True to Himself
Ask the Holy Spirit to direct your thoughts as you read and meditate on God’s Word today.
Read MARK 14:43-65
 Just as he was speaking, Judas, one of the Twelve, appeared. With him was a crowd armed with swords and clubs, sent from the chief priests, the teachers of the law, and the elders.  Now the betrayer had arranged a signal with them: “The one I kiss is the man; arrest him and lead him away under guard.”  Going at once to Jesus, Judas said, “Rabbi!” and kissed him.  The men seized Jesus and arrested him.  Then one of those standing near drew his sword and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear.  “Am I leading a rebellion,” said Jesus, “that you have come out with swords and clubs to capture me?  Every day I was with you, teaching in the temple courts, and you did not arrest me. But the Scriptures must be fulfilled.”  Then everyone deserted him and fled.  A young man, wearing nothing but a linen garment, was following Jesus. When they seized him,  he fled naked, leaving his garment behind.  They took Jesus to the high priest, and all the chief priests, elders and teachers of the law came together.  Peter followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest. There he sat with the guards and warmed himself at the fire.  The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for evidence against Jesus so that they could put him to death, but they did not find any.  Many testified falsely against him, but their statements did not agree.  Then some stood up and gave this false testimony against him:  “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this man-made temple and in three days will build another, not made by man.'”  Yet even then their testimony did not agree.  Then the high priest stood up before them and asked Jesus, “Are you not going to answer? What is this testimony that these men are bringing against you?”  But Jesus remained silent and gave no answer. Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One?”  “I am,” said Jesus. “And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.”  The high priest tore his clothes. “Why do we need any more witnesses?” he asked.  “You have heard the blasphemy. What do you think?” They all condemned him as worthy of death.  Then some began to spit at him; they blindfolded him, struck him with their fists, and said, “Prophesy!” And the guards took him and beat him. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectOn what grounds did they “convict” Jesus?
The full extent of human self-preservation, self-interest, deceit and violence is seen in all its ugliness in both Jesus’ friends (44-51) and his enemies (48,56,64,65). Whether we count ourselves friends of Jesus or not, the fact remains—we are all guilty.
In contrast, Jesus’ honesty and selflessness stands untainted. Here is the man who stilled a storm, who could defeat his enemies with a word, choosing to submit to what God had said in Scripture (49). Since he knows the Christ must die to save others (see Matt. 20:18,19; Mark 14:24), he does not defend himself (55-61), but he cannot deny his identity (62). By fusing Psalm 110:1 and Daniel 7:13 (62), Jesus is claiming to be the Messiah, greater than David, sharing the majesty and authority of God. The high priest cannot accept Jesus’ claim.
If people take the time to consider Jesus at all, they may accept him as a good man, a moral teacher, or an honored prophet, but not many are prepared to receive him as Son of God and Lord of all. Maybe if we, his followers, lived lives that shouted that he is Lord of all, they might think again!
How can you honor Jesus and explain to others who he is and what he means to you?
Lord Jesus, I pray that You will open to me opportunities and the ability to honor You this week.
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