Today’s Bible Reading:
The High Priest Questions Jesus
19Inside, the high priest began asking Jesus about his followers and what he had been teaching them. 20Jesus replied, “Everyone knows what I teach. I have preached regularly in the synagogues and the Temple, where the people gather. I have not spoken in secret. 21Why are you asking me this question? Ask those who heard me. They know what I said.”
22Then one of the Temple guards standing nearby slapped Jesus across the face. “Is that the way to answer the high priest?” he demanded.
23Jesus replied, “If I said anything wrong, you must prove it. But if I’m speaking the truth, why are you beating me?”
24Then Annas bound Jesus and sent him to Caiaphas, the high priest.
Peter’s Second and Third Denials
25Meanwhile, as Simon Peter was standing by the fire warming himself, they asked him again, “You’re not one of his disciples, are you?”
He denied it, saying, “No, I am not.”
26But one of the household slaves of the high priest, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, “Didn’t I see you out there in the olive grove with Jesus?” 27Again Peter denied it. And immediately a rooster crowed.
Jesus’ Trial before Pilate
28Jesus’ trial before Caiaphas ended in the early hours of the morning. Then he was taken to the headquarters of the Roman governor. His accusers didn’t go inside because it would defile them, and they wouldn’t be allowed to celebrate the Passover. 29So Pilate, the governor, went out to them and asked, “What is your charge against this man?”
30“We wouldn’t have handed him over to you if he weren’t a criminal!” they retorted.
31“Then take him away and judge him by your own law,” Pilate told them.
“Only the Romans are permitted to execute someone,” the Jewish leaders replied. 32(This fulfilled Jesus’ prediction about the way he would die.)
33Then Pilate went back into his headquarters and called for Jesus to be brought to him. “Are you the king of the Jews?” he asked him.
34Jesus replied, “Is this your own question, or did others tell you about me?”
35“Am I a Jew?” Pilate retorted. “Your own people and their leading priests brought you to me for trial. Why? What have you done?”
36Jesus answered, “My Kingdom is not an earthly kingdom. If it were, my followers would fight to keep me from being handed over to the Jewish leaders. But my Kingdom is not of this world.”
37Pilate said, “So you are a king?”
Jesus responded, “You say I am a king. Actually, I was born and came into the world to testify to the truth. All who love the truth recognize that what I say is true.”
38“What is truth?” Pilate asked. Then he went out again to the people and told them, “He is not guilty of any crime. 39But you have a custom of asking me to release one prisoner each year at Passover. Would you like me to release this ‘King of the Jews’?”
40But they shouted back, “No! Not this man. We want Barabbas!” (Barabbas was a revolutionary.)
Verse of the Day:
Today’s reading tells us that Jesus was born and came into this world to testify to truth. We also know from scripture that Jesus is the light of the world. What happens in the light? Truth is exposed.
The opposite of light is darkness. The darkness is where we hide when we want to be away from the truth. And the enemy resides in the darkness. The enemy is always present, right? But Jesus has defeated the enemy!! Amen!
I don’t want to walk in darkness and I don’t want to give the enemy one bit of credit for truth. I want my words, my actions, my life, my everything to reflect the TRUTH of Jesus Christ!
We each have a choice today: walk in the light of the truth OR hide in the darkness.
John 14:6 says: Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
We simply don’t have a way to God without accepting Jesus as the truth.
These words that Jesus used in defending himself before Pilate really stood out to me today. Even in the midst of a trial, He is still teaching us and showing us the way.
Yet, they still wanted Him crucified.