Sunday, March 10, 2024

The Chosen 2:4 — The Perfect Opportunity

As of this episode of The Chosen, Jesus has gathered together 10 of his eventual 12 Apostles: Thaddaeus, Little James, Simon, Andrew, Big James, John, Thomas, Matthew, Philip, and Nathanael. This leaves only Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot to be accounted for. (This, of course, in addition to the women: Mary Magdalene, Ramah, and occasionally Jesus’ mother Mary.) In this episode, we see the introduction of Simon the Zealot, and an interesting hypothetical tie-in with one of Jesus’ most well-known miracles, the healing of the lame man at the pool of Bethesda.

I’ve always thought of Jesus’ inclusion of both Simon the Zealot and Matthew the former tax collector as
particularly significant: Jesus was not only bringing together a wide variety of people, but people of opposing backgrounds and convictions, likely to clash violently in any circumstance other than following him.
The Chosen does an excellent job at depicting who the Zealots were, why someone might have been drawn to them, and what could be wrong with taking revolutionary fervor to such an extreme.

This episode also deals with what may seem to be an obvious question that Jesus asks of the man at the pool of Bethesda: “Do you want to be healed?” I mean, of course he wants to be healed, right? That’s why he’s at the pool. And yet, as we’ll see, our preconceptions about how we think God ought to do things can obscure what it is we actually want him to do. Our human penchant for trying to figure out the ways we want God to act often get in the way of just letting him meet our needs however he wants to do it.