Tuesday, October 19, 2021
18-20 At that, the crowd went wild: “Kill him! Give us Barabbas!” (Barabbas had been thrown in prison for starting a riot in the city and for murder.) However, Pilate still wanted to let Jesus go and so spoke out again.
21 But they kept shouting back, “Crucify! Crucify him!”
22 He tried a third time. “But for what crime? I’ve found nothing in him deserving death. So I’m going to warn him to watch his step and let him go.”
-Luke 23:17-22 The Message
Verse 17: Now, he was obligated to release to them at the feast one prisoner.
Verse 18: But they cried out all together, saying, “Away with this man, and release to us Barabbas!”
Verse 19: (He had been thrown into prison for a revolt that took place in the city and for murder.)
Verses 18-19 studies: Barabbas has always been a part of the rebellion against the Roman government (Mark 15:7). He was a hero among some Jews, although he was a political agitator. Isn’t it ironic Barabbas was released on the same crime Jesus was accused of (23:14)? So, who is Barabbas? Jewish names had names that would identify them with their fathers. Let’s use Simon Peter, for example; he is called Simon Barjona (Matthew 16:17), meaning the son of Jonah. Barabbas was never identified by his given name, as his name doesn’t help either – bar-abbas means “son of Abba” or son of daddy. He could have been anybody’s son, which is the point. Barabbas is a son of an unnamed father that committed a crime. Because Jesus died in his place, he was set free. We are sinners as well and criminals who have broken God’s holy law. We deserve to die just like Barabbas, but Jesus died in our place for our sins, and we are set free. We don’t have to be essential people to accept our freedom in Christ. Thanks to Jesus, we all have been taken and adopted as sons and daughters and given the right to call him Abba – “daddy” (Galatians 4:4-6).
Verse 20: But Pilate, wanting to release Jesus, addressed them again,
Verse 21: but they kept on crying out, saying, “Crucify, crucify Him!”
Verse 22: And he said to them a third time, “Why, what has this man done wrong? I have found in His case no grounds for a sentence of death; therefore I will punish Him and release Him.”
Verse 22 study: When Pilate said he can have Jesus punished, it is referred to as having him killed. The usual procedure was to bare the upper half of the victim’s body and his hands to the pillar before whipping him with a three-prong whip. The lashes depended on the severity of the crime, which can be up to 40 under Jewish law. Matthew and Mark recorded other horrors Jesus endured. Some of them are slapped, punched by fists, and mocked. Next, a crown of thorns was placed on his head. Finally, he was beaten with a stick and stripped before being hung on the cross.
Father, there is a lot of criminal things going on in the world. Down to politicians, down to us. In the Bible, the Politicians are talked about a lot as being corrupt. Followers who follow Jesus, we have broken holy laws. Let us pray on this, meditate on it, and get back on track with correcting our broken ways. In Jesus’ name. Amen!