“So Pilate went outside to them and said, “What accusation do you bring against this man?” They answered him, “If this man were not doing evil, we would not have delivered him over to you.” (John 18:29-30 ESV)
The evening prior to Jesus’ crucifixion, Jewish leaders brought Jesus to Pilate. Treating him worse than a common criminal, they demanded attention from Pilate. As Pilate observed the abuse, he asked them a simple question.
“What did he do?”
They answered him, “If this man were not doing evil, we would not have delivered him over to you.”
What an answer! Pilate thought so as well. He told them, “Look, take him out of here and give him the punishment he deserves. But leave me alone.”
“But we want him dead!” That got Pilate’s attention.
Pilate had never met anyone who claimed to be God. But that’s why the religious leaders were so much against their prisoner; his claims were blasphemous, they said, and he deserved to die.
However, God vindicated Jesus by raising him from the dead. Case closed.
Well, not exactly.
Nowdays, for some strange reason, people all over the world have an issue with Jesus. People who have never met him talk as though they have personally witnessed his crimes against humanity. They act like he’s some kind of war criminal, or a person who’s bilked millions out of their life savings.
People will discuss religion, God, their church, their youth group, and even the amount of money they donate to charity. But mention, even briefly, the Name of Jesus…and some of those same people become red faced, their hands begin shaking, and you just know they’re about to call 911 and have you arrested.
Why? What does the world have against Jesus?
Has he ever been on the FBI’s most wanted list? Did he ever rob a store?
He’s been misunderstood, that’s for sure.
But did he ever make a promise he didn’t keep? Did he ever violate even just one of the Ten Commandments?
Did he ever speak ugly about labor unions or endorse Walmart?
As far as I can tell, his record’s clean. If my memory serves me correctly, all he ever did was love and help people.
Well, on second thought, he has been known to associate with some pretty shady characters. Rumor has it, he even had a prostitute as a friend. He took a little boy’s lunch one day, and acted like it was his own.
Once he interrupted a funeral. He actually had the audacity to open the coffin and raise the young man from the dead. Such inconsideration! No wonder people don’t like him.
Yeah, and there’s another time he ruined a perfectly good fishing net of Peter’s. Those things aren’t cheap at all. I heard that’s why he gave Peter a position in his organization; to keep him quiet.
He let his temper get away from him one day, and in the Temple of all places!
Also, shortly after he had John baptize him in the Jordan River, he was seen walking into the desert with the devil right behind him. He seemed to hang out with seedy looking characters, that’s for sure.
He had a couple of his associates steal a donkey one time. And (this is huge) he told his body guards to buy a sword; in spite of all of the sword control laws!
Sure, a lot of people say they were helped by him, those many years ago. But what has he done for people lately?
Is there anyone who will stand up and testify on his behalf?
Reader, I ask you: “What do YOU have against Jesus? What has he done to you or your family?”
Do you care to respond?
If Jesus was on trial today, would you be a witness for the prosecution?
Or, would you rather testify for the defense?
Please comment. I’d really like to know why you either despise Jesus, or love Jesus.