Lectionary: Passion Sunday
Sermon text: Mark 15:1-47
Excerpt: Possibly the greatest tragedy ever told. The death of not just an innocent man. The death of an innocent man for the crimes of another. In case, not just an innocent man. The only begotten Son of God. The single most righteous being in existence, and not for the crimes of just one other, but for the crimes of all. The story we read in Mark chapter 15 leaps out at us. Over and over as I read the phrase, “And they took him and crucified Him.” “And they crucified Him.” “They crucified Him.” “They crucified Him.” “And they crucified Him,” came to me again and again. This is an event of such weight and magnitude that although, for nearly 2000 years now, the best and brightest have tried to describe it, I think we’ve failed in our efforts. And this morning I’m not going to make the attempt. I’m not going to try to describe what’s happening to Jesus. But instead, almost as if the light of it is too bright, I’m going to put my hand in front of Jesus and His crucifixion, and in doing so, maybe see the little points of light that stand out around it, much like an astronomer looking at stars and planets that are near to the sun can’t look too closely. And what I find in this story is that there are people who interact with Jesus’ crucifixion in very meaningful ways, and I see myself and I see others in it. We are going to ignore the crowds, the faceless, nameless mobs that get stirred up because of anger, because of fear, of bloodlust–let’s be honest–to say and do things–we’re going to ignore them. Instead we’re going to look at the people who speak and act in the story of Jesus.