Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Spy Wednesday

Today is Wednesday in Holy Week; one of the other names for Wednesday in Holy Week is Spy Wednesday, because of the events associated with it:

One of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot,
went to the chief priests and said,
"What are you willing to give me
if I hand him over to you?"
They paid him thirty pieces of silver,
and from that time on he looked for an opportunity to hand him over.

It's the day of the wolf in sheep's clothing, of the subversive Fifth Column, of the worm in the apple, of the corruption that eats from within. The Church may rise as high as is imaginable in the Palm Sundays of its history, Christ in the forefront and palms at the feet; but there is always a Spy Wednesday.


Christ was looking to the heavens,
looking with a sigh and frown,
looking for the time of day;
'Judas, make my way,' he said,
'buy a room in Zion-town.'
Judas said, 'A stately dwelling
I will buy us for the feast --
money rings within the wallet,
bells of silver, thirty piece.'

Judas searched then over, under,
Judas searched then broad and deep.
Nowhere did he find a dwelling,
nowhere was a room for having,
nowhere would his money buy it,
coins of silver, thirty piece.

Tired from his ceaseless searching,
ceased he then to nap a while,
deeply on the lawn he slumbered.
When he woke, the noon-time vanished,
nowhere could he find the wallet,
nowhere could he find the money,
treasured silver, thirty piece.

Judas wept and beat his breast,
crying, 'What can now be done?'
Judas wept for thought of failure,
wept (for what would others say?),
fearing to return to Jesus
without dwelling, without wallet,
without silver, thirty piece.

But a young man near was shouting,
'Have you heard? The priests have posted
prize for word to help them capture
Joshua the Nazorean,
trouble-making, rabble-raising:
prize of silver, thirty piece!'

Straightway Satan spoke to Judas,
'Never has the Lord been caught,
grasping hands he has eluded.
Can they capture one who conquers
blindness, sickness, lameness, death,
walks on water, loaves and fishes
multiplies like grains of sand,
water turns to wedding wine?
Crowds he passes through unharmed!
If he from the temple height
were to fall, the Lord's own angels,
soaring down, would surely save him!
If he were in starving hunger,
stones he'd surely change to bread!
If he wanted all the kingdoms,
kings would fall before his power!'
Judas to the scribes and priests
made a promise to betray,
promised to deliver Jesus,
for reward to fill the wallet,
costly silver, thirty piece.

Judas came again to Jesus,
saying he had found no dwelling,
nowhere taking merely silver.
Christ then looked up to the heavens,
looking with a sigh and frown.
John he called, and also Peter,
gave to them a different mission:
'Silver cannot buy a dwelling,
time is short, too soon too late.
Go now quickly to the city.
When you enter in the gate
you will find a water-bearer;
let him guide you to his home.
Ask the master of the house
"Where is found the special room?
He who asks has pressing need."'

Judas followed, worries lightened,
thinking how he was so clever,
how the priests he had outsmarted,
how he trusted in his Master,
how he had made right the problem,
thinking he would get the money,
shining silver, thirty piece.