Home » Devo Prayers » John » John 18:8 – 19:16

John 18:8 – 19:16

Father, every bit of the person You’d have me to be, I long to be.

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Near the end of Your life on earth, Lord Jesus, Your path intersected with a man known as Pilate.  If the way he handled You and the Jewish leaders is any indication of His leadership style in other matters, he seems to be quite the crowd pleaser, who doesn’t like to make the final decision on his own.  In this passage, four different ways that he attempts to deal with You are revealed:

(1)  YOU do it (18:31)  “Take Him yourselves and judge Him by your own law.” — Here Pilate is handed a decision he doesn’t want to mess with and he tries to hand it off to others.

(2)  Let’s NOT do it (18:39)  “But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover.  Do you want me to release the king of the Jews?” — He tries to get out of the whole scenario by simply offering to release You, Jesus, appealing to a custom between the Romans and Jews at Passover.

(3)  Will THIS do it? (19:1-3)  “Then Pilate took Jesus and had Him flogged …” — Hoping to pacify the Jews with another idea, he just let the soldiers beat up on You for a while and mock You.

(4)  How do YOU want to do it?  (19:15) “… ‘Shall I crucify your king?’ Pilate answered.”  —  Still not wanting to be the one to finalize Your fate, Jesus, he seeks the opinion of the people facing You, pressuring him.  Verse 16 shows that he gave in to their demands.

At the very start, Pilate could’ve said “no.”  He had the authority to do so.  Instead of making a decision that was obviously contrary to the crowd, he squirmed, avoided the decision, and let the throng make it for him.  (Granted, the result of his actions had always been part of Your plan and had he released You, someone else wouldn’t have put You on the cross–just because that’s why You came.)

Lord, when I’m faced with decisions to make between wrong and right, strengthen me to stand in Your power and make the decision in line with Your will.  Keep me from shifting blame, attempting to escape, offering a peace-offering, or letting others choose for me.

Infuse my mind with Your Word as You transform my heart to make me just like Jesus.  Amen.

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