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Pilate granted the crowd’s wish and ordered Jesus’ crucifixion


Pilate looked out over the crowd. So, it had come to this. He thought. People who usually had no use for him were now coming to him, looking for him to pass judgment on one of their own. It was exhilarating to have such power. With one word he could bestow life or death.

At every Passover Festival, the Roman governor was in the habit of setting free any one prisoner the crowd asked for.  At that time, there was a well-known prisoner named Jesus Barabbas. So, when the crowd gathered, Pilate asked them, “Who do you want me to set free for you? Jesus Barabbas or Jesus called the Messiah?” He knew jolly well that the Jewish authorities had handed Jesus over to him because they were jealous.

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While Pilate was sitting in the judgment hall, his wife sent him a message: “Have nothing to do with that innocent man, because in a dream last night I suffered much on account of him.”

The chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask Pilate to set Barabbas free and have Jesus put to death. But Pilate asked the crowd, “Which one of these two do you want me to set free for you?”

“Barabbas!” they answered.

“What, then, shall I do with Jesus called the Messiah?” Pilate asked them.

Crucify him!” they all answered.

But Pilate asked, “What crime has he committed?”

Then they started shouting at the top of their voices: “Crucify him!”

When Pilate saw that it was no use to go on but that a riot might break out, he took some water, washed his hands in front of the crowd, and said, “I am not responsible for the death of this man! This is your doing!”

The whole crowd answered, “Let the responsibility for his death fall on us and on our children!”

Pilate then set Barabbas free for them, and after he had Jesus whipped, he handed him over to be crucified (Matthew 27:15-26).

 

Greater love hath no man than the love of Jesus,


Jesus Christ Crucifix

Image via Wikipedia

There is no greater demonstration of devotion, no greater sacrifice of love, than to lay down your life for another. John 15:13 says, “Greater love hath no one than this, that a man Jesus) lay down his life for his friends.” (KJV) The Christian faith is built upon this kind of love. Jesus gave his life for us: “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8 KJV).

God gave man eternal life but our fore-parents forfeited their responsibilities. Their punishment, separation from God and eternal damnation. We inherited death and  destruction even before we were born, but God, through His loving kindness and His tender mercies gave us another chance, and pulled us back from the brink. John 3:16 says, “For Go so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life”

The death of Jesus Christ on Calvary‘s has bridge the gap between us and God. Since there is no more gap between us and God, we have the privilege to renew our relationship with Him, so that we can experience lasting joy and peace. 1 Peter 1:8-9 says, “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” (NIV)

When we experience God’s love and forgiveness, Christ becomes the center of our joy. It doesn’t seem possible, but even in the midst of great trials, the joy of the Lord bubbles deep within us and his peace settles over us: “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7 NIV)

But none of this would have been possible if were not for God’s unfailing love. He sent His only Son to take my place on Calvary. I am fully aware that: “It should have been me who was crucified, It should have been me who bled and died but Jesus took all for me and you.