Saturday, September 18, 2010

Behold the Man by Dudley Hall

So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, "Behold the man! John 19:5 (ESV)

Pilate had Jesus flogged. The soldiers mocked him with a crown of thorns and a purple robe calling him the king of the Jews. Pilate presented him to the crowd in shame. They had no clue that they were actually preaching the gospel through their actions. While they mocked, Jesus was releasing a power into the world that would eventually topple their kingdom and subdue their power.

Because of the reality of redemption, every unjust act of mankind draws an expression of mercy from heaven that is greater in power than the injustice.  This is the reason martyrs are the most powerful figures in the kingdom of God. Those who sacrifice, suffer, or die are carrying the most powerful weapon known in heaven, hell, and earth. So while the soldiers mocked and Pilate squirmed, Jesus was ruling the situation by submitting to the Father.

Hoping that the crowd would accept the humiliation and torture of Jesus as enough punishment, Pilate presented him by saying, "Look at the man!" He didn't know that he was actually presenting the "man" of history. Adam was the first man. He had been assigned to be the physical image of God on earth, but had forfeited that role. Then Israel was assigned to represent God, and David had become the man who represented them. He was their best king, but not "the man" the way God intended. But now, the MAN had come! He came to take Adam's place, and Israel's place...and my place. He took the justice of God's kingdom upon himself by paying the price of man's sin. He took all the humiliation of our perverted lives as he stood there clothed in a mock crown and robes. Later he would be naked on a cross outside the city where criminals and perverts were crucified. He became the man of humiliation so we could be accepted in the king's court as sons.

Pilate was blind, but he introduced us to the only man who makes it possible to relate to God personally. No other man has ever been able to accomplish that. Make no mistake - those who appeared to be in charge on that day were the imposters. The real king was Jesus, mocked by the spiritually blind, but cheered by the chorus in heaven who could see the plan of God working out.

Behold the Man!!

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