From our reporter in Jerusalem.
It would surely be the most incredible ending in all history if the carpenter from Nazareth should somehow walk away alive and well from his encounter with the brutal and unforgiving authorities on Friday. Anyone putting money on him would surely make a killing. But trust me, it’s not happening. It will be the Romans who will make the killing. History tells too well what becomes of upstarts like Jesus of Nazareth. Admittedly all the former wannabe Messiahs have not performed anything like as well. The wisdom, the wit, the miracles, the incisive and uplifting stories, the unremitting compassion and courage. Jesus has them all. But it will not be enough. How could it be? A million ‘Messiahs’ have stepped onto this stage and all have bowed under the pressure of a hammer and three nails. Trust me, the Roman machine has never heard of mercy, and will in no way be wowed by a tail of a rebellious son welcomed home, or a wayward, hopeless sinner being forgiven over a strict religious rule keeper. These parables may have lifted a thousand peasants from the gutter, but the Romans don’t live in the gutter, they inhabit the corridors of power, and one man of hope and healing will not ruffle their feathers one little bit.
It’s tragic that it ever came to this really, someone should have warned Jesus he was playing a dangerous game, on a hiding to nothing, a road to nowhere. They say he was well aware of the narrow path he was travelling, but still, who wants to see another good man down? What’s the point? If, come Sunday morning, the Nazarene is up and about, I will eat not only my hat, but this pen I write with and the chair I sit upon now. But have no fear, it’s not going to happen. To do so would be the biggest shake up in all history and would surely mean the world would never quite turn in the same way again. All the best Jesus. I’d vote for you, but the people in power prefer fame, clout and money over compassion, forgiveness and courage. This will be no feelgood ending, I fear. See you Sunday.