“Jeremiah was a Bullfrog” is all some people know about that name; but when you study about the scripture written by Jeremiah, you discover that he was pretty loud, and pretty direct in what he said. Jeremiah, the prophet kept calling the people of Israel to come back into the agreement, the covenant, that God had made with them when Moses lead them out of Egypt. His constant message was almost a harangue, loud and vocal, and the same; and the people of his day didn’t really like him because of that. They didn’t like the truth. They didn’t like the facts. But he kept telling them and some few believed in what God wanted of them. So, the repeated message was somewhat like the repeated sound of the bullfrog, loud, steady and direct, “Know the Lord, for they shall all know me, from the least of them, to the greatest; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.”
That is a good lesson for this Lent, because that is what Lent is all about. Not ‘Bullfrogs’ but gaining God’s forgiveness; changing our attitude so we can accomplish that.
Lent is beginning to close down at this point; we have been at it for five weeks now; and turn toward the passion of Jesus. In fact, back a few years this fifth Sunday of Lent was called “Passion” Sunday. It was the beginning of Jesus becoming aware that he was going to be crucified, and the human side of him was a bit shaky in regard to what his Father was asking him to do. He was a good son, and he certainly was going to do what was asked of him, but I doubt if he liked the idea.
That is until something happened that John tells us about in his Gospel. Jesus was waiting for a sign, waiting for the “time” to come, when he would move forward and do what God the Father wanted him to do.
There was a festival going on in Jerusalem and among those attending were some Greeks who had come to worship at the Temple. They came to Philip who was from Bethsaida, a place where many Greeks resided, and Philip took them to Andrew. What is going on is the fact that ‘Philip” and “Andrew” were Greek names, so there was a connection which was positive. Then they went to Jesus.
This visit by these Greek people was the sign from the Father that Jesus was waiting for; it told him that all he was being called on to do was for the benefit of the whole world, not just the Hebrew people. That Jesus “Glorification” in the crucifixion and resurrection was for all of the people of the World, and for all ages.
I suppose, gladly, that means you, and me, and the people who are my neighbors. Those seem to be the facts in the matter, and I am glad; aren’t you?
The Rev. George O. Martin is an Ordained Deacon at St. John’s Episcopal Church, 17th and Adams, Great Bend. Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.