April 15, 2019
So the soldiers, their commanding officer, and the Temple guards arrested Jesus and tied him up. First they took him to Annas, since he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, the high priest at that time. Caiaphas was the one who had told the other Jewish leaders, “It’s better that one man should die for the people.” …. Then Pilate turned Jesus over to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus away. Carrying the cross by himself, he went to the place called Place of the Skull ….There they nailed him to the cross. (John 18:12-14. 19:16-18 NLT)
Bound to Unbind, Burdened to Unburden
As I mentioned in a recent Monday thought these words of the prophet Isaiah have been part of my Lenten focus each morning that I pray. "Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? (Isaiah 58:6 ESV)
It’s Monday of Holy Week and we remember Jesus’ last ministry moments, his arrest, trial and crucifixion. The other morning, I realized that as he chose to fast from his power and privilege, he underwent the very things he came to remove.
As he was arrested, he was bound by ropes and as he walked to Calvary he was burdened with the weight of the cross. He was bound so he could loose the binding of wickedness. He was burdened to release the burden of sin, estrangement from God and injustice among humans.
When I read “they tied him up” I cringe because I know how much I hate being restrained. We have an opportunity this week to remember in moments of quiet the powerful humiliation of our loving God.
A Prayer for today
Loving God, you went to such extremes for us in choosing to fast from power, prestige, position and safety. Help us this week to be sensitive to the events of Holy Week. Let us be grateful even as we are sobered by the cost of loosening restraints and relieving burdens. Let us live in the same spirit.…. For Jesus’ sake
Norm’s latest blog/podcast “Speaking with Jesus Person to Person” can be found here