Nov30MonNovember 30, 2020
Isaiah 53:6 All of us have strayed away like sheep. We have left God's paths to follow our own. Yet the LORD laid on him the guilt and sins of us all. 7 He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led as a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth. 8 From prison and trial they led him away to his death. But who among the people realized that he was dying for their sins -- that he was suffering their punishment?(NLT)
Good morning Redeemed of God,
No beating around the bush today. This portion is not about us...really. The spotlight is on the Son of God standing trial before all of humanity, as an innocent man. He does not answer to any charges - the only times He opens his mouth is in affirmation of His true identity. In Luke 22:54-71, Jesus stands trial before the Jewish authorities, being brought before two high priests, with all the religious leaders present. In verses 66-71, Jesus is before the Sanhedrin, the ruling council. In these verses, 3 Messianic titles come out: Christ, Son of Man, and Son of God. Jesus does not deny that He is all three! For this, they decide He is guilty! But, Jesus has committed no crime, nor has He really admitted His identity; He just did not deny it, essentially agreeing to the titles. But this was enough for the Jewish leaders to now bring Jesus to the Roman authorities for trial.
Chapter 23 begins at Pilate's house. Notice that it is a "multitude" of Jewish leaders trying to convince the Roman leaders that Jesus is guilty. Here are the 3 charges: subverting the Jewish nation, opposing payment of taxes to Caesar (untrue see Luke 20:20-26), and claiming to be Christ a King. The last charge would have raised concerns to Pilate, because it would have implied a rebellion, for there was only one king- Caesar. When Pilate asks Jesus if He is the "King of the Jews", Jesus admits that He is. Here is Pilate's conclusion: "I find no fault in this man" - INNOCENT! Four times, Pilate will declare Jesus Innocent (23:4, 14, 15, 22). "Jesus has done nothing to deserve death"!!!
Jesus is taken to Herod's place for interrogation. He did not open His mouth (vs.9), even while being vehemently accused by the Jewish religious leaders. Herod and his soldiers mocked Jesus, dressed Him in a dazzling white robe and sent Him back to Pilate for sentencing.
The innocent Son of God, is now paraded before His accusers - notice the repetition of "chief priest" (8 times in chapters 22 &23). His primary accusers are His own people (John 1:11). During the Passover feast, it was customary to release a prisoner. So Pilate is sure they will choose to release Jesus - an innocent man. Yet the crowd wants Barabbas released, one guilty of murder and rebellion! Barabbas means "son of a father". Jesus is the Son of God - Son of the Father. Verse 18 is the crescendo of the whole scene, All the people (all of humanity represented) cry out in one voice, "Kill Jesus, release Barabbas"! Again in verse 23!!! Pilate tries to persuade the people of Jesus' innocence, but the people prevail. The guilty one is freed and the Innocent One is sentenced to die! ALL People are responsible for His death! Jesus was guilty of no crime, yet was sentenced by those guilty of every crime. "God made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf"!
Friends, take time to read the Gospel accounts of the trial of our Savior. Realize that He stood before His accusers, so that you and I don't have to stand before our Accuser - God Himself. He was condemned so we don't have to be! There is no condemnation for those in Christ, because He took our place, and was condemned for our sins. This is the Gospel good news! He pays the penalty for our sins, so we can live in freedom! The least we can do is worship Him, and give our lives to Him in service. If one does not receive His substitutionary atoning work, then that individual will stand before a Holy God to receive the just penalty for his or her own sins. Receive the the free gift of forgiveness, and be declared INNOCENT, because the righteous work of Jesus has been applied to you.
2 Corinthians 5:21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
Have a blessed week!