Sunday, July 11, 2021

“The Judas Thing”*

[*Words of Dallas Jenkins (creator, writer, director of the TV series: The Chosen**) during his interview with Luke Dimyan, the actor portraying Judas Iscariot.***]

How prescient, in this season of COVID-19 (and escalating variants), that Episode 8 of Season 2 of The Chosen should introduce us to Judas. I say prescient because it seems that more and more “Judas” choices are being presented to us by the authorities and world powers:
• whom will we believe?
• whom will we trust?
• whom will we obey?
• how will we perceive / respond to unfolding latter-day tests and trials?
Prescient too because the prime activity of the adversary through all ages has been to trigger the Judas element in each of us, and the recent turning of things upside down has revealed more fears, divisions, angers, contentions, confusions, and tyrannies within ourselves and our society than we could ever have imagined.

As I posited in a prior post: Are we facing our own individual, third temptation?1 being promised the world if we will place our trust in the promises of science pscience?2

But perhaps, equally dangerous as believing or trusting in world powers and authorities is to trust in our own perceptions and expectations of how God is going to (or should) use and resolve all this for the blessing of His children. I do not know how The Chosen will eventually present the motives that propelled Judas to do what he did, but I wonder if we were given a hint about inappropriate intervening in the Old Testament story of Uzzah.3

Uzzah, along with his brother Ahio, sons of the Levite Abinadab, were driving a new cart carrying the sacred ark of the covenant. Uzzah, perceiving sudden danger to the ark when the oxen stumbled, stretched his hand to intervene and “God smote him for his error.” Many are troubled by this consequence for an understandably normal reaction to fear or expectation, but there is obviously, in God's justice, something in the story about inappropriate intervening, even as in Christ's rebukes to Simon Peter.5

Was Judas attempting to inappropriately intervene because of some fear or expectation? Is that “the Judas thing”? How many times do we intervene or permit or sanction an intervention because our perceptions are confined to this world? because seeing, we see not that the arm of God is already outstretched to save the situation and instead, we stretch out our arm to override His?

**“The Chosen is a television drama based on the life of Jesus, created, directed and co-written by American filmmaker Dallas Jenkins. It is the first multi-season series about the life of Jesus, and season one was the highest crowd-funded TV series or film project of all time.[1][2] The series' creators stated that they had hoped to distinguish the new series from previous portrayals of Jesus by crafting a multi-season, episode-based story.[3] The series portrays Jesus "through the eyes of those who met him".[4] In addition to VidAngel and its own app, the series airs on several streaming services.”

2. Pscience is based, not on facts, observations, method, experiment, and truth, but on agendas sustaining the pursuit and protection of power, gain, glory, and domination.
3. Old Testament | 2 Samuel 6:3-7 ~ 3 And they set the ark of God upon a new cart, and brought it out of the house of Abinadab that was in Gibeah: and Uzzah and Ahio, the sons of Abinadab, drave the new cart. 4 And they brought it out of the house of Abinadab which was at Gibeah, accompanying the ark of God: and Ahio went before the ark. 5 And David and all the house of Israel played before the LORD on all manner of instruments made of fir wood, even on harps, and on psalteries, and on timbrels, and on cornets, and on cymbals. 6 ¶ And when they came to Nachon's threshingfloor, Uzzah put forth his hand to the ark of God, and took hold of it; for the oxen shook it. 7 And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah; and God smote him there for his error; and there he died by the ark of God.
Old Testament | 1 Chronicles 13:7-10 ~ 7 And they carried the ark of God in a new cart out of the house of Abinadab: and Uzza and Ahio drave the cart.8 And David and all Israel played before God with all their might, and with singing, and with harps, and with psalteries, and with timbrels, and with cymbals, and with trumpets. 9 ¶ And when they came unto the threshingfloor of Chidon, Uzza put forth his hand to hold the ark; for the oxen stumbled. 10 And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzza, and he smote him, because he put his hand to the ark: and there he died before God.
Doctrine and Covenants | Section 85:8 ~ 8 While that man, who was called of God and appointed, that putteth forth his hand to steady the ark of God, shall fall by the shaft of death, like as a tree that is smitten by the vivid shaft of lightning.
4. Abinadab (father of Ahio and Uzzah) ~
5. New Testament | Matthew 16:21-23 ~ 21 ¶ From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. 22 Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. 23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.
New Testament | John 18:10-11 ~ 10 Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest's servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant's name was Malchus. 11 Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?
New Testament | Matthew 26:51-54 ~ 51 And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear. 52 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. 53 Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels? 54 But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be?