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Daily Reading: Saturday 30th January

John 19. 12-16 cont.

12 From this Pilate sought to release Him; but the Jews cried out saying: “If you release this man you are not a friend of Caesar. Everyone who makes himself a king speaks against Caesar.”

13 The Pilate hearing these words brought Jesus outside and sat on the judgement seat in a place called the Stone Pavement, which in Hebrew is Gabbatha.

14 Now it was the day of preparation for the Passover, it was about the sixth hour; and he said (says) to the Jews: “Look your king.”

[15] They then cried out: “Take Him away, take Him away; crucify Him”. Pilate said (says) to them: “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered: “We have no king except Caesar.”

16 Therefore, he handed Jesus over to them so that He might be crucified. Then they took Jesus.

We may wonder how Pilate was feeling at this time. It seemed obvious to him that Jesus had not committed any crime against Rome, and therefore, He should not be condemned to be killed by crucifixion. In view of this he was keen to release Jesus.

At the same time he knew that the Jewish leaders could make his life uncomfortable if they made a complaint against him to Rome.

He was caught between wanting to uphold justice and the fear of any Jewish backlash.

This is a position that many of us face at different times in our life. The are those occasions when we know what is the right thing we should do, but the fear of what others may think prevents us from doing the right thing. It may be that there is the fear that to do the right thing may cost us our job, or break some form of friendship.

It is not always easy to stand up for Jesus and His righteousness. Yet His promise is that He will always be with us so that in the power of the Holy Spirit we can rely on Him to guide us into saying and doing the right things.

The word of God tells us:

Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the LORD means safety – Proverbs 29.25 (NLT).

There are those times when fear of others does grip us. It is in those times that we need to turn to God’s word and believe His tremendous promise.

There is a great promise that God has made: The LORD says, “I will rescue those who love Me. I will protect those who trust in My Name – Psalm 91.14 (NLT).

Following Jesus will always bring His blessing, whilst there will also be those times that to follow Him casts over us the fear of man. In those times we need to remind ourselves of His promises to us, and to press on in faith, keeping our eyes firmly fixed on Him.

Jesus will never disappoint us, He will always sustain and protect us.

 

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