PASSAGE: "And Jesus said, 'Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.' And they cast lots to divide his garments" (Luke 23:34 RSV).
COMMENT: Jesus is speaking from the cross; and even in this moment of pain and anguish, he is holding firmly and lovingly to the spiritual Truth that was the basis of his entire ministry. It is easy, when others are painfully oppressing us, to assume a dualistic world in which they are “evil”—a power opposite to God seeking to oppose the energy and expression of God in the world. But there can be no opposite of God—among the attributes of God are omniscience, omnipotence and omnipresence. There is only God. The forces of darkness that make life so difficult are simply expressions of our collective ignorance of God's eternal Presence and Love. So it is with the forces crucifying Jesus: They are not evil, they are ignorant. "They know not what they do." It's difficult to hold to this spiritual Truth even on the best of days; to affirm it so lovingly at such a moment of ultimate challenge is truly an expression of the Christ Nature Jesus expressed and demonstrated, and calls us to find in ourselves.