Read John 19:1-16
1Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. 2The soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They clothed him in a purple robe 3and went up to him again and again, saying, "Hail, king of the Jews!" And they struck him in the face.
4Once more Pilate came out and said to the Jews, "Look, I am bringing him out to you to let you know that I find no basis for a charge against him." 5When Jesus came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe, Pilate said to them, "Here is the man!"
6As soon as the chief priests and their officials saw him, they shouted, "Crucify! Crucify!"
But Pilate answered, "You take him and crucify him. As for me, I find no basis for a charge against him."
7The Jews insisted, "We have a law, and according to that law he must die, because he claimed to be the Son of God."
8When Pilate heard this, he was even more afraid, 9and he went back inside the palace. "Where do you come from?" he asked Jesus, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10"Do you refuse to speak to me?" Pilate said. "Don't you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?"
11Jesus answered, "You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin."
12From then on, Pilate tried to set Jesus free, but the Jews kept shouting, "If you let this man go, you are no friend of Caesar. Anyone who claims to be a king opposes Caesar."
13When Pilate heard this, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judge's seat at a place known as the Stone Pavement (which in Aramaic is Gabbatha). 14It was the day of Preparation of Passover Week, about the sixth hour.
"Here is your king," Pilate said to the Jews.
15But they shouted, "Take him away! Take him away! Crucify him!"
"Shall I crucify your king?" Pilate asked.
"We have no king but Caesar," the chief priests answered.
16Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified. (NIV)
We get to John’s version of Jesus with Pilate. One of the consistent themes in all the Gospels is that Pilate did not find any charge to make against Jesus. We see that Jesus was an innocent victim. But we also see in this exchange that Jesus allows for all this to happen. John tells us in verse 11 that Jesus responds to Pilate saying he has authority over Jesus by answering, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above.” So, we see that Jesus is the sinless lamb that gave his life up for us.
We also see that Pilate didn’t want anything to do with Jesus. Pilate is seen as a poor leader. When we look at him in history, he makes several mistakes in overseeing the area and is removed by Caesar and that is the last anything is said of him in history. As I think about that, if we do not stand for Jesus and seek to share his love with those we meet, we I be removed from the book of life and pass away from all eternity. This is what Pilate did to himself. He said he had the authority to act, but he didn’t. He handed over his duty to others.
And this is the other thing the Gospels make clear, it is the Jewish leadership who set in motion all the things leading up to Jesus being crucified. They stirred up the crowd, they had false witnesses and they acted dishonestly for their own benefit. Paul in his letter to the Philippians writes: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself and became obedient to death — even death on a cross! Therefore, God exalted him to the highest place.” (Phil 2:3-9)
This is how God has called his people to live. But the Jews had forgotten this and we are forgetting it today. We are to be about helping others. It is our calling in life and we have Jesus as the example as to what our attitude should be. We see in this passage Jesus willingly giving himself up so that we might be saved from sin and death. This is the message we share to the world.
How does this affect how you live each day? How does this inspire you to help others? What encouragement does this give you to live each day?
Other Questions? Comments?
Blessings and Peace