The Chosen :: Season2 Episode 8: Beyond Mountains
This episode opens showing a portion of the Promised Land given to the tribe of Reuben, is in the process of being sold to two businessmen who claim to be from the tribe of Simeon. The businessmen con the owner to sell the land for 49 talents and then speak of signing a covenant Deed to bind the sale agreement. The Leader of the Reuben Tribe remembers another covenant made between God and Abraham.
The younger of the two businessmen is apprenticing under his senior partner, but seems to have more grit than his partner and is interested in learning more about Jesus when they hear about His upcoming sermon. He claims that he wants a life that he can be proud of.
The Disciples are shown arguing about everything, from how Simon the Zealot exercises too much and should cover himself before the women wake up, to how the mind and spirit are more important than the body. Thomas believes that all the arguing is a form of love. They all love Jesus and want to follow Him in the right way. They just can’t agree on what that right way is. This reminds us of the different churches who are all following Christ but not agreeing on the way God wants us to worship him. It goes to remind us that we are not called hold on to our oneness in Jesus, in an above our own points of view and seek to be humble, generous and kind in our dealings with our fellow brethren.
Shmuel meets with Rabbi Shammai and conspires against both Jesus and the other Rabbi Shimon (Nicodemus’s student). Here we are shown how the two Rabbinic Schools are trying to bring each other down, through their own intolerance of each others views and additionally they choose to overlook and be blind towards the signs and wonders that Jesus has done. For them their own knowledge and understanding of scripture, is the only sure way.
Jesus and Matthew are shown working on the sermon, watch as the group leaves to hand out flyers hand written by Mary, advertising the upcoming Sermon by Jesus on a Mount. They head out to spread the WORD just as Jesus calls us to do. Jesus seems to be sad when He looks at the empty camp. Jesus’ desire for the Good News is expressed in these words He says, “My Words are for all those who have been through tough times and for people who are hesitant and skeptical as well as bold and confident. They are open to all those who are hungry to learn, as well as those learned and knowledgeable.” It’s an invitation in itself to all of us!
Matthew questions about Jesus’ followers being the SALT of the EARTH. Jesus’s response is that “Salt preserves meat from corruption and slows its decay.” Jesus calls us to hold back on the evil works upon the earth. He mentions that “Salt enhances flavor” which brings to the fore that Jesus calls us to be part of His Redemption Story. He goes on to say that “Salt can also be mixed with honey and rubbed on the skin for medicinal purposes.” Jesus calls us to participate in the Healing of the world, and not its destruction.
What is striking here is that Jesus shown explaining his thoughts to Matthew, as Matthew finds it difficult to understand the metaphors that Jesus uses like, “These things will make sense to some but not to others”, “I don’t want passive followers”, “Those who are truly committed to Me will look deeply into what I say. I want them to look deeply into it, looking for truth.” As Jesus’s followers we must strive to be hungry for the truth and to look deep into the word of God and not merely touch the surface and let it go at that when we find it difficult to understand.
While Jesus is working on his opening statement for the sermon, he finds that he would like to lead people in the right direction, to search for him. Therefore Jesus talks of the be-attitudes as a road-map to finding Him/God.
He goes on to say if anyone wants to find Him those are the groups they should look for.
The word Blessed before each be-attitude doesn’t imply merely as we mean, Blessed be God, but it’s a blessing a true joy a state of utmost bliss. If we break down the words be-attitude it is clearly the attitude as followers of Christ that we should strive to attain and discover that the secret to happiness is hungering, thirsting, and being persecuted for what is right, living meekly, mourning, and being merciful.
The episode ends with Nathaniel introducing the young apprentice businessman, who has helped the apostles in making the spot of land where the sermon on the mount can be held. The young apprentice in the episode is introduced as Judas. It’s interesting how the Chosen for artistic expression chooses to introduce Judas in a way that’s different from how the Gospels speak about him or even other re-telling of the Gospels. Judas as we know will become part of Jesus 12 apostles. The important element that we need to take note, knowing Jesus is the one who will betray Jesus, is that Judas was invited to a honourable and blessed like by Jesus Himself, and so are we. But how he reacted tot that invitation and we react to our own invitation by Jesus, decides what our life will be counted as – Good or Bad, blessed or cursed, fruitful or unfruitful. We are all called to be saints.
- Psalm 139:13-16
- Matthew 5:1-16
- Matthew 7:12
QUESTIONS FOR YOU TO REFLECT:
- In theory, Jesus could accomplish his mission by himself, but in Episode 8 we see how he chooses to depend on his disciples and their contributions. In what ways does Jesus still depend on us and our contributions in order to achieve his mission?
- What do you find interesting about this episode? What did you like? Anything you find surprising?
- Which of the beatitudes feels the closest to you? What about the hardest or farthest from you?
- Go through the beatitudes and think of one person in your life who portrays each of these traits.
** Please note this episode review is also inspired from other comments and reviews on the net. More specifically (www.thebibleartist.com, northstarfamily.org)
Do leave your thoughts and comments below.