He was looking at him, I couldn’t see Joel but I knew where his eyes were fixed. I was to his right and Joel to his left, both of us deserving what we’ve gotten but certainly not him.
“Say the word,” Joel spoke.
“I have heard of the impossible things you made possible and I believe them all. Say the word, save yourself and us too. We have gold stored up and we would gladly share.”
I wanted to step down and punch Joel in the face. How could he know what this man had done yet attempt to bribe him with gold. I spoke, and cared less if I was heard. I told Joel to behave better, I reminded him of the travelers we robbed, about Zacchaeus; the tax collector who we helped extort money an how he was transformed when he met this man. I told him about Mariam – the harlot we had threesome with on times too many to count and he should remember on the night she was caught, he fled through the window while she was dragged along the streets to be stoned. But this man didn’t let it happen; now Mariam is a woman different from the one we knew.
“I know all these and more,” Joel replied and began counting what the man had done. He spoke of the time the man walked on water and of the time the sea obeyed him. He spoke of when he fed thousands in the wilderness and how we even took few baskets of food without anyone knowing. He could do it then, he should do it now and save us all. Curse the soldiers to be the ones on the cross and finally launch the attack against the Romans.
All these while, the man spoke but never in response to the negative comments of the crowd or to interrupt our conversation. Until I told him to let me be with him and the reply he gave, left me more than amazed but irate Joel the more. To Joel the getting out was now, and if he couldn’t do it he was not the son of God he claimed he was and all the stories of his deeds were false.
“Today, you will be with me in paradise,”
“Today, you will be with me in paradise,” was the reply he gave me. I was relieved knowing if this is all I’ve got, then the loss of dying is gain.
PS: This is not the Bible rewritten; it’s a figment of the authors imagination.