It is a deeply moving event that we read of in the Gospel for today. Jesus weeps! The Son of God weeps! A man who weeps is suffering pain – pain either of the body or of the heart. Jesus did not suffer in the body; and yet he wept. How great must have been the sorrow of soul, the heartfelt pain of this most courageous of men to make him weep! Why did he weep? He wept for Jerusalem, for God’s holy city that was so dear to him, the capital of his people. He wept for its inhabitants, his fellow-countrymen, because they refused to recognise the only thing that could avert the judgment foreseen by his omniscience and determined in advance by his divine justice: „If thou hadst known ... the things which belong unto thy peace!“ Why do the inhabitants of Jerusalem not know it? Not long before Jesus had given voice to it: „O Jerusalem, Jerusalem ... how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!“ (Luke 13,34).Ye would not. I, your King, your God, I would. But ye would not! How safe, how sheltered is the chicken under the hen’s wing: she warms it, she feeds it, she defends it. In the same way I desired to protect you, to keep you, to defend you against any ill. I would, but ye would not!That is why Jesus weeps; that is why that strong man weeps; that is why God weeps. For the folly, the injustice, the crime of not being willing. And for the evil to which that gives rise - which his omniscience sees coming, which his justice must impose - if man sets his unwillingness against God’s commands, in opposition to the admonitions of conscience, and all the loving invitations of the divine Friend, the best of Fathers: „If thou hadst known, in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! But thou wouldst not!“ It is something terrible, something incredibly wrong and fatal, when man sets his will against God’s will. I would!- The Blessed Clemens August Graf von Galen
Please go to this previous blog post to read the full sermon.