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

  • School roundup in its 10th year

    In its 10th year, Alameda Church of Christ and Streams of Water Ministry are ready to roll out the backpacks for the Back to School Roundup. This year’s event will be from 9 a.m. to noon Aug. 9 at the church, 801 E. Alameda St. ...

    August 1, 2014

  • Two rabbis sharing their passion

    STILLWATER — Two rabbis from Brooklyn recently spent time in Stillwater meeting with Jews and reconnecting them with their traditions, rituals and heritage....

    August 1, 2014

  • In praise of lonely places

    Lexington church to host Bob Thomas Lexington Free Will Baptist, 230 W. Beech St. in Lexington, will host Bob Thomas at 11 a.m. Sunday. Thomas is the state coordinator for My Hope 2014 with Billy Graham....

    August 1, 2014

  • Trinity Lutheran finishes education wing project

    With the 2014-2015 school year quickly approaching, Trinity Lutheran School and Childcare administration and staff are excited to have two new spacious classrooms for second through fifth grades. “Last year, we had 65 students enrolled ...

    August 1, 2014

  • In praise of lonely places

    I grew up in a tough neighborhood in Cleveland, Ohio. The Berlin Wall was never so formidable a barrier as Woodland Avenue which separated the black neighborhood of the projects from Murray Hill or “Little Italy” as it was known. Like ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Expain Jesus’ impatience with fig tree

    The Rev. Joe Nassal, priest at Precious Blood Center in Liberty: The context provides a clue. At this point in the Gospel, Jesus arrives in Jerusalem to complete his mission....

    July 31, 2014

  • Tests of a living faith

    We recently started a study on Wednesday nights of the letter James wrote to the church. This Bible book is a practical guide to Christian living, but more than that, it really forces one to think honestly about their faith. Is your faith ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Which Bible bit is most misinterpreted?

    The Rev. Scott Gordon, Claycomo Baptist Church: Many passages vie for consideration, but the first “bit” that came to mind we find in Matthew 7:1-6 and Romans 2:1-5....

    July 24, 2014

  • CAIR-OK plans day of service

    The Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) will join Mercy Youth Club and IST Youth at the fourth annual Ramadan Day of Service Saturday....

    July 18, 2014