Sunday, March 20, 2016

Palms and Rumors

This Jesus guy comes into town and he has all these people who are into him, following him around, waving palms at him and stuff. He's talking about some reign that's coming and it's getting the people worked up with his pie in the sky promises and nonsense.

The powers that be don't like it. They worry about what sort of trouble this Jesus and his followers could stir up, what kind of change to the status quo they might bring. When the status quo benefits you, this kind of stuff can be upsetting.

Now Jesus and his folk, maybe they did make demands. There was that incident with the merchants' tables. Jesus kind of got carried way, turned over some stuff, chased the merchants around the holy places, telling them they had no place there. But in general, Jesus and his folk, they weren't, like, punching people in the head or anything. Mostly, he preached.

But one incident is all the powers that be needs to paint someone a violent revolutionary. Jesus and his crew? They were stirring things up. So what if they were exaggerating the charges? Making up other charges out of whole clothe? It's for the protection of the status quo. In fact, there may be some restoration to an earlier status quo that's in order. Whatever. They make some charges, take him to Pilate.

Now Pilate, he had his gig, wasn't worried that much about the rabble rousing unless it directly affected his cush job. He listened to the rumors these lower bureaucrats brought to him, but Pilate could Google, Pilate knew Snopes and while maybe Jesus got a little cocky in his answers now and then, Pilate couldn't find anything solid to hang on him.

But these lower authorities, they were tenacious with their lies and rumors and insinuations. They said the Google skewed results, that Snopes was in on the conspiracy and soon Pilate, despite knowing better, began to feel like his gig, his cush job could be compromised. The thing that was actual didn't matter so much as the appearance of the thing. Those lower authorities? They were good with the appearances.

In the end, Pilate had to preserve his own authority and if some random wandering preacher got crushed, so what. Pilate had to preserve his power so he could take care of bigger things, preserve the status quo in a broader way, make sure that the nation kept running as smoothly as possible.

And so it goes.

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