Thursday, September 13, 2007

Jesus Before Pilate

28 Then the Jews led Jesus from Caiaphas to the palace of the Roman governor. By now it was early morning, and to avoid ceremonial uncleanness the Jews did not enter the palace; they wanted to be able to eat the Passover. 29 So Pilate came out to them and asked, "What charges are you bringing against this man?"

30 "If he were not a criminal," they replied, "we would not have handed him over to you."

31 Pilate said, "Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law."

"But we have no right to execute anyone," the Jews objected. 32 This happened so that the words Jesus had spoken indicating the kind of death he was going to die would be fulfilled.

33 Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?"

34 "Is that your own idea," Jesus asked, "or did others talk to you about me?"

35 "Am I a Jew?" Pilate replied. "It was your people and your chief priests who handed you over to me. What is it you have done?"

36 Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place."

Though Jesus constantly refers to His kingdom, he states here that it is not of this world. He speaks of a kingdom that we will see after we leave this world. I hear many people talk about how we can bring about Jesus' kingdom here by doing such and such. I doubt Jesus needs our help. I'm sure He is in complete control and things are going exactly as He planned.

37 "You are a king, then!" said Pilate.
Jesus answered, "You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me."

38 "What is truth?" Pilate asked. With this he went out again to the Jews and said, "I find no basis for a charge against him. 39 But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to release 'the king of the Jews'?"

40 They shouted back, "No, not him! Give us Barabbas!" Now Barabbas had taken part in a rebellion.
God wasn't taken by surprise when Adam and Eve sinned in the garden. He didn't have to make up a contingent plan on the spot to try to remedy things. It was all planned out from the beginning. His original plan was to create man, whom He knew would fall, so He could redeem them with His son, Jesus, for His glory. Jesus knew that instead of being cast down and stoned, as was the custom of the Jews, He would be lifted up, upon a cross, the way the Romans executed people, so he could willingly lay down His life for our sins. At no time, was this out of God's control. His plan was from the beginning to sacrifice His son for you and for me. But, we do have the free will to accept or reject this grace. That free will is God's plan as well.

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