Summary: A powerful series based on the book "Grace: More than we Deserve, Greater Than We Imagine." The series will look at the many different aspects of Grace. Part 4

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SLIDEGrace Happens - 4

December 2, 2012

His jail cell was small, it contained only one small window. The view from his window took his breath away. He only had to look one time for the air to get sucked out of his gut. He turned his back to the window and slid down the wall and sat in the dirt. He didn’t say anything. There was nobody to talk to, nobody to brag to, there was nothing to say. He was falling apart. For a man who wasn’t afraid of anything . . . he was now scared spitless. The image in his mind was causing his hands to shake uncontrollably.

What caused his fear? What did he see? He saw the hill. He saw the place of the crosses – there were 3 crosses and one would have his name on it.

About a 1/4 mile away there was a group of men. With every passing second, this group was growing in size. They weren’t happy and were voicing their disapproval to anyone who would listen. Many of them had been up most of the night; they were tired and angry. They were looking at Roman governor in charge

SLIDE13 Pilate called together the chief priests, the rulers and the people, 14 and said to them, “You brought me this Man as one who was inciting the people to rebellion.

SLIDEI have examined Him in your presence and have found no basis for your charges against Him.

SLIDE 15 Neither has Herod, for he sent Him back to us; as you can see, He has done nothing to deserve death. 16 Therefore, I will punish Him and then release Him.”

SLIDE18 With one voice they cried out, “Away with this Man! Release Barabbas to us!” 19 (Barabbas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder.)

That last sentence explains the life of Barabbas – a rebel and a murderer. He was a trouble maker and a law breaker. What was Pilate supposed to do? You don’t extend grace and freedom to a murderer. But the crowd thinks so. Instead, the crowd wants the innocent man to be killed. But Pilate responds, ‘He’s not guilty. He has done nothing to deserve death.’

Maybe Jesus is guilty of stirring up the crowd, of misapplication of scripture, or just giving a bad look to the wrong person. Pilate doesn’t know, and frankly doesn’t care. He doesn’t know who Jesus is. Maybe Jesus deserves a lecture and a warning. Maybe He deserves a beating; but He doesn’t deserve death. Pilate had nothing to gain by releasing Jesus. He even made 4 attempts to release Jesus. He told the Jews ~

They shouldSLIDE settle the matter (John 18:28-31)

He referred the issue to Herod (Luke 23:4-7)

He wanted the Jews to accept Jesus as the prisoner released at Passover (Mark 15:6-10)

He offered a compromise - scourging instead of the cross (Luke 23:22)

SLIDEEven in Matthew 27, Pilate’s wife gets into the discussion and tells Pilate “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.” Pilate wants to release Jesus, saying, “I find no fault in Him at all” - John 18:38.

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