Explore God's Word Daily

A daily blog on Christianity.com

Master or murderer (Luke 23 v 1-25)

The Jewish leaders’ show trial has, unsurprisingly, found Jesus guilty. But they don’t have the power to sentence Him to death—only the Roman governor can do that, and so God’s King must appear before the Roman emperor’s representative.

Read Luke 22:1

• What’s the charge (v 2)?
• Which part of it does Jesus plead “guilty” to (v 3)?
• But what does Pilate know about Him (v 4)?

Because he’s Galilean, Pilate sends Jesus off to King Herod, who has oversight of that territory (v 7). In v 8, Herod seems simply to want to see Jesus do some “tricks”—so Jesus stays quiet, and soon enough Herod sends Him back (v 11).

• What changed in Pilate and Herod’s relationship (v 12)?
• Why? Whose authority were they now united in resisting?

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TIME OUT… Read Psalms 2:1
• How do we see this psalm in reality in the events leading up to Jesus’ death?
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Read Luke 23:13

• What does Pilate know, and what does he propose? (v 13-16)
• What do the religious leaders, political leaders and ordinary people ask for instead (v 18-19)?
• Who do they not want to be part of their lives and society?
• Who do they choose to have as part of their lives and society?

This is sin. It is refusing to give our rightful Master, God’s Christ Jesus, any room in our lives or in our society. But it is also giving space to destructive forces, like the murderer Barabbas, to roam freely. When we turn from the One through whom we are created, we turn to things which “uncreate” God’s good world—like letting a murderer loose.

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APPLY
• Are there areas of your life, in your present or your past, where you can see the truth of this? How about in your community or society?
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• In the end, what does Pilate decide to do (v 24-25)? Why is this such a cowardly decision?

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PRAY
Pray for the leaders of your nation, that they would allow the rightful Master to be in charge of their decisions, and not turn away towards destruction.
Pray for yourself, that God would show you where you need to turn back to living with His Son in charge.
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This devotional is taken from Explore—a daily Bible-reading devotional from the good book company which enables you to engage with Scripture and which will encourage, equip and inspire you to live for Christ. Explore features contributions from pastors such as Dr Timothy Keller, Mike McKinley and Tim Chester.

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About Explore God's Word Daily

Explore God's Word Daily helps you open up the Bible to be refreshed and encouraged in your walk with God. "Explore" is the daily Bible-reading devotional from The Good Book Company (www.thegoodbook.com). Contributors include: Dr Timothy Keller, Senior Pastor at Redeemer Presbyterian Church, New York; Mike McKinley, Senior pastor of Guilford Baptist Church; Tim Chester, author and pastor of Crowded House, Sheffield, UK; Mark Meynell, Senior Associate Minister at All Soul’s Langham Place, London, UK. Editors: Tim Thornborough and Carl Laferton.

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