“Wearing the Crown of Thorns”

5 Then Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. And Pilate said to them, “Behold the Man!” – John 19:5 NKJV

John 19:1-6 NLT

The mockery and the persecution goes on and on. A whip with jagged pieces of metal that literally tore the flesh from His back, a crown of thorns that was pushed viciously down upon His brow and then another slap across the face. All this plus the verbal mockery of His truthful claims as to who He really was. Then Pilate goes back out to the crowd and says “I find Him not guilty”. Pilate could have stopped the proceedings then and there, but he chose not to do so. He has Jesus brought out wearing the purple robe and the crown of thorns and Pilate speaks to the people.
“Ecce homo!” “Behold the man”!
The crowd wants Jesus crucified and they let Pilate know that loudly. Pilate tells the crowd they can take Jesus and crucify Him. He knows they can’t administer the death penalty. It is just a ploy to assuage his quilt. Today, I say to all of us, “Behold the Man”, what will we do with Jesus? Will our words and actions or the lack thereof scream ‘Crucify Him’ or will they plead for His acceptance?
“Behold the Man”!!!

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“The Temple Guards Arrested Jesus”

12 So the soldiers, their commanding officer, and the Temple guards arrested Jesus and tied him up. 13 First they took him to Annas, since he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the high priest at that time.[a] 14 Caiaphas was the one who had told the other Jewish leaders, “It’s better that one man should die for the people.” – John 18:12-14 NLT

Once Jesus was arrested, He was tied up and taken to Annas, the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the high priest. This was the same Caiaphas that had prophesied that it was better that one man should die than the whole nation. If Caiaphas had fully understood the situation, he probably would have preferred that Jesus not die for the people. God was allowing satan to use the unbelief and stubbornness of the high priests and religious leaders to accomplish His plan. God’s plan has been in existence since before the world was spoken into existence. No thing or no one had or has the power to stop what God has decreed will be. The reason that Jesus had spoken in parables to the crowds and early in His ministry had told those He healed not to tell anyone was to accomplish the mission that God has sent Him here to do. If satan had figured it out, he would not have wanted Jesus to be crucified on the cross.

7 No, the wisdom we speak of is the mystery of God—his plan that was previously hidden, even though he made it for our ultimate glory before the world began. 8 But the rulers of this world have not understood it; if they had, they would not have crucified our glorious Lord–1 Cor.2:7-8 (NLT)

Jesus said:

13 That is why I use these parables, For they look, but they don’t really see. They hear, but they don’t really listen or understand.—Matt. 13:13 (NLT)

There are still those who look but don’t see and hear but they aren’t really listening. But since we aren’t able to know the minds and hearts of others, we cannot be selective in who we witness to. We are to tell everyone the Good News and let God be in charge of the results.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“You Won’t See Me Anymore”

16 “In a little while you won’t see me anymore. But a little while after that, you will see me again.” – John 16:16 NLT

John 16:16-19 NLT

​The last few days before the crucifixion of Jesus must have been very perplexing to the disciples. They had expected that Jesus might set up an earthly kingdom. Instead, He keeps talking about leaving and they won’t know where He is going and they can’t come with Him now. What could Jesus possibly mean that they would not see Him for “a little while” and then they would see Him? What could He mean by saying they couldn’t come now, but they would come to Him later. Jesus could have been referring to two events. “A little while” could be the 3 days He will be in the grave. But since God is not bound by the way we measure time and since He said that He was “going to the Father”, the little while could be from then until ​the Holy Spirit arrived at Pentecost.  Either way, it was a disturbing and sad time for them. A time that we will never have to endure. Since God has sent the Holy Spirit to indwell each of us that accepts Jesus as our Savior, we will never be without Him.
We will never be alone. I am reminded of the old hymn “Have Faith in God”

“Have faith in God when your pathway is lonely.
He sees and knows all the way you have trod;
Never alone are the least of His children;
Have faith in God, have faith in God.​”

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“So Don’t Be Troubled or Afraid”

27 “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. – John 14:27 NLT

Peace

God has sent the Holy Spirit to abide with us. He sent the Spirit in the name of Jesus. That is the Trinity of God — Father, Son,and Spirit. They are one and the same but with different functions. God created, Jesus redeemed and the Spirit calls us to accept Jesus and be a child of God. Jesus gives us the gift of peace. It is not peace that means there are no wars or violence or problems in our lives.That is what the world thinks of as peace. But true peace, the peace that Jesus gave us is the kind that keeps us calm in the middle of a storm, in the middle of medical emergencies, financial emergencies or any other bad situation that you can name. The peace of God is available to every child of God, but we have to decide to accept it and abide in that peace, just as we had to decide to accept Jesus as our Savior and Lord. We can accept the peace that Jesus offers us or we can hang onto our cares and worries and let the devil devour our peace and joy.

6 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. 7 Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.8 Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.–1 Peter 5:6-8 (NLT)

Humbling ourselves under the hand of God means that we completely agree with Him that He can and will do exactly what He said He would do. To believe anything less than that is to deny the Omniscience, Omnipresence and the Omnipotence of the great God that we serve.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“And Even Greater Works”

19 Soon the world will no longer see me, but you will see me. Since I live, you also will live.  – John 14:19 NLT

John 14:18-24 NLT

Jesus was always teaching His disciples and encouraging them. He knew that until the Holy Spirit came, they would feel alone and discouraged. He assures them and us that we will never be alone. He isn’t here physically with us now, but He is here abiding in our hearts and guiding us. If we love Jesus, we will be obedient children and the Father loves all of those who love Jesus. Every word that Jesus spoke came straight from the Father, so it is Truth. Everyone has the same opportunity to answer the call to come to Jesus. It is difficult for us to understand why some do and some don’t. God doesn’t send anyone to hell, a person has to work hard to get to hell. The wages (salary, pay) of sin is death. It is hard to understand why anyone would continue on that path when the plan of salvation is free and open to all who will accept. So, each of us has a choice to make, we can accept salvation full and free or we can earn our way to hell.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“He Won’t Come For Passover, Will He?

56 They kept looking for Jesus, but as they stood around in the Temple, they said to each other, “What do you think? He won’t come for Passover, will he?”  – John 11:56 NLT

An Evil Plan

Yesterday, in verse 50 of John 11, we hear Caiaphas prophesying that one man must die for the nation. He thought his statement was about handing Jesus over to the Romans so that they would not take any authority away from the Sanhedrin, the ruling council of Israel. He did not realize the eternal implications of what he said, God used the most powerful Jew in Israel, at that time, to announce His salvation plan for the whole world. Had the Pharisees and the ruling council understood this, perhaps, they would not have been so determined to kill Jesus. Jesus, knowing their thoughts and intentions left Bethany and went to the town of Ephraim located in the mountainous area northeast of Jerusalem. It was approaching the time for the Feast of the Passover. Little did the people realize that this would be the Passover that marked the end of the Passover as they knew it. The perfect, sacrificial Lamb was in their midst and they did not recognize Him. Jesus had shown them who He was by His words and His works.They should have been honoring Him. Instead, they were trying to kill Him. He is still in our midst today, are we honoring Him? Does our lifestyle, our dreams, our hopes, our actions, our words reflect His presence in our lives? Or are we still killing Jesus today?

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“It Was Not Moses”

 32 Jesus then said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but my Father gives you the true bread from heaven – John 6:32 ESV

John 6:30-34 ESV

Even after Jesus had fed the multitude, the people wanted more miraculous signs. Jesus corrects them about the Old Testament scriptures. Moses was their earthly leader, but Moses could not have produced enough manna to feed millions of people. God supplied the bread and when that wasn’t enough, God supplied the quails. Jesus uses this to teach them about the true Bread from heaven. God, in the human form of Jesus, came to earth. God is the Creator who breathed the breath of life into us in the beginning and God is the one who sustains life now. Earthly bread may feed us physically, but it cannot sustain us forever, The True Bread is the source of life. If we partake of that Bread, we shall have eternal life.

Do This In Remembrance of Me

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“Granted That Same Life-Giving Power to His Son”

26 The Father has life in himself, and he has granted that same life-giving power to his Son.  ​– John 5:26 NLT​

Power and Authority

God the Father has honored His Son by giving Him complete authority to judge us. It is the Father’s desire for us to honor His Son just as He has honored Him. If we dishonor the name of Jesus, we dishonor God our Father as well. God breathed life into us, when He created us, He is the source of our physical life, as well as our spiritual life. The Father has given this life-giving power to His Son. Because of His obedience, even unto death on the cross, Jesus has been given all authority in heaven and on earth.

18 Jesus came and told his disciples, “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.—Matt. 28:18 (NLT)

Now that we are in Christ and Christ is in us, we have access to the Name and the authority of the Name of Jesus. Just as Jesus only did what He saw the Father do and only said what the Father said, we must speak only those words that we hear Jesus speak and do only those deeds that the Holy Spirit leads us to do.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“Prove That They Are God’s Children”

11 Dear friend, don’t let this bad example influence you. Follow only what is good. Remember that those who do good prove that they are God’s children, and those who do evil prove that they do not know God – 3 John 11 NLT

3 John 1:9-12 NLT

The devil hates anything good. When he sees us showing love and compassion for others, his anger knows no bounds. That is why it is so important for us to show our love for others. We not only please God, but, at the same time, we frustrate satan. Showing our love by doing good is how we imitate Jesus.

38 And you know that God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. Then Jesus went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.—Acts 10:38 (NLT)

We are now the voice, the hands and the feet of the gospel. It is up to us to continue the work that Jesus started. He doesn’t need people with ability, He needs people that are available for Him to use. He could do it all without us, but He has chosen to use the foolish things of this world to confound the wise, so He uses those that make themselves available to Him. Show love and do good so that others can speak highly about you and you will lay up your rewards in heaven.

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous

“…Denying Its Power.”

 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.— 2 Timothy 3:5 NIV

2 Timothy 3:1-9 NLT

Every day we see and hear about more and more evil. The spirits of discord, deception, violence and disobedience are more and more apparent and open. All of us seem to be more concerned about ourselves and our possessions and less concerned about our neighbors. We are filled with pride. Society scoffs at the idea of a God, yet our actions show that we worship our bodies, our families, our careers and our entertainment to the point of making them our “gods”. We have become an ungrateful, unloving, unforgiving people. We take no responsibility for our own actions, always blaming things on others. We say we believe in Jesus Christ but we refuse to be accountable to Him or to obey Him. We speak about religious things but we deny the power of the Holy Spirit, not allowing Him to change our lives. We need to bend our knees, ask God for forgiveness, repent and start living a lifestyle that lets the world know that we love Jesus and will remain faithful to Him.

Matt.22:35-40 NLT

“The Gospel has come to you because it’s on its way to someone else.” -Anonymous