Pilate therefore said to him: Art thou a king then?
Jesus answered: Thou sayest that I am a king.
For this was I born,
and for this came I into the world;
that I should give testimony to the truth.
Every one that is of the truth,
heareth my voice. John 18:33-37
Jesus does not tell Pilate that he has come to save the world. He comes as a witness to the truth.
And if we are ‘of the truth’ we will hear his voice.
That includes ‘Every one that is of the truth’, surely also those who pursue truth in other ways: scientists, poets, lovers, giving their lives to their passion for research, for the sound of the right words, for the lover’s good.
John says elsewhere:
In this we have known the charity of God, because he hath laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 1 John 3:16.
We need not pursue actual martyrdom, as the young Teresa resolved to do (see post ‘Like Little Children’, October 15th 2015). As Teresa discovered, there are other ways to lay down our lives; Rowan Williams reminds us that ‘Christ lived a lifelong passion’. Is that a description of my life?
Rood Screen, Our Lady and the English Martyrs, Cambridge. MMB.