Sunday, July 04, 2010

Who Crucified Jesus?

Luke 23

4Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, "I find no basis for a charge against this man."

13Pilate called together the chief priests, the rulers and the people, 14and 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. 15Neither has Herod, for he sent him back to us; as you can see, he has done nothing to deserve death. 16Therefore, I will punish him and then release him."

18With one voice they cried out, "Away with this man! Release Barabbas to us!" 19(Barabbas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder.)

20Wanting to release Jesus, Pilate appealed to them again. 21But they kept shouting, "Crucify him! Crucify him!"

22For the third time he spoke to them: "Why? What crime has this man committed? I have found in him no grounds for the death penalty. Therefore I will have him punished and then release him."

23But with loud shouts they insistently demanded that he be crucified, and their shouts prevailed.24So Pilate decided to grant their demand. 25He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, the one they asked for, and surrendered Jesus to their will.

It appears to me that Pilate was unwilling to crucify Jesus and that the crowd demanded His death. This does not release him from his responsibility for the death of Jesus, He gave the order, so was it him who crucified Jesus?

39One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: "Aren't you the Christ? Save yourself and us!"

40But the other criminal rebuked him. "Don't you fear God," he said, "since you are under the same sentence? 41We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong."

Jesus had done nothing worthy of the punishment He was now receiving, and He was more than capable of ending the suffering He was now enduring!

There is a painting by Rembrandt "The Three Crosses", in which it shows the cross of Jesus and the crowd below. The crowd in the painting show various facial expressions and actions of their involvement in the crucifixion of the Son of God. Some show dismay, some hurling insults, some smiling. I was thinking which group would I have belonged too? I know the sins I have committed helped nail Jesus to the cross. Like the thief I see that He did nothing to deserve the death He bore. It is one thing to say that Jesus died for the sins of the world, its another to say He died for MY sins, to say that I am guilty of murder, to say that I play a part in His death is a shocking thought!

So who crucified Jesus? The answer is simple...... I did!

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