How to Become a Murderer2
Now the Passover and the Festival of Unleavened Bread were only two days away, and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were scheming to arrest Jesus secretly and kill him. 2 “But not during the festival,” they said, “or the people may riot.”
Here’s a litmus test that your religious practices have just made you more self-righteous instead of a genuine God-follower: you conspire with other people to get someone arrested and killed.
That’s a dead-give away, every time. Just in case you were wondering. J
But before we get too self-righteous about not being quite that self-righteous, let’s remember Jesus’s words about where murder comes from (the heart), and that hating our brothers and sisters is akin to murder in God’s eyes (see Matthew 5:21-22).
The chief priests and teachers of the law didn’t start out their religious occupations thinking they’d be conspiring to kill someone someday. They probably started out wide-eyed and idealistic, hungry for God and for the people they served to know that God, serve that God, and to be the people of God together.
But by the time Jesus rolled into Jerusalem, all that had changed. It happened bit by bit, day by day, to the point where they felt they could justify this conspiracy and murder because of the threat they thought Jesus to be. They’ve been angry with Jesus for weeks, months, maybe a couple of years. And so it’s come to this.
Most of us don’t plan on becoming murderers. Or adulterers. Or liars. Or gossips. Or people who are petty and easily offended. Or worriers. Or control-freaks. Or addicts. But all this happens to people all the time, slowly over time, day by day, bit by bit.
We’re all becoming beings. The chief priests and the teachers of the law had been becoming the kinds of people who could kill Jesus for many years before they actually did kill Jesus.
Who are you becoming today?