Lent with Julian of Norwich #31 – But Jesus was Angry..wasn’t he?


For this was revealed; that our life is all grounded and rooted in love, and without love we cannot live. And therefore to the soul which through his special grace sees so much of the wonderful goodness of God – and that we are endlessly united to him in love, it is the greatest impossibility that there could be that God should be angry, for anger and friendship are two opposites. It must be so that he who destroys and dispels our anger and makes us meek and mild is himself always constant in love, meek and mild, which is the opposite of anger.

Julian of Norwich. Revelations of Divine Joy; Long Text, Chapter 49.

Sometimes Jesus seemed pretty angry. Angry at the religious leaders of the day, those that excluded women, those that turned the temple into a den of thieves, those that lacked compassion for the sick, for lepers. He seemed angry with those that sought to exclude prostitutes, tax collectors. He seemed angry at the men who wanted to stone women to death for taking part in adultery….no mention of the men involved of course. Righteously angry.

Jesus definitely wasn’t angry with the woman at the well, or the women with the issue of blood that ‘contaminated’ him (or so the convention decreed), the Roman Centurion, the man possessed by demons, the lepers outside the city walls, poor fishermen, dishonest tax collectors, freedom fighters. He was definitely their friends.

We are, of course, friends of God. I’m certainly not suggesting that God is angry with any of us, but it’s worth remembering who he was angry with.

Categories: Devotional, Lent 2019

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