The Jews took up stones again to stone him. Jesus replied, “I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these are you going to stone me?” The Jews answered, “It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you, but for blasphemy, because you, though only a human being, are making yourself God.”
Jesus answered, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, you are gods’? If those to whom the word of God came were called ‘gods’ —and the scripture cannot be annulled— can you say that the one whom the Father has sanctified and sent into the world is blaspheming because I said, ‘I am God’s Son’? If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me. But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, so that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.”
Then they tried to arrest him again, but he escaped from their hands. He went away again across the Jordan to the place where John had been baptizing earlier, and he remained there. Many came to him, and they were saying, “John performed no sign, but everything that John said about this man was true.” And many believed in him there.
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.
Facing an angry crowd ready to stone him, Jesus asks, “For which of these are you going to stone me?” Hard to imagine being angry over healings, the raising from the dead, and the feeding of thousands. Or is it?
When someone I have come to dislike does something good, receives praise for their actions, and gains others’ goodwill and attention, am I not ready to throw into the conversation some not-so-good things they have done: a stone of my own? It’s not fair that someone I don’t like is doing something good and forcing me to reconsider my opinion of them.
Jesus’ confidence that God’s good work is for all and can be carried out by all upsets us if in our pride we want to be more special, purer, and more righteous than another. Let us accept that God’s goodness is given and received in infinite ways.
—Fr. Chris Manahan, SJ, is director of the Jesuit Retreat House on Lake Winnebago, near Oshkosh, WI.
Dear Jesus, I pray that all I do today helps others along the way to see you, and that I may see you in them. Amen.
—Fr. Chris Manahan, SJPlease share the Good Word with your friends!