The Norman Transcript


March 14, 2013


NORMAN — Scandalize Jesus? It’s right there in the Bible. Jesus predicted that His disciples would “scandalize” Him in the coming hours. Even amidst their strong objections and promises of steadfast loyalty, Jesus remained firm that they would all be guilty.

I suspect that your translation of Mark 14:27 doesn’t use the word “scandalize,” but it is there. The word we translate to “fall away, be caused to stumble or offend” is transliterated from the original language “scandalizo.” Scandalize stings a little more than “fall away” and may help us better understand why the disciples refused to believe they would act this way. Jesus continued by describing how sheep scatter when their shepherd is struck down. Maybe He was trying to comfort His disciples by saying there are times when things happen that catch us by surprise and cause us to act or react in “scandalizing” ways. The truth of life is that we are not always prepared for what may happen and we are often surprised at how we react in unfamiliar or threatening circumstances.

This revealing conversation took place as the disciples walked with Jesus from the Upper Room to the Garden of Gethsemane. Earlier, as they shared the Passover, Jesus informed the group that one of them would “betray” Him. All, including Judas, responded, “Surely Not I?” Of course, Judas had already made plans to betray Jesus and left the Passover meal early to carry out his act of treachery. This “betrayal” is a darker word than “scandalize” and reflects a “willful, premeditated, act of giving or delivering over in a treacherous way.” It revealed the condition of Judas’ heart, causing Jesus to declare that “it would have been good for that man if he had never been born.”

“Scandalized” and “betrayed!” Definitely a bad night for Jesus and His disciples. Can you relate? You profess your allegiance and loyalty to Jesus as Lord and yet find yourself in circumstances and situations where you “scandalize” Him — at work, at home, at play, in front of the computer. Like Peter, the crowing rooster awakens you and you flee in guilt and shame. What can you do? Where can you go? Graciously, Jesus calls us to Himself. He refuses to “scandalize” us. Did you notice that after warning His disciples of their impending denials, Jesus told them that when He had risen, He would meet them in Galilee?

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Hnsen Luger Kate Hansen still riding the Olympic cloud

    Not many people can say they actually accomplished their lifetime dreams. Even less can say they did it before turning 22....

    March 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Conference set

    Following a diocesan-sponsored national conference on violence, “Reclaiming the Gospel of Peace,” the Episcopal Church Women of St. John’s Norman will host an Oklahoma diocesan-wide women’s conference and Bishop’s day on April 25-26....

    April 18, 2014

  • Muslim group urges re-education

    LOS ANGELES — Seeking a way to prevent violence like last year’s deadly Boston Marathon bombing, an Islamic advocacy group Monday announced a plan aimed at helping U.S. mosques identify and re-educate radicals....

    April 18, 2014

  • This is ... Friday ...

    It’s Good Friday. Good Friday? What could possibly be “good” about Good Friday? Think about it … this is the day in which the Lord Jesus was beaten and crucified. He hung on a cross between two thieves. Abandoned, betrayed and denied, by ...

    April 17, 2014

  • Why do we always test God?

    ‘Do not put the Lord God to the test,’ Jesus said, but don’t we do this all the time? Human nature The Rev. Holly McKissick, Peace Christian Church UCC: It’s human nature: testing the limits of God’s peaceful creation....

    April 17, 2014

  • Girl told not to say prayer

    OVIEDO, Fla. — The 5-year-old who said she was told not to pray over her lunch visited the school Monday and identified the staffer in a line-up, her family’s lawyer said....

    April 11, 2014

  • CrossPointe chooses Butler as lead pastor

    One of Norman’s largest churches has chosen a new lead pastor for its congregation. Mike Butler, 38, was voted lead pastor by the congregation of CrossPointe Church on March 23. Butler succeeds Glenn Quirk, who served as lead pastor for ...

    April 11, 2014

  • A divine drama

    All of us love drama. We experience drama in many ways. We watch a play on a stage or a show on TV. We have lives filled with drama every day through interactions with other people....

    April 11, 2014

  • What should we think of original sin?

    The Rev. Joe Nassal, Precious Blood Center: Watching the evening news recently, there was one disaster story after another, from the Malaysian airline that disappeared to the mudslide where one minute people are going about their daily ...

    April 11, 2014

  • Lenten lunch set

    The next Norman Ministerial Fellowship Lenten lunch will be Wednesday at NorthHaven Church, 4600 36th Ave. NW. Guest pastor will be the Rev. Joseph Summerville, University Lutheran Church. The sermon theme will be “The Thursday of Holy ...

    April 4, 2014