EASTER & JESUS & SHAKESPEARE
I think it is my theatrical background, but every time I realise it's almost March 15 I find myself creepily saying to myself in a mirror, "Bewaaaaare the Ides!" with much dramatic effect.
I know, I'm a weirdo. I've never performed in a Shakespearean play, but I've certainly read and seen a lot of them, one of which was, of course, Julius Caesar.
But this year I am thinking that instead of being aware of March 15 and making a face at myself in the bathroom, I would consider it. And upon considering ...
Well, it occurred to me how Shakespeare's Caesar was frightened of a day that landed so close to Easter, and his death occurred through the betrayal of friends.
The Ides of March is supposedly March 15 - on this day, two guys named Cassius and Brutus betrayed and killed Julius Caesar in 44 BC. His murder was carried out by betrayers. And, this may have been artistic license, but according to Shakespeare, a soothsayer also foretold it (well, at least in Act 1, Scene 2 of his play). ;-)
Yes, I'm that much of a Shakespeare nerd. But not as much as my friend Beth (hi Beth! I don't hate you for being in Ireland right now...).
Back to YOU. Stay with me. I'm actually about to compare Scripture to Shakespeare. I am NOT comparing Julius to Jesus. Goodness, no. I realize some people have done that and considered Caesar was actually the fulfillment of prophesy, but um, NO. That's not what I'm doing. I am simply considering that maybe Old Will was more thoughtful or somewhat spiritual than I gave him credit.
Kinda cool, right? But then there's this ...
A thousand years before the birth of Christ, the Psalmist wrote of the crucifixion of Jesus which fulfilled in the New Testament (Psalm 22:1) -- even more specific about the details of the execution of our Saviour.
As we approach March 15 this year, let us remember that the fictional divination of Caesar’s death was only for climactic effect; whereas, the moving prophecies of Christ’s death had some pretty noticeable and eternal results. As much as Shakespeare might have made Caesar as a martyr, we must remember that the Roman Empire received no benefit from his demise.
Orange Julius didn't rise from the dead, eh? You see (of course you see), Christ's death and the resurrection Sunday have definitely changed MY world. How about YOU? Let us cherish the words of Isaiah, who said:
“We’re all like sheep who’ve wandered off and gotten lost.
We’ve all done our own thing, gone our own way.
And God has piled all our sins,
everything we’ve done wrong,
on Him, on Him."
Now that's a prophesy that still undoubtedly, absolutely, and positively impacts the world daily.
On this year, on this "Ides of March," and on your own, whether it is a first decision or re-commitment, what a dramatic effect it would be to place your faith in Christ. I may, out of silly personal tradition, creepily mutter "beware the Ides," in the mirror this year, but on this day and every other day, when I look in the mirror, all I really want to see is ... Jesus. And that's up to me, isn't it?
It's up to you too. ;-)