30th September 1946.
Jesus goes back into the Temple with His apostles and disciples. And some of the apostles, and not only the apostles, point out to Him that it is not wise to go in. But He replies: « By what right could they refuse to let Me go in? Have I perhaps been condemned? No, not yet. So I am going up to the altar of God like every Israelite who fears the Lord. »
« But You intend to speak... »
« And is this not the place where rabbis usually gather to speak? To speak and teach outside is an exceptional case, such as the rest taken by a rabbi or a personal necessity. But this is the place where everyone loves to teach disciples. Do you not see people of every nationality around rabbis to hear the famous ones at least once? So that when they go back to their native countries they may say: We heard a master, a philosopher speak according to the fashion of Israel. A master for those who already are or intend to be Jews; a philosopher for the true and proper Gentiles. Neither do the rabbis disdain being listened to by the latter, as they hope to make proselytes. Without such hope, which would be holy if it were humble, they would not remain in the Court of the Gentiles, but they would demand to speak in that of Israel, and if it were possible, in the very Sanctuary, because, according to the opinion they hold of themselves, they are so holy, that God only is holier... And I, the Master, will speak where teachers speak. But be not afraid! It is not their hour as yet. When their hour comes, I will tell you, that you may fortify your hearts. »
« You will not tell us » says the Iscariot.
« Why not? »
« Because You will not know. No sign will tell You. There is no sign. I have been with You for almost three years and I have always seen You threatened and persecuted. Nay, You were alone then. Now You have the support of the crowds who love You and of whom the Pharisees are afraid. So You are in a stronger position. How do You expect to know when the hour has come? »
« By what I see in the hearts of men. »
Judas remains dumbfounded for a moment, then he says: « And You will not mention it also because... You spare us because You doubt our courage. »
« He keeps silent not to distress us » says James of Zebedee.
« True. But You will certainly not tell us. »
« I will tell you. And until I tell you, whatever violence and hatred you see against Me, be not afraid of it. They will have no consequences. Go on. I am staying here to wait for Manaen and Marjiam. »
The Twelve and those who are with them go on halfheartedly. Jesus retraces His steps towards the gate waiting for the two, He then goes out into the street and walks towards the Antonia.
Some legionaries standing near the fortress point Him out chatting to one another. There seems to be some disagreement in opinion, then one of them says in a loud voice: « I'll ask Him » and he departs from the group coming towards Jesus. « Hail, Master. Are You speaking in there also today? »
« May the Light enlighten you. Yes. I am going to speak. »
« In that case... be careful. One who knows has warned us. And a lady who admires You has ordered us to watch. We shall be near the eastern underground. Do You know where the entrance is? »
« I do. But both ends are closed. »
« Do You think so? » The legionary has a little laugh and in the shadow of his helmet his eyes and teeth shine making him look younger. He then salutes coming to attention and says: « Hail, Master. Remember Quintus Felix. »
« I will. May the Light enlighten you. »
Jesus resumes walking and the legionary goes back to his place and talks to his fellow-soldiers.
« Master, are we late? The lepers were so many! » exclaim together Manaen, who is wearing a plain dark brown garment, and Marjiam.
« No. You have been quick. But let us go. The others are waiting for us. Manaen, was it you who warned the Romans? »
« Of what, Lord? I have not spoken to anybody. And I would not know... The Roman ladies are not in Jerusalem. »
They are once again near the gate of the enclosure. The Levite Zacharias is there, as if he happened to be there just by chance.
« Peace to You, Master. I want to tell You... I will try to be always where You are, in here. And please do not lose sight of me. And if there is a tumult and You see me go away, try to follow me all the time. They hate You so much! I cannot do any more... Please understand me... »
« May God reward and bless you for the pity you take on His Word. I will do what you say. And you may rest assured that no one will be aware of your love for Me. »
« Perhaps he told the Romans. While in there he may have heard... » whispers Manaen.
They go to pray passing through the crowds who look at them with different feelings and who later gather behind Jesus, when He comes away from the Court of Israel after praying.
Outside the second enclosure Jesus is about to stop, but He is surrounded by a mixed group of scribes, Pharisees and priests. One of the officials of the Temple speaks on behalf of them all.
« Are You here again? Do You not realise that we do not want You? Are You not even afraid of the danger impending over You? Go away. It is already a lot if we allow You to come in to pray. But we do not allow You to teach Your doctrine any more. »
« Yes, go away. Go away, You blasphemer! »
« Yes. I am going away, as you wish. And not only out of these walls. I will go, I am already going farther, where you will not be able to reach Me. And the time will come when you also will be looking for Me, and not just to persecute Me, but through a superstitious terror of being struck for driving Me away, urged by a superstitious anxiety to have your sin forgiven and receive mercy. But I am telling you. This is the time of mercy. This is the time to make friends with the Most High. After the present time, no remedy will be of any avail. You will not have Me any more and you will die in your sin. Even if you travelled all over the Earth and you succeeded in arriving at stars and planets, you would no longer find Me, because you cannot come where I am going. I have already told you. God comes and passes by. Those who are wise receive Him with His gifts while He passes by. Those who are foolish let Him go and no longer can find Him. You come from down here. I come from up there. You belong to this world. I am not of this world. So, once I have gone back to the Abode of My Father, out of this world of yours, you will not be able to find Me any longer and you will die in your sins, because you will not even be able to reach Me spiritually through faith. »
« Do You want to kill Yourself, You devil? We will certainly not be able to join You in Hell, where violent souls descend, because Hell is the place of damned cursed souls, whereas we are the blessed children of the Most High » some of them say.
And others say approvingly: « He certainly wants to kill Himself, because He says that we cannot go where He goes. He realises that He has been found out and has failed the test, and He is going to kill Himself, without waiting to be killed like the other Galilean who was a false Christ. »
And others say benevolently: « And if He really were the Christ and should go back to Him Who sent Him? »
« Where? In Heaven? Abraham is not there, so how can you expect Him to go there? The Messiah is to come first. »
« But Elijah was taken up to Heaven in a chariot of fire. »
« On a chariot, yes. But to Heaven!... Who can assure that? »
And the dispute continues while Pharisees, scribes, officials, priests, Judaeans obsequious to priests, scribes and Pharisees pursue the Christ through the vast porches as a pack of hounds chases roused game.
But some people, that is the good ones among the hostile group, those urged by real honest intentions, elbow their way through the crowd until they reach Jesus and ask Him the anxious question, which has been heard being asked so often with love or with hatred: « Who are You? Tell us so that we may know how to behave. Tell us the truth in the name of the Most High! »
« I am the Truth itself and I never tell lies. I am what I have always declared to be since the first day I spoke to the crowds, in every place in Palestine, what I said I am, here, several times, near the Holy of Holies, of Whose thunderbolts I am not afraid, because I speak the truth. I have still many things to say and to judge during My day and with regard to this people, and although My evening seems to be close at hand, I know that I shall tell them and I shall judge everybody, because that is what I have been promised by Him Who sent Me and is truthful. He spoke to Me in an eternal embrace of love, telling Me all His Thought, so that I could repeat it by means of My Word to the world, and I shall not be able to be silent, neither will anybody be able to silence Me until I announce to the world what I heard from My Father. »
« Are You still blaspheming? And are You continuing to call Yourself the Son of God? But who do You expect to believe You? Who will ever be able to see the Son of God in You? » shout His enemies shaking their fists at His face, deranged as they are by hatred.
The apostles, disciples and well-meaning people drive them back forming a protective barrier round the Master. Zacharias, the levite, steals slowly close to Jesus, Manaen and Alphaeus' two sons with stealthy movements in order not to attract the attention of the evil ones.
They are now at the end of the Court of the Gentiles as progress is slow owing to the hindering opposition and Jesus stops at His usual place, at the last column of the eastern side. He stops. They cannot eject a true Israelite from the place where even pagans are allowed to stay, unless they wish to rouse the masses. Which they craftily avoid doing. And He resumes speaking replying to His offenders and everybody else: « When you have lifted up the Son of man... »
The Pharisees and scribes shout: « And who do You expect is going to lift You up? Miserable is that Country whose king is a silly charlatan and a blasphemer disliked by God. None of us will lift You up, You may be sure of that. And the little intelligence You are still left with has made You realise that in time, when You were put to the test. You know that we shall never be able to make You our king! »
« I know. You will not raise Me to a throne, and yet you will lift Me up. And while lifting Me up you will think that you are lowering Me. And just when you think that you have lowered Me, I shall be raised. Not only over Palestine, not only over the people of Israel spread all over the world, but over the whole world, even over pagan countries, even over those countries of which the learned people of the world are still unaware. And I shall be raised not only for the lifetime of a man, but for the whole life of the Earth and the shadow of My throne will spread more and more over the Earth until it covers it completely. Then only, I will come back and you will see Me. Oh! You shall see Me! »
« Listen to His speech of a madman! We shall raise Him by lowering Him, and we shall lower Him by raising Him! He's mad! And the shadow of His throne all over the Earth. Greater than Cyrus! Greater than Alexander! Greater than Caesar! And what about Caesar? Do You think he will allow You to take the Roman empire? And He is going to last on His throne until the end of the world! Ha! Ha! » Their words are more grievous than slaps; their irony is more painful than scourging.
But Jesus lets them speak. He raises His voice to be heard in the outcry of those who deride and of those who defend, filling the place with the roar of a rough sea.
« When you have raised the Son of man, then you will understand who I am and you will realise that I do nothing by Myself, but I say what My Father taught Me and I do what He wants. And He Who sent Me does not leave Me all alone, but He is with Me. As a shadow follows a body, so is the Father behind Me, watchful and present, although invisible. He is behind Me and comforts and helps Me and He does not go away because I always do what He likes. God instead goes away when His children do not obey His laws and His inspirations. He then goes away and leaves them all alone. That is why many people in Israel commit sin. Because when man is left to himself, it is difficult for him to remain just and he easily falls into the coils of the Snake. I solemnly tell you that because of your sin in resisting the Light and Mercy of God, He leaves you and will no longer dwell in this place or in your hearts and what Jeremiah grieved over in his prophecies and lamentations will be fulfilled. Meditate on those prophetical words, tremble and return to your senses with good minds. Do not listen to the threats but to the kindness of the Father Who warns His children while they are still granted the possibility to make amends and save themselves. Listen to God in His words and deeds, and if you do not want to believe My words, because old Israel is suffocating you, believe at least in old Israel. Her prophets proclaim the dangers and misfortunes of the Holy City and of all our Fatherland if she does not convert to the Lord her God and does not follow the Saviour. The hand of God weighed heavily on this people in the past. But the past and present are nothing as compared to the dreadful future, which is awaiting it for not accepting the Messenger sent by God. What is awaiting Israel who repudiates the Christ cannot be compared with the past in severity and duration. I am telling you, straining My eyes into future ages: like a tree uprooted and thrown into a stormy river, the Hebraic race will be struck by divine anathema. It will stubbornly try to stop on the banks, here or there, and vigorous as it is, it will sprout and take root. But when it thinks it has settled, the violence of the flood will get hold of it again, tearing it away and breaking its roots and shoots, and it will be carried farther away, to suffer, to strike roots again, and then be torn off and scattered once more. And nothing will be able to give it rest, because the flood pursuing it will be the wrath of God and the contempt of peoples. Only by throwing itself into a sea of living sanctifying Blood it could find peace. But it will shun that Blood, because although its voice will be an inviting one, it will sound like the voice of Abel's blood calling it: the Cain of the heavenly Abel. »
A further widespread whispering runs through the large enclosure like the noise of the sea. But the harsh voices of Pharisees, scribes and of the Jews subjected to them, are not part of the whispering. Jesus avails Himself of the opportunity to try to go away.
But some people who were far from Him, approach Him and say: « Master, listen to us. We are not all like them (and they point at His enemies), but we find it difficult to follow You also because Your voice is all by itself against hundreds of voices which state the opposite of what You say. And what they say is just what we have heard from our fathers since our childhood. But Your words induce us to believe in You. But how can we believe fully and have life? We feel as if we were tied by the thoughts of the past... »
« If you settle in My Word, as if you were being born again now, your faith will be complete and you will become My disciples. But you must divest yourselves of the past and accept My Doctrine. It does not delete the past completely. On the contrary it keeps and instills new life into what is holy and supernatural in the past, and it removes the superfluous human additions as it puts the perfection of My Doctrine where now are human doctrines, which are always imperfect. If you come to Me you will know the Truth, and the Truth will make you free. »
« Master, it is true what we said to You, that we feel as if we were tied by the past. But that tie is neither imprisonment nor slavery. We are Abraham's posterity in spiritual matters, because, if we are not mistaken, Abraham's posterity means spiritual posterity as opposed to Hagar's, which is a posterity of slaves. So how can You say that we shall become free? »
« I wish to point out to you that also Ishmael and his children were Abraham's posterity, because Abraham was the father of Isaac and of Ishmael. »
« But it was impure because he was the son of a woman, who was a slave and an Egyptian. »
« I solemnly tell you: there is but one slavery, that of sin. Only he who commits sin is a slave. And of a slavery which no money can ransom; and he is the slave of an implacable cruel master and loses all rights to the free sovereignty in the Kingdom of Heaven. A slave, a man who has become slave through war or misfortunes, may also become the property of a good master. But his welfare is always precarious because his master can sell him to another cruel master. He is merchandise, nothing else. Sometimes he is used as money to settle a debt. And he is not even entitled to complain. A servant instead lives in the house of his master until he is dismissed. But a son remains in the house of his father for good, and the father does not think of expelling him. He can go out only of his own free will. And that is the difference between slavery and servitude, and between servitude and filiation. Slavery puts man in chains. Servitude puts him at the service of a master. Filiation puts him forever, and with equal rights of life, in the house of the father. Slavery destroys man. Servitude subjects him. Filiation makes him free and happy. Sin makes man the slave and forever, of the most cruel master: Satan. Servitude, in this case the Ancient Law, makes man fear God as an intransigent Being. Filiation, that is, to come to God with His First-Born, with Me, makes man free and happy, as he knows and trusts in the charity of his Father. To accept My Doctrine is to come to God with Me, the First-Born of many beloved children. I will break your chains, if you only come to Me to have them broken and you will really be happy and coheirs with Me to the Kingdom of Heaven. I know that you are Abraham's posterity. But those among you who seek My death no longer honour Abraham, but Satan, and serve him as faithful servants. Why? Because they reject My word which cannot get to the hearts of many of you. God does not compel man to believe or to accept Me. But He sent Me that I may show you His will. And I tell you what I saw and heard near My Father. And I do what He wants. But those among you who persecute Me, do what they learnt from their father and what he suggests. »
Like a paroxysm which revives after a remission of a disease, the wrath of Judaeans, Pharisees and scribes is roused violently again, although it seemed to have abated. They penetrate like a wedge into the compact circle of people pressing Jesus and they try to approach Him. The crowd sways like opposed billows, as opposed are the feelings of their hearts. The Judaeans, livid with rage and hatred shout: « Abraham is our father. We have no other father. »
« God is the Father of men. Abraham himself is a son of the universal Father. But many repudiate the true Father for one who is not a father and has been chosen as such by them because he seems more powerful and willing to satisfy their immoderate desires. Children do the works that they see their father do. If you are sons of Abraham, why do you not do the works that Abraham did? Do you not know them? Shall I enumerate them with regard to their nature and symbol? Abraham obeyed by going to the country pointed out to him by God, and is thus the symbol of man who must be prepared to leave everything to go where God sends him. Abraham was obliging with his brother's son, whom he allowed to choose the region he preferred, thus symbolising respect for freedom of action and the charitable mind we must have for our neighbour. Abraham was humble after the predilection of God, Whom he honoured in Mamre, always feeling that he was a mere nothing in comparison with the Most High, Who had spoken to him, a symbol of the place of reverential love man must always keep towards his God. Abraham believed and obeyed God also in the most difficult matters to believe and painful to accomplish, and he did not become selfish in order to be safe, but he prayed for the people of Sodom. Abraham did not come to terms with the Lord, by requesting a reward for his manifold obedience, on the contrary, in order to honour Him till the very end, to the extreme limit, he sacrificed his beloved son to Him... »
« He did not sacrifice him. »
« He did sacrifice his beloved son because it is true that his heart had already sacrificed him, during the journey, with his will to obey, which was arrested by the angel when his heart of a father was already breaking, as he was on the point of rending the heart of his son. He was going to kill his son in order to honour God. You are killing the Son of God to honour Satan. So, do you do the works of Him Whom you call your father? No, you do not. You are trying to kill Me because I tell you the truth as I heard it from God. Abraham did not behave thus. He did not try to kill the voice coming from Heaven, but he obeyed it. No, you do not do the works of Abraham, but those pointed out to you by your father. »
« We were not born of a prostitute. We are not illegitimate children. You said Yourself that God is the Father of men, and we are the chosen People and we belong to the chosen castes of this People. So we have God as our only Father. »
« If you recognised God as your Father in spirit and truth you would love Me because I proceed and come from God; I have not come of My own accord, but it is He Who sent Me. So, if you really knew the Father, you would know also Me, His Son and your brother and Saviour. Is it possible for brothers not to know one another? Can the children of One only father not recognise the language spoken in the House of the Only Father? Why, then, do you not understand My language and you cannot bear My words?
Because I come from God and you do not. You left the paternal house and you have forgotten the face and the language of Him Who lives in it. You have spontaneously gone to other regions, to other abodes, where one who is not God reigns, and where another language is spoken. And he who reigns there compels those who want to go in to become his children and obey him. And you have done that and still do it. You abjure and disown God the Father to choose another father for yourselves. And that father is Satan. You have the demon as father and you want to accomplish what he suggests to you. And the wishes of the demon are for sin and violence and you accept them. From the beginning he was a homicide and he did not persevere in the truth, because having rebelled against the Truth, he cannot have in himself any love for the truth. When he speaks, he speaks as he is, that is, as a liar and a gloomy being, because he really is a liar and has procreated and given birth to falsehood after being fecundated with pride and nourished with rebellion. All concupiscence is in his bosom, and he spits it and inoculates it to poison creatures. He is the gloomy, sneering, creeping cursed reptile, the Disgrace and Horror. His deeds have tormented man for ages and their signs and fruits are clear to the intellects of men. And yet you listen to him, although he lies and destroys, whereas if I speak and say what is true and good, you do not believe Me and you say that I am a sinner. But among the many people who have approached Me, with hatred or with love, who can say that he saw Me commit sin? Who can say so truthfully? Where are the proofs to convince Me and those who believe in Me that I am a sinner? Which of the ten commandments have I infringed? Who can swear before the altar of God that he saw Me violate the Law and customs, the precepts, traditions and prayers? Who amongst all men can make Me blush, having convinced Me of sin with definite proofs? No one can do that. No one amongst men, no one amongst angels. God shouts in the hearts of men: He is the Innocent One. You are all convinced of that, and you who are accusing Me are more firmly persuaded than these people who are undecided as to who is right, you or I. But only who belongs to God listens to the words of God. You do not listen to them, although they resound in your souls day and night, and you do not listen to them because you do not belong to God. »
« We, who live for the Law and in the most detailed observation of the precepts, to honour the Most High, we do not belong to God? And You dare say that? Ah!!! » They seem to be suffocating with horror, as if a halter were fastened round their necks. « And we are not to say that You are possessed and a Samaritan? »
« I am neither, but I honour My Father, even if you deny Him to revile Me. But your insults do not grieve Me. I do not seek My glory. There is One who takes care of it and judges. That is what I say to you who want to humiliate Me. But to those of good will I say that he who accepts My word, or has already accepted it, and knows how to keep it, will never die. »
« Ah! Now we can see very clearly that the demon possessing You is speaking through Your lips! You said that Yourself: He speaks like a liar. What You said is a lie, therefore it is a word of the demon. Abraham died and the prophets died. And You say that those who keep Your word will never die. So You will not die? »
« I shall die only as Man, to rise again in the time of Grace, but I shall not die as the Word. The Word is Life and never dies. And he who receives the Word has Life in himself and never dies, but rises in God because I will resuscitate him. »
« Blasphemer! Madman! Demon! Are You greater than Abraham and the prophets, who died!? Who do You think You are!? »
« The Beginning Who am speaking to you. »
There is absolute pandemonium. And while it goes on, the Levite Zacharias pushes Jesus imperceptibly towards a corner in the court, helped by the sons of Alphaeus and by other people, who perhaps assist Him without even knowing what they are doing.
When Jesus is against the wall and is protected by His most faithful ones standing in front of Him and the tumult calms down a little, He says in His voice which is so incisive, beautiful and calm also in the most troubled moments: « If I glorify Myself, My glory is of no value. Anyone can say of oneself what one wishes. But He Who glorifies Me is My Father, Who you say is your God, although He is so little yours that you do not know Him, and you have never known Him, neither do you want to know Him through Me, as I speak to you of Him because I know Him; and if I should say that I do not know Him, to appease your hatred against Me, I would be a liar like you who say that you know Him. I know that I must not lie for any reason whatsoever. The Son of man must not lie even if by telling the truth He will bring about His death. Because if the Son of man should lie, He would no longer be the Son of Truth and the Truth would reject Him from Itself. I know God, both as God and as Man. And as God and as Man I keep His words and comply with them. Israel, think it over! It is here that the Promise is fulfilled. It is accomplished in Me. Recognise Me for what I am! Abraham, your father, longed to see My day. He saw it, prophetically, through a grace of God, and he rejoiced. And you who really live it... »
« Be quiet! You are not yet fifty years old and You are telling us that Abraham has seen You and You have seen him? » and their scornful laugh spreads like a wave of poison or corrosive acid.
« I solemnly tell you: before Abraham was born I am. »
« I am.? God only can say that, as He is eternal. You cannot! Blasphemer! I am.! Anathema! Are You perhaps God, that You may say that? » shouts one, who must be an important personage, because, although he has just arrived, he is already near Jesus, as everybody has moved aside, almost in terror, at his arrival.
« It is you who say it » replies Jesus in a thundering voice.
Everything becomes a weapon in the hands of those who hate. While the last man who has questioned Jesus gives free course to a mimic display of scandalised horror and tears his headgear off his head, ruffles his hair and beard and unfastens the buckles holding his mantle round his neck, as if he were about to faint with horror, handfuls of earth and stones - used by the vendors of doves and other animals to hold tight the ropes of the enclosures, and by money-changers as a prudential protection for their coffers, of which they are more jealous than of their own lives - are thrown at the Master and obviously fall upon the crowd, as Jesus is too far inside the arcade to be struck, and the crowds curse and complain...
Zacharias, the levite, gives Jesus a mighty push, the only means to make Him reach a little low door, hidden in the wall of the court and already set to be opened, and pushes Him inside with the two sons of Alphaeus, John, Manaen and Thomas. The others are left outside in the tumult... its noise arrives weakened in the underground passage, among the mighty stone walls, the correct architectural name of which I do not know. The stones are embedded, I would say, that is, there are large stones and smaller ones, and on top of the smaller ones there are large ones and vice-versa. I do not know whether I have made myself clear. They are dark and mighty, coarsely chiselled, hardly visible in the dim light coming from narrow loopholes placed high up at regular intervals to admit air and light so that the place may not be completely murky. It is a narrow tunnel, the purpose of which I do not know, but I am under the impression that it runs right round the court. Perhaps it was built as a protection, as a shelter place, or to double and thus reinforce the walls of the courts, which form enclosures round the true and proper Temple, the Holy of Holies. In brief, I do not know. I am saying what I see. There is a smell of dampness, that kind of dampness that one cannot say whether it is cold or not, as in certain wine-cellars.
« And what are we going to do here? » asks Thomas.
« Be quiet! Zacharias told me that he will come and we must remain silent and still » replies Thaddeus.
« But... can we trust him? »
« I hope so. »
« Be not afraid. He is a good man » says Jesus comforting them.
Outside the noise of the tumult fades away. Some time goes by. Then the dull sound of steps and a tiny flickering light coming from the dark depth.
« Are You there, Master? » asks a voice that wants to be heard but is afraid of being heard.
« Yes, Zacharias, I am here. »
« Praised be Jehovah! Have I kept You waiting? I had to wait for the others to rush to the other exits. Come, Master... Your apostles... I have been able to tell Simon to go all together towards Bezetha and wait there. We go down here... There is not much light, but it's a safe way. It takes us down to the cisterns... and we come out near the Kidron. An old way. Not always used for a good purpose. But this time it is... And that sanctifies it... »
They continue to go down in the deep shade broken only by the flickering light of the lamp, until a different gleam is seen down at the bottom... and beyond it some green appears in the distance... A railing, so heavy and thick that it looks like a door, is at the end of the tunnel.
« Master, I have saved You. You can go. But listen to me. Do not come back for some time. I could not serve You every time without being noticed. And... forget, all of you must forget this passage and me who brought you here » says Zacharias, working some devices of the heavy railing, which he opens just enough to let them go out. And he repeats: « Forget all about this, for my sake. »
« Be not afraid. None of us will speak. And may God be with you for your charity. » Jesus raises His hand and lays it on the bowed head of the young man.
He goes out followed by His cousins and the others. He finds Himself in a small wild open space, covered with bramble, so small that it can hardly contain them all, facing the Mount of Olives. A very steep path runs down among the bramble towards the torrent.
« Let us go. We will climb up again to the height of the Gate of the Sheep and I will go to Joseph's with My brothers, whilst you will go to Bezetha to get the others and will then join Me. We will go to Nob tomorrow evening after sunset. »