Joy and Brightness of Sad and Dark Gethsemane
“Take this cup AWAY from me, but not what I will but what you will.“
~Mark 14, 36
Honest opinion, I find this statement coming from someone who’s a coward. But then again, it’s coming from Jesus, right? As usual, the real meaning ought to be encrypted in it. Jesus was a non-violent person throughout. He was also 100% human and 100% Divine. He foresaw the storm of violence that was heading His way and He wanted to avoid it by all means. But then God acts in mysterious ways, He had a different plan. He was gonna bring a Great Victory through the Non-Violence reaction of His Son. At Gethsemane Jesus, prays, this can also be incorporated into our lives. He also learnt to surrender to the will of His Father from His mother, where she first gave her consent to God, when she was told that she was going to give birth to Jesus and obediently accepted God’s will.
PRAY before you ACT, to know the will of your Father. And I’m not talking about reading a book with flowery prayers printed on it. A real time conversation with your Father. Tell Him how you feel, if your angry, sad, happy or jealous. Yes He knows it… but He prefers to hear it from the horse’s mouth. Then most definitely you’ll have a better view and find the correct solution.
Another instance was when the Disciples could not stay awake with Jesus and pray. Similarly, we also shut our eyes to the unjust things happening around us. Or ignore the slightest wastage that occur, thinking how can I being one person change the world?
According to Dear, if you take the situation at Gethsemane, there are two acts of Violence present in it.
The Betrayal – Mark 14, 45
“He came and immediately went over to him and said, “Rabbi.” And he kissed him.”
Robert Bly, a famous poet once said that “The only way to become wise is through betrayal”. Likewise, in this situation, Jesus knew about His betrayal and beyond that He even knew the betrayer. But still He did not withdraw Himself or react violently towards His betrayer.
A bystander striking the High Priest – Matthew 26, 52
“Put your sword back into its sheath, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword.”
Jesus had His own gang, so for sure, He could’ve called in for a war. A battle of the divine vs mortals. But He did not do it. Instead, He make everyone realize that weapons only bring destruction and they cannot bring back life from the dead.
Sanhedrin Trial and Mockery
In the following instances we see how Jesus was being ridiculed. He was bulleyed, but yet He didn’t retaliate.
“Some took the stand and testified falsely against him...”
~ Mark 14, 57
“Some began to spit on him. They blindfolded him and struck him…”
~ Mark 14, 65
Despite all the humiliation faced, he only did one thing which is a non-violent reaction to the violence He faced. SILENCE is Golden.
“But he was silent and answered nothing.”
~Mark 14, 61
But how long can Silence be the solution? Shouldn’t one speak up for the injustice He is facing or witnessing another going through? In Sinhala and Tamil there’s a proverb which says, the one who keeps bowing his head while he’s being struck is also a fool and the one who keeps striking while the other bows down is also a fool. Then how did Jesus react?
“If I have spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong;
but if I have spoken rightly,
why do you strike me?”
~John 18, 23
He questioned why He was being treated like this. Likewise, if you take a look at your own lives, how many times do we fear to react and speak when injustice is happening every second around us? We are afraid of what others will think about us, fear of life, position, reputation.
The Violent Crucifixion
“Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”
~Luke 23, 34
After suffering an unbearable amount of agony and pain, Jesus asks for forgiveness on behalf of those who persecuted Him. This reminds His saying on forgiving 77 times, which is an innumerable amount. Therefore have no boundary set for your patience and love.
“Forgive your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”
~Matthew 5, 44
I have shown below a comparison on what Jesus could have said and done opposed to what He really said and did. (Cited from Dear’s articles and personal insertions)
|What Jesus Could have said and done?||What Jesus Actually said and did?
|“Break their bodies for me!”||“This is my body, broken for you.”|
|“Shed their blood for me!”||“This is my blood, shed for you.”|
|“If my kingship were of this world, my servants would fight, that I might not be handed over to the Jews,” ~ John 18, 36||“My kingdom does not belong to this world…” ~ John 18, 36|
Jesus according to Mahatma Gandhi
“Jesus was the most active resister known perhaps to history. This was nonviolence par excellence”
“A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act.”
The same Gandhi later on said the following as well,
“I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”
What made Gandhi say this? Is it the same Christ that we encounter in the Gospels, whom we are following. Or like those who during the Exodus idolized God as a Golden Calf, are we idolizing different images of Christ, which are moulded into a framework that suits us?
The Victorious End – The Resurrection
If it was not for the Resurrection, none of us would’ve been Christians. This is the ultimate victory of God where He proved that Active Non-Violence is the only solution against Violence.
“They conquered Him by the blood of the Lamb”
~Revelation 12, 11
The best teaching that can be followed in order to react to violence with Non-Violence is, the Prayer of Peace bySt. Francis of Asisi. This prayer is the definition of real peace.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.