On: August 18, 2015 | By: SWLadmin | Under: Blog | Comments: Comments are off
Pilate called together the chief priests, the rulers and the people, and said to them, “You brought me this man as one who was inciting the people to rebellion. I have examined him in your presence and have found no basis for your charges against him. Neither has Herod, for he sent him back to us; as you can see, he has done nothing to deserve death. Therefore, I will punish him and then release him.” Luke 23:13-16
There is a crazy disconnect in this speech that sums up human fallenness. Neither Pilate nor Herod, in farcical interviews peppered with verbal and physical abuse, could find fault in Jesus. Yet Pilate, in the same breathe before releasing Jesus, says he will punish Him. What for? Why?
I think we know the answer, and it’s ugly. It was to protect his own standing and reputation. He chose convenience over truth, expediency over integrity, personal gain over honesty.
Sounds horribly like contemporary failings in the banking world (amongst others). But, as yesterday, it comes down to the temptation all of us face when confronted with choices: either affecting our reputation or personal benefit.
How can we avoid falling into such a trap? We are all slaves to something. We must choose who or what we will be a slave to, and where we find our value as human beings. If we submit our lives to Jesus, we will hold our reputation lightly and measure our worth by our relationship to Him.
Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey – whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness? Romans 6:16
I dare say many will scoff at such an apparently proscriptive approach to life, confident in their own judgement and protective of their own independence. But Jesus ushered in an upside down Kingdom, where the last end up first, the meek inherit the Earth and we find our life by losing it. The proud will cry “losers!”. The confused will call out “foul, ref!”
For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it. What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self? Luke 9:24-25
We must make our decision. We can decide not to give Jesus a proper hearing. We can see what He’s all about, but ignore what we find and go our own way regardless. Or we can assess the evidence of His life, death and resurrection and follow where it leads. Our call.
Lord, I come to You let my heart be changed, renewed, flowing from the grace that I’ve found in You. Amen