“Egg on my face” would be an understatement. Readers will remember a very recent post entitled “JESUS IMPOSED INSTANT DEATH ON DISSENTERS”. I must confess that I made a monstrous mistake. Jim, “Lumen de lumine”, was absolutely right in castigating me for manipulating Sacred Scripture. Jim is usually wrong. This time he was not – except that it was, on my part, an honest, stupid misreading of Luke 19 : 27 : “Now about those enemies of mine who do not want me to be king, bring them in and slay them in my presence”. I am ashamed, mortified, to have to admit how wrong I was in insisting that the speaker is obviously (!) NOT the king of the parable, but Jesus, who, I now realize, in no way ever contradicted what He in fact (is said to have) said, totally in keeping with His rôle as Good Shepherd : “The Son of Man has come to search out and save what was lost” (Luke 19:10).
No, I cannot explain how after all these years I found myself surprised that I hadn’t ever noticed the verse in question, and inexcusably rushed to publish a post highlighting a statement completely out of keeping with the rest of the Gospels’ image of Jesus. It will be hard for Jim to accept that I was not deliberately distorting the text. But I could have simply deleted the offensive, totally erroneous post, comments included, and pretended I never wrote or published it. I could have abstained from making this public apology. I realize the damage it may do to my credibility and reputation as a theologian. But it is the least I can do to try to set the record straight, if not to repair the damage. Will Jim resist the temptation to respond by refusing not only to accept my apology and public confession but continue to accuse me of deliberately distorting the text ? I can hardly expect him to congratulate me on my honesty. But I prefer to take the risk rather than practise the “cover-up” so common in both politics and current Church affairs . . .
Readers will be interested, and perhaps impressed, to learn, how I discovered this disastrous mistake. It was Thom, yes, our irreplaceable, prolific, brilliant commentator who has just drawn my attention to the gigantic gaffe, the first (and, I swear, the last of its kind) ever to appear in this Blog. He is a true friend and – at the risk of offending him – my . . . Guardian Angel !
This Blog is dedicated to Jesus’ own statement : “The truth will make you free”. Even, as Al Gore would say, when it is “uncomfortable”. I have no choice but to beat my breast with a sincere “Mea culpa, mea culpa,mea maxima culpa !” This post is part of my self-imposed “penance” . . .