DON'T MISS THE OBVIOUS: As we've noted several times in the last few days, there's value in reading these passages relating to the end of Jesus' life as the rest of the world is celebrating His birth, because it helps us truly understand who Jesus is and what He did. The unfortunate thing is that while a huge majority of people believe Jesus was laid in a manger as a baby, way too many people don't understand who He truly was. The Jews knew exactly who Jesus claimed to be, and they killed Him because of it:
He must die, because He claimed to be the Son of God (v7).
This Christmas look past all the layers of secular celebration and realize that the Son of God was born to die.
LAST LAUGH: On one hand, this episode makes it look like the Jews have Pilate wrapped around their finger, but Pilate showed them who was in control with the sign he hung over Jesus in the three major languages of the world:
JESUS OF NAZARETH KING OF THE JEWS
The Jews protested that the words "he claimed to be" should be added to the sign, but Pilate was quite content with the political statement he made and how it reminded the Jews they were under his Roman authority. But yet it's Jesus who reminds Pilate whose it control, telling Pilate he would have no authority at all if it were not given from above (v11). Remember that no matter what, God is always in control.
FAMOUS LAST WORDS: There are seven phrases that Jesus said while hanging on the cross recorded in the four gospel narratives, but the final saying John records is perhaps the most famous: "It is finished." This is one word in Greek, which I've often seen tattooed on people:
What makes this word so significant is that it represents much more than the crucifixion process being finished, or even Jesus' earthly life being done. What Jesus means here is that His entire mission is finished. He fully accomplished a life of perfect obedience and in His death He fully paid the price for the sin of those who put their faith into Him. There's nothing left to do. It is finished. As you take in the sights and sounds of Christmas, dwell on these final words of Jesus.
Follow the AAA Prayer Pattern:
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our God is the King of kings and Lord of lords
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that the Holy Spirit will continually remind you that everything required for your salvation is finished.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: