coming when those who kill you will think they are
doing God a service.’” (John 16:1-2)
he returned to the three disciples and found them asleep. ‘Peter,’
he called, ‘couldn’t you even stay awake with me one hour? Keep
alert and pray. Otherwise temptation will overpower you. For the
spirit indeed is willing, but how weak the body is!’” (Matthew
how weak over flesh is! We are slaves to our desires, certainties,
and most of all our fears. Fear of the truth of diversity—shattering
the lie of the sameness. Fear of not self-preserving. Fear of not
surviving. Fear of being a loser.
of not being validated. You had no such fear of not being validated.
the Garden of Gethsemane, you took Peter, James, and John further
ahead while leaving the rest of the disciples. You prayed after
having asked your disciples to keep watch.
prayed with such intense turmoil that you broke into a sweat of
blood. Unfortunately you found your disciples asleep several times.
many of us may be asleep now to the evil before us. The evil of
unrecognized bigotry, hatred, and superiority. The evil of Modern-day
Pharisees of every background and culture—placing rules and
regulations above the human family. Judgment and self-righteousness
above mercy and love. Lies above truth—not telling the difference
mob sent by the Jewish leaders arrived to arrest you, and Judas
kissed you to signal who you were. As they proceeded towards you to
seize you, Peter severed the ear of the high priest’s own servant.
But you told him to put up the sword that, “…for all they
that take the sword shall perish with the sword.’” (Matthew
you healed the servant’s ear. So, isn’t it obvious how you felt
about alpha male fierceness? Peace over violence? Reasoning over
it obvious the kind of human being you were? Not cunning or conniving
but clear in your intentions. Clear in your meetings. Clear. Not
twisting speech, mincing words, or muddying lessons. No misdirection.
No kinda truths. No factoid pretzels. Just clarity. Where do people
become confused by you?
Jesus addressed the chief priests and captains of the Temple guards
and the religious leaders who headed the mob. ‘Am I a robber,’ he
asked, ‘that you have come armed with swords and clubs to get me?
Why didn’t you arrest me in the Temple? I was there every day. But
this is your moment—the time when Satan’s power reigns supreme.’”
they spat in his face and struck him and some slapped him, saying,
‘Prophecy to us, you Messiah! Who struck you that time?’”
much that’s false permeates the world. False. False. False. We
don’t seem to really know the meaning of the word as we often deem
false what we don’t like. What we don’t want to face about
ourselves. What we refuse to change. Make truth false and false the
truth so we don’t have to change our minds.
before a court of priests and other religious authorities in the
middle of the night, they looked to charge you and condemn you to
death. You were questioned, and false witnesses, who contradicted
each other in many ways, were produced.
this time, you were horribly abused.
later, at a more complete meeting of the Council, you were questioned
further and then convicted. However your death sentence could only
be carried out by the Romans and you were sent in chains to Pilate,
the Roman governor.
was very concerned with the maintenance of law and order since there
had been numerous riots and bloodshed in the city. When questioning
you, he couldn’t find fault in you, but the priests insisted
urgently that Jesus was a troublemaker—inciting people to riot.
Pilate made the decision that because you were a Galilean, you fell
under King Herod’s jurisdiction. But after the questioning and
battering with Herod, you were sent back to Pilate.
you didn’t answer during some of the accusations flung at you. On
certain occasions, you stayed quiet when being questioned. Why? Did
you think it was useless to try to reason with a locked mind? A
myopic viewpoint that doesn’t want to bother to look beyond the
hypocrisy of its own interests.
fatigued with the situation, offered the mob that had gathered a
choice. Either free Jesus or let go a criminal. It was a tradition
that during the Passover, the Romans would free a prisoner at the
selection of the people.
the chief priests and Jewish officials persuaded the crowds to ask
for Barabbas’ release, and for Jesus’ death.”(Matthew 27:20)
‘“Then what shall I do with Jesus, your Messiah?’ Pilate
they shouted, ‘Crucify him!’
Pilot demanded. ‘What has he done wrong?’ But they kept shouting,
‘Crucify! Crucify!’” (Matthew 27:22-23)
lies, distortions—why can’t we see them for what they are? How do
we become so brainwashed that we can’t see the truth before us?
That we can’t tell truths from lies because lies permeate our
comfort zone of the tyranny of the sameness and
superiority thinking that we can’t
accept the truth. We become so obstinate in the delusion of what we
think should be the truth.
you were presented to the people, they would choose the notorious
prisoner, the infamous bandit named Barabbas, with much blood on his
hands, to go free. They were persuaded by the powerful
to do so.
How did they do this? Did they lie? Misinform? Distort the truth?
Call the truth lies and lies the truth? Spread propaganda?
they feel absolutely certain that they were doing right
by God? Get rid of you by any means necessary. Did they tell
themselves they were doing the right thing for
God? Did they believe their own lies? That they were the godly ones
because they followed all the rules and regulations. In their
minds—you, on the other hand, broke some of them and babied the
sinner instead of cracking God’s whip—putting concrete order to
the disorder. This would threaten their superiority thinking.
Threaten their power. Threaten their sense of self.
frenzied mob, made rabid by leaders only interested in keeping their
own power and not the people’s, believed in the delusion of
should-be-the-truth. Jesus should
be the true bandit, so therefore it was the TRUTH. They forced the
manipulated opinion to be the truth in their own minds.
were so convinced of their righteousness that when Pilate said, “‘…
I am innocent of the blood of this good man. The responsibility is
yours!’ And the mob yelled back, ‘His blood be on us and on our
children!’” (Matthew 27:24-25)
was released while you were whipped. The Roman soldiers tormented and
mocked you, calling you, “King of the Jews.” They crammed a crown
of long thorns on your head, placed a stick in your right hand as a
scepter, and jeered as they bowed before you. Then they spat on you
and beat you on the head with the stick.
you had been tried, Peter denied you three times, as you said he
would. Judas witnessed what happened to you and regretted his
betrayal. Then, at the Temple, he threw down the thirty pieces of
silver he had received for his treason and cried out his treachery of
an innocent man. He ended up hanging himself, not being able to live
with what he had done.
against you abounded. Some would be forgiven like Peter’s and
others wouldn’t like Judas’ who couldn’t forgive himself. But
there were those unaware of their betrayal of God—the religious
leadership. Much strife.
kingdom divided against itself will collapse. A home filled with
strife and division destroys itself.’” (Mark 3:24-25)
forgive these people,’ Jesus said, ‘for they don’t know what
they are doing.’” (Luke 23:34)
crucifixion was beyond, beyond horrific. A few days
earlier, you had entered Jerusalem in glory, but now you left the
city lugging a heavy wooden cross through streets lined by a
the way to Calvary, already fatigued and beaten, you collapsed more
than once under the massive weight of the cross. Upon arriving at
Golgotha, you were stripped and then laid on the cross where you were
nailed to it by your hands and feet. Once several crosses were
erected, you were placed between the two criminals.
and certain leaders heaved scornful abuse at you. Mocking you.
Scoffing at why you magically didn’t get off the cross if you were
the Son of God. Yet, you still asked God to forgive the people. You
didn’t seem to have much patience with those manipulating truth for
power games—the self-righteous leadership. Your compassion often
went to the ordinary people. Did you feel for
the mob that had been worked on to go against your truth? You said
they didn’t know what they were doing.
hours of agony, an abnormal darkness covered the earth for three
hours from noon to 3 o’clock. You cried out, ‘“… My
God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’” (Matthew 27: 46)
later your agony was finally over.
Jesus shouted out again, dismissed his spirit, and died. And look!
The curtain secluding the Holiest Place in the Temple was split apart
from top to bottom; and the earth shook, and rocks broke, and tombs
opened, and many godly men and women who had died came back to life
again. After Jesus’ resurrection, they left the cemetery and went
into Jerusalem, and appeared to many people there.” (Matthew
there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord came down from
heaven and rolled aside the stone and sat on it. His face shone like
lightning and his clothing was a brilliant white. The guards shook
with fear when they saw him, and fell into a dead faint.” (Matthew
couldn’t finish you, but our inability to learn from your life may
wealthy man from Arimathaea in Judea named Joseph obtained permission
from Pilate to take your body. As an honored member of the Jewish
Supreme Court Joseph of Arimathea hadn’t agreed with the other
leaders and was your secret follower. Along with Nicodemus, a
Pharisee who was another secret follower, they had your body anointed
with oils and perfumes, and they wrapped it in a long linen shroud. A
wealthy person and a Pharisee going against the evil of power games.
were placed in a nearby tomb that was carved into rock at the side of
a hill. The tomb was sealed with a huge stone while Mary Magdalene
and another Mary watched.
your body would be taken to trick the masses into thinking you had
arisen, the chief priests and Pharisees set a watch on the tomb and
sealed it. Yet, no one could stop you from your resurrection.
made numerous appearances after leaving your tomb. You appeared
before your frightened disciples, showing them your pierced hands,
feet, and side so that they knew who you were. In an effort to stop
the doubting, you invited Thomas to touch your wounds.
the final meeting with your disciples, before you ascended to heaven,
you had special guidelines for them. You assured them you’d always
be with them.
told his disciples, ‘I have been given all authority in heaven and
earth. Therefore go and make disciples in all the nations, baptizing
them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy
Spirit, and then teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I
have given you; and be sure of this—that I am with you always, even
to the end of the world.’” (Matthew 28:18-20)
‘“My true disciples produce bountiful harvests. This brings
great glory to my Father. I have loved you even as the Father has
loved me. Live within my love.”’ (John 15:8-9)
have often managed to kill your prophets and raise evil—in your
much struggle, your disciples persisted in spreading your work. They
preached and healed and were persecuted, beaten, and imprisoned.
most of them died vicious deaths. Stoned to death. Arrested for
blasphemy. Condemned by the testimony of false witnesses.
were used as scapegoats and were persecuted. Even crucified. But they
still did what was in their hearts—Your teachings over obsessive
self-preservation and self-aggrandizement.
don’t be afraid of those who threaten you. For the time is coming
when the truth will be revealed: their secret plots will become
public information.’” (Matthew 10:26)