Jesus is judged by Pilate

Pilate then called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, and said to them, “You brought me this man as one who was misleading the people. And after examining him before you, behold, I did not find this man guilty of any of your charges against him. Neither did Herod, for he sent him back to us. Look, nothing deserving death has been done by him. I will therefore punish and release him.”

But they all cried out together, “Away with this man, and release to us Barabbas”— a man who had been thrown into prison for an insurrection started in the city and for murder. Pilate addressed them once more, desiring to release Jesus, but they kept shouting, “Crucify, crucify him!” A third time he said to them, “Why? What evil has he done? I have found in him no guilt deserving death. I will therefore punish and release him.” But they were urgent, demanding with loud cries that he should be crucified. And their voices prevailed. So Pilate decided that their demand should be granted. He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, for whom they asked, but he delivered Jesus over to their will.

(Luke 23:13-25)

When Jesus is before Pilate we see that the crowd has one thing on their mind, Jesus must be crucified.  They have made their judgment of Jesus and nothing is going to change their mind.

So often in our own lives we’ve judged people around us and made up our minds about what they deserve and how we will treat them.  Even in Jesus’ final hours, He continued to show love for those who put Him on the cross.  When asked what the greatest commandment was, Jesus answered “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

It is clear that the crowd wasn’t loving Jesus they way they wanted to be loved, but it might not be as clear in our own lives.  Think of the “unlovable” people you encounter in your life.  What is it about these people makes them hard to love?

Once you’ve thought of something, fill in one of the blanks on the paper.  Looking over this list, is there anything that could describe you?

Pray over this list, the people you’ve thought of, and yourself.  Ask God to help us love our neighbors and to help us be better neighbors to those around us.