If you were on trial for a murder you didn’t commit, do you think you would speak up and proclaim your innocence? I believe the majority of us would, but during a bible study of Mark (15:3-5) I saw an instance where Jesus did just the opposite. While people viciously hurled false accusations his way and deemed him worthy of a crime punishable by death, Jesus remained silent. We see three times when Jesus was questioned and gave no reply. The high priest Caiaphas – Matthew 26:62&63-And the high priest arose and said unto him, Answerest thou nothin what is it which these witness against thee? (63) But Jesus held his peace. When Herod questioned him in Luke 23:9 – Then he questioned with him in many words; but he answered him nothing. As a result Herod and the other men mocked Jesus for what they thought to be stupidity or weakness. But the instance that intrigued me the most was when Pilate asked if he had heard all of the things people were accusing him of doing, I believe in an attempt to get him to speak out on his incorruptibility. Mattthew 27:14 – And he answered him to never a word; insomuch that the governor marveled greatly.
The fact that Pilate marveled greatly at Jesus’ response or lack there of was so perfectly human and Jesus’ silence was so utterly perfect. To me it exhibits Jesus’ strength in connection with God and the spirit world in contrast with the carnal angst of fleshly death that was Pilates focus. While Pilate only saw the mythical world in front of him, Jesus looked beyond this life, this flesh, his crucifixion and saw eternal life.
It brought to mind a few things, the first is that far too often I am a Pilate in this world, afraid to speak out on what I know is truth and wasting my time focused only on futile human carnalities. The second is that there can be such awesome power in our use of silence, so much so that it can leave others speechless and in awe, I speak on that here. The third is that it is necessary for my spiritual growth to embrace and regularly put into practice the qualities and confidences that Jesus must have held to be the type of man that could remain silent at a time like this. These are five qualities that I hope to develop within myself.
Jesus knew who he was and his purpose for being here on earth: Jesus was all ‘about his fathers business’ and since the start of His ministry he focused on his purpose, being a savior. You may not know exactly what your gift(s) here on earth is just yet, but you do know your purpose. We are laborers with God (1 Corinthians 3:9) and we are to teach all nations to observe all things whatsoever Jesus commanded of us and to baptize them in the name of the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost (Matthew 28:18-20). Many times we make excuses for not doing what God called us to do even though it is clearly stated. I will confess that I include myself in the realm of passive Christianity, going to church when I can, not being a servant, reading the bible when I remember and rarely speaking to others about God unless they introduce Him into the conversation. My main excuses are fear of going up and talking to people cold turkey and making time to serve. I can’t afford to wait any longer to be about my father’s business and I ask that God gives me the opportunity to do so. I pray that all excuses, barriers and road blocks for not doing God’s will are removed from our lives and that God reveals our gifts when the time is right.
Jesus already knew how the story would play out: The bible tells us that all things work together for the good of those that love him (Romans 8:28) and we also know that in the end God win’s! Jesus knew his fathers plan and as children of God so should we. Although, we may not always be secure in this fact as concerns of this earth boggle us down and disrupt our faith. It is imperative that we keep in mind that everything is working together for our good. I honestly wish I could be as assured as Jesus, but I worry and doubt about things all the time. I’m challenging myself and you to recite Romans 8:28 whenever thoughts of doubt, fear or worry about a situation fill our heads to remind us that if we are on God’s team, we have already won. I pray for knowledge and wisdom from above to remain focused on things eternal.
Jesus trusted his father: How many times in your life have you questioned God? Have you ever wondered if you were meant to be in the situation or place you are currently? I find myself doing this, especially when things aren’t going right in my limited view. But in the heat of the moment, before his death, Jesus trusted God because he knew that no matter what his father loved and would be there for him, just as he will for you. Trust can be hard to maintain, especially when we often desire a tangible proof before totally giving it. But if I’m taking notes from Jesus he went along with God’s plan even in the most difficult of times, even when he thought God had forsaken him. Having trust is paramount to growing as a child of God and I pray that we place our trust in God and surrender to his plan for our life.
Jesus did what God told him to do: As stated before Jesus knew God’s plan and although it didn’t always seem like a pleasant journey he still walked the path God gave him, no questions asked. When God tells us to do something it’s guraranteed to be for our good. Oftentimes, I find myself being more of a Jonah than a Jesus in life. If I have an urge to write, give up a relationship or do something that I feel like God may be directing me to do, I can’t always say that I do it right away. Usually what happens when I don’t follow God’s plan is that I go the painful circuitous route, am swallowed up and spit out by the jaws of life and wind up having to do what I was trying to avoid initially. I pray against the spirit of procrastination, confusion and wrong relationships and replace them with a spirit of love and willingness to move when God calls us to move.
Jesus wasn’t going to allow anyone to stop him from accomplishing his Goal: When Peter was so over taken at the thought of Jesus’ death that he begins to rebuke the plan, Jesus knows it’s the devil attempting to stop him (Matthew 16:23). Just as the jeering, criticizing and mocking of the people prior to and during his crucifiction is no match for the power of his desire to do God’s will. Nothing and no one could stop him. When we set out to accomplish something, be it completing a bible study or starting a business there will be distractions to be put at bay so we can do the work set before us. Recognizing when the devil is trying to knock us off the path God has placed before us is critical to reaching God’s goal for our life. I pray for freedom from people and discernment to know when the devil is a distraction in our lives and to rebuke any and all attempts to pull us away from our work and callings.
God bless & here’s to a purposeFULL life!