Kellie, Isabella, Isaiah, and Pastor Chris

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Daily Word April 19, 2011 - "The Conversation - Part I"

John 19:1-11
19:1 Then Pilate took Jesus and flogged him. And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head and arrayed him in a purple robe. They came up to him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and struck him with their hands. Pilate went out again and said to them, “See, I am bringing him out to you that you may know that I find no guilt in him.” So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, “Behold the man!” When the chief priests and the officers saw him, they cried out, “Crucify him, crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Take him yourselves and crucify him, for I find no guilt in him.” The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to that law he ought to die because he has made himself the Son of God.” When Pilate heard this statement, he was even more afraid. He entered his headquarters again and said to Jesus, “Where are you from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. 10 So Pilate said to him, “You will not speak to me? Do you not know that I have authority to release you and authority to crucify you?” 11 Jesus answered him, “You would have no authority over me at all unless it had been given you from above. Therefore he who delivered me over to you has the greater sin.”
John is an interesting gospel writer, because he often shows us the heart of individuals through the conversations that take place.  He seems to take us into the inner circle and allow us to hear things that perhaps other gospel writers left out.  With that said, for the first part of this week, as we turn our attention to the work of Christ on the cross, I want us to see a conversation that took place between Pilate and Jesus.  In these first verses, we see that Jesus has been given over to Pilate.  Pilate receives him and he tells the crowd, 'do with him what you are wanting to do (crucify), but the Jews respond that only Pilate has the authority to crucify him.  Their reason for wanting this done, "he has made himself the Son of God."  What they were saying was 'He thinks he is God.'  Now Pilate is not the nicest of guys, in fact, he was known for his cruelty.  And yet, John shows us that Pilate saw something in this man that puzzled him.  I wonder if he did not have a searching heart, if he did not see more to life than what he was experiencing.  He says to him, "Where are you from?"  He was wondering, 'are you really the Son of God?'  But Jesus goes silent, perhaps because he knows Pilate is not ready to receive the truth, perhaps because he has resigned to the truth of what is about to happen.  This silence was deafening to Pilate and he says, 'Don't you know who I am?  I have the authority to release or crucify you.'  But here was Jesus answer to Pilate's question.  He tells him that the only authority he has, is given from heaven.  This was implicitly saying, 'I am indeed the Son of God, and what is about to happen, I am in control.'  In this moment, he didn't seem to be in control, and yet, he was.  Indeed, this man was the sovereign, eternal Word of God in flesh.  How will Pilate respond?  When faced with the truth of who Christ is, how do you respond?

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