Day 169: Preparation Day

John 19:12-16 :

At this, Pilate was seeking to release him, but the Jews cried out, saying, “If you release this man, you aren’t Caesar’s friend! Everyone who makes himself a king speaks against Caesar!”

When Pilate therefore heard these words, he brought Jesus out, and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called “The Pavement,” but in Hebrew, “Gabbatha.” Now it was the Preparation Day of the Passover, at about the sixth hour. He said to the Jews, “Behold, your King!”

They cried out, “Away with him! Away with him! Crucify him!”

Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?”

The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar!”

So then he delivered him to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus and led him away.

It is likely that Pilate was acting out of self preservation here. It is clear that he believed that Jesus was innocent, but he was maneuvered into a hard place by the threats of the Jewish leaders. They were so intent on having Jesus killed that they threatened Pilate! They were ready to get rid of Pilate and Jesus if they had to by accusing Pilate of speaking against Caesar.

Pilate was threatening the Jews with humiliation and the Jews were threatening Pilate with being removed from power. Needless to say, Pilate caved in.

That was the end of the mockery of a trial that Jesus got.

Isn’t it interesting that this happened on the “Preparation Day of the Passover?” The Passover was the day that a lamb was killed and it’s blood was put on the door posts of the houses of those who would be saved by the blood of the lamb. If you have ever watched the movie “Prince of Egypt,” it is the part of the story of Moses the night that God took the lives of all the first-born children. This was the event that caused Pharaoh to let them go. Jesus was the lamb of God as John the Baptist said earlier in John, and we can see that he spoke the truth to the people. In the very day of preparation, Jesus was committed to die for our sins. The Passover lamb was to be without spot or blemish. Jesus was innocent. These things are far more than a coincidence. God, who arranges all things that happen, was making it even clearer to us that we need Jesus to save us.