Summary: A sermon that looks at the three groups of people who were against Jesus at His trial.
Introduction: Probably most of the adults here have at one time or another been called up for jury duty, and many here have probably served on a jury once or several times. I found it quite interesting yet very sobering the one time so far that I served on a jury. When you listen to testimony you trust that you are being given truthful statements about the case. You also know that the courtroom situation is a sober one, with dignity and decorum reigning. Of course, this is not always what happens but it is every judge’s responsibility and desire to see such taking place in his/her courtroom.
We have been studying probably the most famous trial in all the world and for all time - the trial of Jesus Christ. It is the type of trial that I’m certain that most judges would not have liked to much. It is a trial where the people want to “railroad” the person they want judged and executed through the system and get it over with. It is a trial where the truth does not seem to matter too much. It is a trial where the principle people, other than the convicted, are butting heads all the way through. It is a trial where one side wants to do the right thing up to a point, while the other side doesn’t care if the law is followed or not.
The convicted, Jesus, has seen Caiphas, Annas, Pilate, Herod, and now back to Pilate. Pilate has been trying to determine if there is any truth to the accusation that has been leveled against the man before him - that he claims to be the king of the Jews. He has come to the conclusion that this accusation “holds no water”, and attempts to get this man’s accusers to reconsider when given the option of having this man released for a thief and killer released. They chose the thief and killer. Pilate then resorted to scourging the man and humiliating the man so that his accusers will lose interest and agree that he has been punished enough. As we studied last week, Pilate brought Jesus out in this humbled and pitiful state and told the people “Behold the man.” This is where we will pick up the trial this AM.
I. The Infuriated Religious--19:6a
Illustration: We have probably all seen programs on TV about sharks. One of the traits of sharks is to pack up when they sense blood in the water. It leads to a feeding frenzy and can be a dangerous time to get into the water, though some brave souls do so. The fresh blood in the water attracts them, and excites them. They are not looking to show comfort for their intended victims.
This characteristic of sharks reminds me of the way the chief priests and officers responded to Pilate’s request to “Behold the man.” I see their response in two ways:
A. No humbleness
1. As I stated just a little while ago, Pilate, I believe, hoped that these people would turn from their illegal request once they saw Jesus as having been tortured and humbled by the Roman soldiers. He hoped that this action on the part of the Romans against one of their own would satisfy them and this would all blow over. Of course it didn’t.
2. Like sharks, as soon as they saw Jesus in his blooded state they turn against Him once again.
3. They appear to be “past feeling” in their ability to show any humbleness or compassion at this point. They want blood and they mean to get blood.
4. The apostle Paul uses these two words, “past feeling” in Eph. 4:17-19 in speaking of those who are outside of Jesus Christ. Listen to what it says, “This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.”
5. When a person is past feeling they have come to the place where they have consciously closed their heart and mind to show any concern or care for another or even for their own life of sin. They have hardened their heart to such a place that nothing affects them any longer.
6. This is certainly a sad condition to be in, but it takes place as a result of the conscious decisions of the person in such a state. They have time after time reject that which could have spared them falling into this state but they didn’t care.