‘Only By Grace’
a series of reflections for Easter in the form of monologues by Judas Iscariot
This series of reflections take a different stance on grace than you may have experienced previously – this is grace through the eyes of Judas Iscariot. Written as a dramatic presentation, these posts during holy week 2017 are adapted from the original script. If you are joining part way through the journey, do head back to the introduction before continuing with the actual monologues.
PART 3 – INSUFFICIENT GRACE ?
I hoped that this Passover would be different and I was not disappointed. The Rabbi had gained a pretty large crowd and as we travelled towards Jerusalem people followed. I don’t know if word had spread about the donkey incident but as we arrived there were hundreds of people lining the road, laying down their cloaks and waving palm branches.
I wondered if the time had come, was the leader of the revolution ready to make his stand?
“Hosanna to the Son of David!” everyone shouted, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” – “Hosanna in the highest heaven!”… the twelve of us just followed behind bewildered by the reception Jesus was receiving…
I wasn’t raised to be a zealot – I don’t think many men are. I was raised to be a money changer. You see the only way one could pay the temple tax was by using a shekel but most of the year people bought and sold goods with the coins of Rome. So when they came each year to pay the tax, they would seek out people like my father, who, for a fee would exchange their drachmas for shekels. I was trained to do the same.
That’s why I was shocked, to say the least, when Jesus entered the temple courts and drove out all who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves. “It is written,” he said to them, “My house will be called a house of prayer, but you are making it a den of robbers.”
The whole table turning incident seemed quite out of character, I began to question if the Rabbi had insufficient grace or was this the time? Was this the stand I had been waiting for? It was not to be, the week wore on and it became clear the incident was the whole of it.
I pondered how to move things on, to force his hand – I thought if he was confronted head on by the authorities, if he was in danger of arrest he would draw a sword and mount a revolt.