To please the public do injustice!!!

Perrier, Francois; The Beheading of Saint John the Baptist; National Trust, Kedleston Hall and Eastern Museum;

Mark 15:15, 15 Wanting to satisfy the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas to them. He had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.

Pontius Pilate released Barabbas instead of Jesus to satisfy the public. He then handed over Jesus to be flogged and crucified. Here we see that creation is putting the creator to trial. The creator is isolated, stands mute and abandoned by all, is mocked by all the people. Pilate wanted to release Jesus after trial since he could find no fault with Jesus. He had full power to take independent decisions. The public was furious and demanded Barabbas to be released and raised their voices saying “Crucify Him”, for Jesus. Their chanting for crucifixion was like the howling of hyenas. Matthew 27:24, 24 When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!”

Pilate’s wife sent him a message, Matthew 27: 19, 19 While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.” But this did not bring a change of heart in Pilate. He released a man accused of murders and riots to please the public, and crucified Jesus,son of God. Jesus bore the sins of the whole world upon Himself.

200 years ago, Pilate handed over Jesus to be crucified out of fear of losing his position and stature. Pilate agreed to the cry of public who just few days earlier had glorified Jesus and welcomed Him like a king. Now they were crying to crucify Him. Matthew 27:18, 18 For he knew it was out of self-interest that they had handed Jesus over to him. Pilate very well knew that some people out of jealousy have provoked and manipulated the society to ask for crucifixion of Jesus. If only Pilate had paused and introspected his inner conscience and heard the voice, he would not have sentenced Jesus to such a cruel death. Jesus came to earth to fulfill the wish of the Heavenly Father, to fulfill the prophecies, it is true. But what justifications can be there for the injustice meted out to Jesus. Nothing can reduce the gravity of the situation. Colossians 3:25,25 Anyone who does wrong will be repaid for their wrongs, and there is no favoritism.

Exodus 23:2, “Do not follow the crowd in doing wrong. When you give testimony in a lawsuit, do not pervert justice by siding with the crowd,

Then and even today, power and authority pose threat to society. Even the self proclaimed firm believers, for the wealth of the world do not shy away from doing wrong and injustice. Even if you face isolation from the society, dear children of God gather strength from word of God and do not do injustice or wrong out of self interest and selfish intent.

Before Jesus was arrested, He was questioned by the chief priests, Matthew 21:23,23 Jesus entered the temple courts, and, while he was teaching, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him. “By what authority are you doing these things?” they asked. “And who gave you this authority?”

Proverbs 12:6, The words of the wicked lie in wait for blood, but the speech of the upright rescues them. This verse not only speaks about the wicked people but is also a loud call out for the upright.

Till now we saw Jesus. Now let us see the life of John the baptist, the one who spoke and fought for truth. Mark 6: 18, 18 For John had been saying to Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” John said to king Herod that it was wrong on his part to keep his brother’s wife. Mark 6: 19,19 So Herodias nursed a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But she was not able to, 20 because Herod feared John and protected him, knowing him to be a righteous and holy man. When Herod heard John, he was greatly puzzled; yet he liked to listen to him.

She was looking for an opportunity to kill John. On Herod’s birthday, Herodias’ daughter Salomi danced before him and pleased him. In his happiness he said to her to ask for anything in return. Salomi went and asked her mother. Herodias seeing this as perfect chance asked for John’s head to be brought on a platter.

In Mark 6:26,26 The king was greatly distressed, but because of his oaths and his dinner guests, he did not want to refuse her. Here we see that king Herod too wanted to please the public and hence sided with wrong and did injustice. 27 So he immediately sent an executioner with orders to bring John’s head. The man went, beheaded John in the prison, 28 and brought back his head on a platter. He presented it to the girl, and she gave it to her mother. Is his distress of any value here??? Injustice and selfish intent made a woman do such a wicked act when John stood up for the truth. She used her daughter and provoked Herod as well.

Be it home or the society, even if we have to face loss, be it any position he /she is at, a believer should have justice and truth as their master stroke. For this may the Holy Spirit guide us and lead us.

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