DISCRETION OR VALOUR?
Jesus had doubly
1. Regarding the enthusiasm
demonstrated by the disciples in that upper-room. Believing that he
would only have to contend with the Jews in a clandestine
2. The Jews were more wily
then he had thought. They brought with them Roman soldiers.
The Christian scholars are no
less wily in their translations and manipulations of the Bible. They
have changed the words "Roman soldiers" to simply "soldiers" and
from the word soldiers to now "band of men" and "the guard".
"Judas then, having
received a BAND OF MEN1 and officers from the
chief priests and Pharisees, cometh there with lanterns and torches and
(HOLY BIBLE) John 18:3
1. "Band of men": here and in verse 12 following, the
words in the so-called original manuscripts are speira and chiliarchos
respectively. Both Roman military terms, meaning "cohort" and "tribune".
"That John is the first Evangelist to mention Roman soldiers
among the party which went out to arrest our Lord . . ." See Knox's — "A
New Testament Commentary", page 260.
The disciples were caught as
the Englishman would say with their "pants down".1
Literally they were caught napping. The enemy trod over them roughshod.
Only one of the soldiers of Christ had the presence of mind to ask:
". . . Master, shall we smite them
with the sword?"
(HOLY BIBLE) Luke 22:49
But before Jesus could
attempt a reply, the impetuous Peter struck out with his sword and cut
off the right ear of one of the enemy. Jesus had not anticipated Roman
soldiers. Realising that the tables were turned against his
misconceived strategy, he advises his disciples:
". . . Put up again thy
sword into its place; for all they that TAKE THE SWORD shall PERISH
WITH THE SWORD."
(HOLY BIBLE) Matthew 26:52
1. "Pants down": a figure of speech, meaning caught in an unguarded moment;
Did Jesus not know the truth
of this statement when he ordered his disciples to sell their garments
and buy SWORDS? He surely did! Then why the contradiction now? . There
is really no contradiction! The situation changes, so the strategy must
also change. He had sense enough to realise that against trained and
well-equipped Roman soldiers it would be suicidal for his sleepy
warriors to offer even a pretence of resistance.
Why do not the Christian
controversialists give their "Lord and Master" credit for this simple
common-sense? Because they have been programmed for a period of two
thousand years that Jesus, the "lamb", the "prince of peace",
couldn't harm a fly. They overlook the other side of his nature which
demanded blood and fire! They forget his instructions to his soldiers
regarding those of his enemies who would not like him to rule over
them, to bring them forth:
. . . and SLAY1 them
(HOLY BIBLE) Luke 19:27
"Think NOT that I am come to send
PEACE on earth; I. came NOT to send PEACE, but a SWORD."
(HOLY BIBLE) Matthew 10:34
"I am come to send FIRE
on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?
Suppose ye that I am come to give PEACE on earth? I tell you, NAY;
but rather DIVISION."
(HOLY BIBLE) Luke
12:49 & 51
In view of these solemn
pronouncements and his repeated vitriolic outbursts against the learned
men of his time, if the sword of Peter had prevailed, we would have
witnessed a massacre without compunction, equal to that of his ancestor
Joshua (meaning Jehova — Saviour)2 who
utterly destroyed all that was in Jericho:
"both man and woman,
young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the SWORD."
(HOLY BIBLE) Joshua
And the Gospel writers would
not have been slow in putting words into the mouth of Jesus, word for
word, as fulfilment of prophecies VATICINIUM EX EVENTU (prophecies
after the event) as recorded3 of his "father" (?)
1. Means to KILL. Breaking the commandment — "Thou shalt not
kill. — (Exodus 20:13)
2. Joshua: a type of Christ, says C.I. Scofield, D.D.
in his Bible commentary.
3. His "father's" record: 'The conquered Ammonities he
treated with even greater ferocity, tearing and hewing some of them in
pieces with harrows, axes, and saws; and roasting others in
brick-kilns". Maitlands comment on 2 Samuels Chs. 8 to 12 in
"Jewish Literature and Modern Education" - (page 21).
The march on Jerusalem had
fizzled out. The sabre-rattling in the Garden had proved abortive. As
there is a reward for success, likewise there is a price for failure.
The odds are heavy! Hence the trial, the tribulation, the turmoil and
the sweat and blood.
With heavy hands, the Roman
soldiers dragged Jesus (pbuh) from Gethsemane to Annas, and from Annas
to Caiphas the High Priest, and on to the Sanhedrin as directed
by the Jews, for trial and execution.
Whilst Jesus was being
manhandled and buffeted towards his doom, where were his heroes who
were beating their breasts with the war-cry: "Master, we are
prepared to die for you. Master, we are prepared to go to prison for
you!" ? St. Mark, the first of the Gospel writers, un-ashamedly and
without any apology reveals:
THEY ALL FORSOOK HIM, AND FLED."
(HOLY BIBLE) Mark 14:50
The authors of the 27 books of the New
Testament could not find a similar dastardly desertion in the Jewish
Bible1 to fulfil prophecy. If there was, they would have been
quick to exploit it.
1. The Old Testament
In a debate between Islam and
Christianity, on SABC T.V. one of the participants, claiming to be
"reborn", gloated over the word DESERTION. He articulated the word
with such relish —D-E-S-E-R-T-I-O-N — which must have left a taste of
triumph in the mouth of the cultists, instead of the bitterness of
shame and defeat. The Bible-thumpers have developed a new sickness of
glamorising despicability and ignominy. Everyone, male or female, of
these cultists, will not fail to relate their peccadillos, their
adulteries and bestialities, their drinkings and druggings. It appears
that one must have been part of the dregs of humanity to become a
candidate for this "born again" cult.