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Daily Reading: 26th January 2016

John 19.9-11

9 And he entered into the praetorium again and said (says) to Jesus: “Where do you come from?” But Jesus did not give him an answer.

10 Pilate said (says) to Him: “Are You not speaking to me? Don’t You know that I have authority to release You and I have authority to crucify You?”

11 Jesus replied: “You would have no authority over Me except it was given to you from above, because of this the one delivering Me to you has a greater sin.”

There is the saying that it is not good to do your dirty washing in public. This expresses the thought that there are some things that are best sorted out in private, away from the gaze of others.

Pilate had taken Jesus out of the praetorium (palace) and presented Him to the crowds as an innocent man who was not worthy of death. However, his attempts to persuade the crowds to have Jesus released had backfired, leaving him with a difficult situation to deal with.

As we have seen he was in the grip of fear. It was the fear that Jesus may in some way be divine, and he would not want to incur the wrath of any divine being. It was also the fear of the Jews who could cause civil unrest.

Perhaps wisely Pilate retreats into the praetorium, where he can continue to question Jesus in private.

1 There are those times when we also need to know when it is wise to retreat to a place of privacy. It is not always wise to let everyone know what is happening in our life.

God’s word tells us:

Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results – James 5.16 (NLT). Notice that we are told to confess our sins to each other, not to everyone. In particular it is right to share things with those who are able to pray in faith.

2 Pilate had a fear that Jesus might be more than an ordinary human being. He came from a culture of many ‘gods’. He was afraid that He might be in the presence of one.

There is a sense in which we should stand in a certain amount of fear of Jesus. We should have a fear of disobeying Him; we should have a fear of offending Him through our words and actions; and we should have a fear of neglecting Him and His word.

It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God – Hebrews 10.31 (STV).

cont. tomorrow.

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