Summary: Good Friday. A set of brief reflections on the reading for the service of the Passion of Our Lord.
Betrayal and Arrest of Jesus John 18:1-11
1. Why betrayal? Couldn’t the soldiers have just come for Jesus? So why did Judas have to betray him? Betrayal is the heart of sin. Adam and Eve betrayed God in the garden. Now, Jesus is suffering betrayal that He might restore us. Who have we betrayed?
Sanhedrin Trial and Peter’s Denial John 18:12-27
2. The scene moves back and forth. From the High Priest’s questioning Jesus, to Peter being questioned in the courtyard. From those who claimed to know God, but did not to one who knewHim, but claimed not to. Is there much difference between the two? Where have we found ourselves standing?
Jesus before Pilate John 18:28-40
3. The Pharisees would not go inside, so that they would not become ritually unclean. They do not answer Pilate’s question, what has Jesus done? They simply assert that because they say he is evil, that he is. When Pilate says deal with him yourselves, they cite Roman law, a law they hate and despise, It is not lawful for us to kill. Yet this had not stopped them from stoning others to death. They were seeking their own ends, using rules and regulations to get what they wanted. Pilate asks, “What is truth?” Do we seek truth and justice? Or are we concerned about being religious, about what we want, about appearances and what people may think?
Jesus prepared for Crucifixion John 19:1-16a
4. Pilate recognized Jesus’ innocence. He sought to release Him. “Sought to” He was governor, He could have had he been willing. But he feared reprisal from Rome if these Jews started a riot. And so he acquiesced. Gave in. When have we known what was the right thing to do, but gone along to get along with the wrong thing anyway?
The Crucifixion of Jesus John 19:16b-24
5. The soldiers cast lots for his clothing. They literally took the shirt off his back. Jesus’ suffering did not matter to them, they were interested in what they could get out of this. When have we been consumed by greed of gain? When have we ignored the suffering of others? Not others far away. But those right in front of us, in plain sight.
Jesus’ Mother and His Death John:25-30
6. Jesus, in the midst of dying, puts the concern of his mother first. Do we see others with such eyes of compassion? Would we stop thinking of ourselves in our hurt to speaking kindness into the life of another?
Jesus Side is Pierced and His Burial John 19:31-42
7. Myrrh and Linen. At His birth, Jesus was wrapped in strips of cloth and was laid down. He received myrrh as gift, from another. Now again He receives myrrh as gift from another. He is wrapped in linen cloth and laid down. Born His people to deliver, born a child and yet a King. The King of the Jews is dead.