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Two Crowds: Lenten Devotions

by | Mar 22, 2024 | God's Love, Lenten Devotions, Sacrifice

Pilate went out again and said to them, ‘See, I am bringing Him out to you that you may know that I find no guilt in Him.’ So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, ‘Behold the Man!’ When the chief priests and the officers saw Him, they cried out, ‘Crucify Him, crucify Him!'”

(John 19:4-6a ESV)

It’s horrifying that Pilate would let things go so far with an innocent man. Was he trying to play on the sympathies of the crowd? Did he think that they would have pity on Jesus, so clearly half-dead, and beg for Him to be let go?

If so, Pilate reckoned wrong. They cried out all the louder for His death.

It’s never safe to rely on the sympathy of a mob. When we get together in large groups, we are capable of doing evils that would shock us individually. It is as if the large crowd made the seeds of evil in our hearts sprout and bloom.

And yet … Jesus looked out on that bloodthirsty crowd, those people just like us, and what did He see? The people He came to die for. The people God had made at the beginning of the world and grieved to see them fall into ruin. The people that Jesus loved in spite of everything, that He would buy back from evil with His own blood.

And some day, from God’s holy throne, Jesus will look out at the same crowd of humanity—all of us redeemed by His act. And we will be singing and waving palm branches and crying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Revelation 7:10b)

WE PRAY: I love and worship You, dear Lord. Amen.

Reflection Questions:

* Have you ever been in a frightening mob?

* Why do you think it is easier for crowds to do evil than for individuals?

* Do you think any of those in the mob became believers later?

Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.

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