Lent Reflection: Friday 03rd April 2020
Bible Reading: John 19:1-11
Pontius Pilate has had Jesus taken away and flogged.
The Roman soldiers who have administered this punishment, have humiliated Jesus further. They mock Jesus, dressing Him in a purple robe, then twisting together a crown made of thorns and putting it on His head.
“Hail, King of the Jews!” They cry and begin to punch and slap Him.
Pilate comes out before the crowd again. He is still trying to cover his own back, knowing that he finds nothing about Jesus to condemn Him to death.
He brings Jesus before the crowd, and says, “Behold the man!”
You see, Jesus is not just God come in human flesh, He is the true man, the true image of what human beings were created to look like.
Even though He has been battered and bruised, even though He has been flogged and beaten, even though He has been mocked and shamed, Jesus still looks more human than the rest of us.
We’re an imprint of what it is to be human. Our own humanity is stained and damaged – captured, as we have been, by the power of Sin and destined for death.
But Jesus is truly human. Faithful, obedient, and now stood before a world that is so ashamed of its own nakedness as it stands before its Maker, that it bays for the blood of the One who loves them. Truly loves them.
But the Pharisees and the crowds cannot see the person who truly stands before them.
Jesus, caught in this moment in the clutches of Sin and now destined for death, is faithful to God in His humanity in a way that no else could be.
He is the new model for all humanity. Those who come after Him now, those who follow Him, those who are filled with His Spirit, so they too begin to model, to image and to display what it is to be truly human as well.
Even if it is as a pale shadow at present, we know the glory that awaits the children of God, when the Son of Man appears again and transforms our lowly bodies into the image of His own, true humanity.
The crowds continue to cry out, “This man must die because he has made himself the Son of God!”
Pilate is more fearful than ever. He takes Jesus back inside. He questions Jesus again, but Jesus gives no answer.
In his frustration and fear, Pilate pleads, “Don’t you know that I hold your life in my hands?”
Jesus answers, “You only have this authority because it has been given you.”
The authority in this moment belongs to God.
The path ahead is one that only the truly human Jesus can walk. Only He can now truly bear the weight of all that is to come.
We thank you that when we stumble and fall, that you are faithful, that you are there to pick us up, to rescue and to save us.
Lord Jesus, we pray that you would send your Holy Spirit to us, to fill us with your great love and power, and to transform us more and more into your truly human image.
Fill us, Lord, with your hope, your forgiveness and your faithfulness.
We pray this in your truly human name, Jesus.