This being the Lenten Season, one is somehow automatically drawn to the unforgiving events of Christ’s Passion. For me, especially as it relates to the reactions of US media on the mass shootings that happened a world away in New Zealand. Unbelievable condemnation, but very expected in light of what is happening in the US.
BTW, within hours from the carnage, almost to the man or woman US media pundits had very self-assuredly unloaded direct blame at the feet of Donald Trump because of his “incendiary” rhetoric on topics having completely no bearing at all on the NZ carnage; he who lives and rules more than 7,000 miles away. Unbelievable but still, expected.
But we can get our understanding and valuable lesson from reading scripture, especially the trial of Christ, prior to his gruesome Crucifixion. I refer especially to the person of Caiphas, who had first dib at judging Jesus Christ.
We remember that Caiphas was not anymore in authority because he had finished his term as high priest. Shades of US media, composed of people unelected and self-appointed. In other words, Caiphas was in retirement and out of power, but he still wielded critical influence in the politics of that time. Thus, the conspirators thought it best to bring Christ first to him for judgment. Of course, he was also the same person who said that in the pesky and messy case of Christ and his ministry, the solution lies in that it is expedient that one man dies, as a form of catharsis. Like the holocaust of a sacrificial lamb? Scholars also say that Caiphas had so much temporal notions of religion and salvation, so this could also be the reason why those who wanted Jesus out of the way chose him as first judge.
So Caiphas stood for: That it was expedient for one man to die for the cause!
This deterministic attitude reminds me so much of the current situation in US politics. The opposition to Trump, which consists mainly of the entire mainstream media, the Democratic Party, and ensconced members of the Deep State in government, has been so determined and invested in the avowed goal to remove Trump from office that like Caiphas and the conspirators it would not stop at anything. From lining up false witnesses, to weaving contradictory statements, to outright petty accusations, to whatever, like having a headless special counsel jerking every which way. Everything took on the mantle of legitimacy and credibility because the goal was perceived as both moral and true. The self-appointed moral betters had declared that Trump had “to be executed”. And that was all that mattered. Truth and rule of law be damned.
Thus the current Trump opposition has become the worst imitators of the biblical Caiphas.
And do you remember how Christ handled all this, including the final questions of Caiphas? He answered them all with silence? The mighty power of silence!