The previous Messiah wannabes who dotted the scene before Jesus were a motley bunch of crackpots, axe-to-grind types, thundercloud-over-the-head types, rebels and fellows of dubious character. They were all, ultimately, flashes in society’s pan, and their following typically disintegrated rapidly upon their often untimely and ignoble deaths. Then came Jesus! At the beginning, he, too, was regarded as just another voice to be tolerated for a season. As headlines increasingly sang out his accolades, among ever greater numbers, fears began to blossom among those who would maintain the status quo. To quicken the silencing of this troublesome sect, the religious rulers orchestrated his death, thinking, by it, to have restored peace and order in their domain. They were almost right. Almost.
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