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Daily Reading: 20th January 2016

John 19.1-3 cont.

1 Therefore, Pilate then took Jesus and flogged Him,

2 And the soldiers weaved a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and threw a purple cloak around Him.

3 And they came and said to Him: “Hail, King of the Jews”. And they slapped Him on the face.

Cont. from yesterday

3 The soldiers mocked Jesus with the words: “Hail, King of the Jews”.

Words can be very beneficial or extremely cruel. They can bring life and health, but they can also bring cursing and destruction. The soldiers said these words in derision. Their objective was to ridicule Jesus. They wanted to belittle Him. The words of their mouths were false words, because they did not believe anything they were saying.

They may have despised the Jews, and therefore, they would despise anyone who was seen to be their king. As far as the Romans were concerned the Jews were a subjugated people. Therefore, anyone who claimed to be their king was deluded. So they contemptuously cried out: “Hail, King of the Jews”.

Contempt and ridicule may greet anyone who follows Jesus. This may be the cross we have to bear for Him. Many people face derision in their place of work, others face it within their own families. Jesus said that those who follow Him would find that it may mean having to endure the hatred of family members.

The words of Jesus do not make for comfortable reading:

51 “Do you think that I came to give peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division.

52 For from now on there will be five in a house who have been against each other, three against two and two against three

53 They will be against one another, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law and her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law” – Luke 12.51-53.

It is often said that we have an enemy, by this people mostly are talking about the devil. It is true that he is our enemy, and that he prowls around looking for someone to devour. However, it is clear from what Jesus said that a lot of the time our enemies are within our own families. They sometimes openly oppose us, they may ridicule and mock us, and they may plot evil against us. It is all because we prefer and choose to honour Jesus.

He will never let us down, nor will He abandon us.

 

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