What Jesus Did! 'Not Wanting to Be Defiled!' — John 18:28-32

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Then the guards took Jesus from Caiaphas' house to the {Roman governor's} palace. It was early in the morning. The Jews there would not go inside the palace. They did not want to make themselves unclean, because they wanted to eat the Passover meal. So Pilate went outside to the Jews. He asked, "What do you say this man has done wrong?" The Jews answered, "He is a bad man. That is why we brought him to you." Pilate said to the Jews, "You Jews take him yourselves and judge him by your own law." The Jewish leaders answered, "But your law does not allow us to punish a person by killing him." (This happened so that what Jesus said about how he would die would be true.)
— John 18:28-32
Illustration of John 18:28-32 — "But your law does not allow us to punish a person by killing him."

Key Thought

Semantics and blind spots! These are two of the biggest problems religious people of every age have had. Rather than pursuing righteousness from the heart, we have a tendency to try to justify ourselves using legalistic maneuvering—i.e., "His accusers didn't go in themselves because it would defile them ..." In other words, they were asking for Jesus to be killed, but were also worried about being righteous by the letter of the law. They are worried about the Passover and are thus fulfilling God's plan that Jesus would be the Passover Lamb, sacrificed for his people's deliverance. While we can see the blind spots and the legalistic semantics of Jesus' opponents, can we see our own? One of the most important requests we can ask of God is this: O Lord God, please reveal to me my spiritual blind spots so that my heart may be pure. A world of evil lurks in the hearts of men and women who seek to justify their religious actions rather than asking for God to reveal and to eradicate every evil thought and desire from their heart!

Today's Prayer

God forgive me! I recognize that my own heart at times is so very deceitful. I want to be pure and not have to try to justify myself by legalism. Cleanse me thoroughly by your Spirit as he does the work of transforming me to be more and more like Jesus. Help me see my blind spots and inconsistencies so that I can wholly serve you with a pure heart and righteous life. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

Then the guards took Jesus from Caiaphas' house to the {Roman governor's} palace. It was early in the morning. The Jews there would not go inside the palace. They did not want to make themselves unclean, because they wanted to eat the Passover meal. So Pilate went outside to the Jews. He asked, "What do you say this man has done wrong?" The Jews answered, "He is a bad man. That is why we brought him to you." Pilate said to the Jews, "You Jews take him yourselves and judge him by your own law." The Jewish leaders answered, "But your law does not allow us to punish a person by killing him." (This happened so that what Jesus said about how he would die would be true.) Then Pilate went back inside the palace. Pilate called Jesus to him. He asked Jesus, "Are you the king of the Jews?" Jesus said, "Is that your own question, or did other people tell you about me?" Pilate said, "I am not a Jew! It was your own people and their leading priests that brought you before me. What have you done wrong?" Jesus said, "My kingdom does not belong to this world. If it belonged to this world, then my servants would fight so that I would not be given to the Jewish leaders. But my kingdom is from another place." Pilate said, "So you are a king!" Jesus answered, "You say that I am a king. That is true. I was born for this: to tell people about the truth. That is why I came into the world. And every person that belongs to the truth listens to me." Pilate said, "What is truth?" When Pilate said this, he went out to the Jewish leaders again. Pilate said to them, "I can find nothing to charge against this man. But it is one of your customs for me to free one prisoner to you at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to free this 'king of the Jews'?" They yelled back, "No, not him! Let Barabbas go free!" (Barabbas was a rebel.)

John 18:28-40

Then a teacher of the law stood up. He was trying to test Jesus. He said, "Teacher, what must I do to get life forever?" Jesus said to him, "What is written in the law? What do you understand from it?" The man answered, "'You must love the Lord your God. You must love him with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.' Also, 'You must love other people the same as you love yourself.' " Jesus said to him, "Your answer is right. Do this and you will have life forever." But the man wanted to show that the way he was living was right. So he said to Jesus, "But who are these other people I must love?"

Luke 10:25-29

Then Jesus began to teach his followers that the Son of Man must suffer many things. Jesus taught that the Son of Man would not be accepted by the older Jewish leaders, the leading priests, and the teachers of the law. Jesus taught that the Son of Man must be killed and then rise from death after three days.

Mark 8:31

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.