Our Darkness, His Light
Today, I want to share with you the first chapter of a short book I hope to soon release through Amazon. The booklet tells the story of people who were present the last week of Jesus’ life. It tells stories from their point of view. And, while I have taken dramatic liberty with the stories, they are based on the real events of the Passion Week. Here, in Chapter 1 we see the Triumphant Entry on “Palm Sunday” from the viewpoint of someone who, I believe, was watching Jesus from the start of His ministry.
BY DARKNESS BOUND
“It is dark in here.” The man’s voice was shaky with fear. Good!
Saul pushed the tiny clay lamp across his wooden table toward the man. The shadows flickered and moved across the man’s bearded face. “I prefer the darkness, Benjamin.” He whispered.
Sweat ran from beneath the cloth on Benjamin’s head and he licked his lips. “I followed the man like you asked me to.”
Saul leaned into the flickering lamp light. “And, where did he go?”
“To the temple. He met with the High Council.”
Saul nodded. “And, how was he received?”
“They laughed at him. I think he wants to betray his master. Force his hand.” Benjamin ran a hand through his beard. “Why would he do such? This teacher is a good man . . .”
Saul slammed his open palm on the table. “He is a blasphemer! A deceiver!”
“But, Saul, he has healed the sick. He has even raised Lazarus from the dead.”
Saul stood up slowly and walked around the table. He leaned over the man and smelled the stale fish in his beard. “Do you support this enemy of our people? Do you follow his teachings?”
“Well, no. I am . . .”
“But a coward, Benjamin. Take my money and leave me.” He stood up and motioned toward the door as he dumped a few coins on the coarse wooden table.
Benjamin scooped up the coins and hid them in his robe. “Saul, the High Council is against this man, too. Why aren’t you working with them?”
Saul opened the door allowing bright sunlight to gush into the room. He squinted into the rays of light. “The High Council sees this man as a charlatan. I see him as a usurper of the prophecies. They have no idea how heinous his crimes are. They do not appreciate my theories.”
Benjamin stood up from his bench and moved into the sunlight. “Perhaps you have not yet decided about this man, Saul. Perhaps you wonder if his claims are true.”
Saul shoved the man out into the sunlight. “Begone before I turn you into the High Council as a collaborator of this teacher.”
Benjamin disappeared into the crowd milling in the streets. Saul had almost closed out the offending light when his ears detected the distant sounds of an unruly crowd.
Across the end of a distant alleyway, Saul watch as a procession of men and women scurried along, carrying palm fronds and flowers. As quickly as they appeared, they were gone followed by a most unusual sight. The man sat upon a donkey, riding in the midst of the surging crowd. His head held high, the man bore the stature of a king. But, his clothing betrayed the demeanor of a commoner.
Saul stepped out of the light into the shadows and reached for the door to close it. For a fleeting second, the man glanced in his direction. Their eyes met across the long alleyway. Panic welled in Saul and he caught his breath. The scant seconds stretched into an eternity and then, a blinding light reflected from some shiny surface in the surging crowd struck him in the eyes. He stumbled back away from the window temporarily blinded. He slammed the door and groped around the dark interior of his room until he found his desk and chair. He sat carefully and waited in fear until his sight slowly returned. Darkness ruled the room once more.
“You think you are the Messiah? Well, I shall double my efforts at interpreting the Law. I shall seek out all heretics who blaspheme the name of Jehovah God. Beware, man who would be God. Saul will not be so easily blinded by your deeds.”
Each day for the next ten days, I will post another “chapter” from the upcoming booklet, “Our Darkness, His Light”