Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from my Father.
For which of these are you trying to stone me?”
In Jesus dialogue with the Jews, He is arguing to an unreceptive and hostile audience. Those Jews are accusing him of blasphemy, and Jesus gives his argument for being the son of God. They were hostile because those Jews were unwilling to claim allegiance to any God but the God they knew. Their determination to remain loyal to the God of the covenant was so important that they likely would not go so far as to enter into a debate about the meaning of Son of God that Jesus presents. The part that I find interesting is that both Jesus and those Jews argued a fidelity to God; and that discussion nearly ended in a stoning.
What grabbed my attention to this reading today relates to another argument that I have encountered that also is a type of stoning. The difference this time though is that this contemporary argument is the Pope presenting Jesus, and an audience verbally stoning that messenger. Those hurling the stones though have no interest in any fidelity to God, but instead are violently opposed to the idea of God, and of Jesus Christ. Where does this current stoning take place? It is currently displayed @pontifix at Twitter. It is Pope Francis tweeting Jesus Gospel message to what can be described as the most hostile of audiences.
While the argument between Jesus and the Jews has much to do with how one witnesses God, the Popes message is attacked by people that have no use for God; and that is sad. It is sad to think that those spewing so much venom at the Pope have not listened the blessings given in the beatitudes. They have not embraced the blessing of forgiveness. They have not even attempted to learn of the victory of the cross, or of that kingdom that Jesus preached. It is sad too that the condemnation of Christ continues in this twenty first century. It is sad the wickedness of the scourging, and the mockery of the crowning with thorns is so alive in so many. The sadness also is that these insults are not rational arguments, but vengeful persecutions so reminiscent of a mob mentality.