Matthew 27

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“Whom do you want me to release to you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?” (Matthew 27:17 NKJV).

February 12, 2017

The Roman governor, Pontius Pilate, had a custom of releasing a prisoner during the feast of Passover. He gave the unruly crowd a choice between Barabbas and Jesus, thinking they would choose Jesus and let him off the hook. But at the urging of the chief priests and elders, they chose Barabbas instead. Ironically, “Barabbas” is from the Aramaic, which means, “son of a father” (“bar” = “son of” + “abba” = “father”). So, the guilty “son of a father,” representing fallen humanity was released. And the innocent and holy, Son of the Father, was condemned in his place.

‘So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood; see to it yourselves.”’ (Matthew 27:24 ESV)

February 12, 2016

Pontius Pilate, the Roman Governor over Judea, made a show of washing his hands and declaring himself “innocent” of Christ’s blood. Yet in reality, he was fully responsible as the ranking representative of Roman law. How strange that the one who condemned the Innocent One to death would declare himself innocent instead. Many of us are like Pilate in our attempts to wash our hands of Christ’s blood. We question God’s goodness and lift ourselves up as innocent. However, the truth is this: We are guilty. It was our sin that sent Jesus to the cross. And when we finally admit our guilt and accept His payment, it is that alone which actually washes away our sin.

“But when he was accused by the chief priests and elders, he gave no answer” (Matthew 27:12 ESV)

February 11, 2016

Fulfilling the Messianic prophecy of Isaiah, Jesus was silent before his accusers: “He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth” (Isa.53:7). Every time I read the story of Christ’s trial and crucifixion, my mind screams against the injustice. I hear myself saying, “Speak up Lord. Don’t let them falsely accuse you.” But then I remember. He did this for me. He stood before a human judge and was condemned to death. Jesus, the Son of God, went silently “like a lamb that is led to the slaughter” for me.
The One who spoke the universe into existence was silent. He was condemned in our place, so that there is now “no condemnation” for those who are in Him (Rom.8:1).

“Jesus called out with a loud voice, ‘Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?’ which means ‘My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?’” (Matthew 27:46 NLT)

February 13, 2014

Between the four gospels, seven last sayings of Jesus are recorded. This is saying number six. Here, Jesus repeats David’s haunting words from Psalm 22:1. For the first time in eternity, fellowship between the Father and the Son is interrupted. Jesus who knew no sin, became our sin. Jesus who is the Life, took our death. Jesus the eternal Son of God, took our separation. So, we might receive His righteousness, life and sonship by believing in Him. What was Jesus’ seventh saying? “It is finished” (John 19:30). Jesus accomplished His mission for our salvation.