By Sister Jane Geiger, MHSH
[2 Chr 36:15-16, 19-23; Ps 137:1-6; Jn 3:14-21]
“Gutsy” might best describe Nicodemus: gutsy, but not stupid. It seems he had to meet with Jesus, but he took care to come in the dark so fewer people would see—although, as part of a small population, he certainly knew that even the night has eyes and word travels fast.
So his status as a respected religious leader might have been jeopardized by his visit to a questionable “wonder worker.” Nevertheless, he went, impelled by a hunger to understand.
Cyrus, too, seems daring. Yes, he may have wanted to deport a troublesome ethnic group, but they were also one of his main sources of labor (why does this sound familiar?), and their exodus left the country in significant need of workers. Credit—or blame?—is attributed to God for inspiring Cyrus’ decree.
In our time, God gets less credit or blame for the decisions of humans. Only when we look back from some decades’ distance do we perceive the sticky fingerprints of divine providence and mutter to ourselves, “So that’s where God was going,” or “So that’s why that evil was allowed to happen.”