Jesus responds, "All I'm saying is that change will happen with love, not with killing."
Then Pilate answers, "Either way it's dangerous. It's against Rome. It's against the way the world is. And killing or loving it's all the same. It simply doesn't matter how you want to change things. We don't want them changed."
It's against the way the world is.
That's always the problem isn't it? The drive to protect the status quo is among the most powerful forces in human society. Even within the Church, the resistence to change for the sake of resisting change is immense.
But a couple of years ago I heard Dr. David Tiede, former president of Luther Seminary, speak a word that has encouraged me ever since. This is what Dr. Tiede said: The Holy Spirit is a disrupting influence in the Church. This is a truly remarkable insight. The Church is the creation of the Holy Spirit. And yet the Church isn't just created by the Holy Spirit -- the Church is constantly being re-created by the Holy Spirit.
Naturally, this makes the Church a very uncomfortable place to be most of the time. Countless Christians live with battle scars from church fights. Christians used to call the Church on Earth "the Church Militant", but we always imagined that the fight was against an exterior enemy. We're quickly disillusioned when we find that we have to fight within the Church. But to expect otherwise is to misunderstand the nature of humanity, the nature of the Church and the work of the Holy Spirit.
It all reminds me of the classic scene from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe when the children find out that Aslan is a lion.
"Then he isn't safe?" said Lucy.
"Safe?" said Mr. Beaver. "Don't you hear what Mrs Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? 'Course he isn't safe. But he's good."