And Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in the prophet’s hometown.” – Luke 4:24 (NRSV)
Jesus was preaching freedom. But for a people in chains, claims of freedom are viewed suspiciously. And for people in charge, chains are profitable.
So someone whipped up the crowds and got them mad about something or other like masks or critical race theory or whatever. And the frenzy took over and…
They almost killed Jesus that time.
I want you to understand this: Liberation is not popular. It should be. But it’s not. The frenzy nearly drove our Lord and Savior off a cliff, y’all. Our neighbors are trying to do the same.
My plea to us all: Don’t be those folk. Instead, notice what happened in the frenzy: They drove him to the cliff. They were going to kill him through mob justice.
But something happened. God showed up. Jesus was made safe because God spoke something into some folk in that crowd. There were people there who knew it was wrong. And they protected Jesus. They made a way for him to emerge from that cliff. Of course that’s how it happened!
And that’s what must happen now. There are prophets in our midst who need our protection, who need us to silence the crowd and give the courageous space. Imagine what would’ve happened if they hadn’t taken that courage? Imagine what will happen if we don’t, too?
Our liberation. Our freedom. Our very loves and lives are at stake.
Help us to safeguard your prophets, O God. Because we need them. Amen.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kaji Douša is the Senior Pastor of The Park Avenue Christian Church, a congregation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ, in New York City.