Yesterday I wrote about being misunderstood and how to handle it. I want to continue that thought as we look at Jesus Christ, our perfect example of how to behave.
“But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.” Matthew 27:20
The very people Jesus had come to present Himself to as the Messiah, wanted to DESTROY Him.
If they wanted to destroy the King of Kings, what makes you think you are immune?
I remember one time I was driving our children through town in Brazil. They had invited their friends from Bible club to jump in the truck bed with them and I took them all over the dirt roads by the jungle and through town so they could cool down in the intense summer heat. We were having a really good time when I turned down one street in particular and a woman younger than me came out and yelled some obscenities at me and made an ugly gesture with her hand.
I came unglued. (I know, this isn’t how a missionary wife should behave, and I have regretted it to this day. Please close your eyes and stop up your ears when you hear my name called at the Judgement Seat one day. It won’t be pretty)
Anyhow, I whipped my truck around and jumped out.
She ran for cover.
I let her know exactly what I thought of her actions and a cat fight ensued.
And my children and Bible club kids saw it all.
It took me hours before the adrenaline quit running through my veins with hot revenge. All I could hear were the words the woman had said and how I wanted to make her eat them with my bare fist. I was zipped up tight in the flesh and I know Christ was sadly shaking His head.
I sure did make a mess of things.
Turns out that someone had told her that her husband was dating a blond woman on the side. She thought it was me. I was falsely accused and she wanted to end me. But instead of helping her solve the situation, I wanted to end her for accusing me of something so awful. Eventually….MONTHS later, she found out it was a German blond girl that was the culperate, not me! But, the damage had been done. I assume that this woman has never met Christ and probably didn’t want to after the way she saw me, a pastor’s wife, react. Her blood may very well be dripping from my hands one day in Heaven and the thought sickens me.
Obviously, I REALLY handled that moment in my life pretty badly. I do not enjoy writing about it. However, it is one example of something I personally did that causes me to feel in my heart some extreme emotions of betrayal, false accusations and how I handled it the wrong way. Hopefully it serves as a poignant reminder for how NOT to behave.
The Chief priest and elders wanted to destroy Jesus. They brought up false accusers, they paid Judas to betray Him, they even paid big money to the soldiers at Jesus’ tomb after He rose from the dead. They wanted them to lie and say the disciples had stolen His body away. These men were pretty ruthless weren’t they? We understand the prophecy being fulfilled and the necessary elements that had to take place for Salvation, but Jesus was 100% man as He endured their hatred and their accusations.
Imagine when all the people rose up and said in Matthew 27:25 “….His blood be on us, and on our children.” They had little idea that His blood was actually going to be shed for them and their children. They were so intent on destroying Christ!
How did Jesus respond? He didn’t just begin responding correctly at that moment. He had already been living the correct response!
“For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19:10
That is Jesus speaking. He has included in that statement the very people He knew were going to shout at Him to be crucified. He was loving them all along.
What about when His own disciples leave Him? Does He go and knock them up side the head? No. In Luke 22, the Lord turned and looked upon Peter as he denied knowing Christ. Later after Jesus has risen from the grave, He confronts Peter about Peter’s love for Him and I’m sure it was just as humiliating to Peter to remember his denial as it is for me to remember my flub up, but Jesus calmly instructs Peter and in turn instructs me when He says, “…And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me.” John 21:19
Follow me. What powerful words. What an example! Follow Christ. Follow His example of love, humility and forgiveness!
How about you? I’m sure your escapades have not been as awful as mine, but is there somewhere that you need to change course and quit following human emotion and start following Christ’s example?
When we dwell in Him and learn of His Person, we find everything we need in order to guide us along our way in this life on earth.
Even though the enemy whispers in my ear from time to time that I am a failure and that God can never use a person like me, I remind myself that the devil wants to destroy me but GOD loves me and forgave me. I can either walk on in that forgiveness or wallow in that destruction. Choice is vital to my future service and the souls that hang in the balance. I must choose forgiveness. Being forgiven and forgiving others. Period!
Until Next Time, Lord willing,
READ THE BIBLE THROUGH WITH ME IN 36 WEEKS!
Today’s reading: Exodus 3-4 / II Samuel 2 / Psalm 28 / Acts 3