Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him. But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what he had done. So the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the council, and said, “What are we to do? This man is performing many signs. If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy both our holy place and our nation.” But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all! You do not understand that it is better for you to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed.” H
e did not say this on his own, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus was about to die for the nation, and not for the nation only, but to gather into one the dispersed children of God. So from that day on they planned to put him to death. Jesus therefore no longer walked about openly among the Jews, but went from there to a town called Ephraim in the region near the wilderness; and he remained there with the disciples. Now the Passover of the Jews was near, and many went up from the country to Jerusalem before the Passover to purify themselves. They were looking for Jesus and were asking one another as they stood in the temple, “What do you think? Surely he will not come to the festival, will he?”
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved. http://www.usccb.org/bible/approved-translations
Last week a friend reflected on his recent diagnosis and treatment for cancer. He joked how he was being asked to follow the advice he so frequently shared: surrender and trust in God. Unlike my friend, when my way of life is threatened or is challenged, my instincts lead me away from surrender and trust and closer towards self-preservation.
In today’s Gospel, with Jesus threatening their influence, power, and way of life, the Jewish religious leaders look beyond what God may be asking and respond with their interests in mind. While their decision helped lead to Jesus’ death, it was Jesus’ choice to surrender to his Father’s will that led to something greater than death, his resurrection.
As Holy Week approaches, may I seek the opportunity for new life and move beyond the areas in my life where selfishness and self-preservation prevail. Can I open myself to God’s call and have the courage to follow the models my friend Jesus puts forth, through trust and surrender?
How might you be called away from selfishness so you can surrender more fully to God’s will?
—Andy Rebollar serves as Pastoral Associate for Parish Life at St. Pius X Parish, Grandville, MI.
Lord, teach me to be generous.
Teach me to serve you as you deserve;
to give and not to count the cost,
to fight and not to heed the wounds,
to toil and not to seek for rest,
to labor and not to ask for reward,
save that of knowing that I do your will.
—Prayer for Generosity (St. Ignatius of Loyola) Click here to download the prayer card.
Please share the Good Word with your friends!