Jesus kicked off the Sermon on the Mount with the beatitudes. “Blessed are the poor in spirit . . .”
A guy on the mount interrupted Jesus. “Hey! ALL lives are blessed!”
Jesus ignored him. “For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
The heckler again horned in. “The kingdom of heaven belongs to EVERYBODY!”
And so it went through the beatitudes, Jesus identifying those who are blessed – those who mourn, those who hunger for righteousness, the meek, the merciful, the persecuted, and so on – and the guy interrupting him each time.
Of course it didn’t happen that way. According to Matthew Chapters five through seven, Jesus was allowed to get through the entire Sermon on the Mount without interruption.
But how would he have responded to such a challenge?
Based on his teaching and ministry, I imagine Jesus’ reply would have been something like this. In Aramaic, of course:
“Dude, did I say ONLY those types of people are blessed?
“Of course not!
“If you’ve been paying attention to what I’ve been saying and doing, you know that I have come especially to remind those on the margins – the least, the lost, the last, and the left out – that they are indeed blessed. That they matter to God.
“For what does ‘blessed’ mean but to matter to God?
“Do you know your Scriptures? All through the Law and the Prophets, over and over my Father commanded the people of Israel to care for the orphans, the widows, and the immigrants. Do you think that means those are the only people who matter to God?
“Of course not!
“But both the Scriptures and I take special care to remind those who may feel God has forgotten them that they matter, and to remind YOU that they should matter to you. That does not mean you matter any less. However, if you are my follower then you are to also remind the diminished and the disparaged that they matter; that they are indeed blessed.
“Or, to put it another way, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'”
And then maybe Jesus would tell the Parable of the Good Samaritan. In which one of the lessons is, of course, that Samaritan lives matter. As do the lives of those who have been robbed and beaten and left by the road.
To which the guy on the mount might reply, “All lives matter.”
And Jesus would just shake his head. But still love that guy because even the lives of those who don’t get it matter to God.