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judgement
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20091203_919

FIRE ASSESS

Judgement

At the end of time, billions of  people were scattered on the vast plain before God's Throne. Some  shrank back from the brilliant light before them. But many other  groups talked heatedly, not cringing  with shame, but with belligerence.

"Can God judge us? How can He know about suffering?", snapped a pert brunette. She ripped open e sleeve to reveal a tattooed number from a Nazi concentration camp. "We endured terror ... beating ... torture ... death!"

In another group a Negro boy lowered his collar. "What about this?" he  demanded, showing an ugly rope burn. "Lynched, for no crime but being black."

In another crowd there was a pregnant schoolgirl with sullen eyes: "Why should I suffer?" she murmured. "It wasn't my fault."

Far out across the plain were thousands of such groups. Each had a  complaint against God for all the evil end suffering He had permitted  in His world. How lucky God was  to live in Heaven, where all was sweetness and light, where there was  no weeping end fear, no hunger or hatred, no sickness or sorrow. What  did God know of all that human-kind had been forced to endure in this  world? After all, God leads a rather sheltered sort of life, they said.

So each of these groups sent forth a leader,  especially chosen because they had  suffered the most. A Jew, a Negro, a person from Hiroshima, a horribly  deformed arthritic, a thalidomide child, an AIDS victim. In the centre  of the vast plain, these leaders consulted with each other. At last  they were ready to present their case, item by item, leader by leader,  to God. It was rather pertinent.

Before God could be qualified to be their Judge, He must endure what they had endured. Their decision was that God should be sentenced to live on  earth as  a human being, as a man.

Let him be born of the most despised race, a Jew, in  poverty-stricken conditions. Let the  legitimacy of his birth be doubted. As a child, let him be forced to  flee as a refugee, and live several years in a foreign country. Then  give him a work to do, and an ideal to uphold that is so difficult that even his own family will think him out of his mind when he tries to do it. Let him be betrayed by his closest colleague, into the hands of  those who hate him. Let him face false charges, be tried by a  prejudiced Jury, and convicted by a cowardly judge.

At the last, let him see what it means to be  terribly, terribly alone - forsaken of  all his friends. Let him be tortured. Then let him die. Let him die the most excruciating, end humiliating death possible, before a taunting,  reviling crowd, that not only verified his death but contributed to it.

As each leader announced his portion of the sentence, loud murmurs of  approval went up from the whole assembled throng. When the last  leader had finished pronouncing his  part of God's sentence, there was a long silence. No-one uttered  another word. Nobody moved.

For suddenly, everybody knew that God had already served His sentence.

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