Jesus’ Apology : John 8:31-59

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Jesus was having a hard day. With all the Pharisees, lepers and demon-possessed Jews he had dealt with in the morning, it seemed like a good time for an afternoon nap. Just as the Son of God was nestling against a wild olive tree, along came two rather proper Jews.

“Hey, there!” cried the taller of the two. “You’re that rude upstart that caused all the trouble this morning!”

Jesus looked up. He recognized the man immediately, one of the crowd of believers. He had told to get lost.

“You have no respect for authority,” the man cried out, “and for all your blubbering about love, you sure showed little of it today.”

Jesus looked at the man intently.

“You don’t even give people a chance!” the tall man continued. “You said we would all die in our sins, with not even an invitation to repent.”

“Don’t take it personally,” Jesus said softly.

“Not personally! You claim to be Messiah, the Son of God! how can I not take it personally? Why would I even want to listen to a know-it-all? Like you’re the only one who knows the truth!”

“I am the truth,” Jesus responded, His voice steady and clear.

“There you go again!” The man cried. You told us you met Abraham! What did you expect us to say? I heard the same thing from the village idiot last week. Who says things like that?”

“I didn’t think you were going to take it so hard,” the LORD responded. “All I was really saying is, Have it your way.”

“Well, I expect I will, no thanks to you!” The man’s voice began to rise. “You know, I do a lot of good things. We all do. We believe in Ha Shem. We try and earn an honest living. And, anyway, even if we blow it sometimes, we took the time to come and listen to you! At least we’re searching for something. You really offended me when you…”

“But there is one thing you aren’t interested in, ” the LORD interjected; interrupting the man in mid-sentence.”

The man’s voice got louder. “I can’t even get a word in edgewise. My father raised five children and worked hard every day of his life, and you called him the Devil.”

“I think you misunderstood me,” said Jesus quickly . “I meant your spiritual father.”

“Well, that isn’t really what you said.”

Jesus quietly whispered under His breathe, “I’m sorry you took it that way.”

“You know,” the man continued, “I have feelings too. It’s hard for me to listen to someone who assumes I don’t care what he’s saying.”

The shorter Jew jumped in. “Yeah, we were all offended. Do you’re really think you’re right and everyone else is wrong?”

“It had occurred to me,” the Living God offered.

“I have a sensitive heart,” the short fellow continued. “Have had since I was a child. My parents never cared much for me, and now here you are, rubbing my face in my sins. You’d think a guy who says he’s God would be a little more sensitive and a lot more merciful.”

“Look,” Jesus offered, “I was just stating the facts. But, maybe if you want to go over it again, we should talk.”

“So, at least you’re open to the fact you might be wrong,” the taller Jew quipped.

“Well, actually, not really.” Jesus’s voice was even and firm.

“Then you’re an even bigger ass than I thought,” the man retorted.

Looking the two Jews up one side and down the other, Jesus, raising His voice, called out to the men as they left, “Well, then, Sorry about your luck!”