This week’s long reading from Matthew 26:14- 27:66 involves different plans from many different characters.
Planning can have a negative connotation – as in plotting, but planning can also involve creating a strategy for a desired result. Let’s look at the plans of several of the characters in this week’s reading:
- The Chief Priests – These leaders wanted to capture, discredit and do away with Jesus. They also wanted any kind of following Jesus had to disappear.
- Judas – I think Judas really wanted to “smoke Jesus out” and get him to come out like a fighting warrior to take over power. Others say he was just greedy.
- Jesus – Jesus knew what he was doing. He layed low for awhile before making the trip to the big city where he was sure to be noticed.
- Peter – I think he really wanted to be a hero and a protector of Jesus. His plan didn’t work out so well, either.
- Caiaphas – I think he, like the other priests, wanted to discredit and do away with Jesus.
- Pilate – It seems that Pilate really wanted a way out of the whole crucifixion scenario. Or maybe his plan was to do what he wanted, while making the crowd seem like they were in charge.
- Soldiers – It looks like they, too, wanted to discredit and do away with Jesus and any ‘Jesus movement.’ Or maybe they were just doing their jobs.
- The Marys – The women who watched Jesus crucifixion from a distance, I think, wanted to be sure that Jesus was neither forgotten nor belittled.
- Joseph of Arimathea – It seems as though Joseph also had a plan to protect Jesus’ reputation and to give his family dignity.
- Pharisees – Same for the priests. These folks wanted to be sure that any false religious leader never got a strong following. It’s too bad they missed the real thing.