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152

Part One

591

Jesus asked the religious authorities of Jerusalem to believe

in him because of the Father’s works which he accomplished.

373

But such an act of faith must go through a mysterious death to self,

for a new “birth fromabove” under the influence of divine grace.

374

Such a demand for conversion in the face of so surprising a fulfill-

ment of the promises

375

allows one to understand the Sanhedrin’s

tragic misunderstanding of Jesus: they judged that he deserved the

death sentence as a blasphemer.

376

The members of the Sanhedrin

were thus acting at the same time out of “ignorance” and the

“hardness” of their “unbelief.”

377

IN BRIEF

592

Jesus didnot abolish the Lawof Sinai, but rather fulfilled

it (cf.

Mt

5:17-19) with such perfection (cf.

Jn

8:46) that he

revealed itsultimatemeaning (cf.

Mt

5:33) andredeemed

the transgressions against it (cf.

Heb

9:15).

593

Jesus venerated the Temple by going up to it for the

Jewish feasts of pilgrimage, and with a jealous love he

loved this dwelling of God among men. The Temple

prefigures his own mystery. When he announces its

destruction, it is as a manifestation of his own execution

and of the entry into a newage in the history of salvation,

when his Body would be the definitive Temple.

594

Jesus performed acts, such as pardoning sins, that mani­

fested him to be the Savior God himself (cf.

Jn

5:16-18).

Certain Jews, who did not recognize Godmademan (cf.

Jn

1:14), saw in him only a man who made himself God

(

Jn

10:33), and judged him as a blasphemer.

373

Jn

10:36-38.

374 Cf.

Jn

3:7; 6:44.

375 Cf.

Isa

53:1.

376 Cf.

Mk

3:6;

Mt

26:64-66.

377 Cf.

Lk

23:34;

Acts

3:17-18;

Mk

3:5;

Rom

11:25, 20.

526

574