Reformation Lutheran Church A Congregation of the ELCA

Wednesday, April 1

The Fool on the Hill

nobody wants to know him
They can see that he's just a fool
And he never gives an answer...
But the fool on the hill
Sees the sun going down
And the eyes in his head see the world spinning ‘round


On this April Fools’ Day, we hear from The Beatles! This song is not about Jesus, but it does reflect the culture then and now as he was and is thought of as a fool by those who were and are perfectly content with the status quo. We who follow him are also often seen as foolish or gullible (I Corinthians 4:10). April Fools Day tends to be about pranks and not falling for them. Much of the world sees Christians s gullible fools who have fallen for scandalous lies and been conned by a hustler and his minions.


Specifically in the lyrics of this song, the line “...And he never gives an answer...” echoes back to Jesus’ standing before Pontius Pilate and not giving the answers Pilate desires. Even as Jesus hung on the cross, he did not give those mocking him the satisfaction of a response of any kind. His seven last words demonstrate a depth of character beyond mere humanity that echoes through the ages, and they are an indication that merely responding to the questions he was asked could not have been adequate.


As the disciples spent the weekend mourning an inconceivable death, the rest of contemporary society berated them for falling victim to one of the “classic blunders”: being fooled into believing Jesus was the Messiah and subsequently having their hopes dashed by stark reality. Musically, Paul McCartney’s minor chord progression echoes the despair they must have felt, but the sonic landscape also resolves into an optimistic tone, as Christ’s resurrection eventually demonstrated to them. For us, it’s hard to wait through Saturday; for the disciples, the wait must have been interminable while they struggled to find meaning in his words and the recent events. When they understood, they ran from Emmaus; they stumbled over their words in the upper room; they ran breathless from the tomb. It was then that they most looked like fools; it was then that they truly were fools...for Christ.


God’s foolishness is wiser than human wisdom,
and God’s weakness is stronger than human strength.
I Corinthians 1:25


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