The name Edward Snowden is splashed all over the world media after he leaked US and UK State secrets on an unsuspecting public. The result is that we might not be able to sleep as easily in our beds, because the terrorists now know more of our previously hidden intelligence, than they ever knew before. Mr Snowden has handed those who would do us harm (and they do exist), a gift on a silver platter, and all in the name of ‘truth and openness’.
Our global communities of many persuasions, usually political, though not always (it creeps into faith circles too) place a lot of weight in the word ‘equality’. That word is being used in this situation, because someone has decided that information of all kinds should be in the hands of the people, and not just a few agents in the intelligence networks. This is a serious problem, and there are strong opinions on each side, but I started to wonder what would Jesus do (WWJD)?
Jesus lived in a time where His own country was under occupation and control of a foreign power. He was well aware of the tensions on the streets and in the political circles of His day. People were abused and beaten by the Roman Army, and summarily executed. There was a terrorist army of the day, and they were called ‘Zealots’, who also killed and maimed in the name of freedom and equality. Jesus lived inside this daily tension. What did Jesus do?
Two of the disciples had been Zealots. James and John were called the ‘sons of thunder’ in their community, and active in their own operational cells. Jesus called them OUT of this lifestyle, and into a new life. He did not associate any of His teaching with the terrorist groups of His day. In fact, it is significant to see what Jesus did NOT do. He did not support either side in word or deed, and He did not support anyone who did. In fact, when he was being arrested by these occupying army forces, and Peter cut off a soldier’s ear, Jesus put the severed ear back on, and rebuked Peter! I will leave you with a couple of texts and a thought:
Then Jesus said to them, ‘Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.’ Mark 12:17 NIV
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people – for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Saviour. 1 Timothy 2:1-3 NIV
Question: In our own day, should we resist elected governments to the point of treason, while keeping in mind the circumstances of the world in Jesus and Paul’s day?