Monday, May 7, 2018
Are we to be avengers or peacemakers?
A moment of mystery in the story of Christ and scholars can but voice conjecture. It involves the presence of two swords …
Christ said to disciples in the Upper Room, “But now if you have a purse, take it, and also a bag; and if you don’t have a sword, sell your cloak and buy one. It is written: ‘And he was numbered with the transgressors’; and I tell you that this must be fulfilled in Me. Yes, what is written about me is reaching its fulfillment.” The disciples responded, “Lord, here are two swords.” “That’s enough!” Christ replied. – Luke 22:36-38
Everyone ought to buy his or her own sword, yet two swords are enough!(?) The disciples carry with them two swords, and yet a few minutes later Christ warns that those who live by the sword will die by the sword!(?)
Many consider the two swords symbolically. Possibly the two swords are Truth and Justice, or maybe, Truth and Mercy; or maybe … well, maybe, any combination that one might consider. And this may be the true interpretation, but I lean toward another interpretation.
My interpretation is that Christ recognizes the need to protect the innocent from those who persecute, but we ourselves as the Christian community will not be an army of warriors. Whatever swords may be required then we are to gather no more than what is necessarily required. And as to our own mission as Christian disciples, we will place ourselves in jeopardy if we must, choosing to transform the earth using the instruments of mercy, grace, and peace rather than the instruments of judgment, hatred, and violence. We are the Peace-makers because we are the Children of God as was Christ our Lord.
Millions will disagree with me … but here I stand with the Lord beside me.
Always in His Service,
Fr. Charitas de la Cruz