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Jesus is judged by pilate
And as soon as it was morning, the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council. And they bound Jesus and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate. And Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” And he answered him, “You have said so.” And the chief priests accused him of many things. And Pilate again asked him, “Have you no answer to make? See how many charges they bring against you.” But Jesus made no further answer, so that Pilate was amazed.
Now at the feast he used to release for them one prisoner for whom they asked. And among the rebels in prison, who had committed murder in the insurrection, there was a man called Barabbas. And the crowd came up and began to ask Pilate to do as he usually did for them. And he answered them, saying, “Do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?”For he perceived that it was out of envy that the chief priests had delivered him up. But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have him release for them Barabbas instead. And Pilate again said to them, “Then what shall I do with the man you call the King of the Jews?” And they cried out again, “Crucify him.” And Pilate said to them, “Why? What evil has he done?” But they shouted all the more, “Crucify him.” So Pilate, wishing to satisfy the crowd, released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, he delivered him to be crucified.
The Sanhedrin pronounced Jesus guilty of blasphemy and took him to Pilate, the Roman Governor of Judea, with the request to sentence Jesus to death.
Jesus was brought before Pilate's judgement seat. Pilate declares to the Jews, “Behold your King!” but they cried out, “We have no King but Caesar.”
This moment harkens back to 1 Samuel 8 when the elders of Israel demanded a king saying,
Now appoint for us a king to judge us like all the nations.'” Samuel was upset, but God told him, “Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them.
As you read this passage, turn your attention first to Jesus standing bloodied, beaten, and weary before the judgement seat. Placing yourself in the story, how do you envision Jesus? What’s his demeanor? What tone of voice does he use when speaking?
Judgement by Lynn Staggs
I was deeply moved by this station, especially when I was putting the chair together. A question arose from within, “What chair do I sit in when I’m judging others?” When I am reading the news or following the people that I agree with, where am I sitting when I judge others or decide that they deserve less than I want for myself or my children or my grandchildren?
Materials: Assorted papers and adhesives, acrylic paint sponged over plastic produce packaging.
What do you notice about the art?
What thoughts or feelings does it stir?
What chair do you sit in when you judge others as less than the person most precious to you?
What does this reveal to you about the passion of Jesus?
Imagine Pilate looking with amaze at Jesus. What amazes him? What amazes you about Jesus?
Have you ever felt rejected or judged unjustly? What did that feel like? Is there a wound that needs healing? Can you bring it before Jesus now, knowing that he has taken on himself all of our griefs and wounds?
Consider the people in your world. Is there anyone that you judge? Anyone you feel contempt toward? Is there anyone in your life that you give into their demands even though it goes against your conscience?
What do the character and actions of Jesus invite you to change in your life?
Almighty God, you have not dealt with us according to our sins, nor rewarded us according to our iniquities; grant that we, who for our evil deeds deserve to be punished, by the might of your grace may mercifully be relieved; through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(Book of Common Prayer)