At the prospect of a terrible death Jesus fixed his face like flint. He did not rebel, he turned his back to the lashes.

My closest classmate through grade school and the early seminary years died last week. His was a slow, painful fight with emphysema and cancer. I talked with him on the phone three weeks back, and I was impressed by the courage Len drew from our suffering Lord. Like Jesus, he had set his face like flint. He did not rebel, did not turn back from painful lashes.

The Gospel too has echoes in my personal experiences. This is known as Spy Wednesday because like a spy Judas betrayed his master. I had a Spy Wednesday experience in 1956. At Easter of 1955 I baptized two Korean girls who could not afford to go to school. Their parents had promised me that they would not sell them as brides to men who already had wives, but Chun Jinny’s father broke his promise. Four days short of her second Easter she came to me saying her father had sealed the bargain, and she had to be off right away. Somehow it seemed even worse that it had to happen on Spy Wednesday.

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