Scripture: John 19:1-16
Observation: Pilate demanded that Jesus be flogged and soldiers mocked him, shouting “King of the Jews” and putting a crown of thorns on his head. After numerous attempts to let him go, Pilate finally sentences Jesus to crucifixion.
Application: Power is an intoxicating thing. When we have it, we love it. Power puts us in control. Power makes us feel worthy. Power pushes us to a place of prominence.
But when we don’t have power? We feel miserable, hopeless, and sometimes downright helpless. (Having no power basically sums up our entire high school experience. Do you remember having to get a hall pass to go to the bathroom?! We had to get permission to pee. We live in a strange world...)
So often, we feel defeated by our powerlessness – in a relationship, a job, a financial situation, a class. We can’t do or say anything to fix it or change it and all of the sudden, we feel like we’re controlled by what’s happening around us. But that feeling of defeat and powerlessness? It stops when we start to have a heavenly perspective.
Jesus had an eternal perspective. He wasn’t swayed by the opinions and circumstances in this world; he knew this life wasn’t all there was. After trying (and failing) to let Jesus go away without a conviction, the Roman governor, Pilate, finally tried to pull a power play of his own:
“’Why don’t you talk to me?’ Pilate demanded. ‘Don’t you realize that I have the power to release you or crucify you?’” (v.10)
But Pilate’s power play didn’t phase Jesus --
“Then Jesus said, ‘You would have no power over me at all unless it were given to you from above. So the ones who handed me over to you has the greater sin.’” (v. 11)
Jesus knew: no circumstance, no relationship, no threat, no opposition, no rejection has power over me. I am empowered by the one and only God himself.
What if we lived with this same knowledge? Through our faith in Christ Jesus, there is nothing – no divorce, no debt, no addiction, no broken relationship, no failure, no persecution, no rejection – that has ultimate power over us. We are empowered by the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
Let’s live with a heavenly perspective today.
Prayer: God, I pray that nothing distracts me from living for you and you alone. I admit the areas of my life that consume so much of my focus, the broken parts of myself – and I invite you in. I pray my weakness will be made perfect in your strength. Amen.