Jesus was not a victim but a victor

Jesus was not a victim but a victor

By REV. DR. RICHAR... | 26 March, 2016
Jesus faced the brutal cruelty of his crucifixion as a victor. His response to the state and religious leaders, who had connived to execute Him, was His radical prayer, “Father, forgive them for they do not know what they do” (Luke 24:32). Despite harming Jesus’ body, the perpetrators could not touch the moral make up of His soul. In the face of hatred, Jesus did not seek revenge, but demonstrated love.
All too often, victims mimic the behaviour of oppressors. As a result of unceasingly focusing on their enemies, victims run the risk of becoming mirror images of the very people they hate. Therefore, when liberated, victims can easily slip into the temptation to behave like perpetrators. And when this happens, the cycle of revenge continues unabated.
Jesus, however, did not act like His oppressors. He practiced forgiveness, empowering Himself and disempowering the oppressors. Even in His suffering, Jesus was practicing the values of the kingdom of God which he had preached. Jesus did not allow the oppressors to determine the terms of this narrative ridden by social conflict. Many years later, Vengal Chakkarai (1880-1958) of Tamil Nadu became a dedicated follower of Christ by meditating on the words Jesus uttered on the cross.
Jesus gave himself as a sacrifice for the wages of our sins. Therefore, we do not have to live fearful, stressed lives, falling apart under the burden of our sin. Salvation is a free gift of God in Christ Jesus. We cannot earn it, nor do we deserve it, but God in His gracious love comes down to our human level, takes us by our hand and raise us up to Himself.
Jesus, willingly, died for our sins and on the third day He bodily rose again from the dead. He overcame, sin, death and Satan, and so can we, when we trust in Him. Happy Easter!

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Since 1492 when Columbus "discovered" America, whenever the Judeo-Christian Man encountered a non-Christian culture or people, he did so with conflict, with brutality, with conquest, with humiliation, and wherever it was easy, with genocide. Never, literally never, with friendship, with creative amity, with the Love which Jesus proclaimed on the cross and even before his crucifixion. The only excuse for the ill-treatment of the alien culture by the Christian , is that the Muslim too did likewise, perhaps with more rigour and fanaticism than the Christian. Ludwig Wittgenstein has said that if a lion were to speak the language of Man nobody would understand him. When Mahatma Gandhi spoke to the Christian power in the language of the Beatitudes of Matthew, the Christian ruler put him in jail. When after Independence the Indians, with the Hindus, now called the majoritarian community, adopted a policy of friendship, in joining the Commonwealth, for example, while never mentioning the ravages of looting, taxing, impoverishing, famishing, humiliating, the Injuns for two centuries, without asking a single shilling as compensation from the Brits, that was a monumental show of Love, which has remained unsung, unrecognized, by the so-called Christian West. The Injun showed to the world, and to the Christians, that the Injun lion speaking the language of the Gospel, was not only not heeded, but hated. Churchill, the defender of Christianity against the barbarian Nazis, is known for his very Christian pronouncement: "The Hindus are a bestial people who believe in a bestial religion!" Easter is a good occasion to recall the nature of the encounter of "loving" Christians with the bestial people. To love is not easy, Reverend! It never was. The puzzling question still nags: "Why is it that in 2000 years and more, the Churches, with their countless theologies, never enunciated the practical social Grammar of loving. It has always been a recall of the words of Jesus on the Cross, and frozen as a slogan, for the uses of the pulpit, into a cold command. The Christian was never taught that loving without self-sacrifice is a sterile word.

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