Monday, October 29, 2012

That Guy?

It was bloody murder, and they would have no less. They unthinkingly brought their own condemnation upon themselves and their children's children in an effort to haste the death of a Man guilty of nothing but perfection.

I worked out of Matthew 27 last week, and God seems to keep offering me things out of that passage, so we'll continue with these words:

"So when the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them, “Which one do you want me to release to you: Jesus Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?” For he knew it was out of self-interest that they had handed Jesus over to him."
So, let's dig a little deeper here and analyze the situation. The Jewish religious leaders had riled up the crowds of Jerusalem to the point of screaming bloody murder over this Jesus person, with much of the crowd probably composed of people who, a few days before, had laid down their coats on the ground to "worship" said Jesus. Pilate, who becomes Jesus' sentencer, realizes that He's dealing with an innocent Man, and figures that when given a choice, the people of Israel would choose Jesus to be freed, instead of Barabbas.


You mean, the murderer Barabbas? The guy who, if released upon the crowd, could cause a violent uprising which would be starkly contrasted against Jesus' non-violent, spiritual, and beneficial revolution of the soul? Barabbas? The one who could hurt your children? That Barabbas?

Or Jesus? The One whom they could not find a charge against. The One who had done nothing but heal the sick, cast out demons, perform miracles, and forgive people of their sins. Oh, and one other thing - He had proclaimed that He was God. And this, my friends, is what got them steaming. Jesus told them that they were wrong and that they were prideful, religious people who served no purpose but to poison the hearts of the people. That Jesus.

And so, the Jews were more concerned about Jesus destroying their pride, than with Barabbas destroying their people.

That, ladies and gentlemen, is what we see today. People will go to greatly unreasonable lengths to get away from Jesus just to salvage their pride. Why? Because you can't have Jesus and have pride at the same time. That's what is called a "mutually exclusive relationship." Jesus opposes the idea of pride because everything that we have begins and ends with Him.

And yet, even as believers, we still hold on to our pride. Oh you know, we're cool with Jesus, but in order to make ourselves look like "cool Christians," we have to dress Him up a little, don't we? We have to put some nice clothes on Him, take away His more controversial messages, and give Him a modern edge. All to save face, right?

And look, I'm not against using cultural tools to spread the Gospel. I'm all for it. But you've got to ask yourself two things:

#1: Are you changing the Jesus of the Bible?
#2: Are you trying to make Jesus look better for Him, or for you?


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