Easter - Year A
So where does the switch happen in this bait and switch passage?
Doing - anyone who does what is right is acceptable to G*D.
Doing - G*D anointed Jesus and he went about doing good and healing.
Believing - we preach that everyone who believes in Jesus is forgiven in his name.
A first response would be that the switch comes with a resurection of Jesus. Somehow this was no longer about doing what is right or good or healing. It is now about how special we preachers, we Jesus followers/believers, are. It is this privileged position of saying what G*D means that shifts the conversation from control over oneself (doing good) to power over another (what do you believe). It seems nothing, not even resurrection, can avoid the possibility of being corrupted.
When matching this passage up with yesterday’s gospel lesson of community, this is anti-community. This is fall in line. Listen again to the switch in the words of The Message, “But in three days God had him up, alive, and out where he could be seen. Not everyone saw him—he wasn’t put on public display. Witnesses had been carefully handpicked by God beforehand—us!”
So let’s play Thomas Jefferson and take a scissors to the Bible. Imagine deleting verses 41-43. This greatly strengthens the movement of the story.
(34) G*D shows no partiality, so be not partial, (35) simply do what is right. (36) To see the right remember (37) Jesus’s baptism of belovedness and (38) subsequent doing good and healing. (39) When Jesus was hidden, (40) G*D revealed him again - - - (44) The Holy Spirit visited (belovedized) all who heard this . . . .