John 19: 1-16a

Although we are probably all familiar with this passage, here is a brief summary. It is just before Jesus crucifixion, and Jesus is whipped, slapped in the face by the soldiers and presented by Pilate to the Jewish crowd wearing a purple robe and crown of thorns. The crowd call out for Jesus to be crucified because he broke their law by claiming to be the Son of God. Jesus was largely silent during this ordeal, except to remind Pilate that he only had authority over Jesus because God had given it to him. Pilate tried to pardon Jesus but became scared when the Jews indicated that to do this would be defying Caesar. Pilate gave in to the crowd and handed Jesus over to be crucified.

 

Two things stood out for me when reading this passage again? First, how humiliating this would have been for Jesus. He claimed to be a king so they dressed him like a king – with a crown (but of thorns) and in purple (sign of royalty). But Jesus’ response to this was to allow it to happen and be silent – except to remind Pilate of who was really in charge, God the Father.

 

Second, how Jesus must have felt to see the very people he came to save first, the Jews, declare that they have no king except Caesar and cry out for him to be killed because he claimed to be what he really was – the Son of God. Personally, I am reminded of the magnitude of Jesus sacrifice for me, his servant heart, and his willingness to endure such pain and humiliation to save me.

 

Thank you Jesus for your sacrifice. May this reminder encourage us today to honour and glorify you in all we do to show, in some small way, our gratitude for all you have done for us.

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