Luke and The Lost
It is sad to say but humans are drawn together by a common enemy. Two very opposing sides in life can come together quickly if both feel threatened by another point of view that affects both of them for any reason. We see it happen in families. We have all heard the phrase “blood is thicker than water”. I have been told by friends in law enforcement that what police dread, most of all, is responding to a domestic dispute call. A man might be harassing and beating on his screaming wife, but when a policeman comes and tries to intervene, both the husband and wife turn on the police officers! Crazy, I know.
Two sisters fight continually until someone at school threatens one of the sisters. Who will fight for their sister? You’ve got it…the other sister. Common enemy.
Competitive businesses will come together and fight for their justice if the town changes laws or raises taxes for both of them. A common enemy brings all together to fight for their “rights” and privileges to make money. Common enemy.
Countries who have completely opposing views and beliefs about how governments should be run come together when another country becomes a threat to them. Common enemy.
Crowds made up of many individuals with different view points about life come together at a huge concert when a shooter decides to spray them with bullets meant to kill. They suddenly and immediately help each other to escape. They help each other seek shelter and bind the wounds of those who are hurt. Suddenly and without forethought, a “family” of sorts is formed and bonded to fight or flight all because of a common enemy.
Jesus becomes the Common Enemy on the road to dying for our sin. Opposing groups come together to mock Him, slap Him around through the night, and mash a crown of thorns on his head to force blood to drip from his brow. The high priests shuttle Him from the High Council chamber to the Governor who takes Him to Herod. When curious and crazy Herod could not get a “show” from Jesus, He was sent back again to Pilate. All three of these leader groups did not like each other. But now they have a common enemy that bonds them together.
In the meantime the crowd outside who praised His entry with palm branches days before, now join with the rest of Jesus’ accusers all because they now have a Common Enemy…or so they think. He died for all of them. They just don’t know it….yet.
Luke 22-23, The Message
Slapping Him Around
63-65 The men in charge of Jesus began poking fun at him, slapping him around. They put a blindfold on him and taunted, “Who hit you that time?” They were having a grand time with him.
66-67 When it was morning, the religious leaders of the people and the high priests and scholars all got together and brought him before their High Council. They said, “Are you the Messiah?”
67-69 He answered, “If I said yes, you wouldn’t believe me. If I asked what you meant by your question, you wouldn’t answer me. So here’s what I have to say: From here on the Son of Man takes his place at God’s right hand, the place of power.”
70 They all said, “So you admit your claim to be the Son of God?”
“You’re the ones who keep saying it,” he said.
71 But they had made up their minds, “Why do we need any more evidence? We’ve all heard him as good as say it himself.”
1-2 Then they all took Jesus to Pilate and began to bring up charges against him. They said, “We found this man undermining our law and order, forbidding taxes to be paid to Caesar, setting himself up as Messiah-King.”
3 Pilate asked him, “Is this true that you’re ‘King of the Jews’?”
“Those are your words, not mine,” Jesus replied.
4 Pilate told the high priests and the accompanying crowd, “I find nothing wrong here. He seems harmless enough to me.”
5 But they were vehement. “He’s stirring up unrest among the people with his teaching, disturbing the peace everywhere, starting in Galilee and now all through Judea. He’s a dangerous man, endangering the peace.”
6-7 When Pilate heard that, he asked, “So, he’s a Galilean?” Realizing that he properly came under Herod’s jurisdiction, he passed the buck to Herod, who just happened to be in Jerusalem for a few days.
8-10 Herod was delighted when Jesus showed up. He had wanted for a long time to see him, he’d heard so much about him. He hoped to see him do something spectacular. He peppered him with questions. Jesus didn’t answer—not one word. But the high priests and religion scholars were right there, saying their piece, strident and shrill in their accusations.
11-12 Mightily offended, Herod turned on Jesus. His soldiers joined in, taunting and jeering. Then they dressed him up in an elaborate king costume and sent him back to Pilate. That day Herod and Pilate became thick as thieves. Always before they had kept their distance.
13-16 Then Pilate called in the high priests, rulers, and the others and said, “You brought this man to me as a disturber of the peace. I examined him in front of all of you and found there was nothing to your charge. And neither did Herod, for he has sent him back here with a clean bill of health. It’s clear that he’s done nothing wrong, let alone anything deserving death. I’m going to warn him to watch his step and let him go.”
18-20 At that, the crowd went wild: “Kill him! Give us Barabbas!” (Barabbas had been thrown in prison for starting a riot in the city and for murder.) Pilate still wanted to let Jesus go, and so spoke out again.
21 But they kept shouting back, “Crucify! Crucify him!”
22 He tried a third time. “But for what crime? I’ve found nothing in him deserving death. I’m going to warn him to watch his step and let him go.”
23-25 But they kept at it, a shouting mob, demanding that he be crucified. And finally they shouted him down. Pilate caved in and gave them what they wanted. He released the man thrown in prison for rioting and murder, and gave them Jesus to do whatever they wanted.
Think about it…
–Pilate caved because of the crowd. Do we cave when pressed by the crowd?
–Coming together for the common good should be done with wisdom and foresight. The common good might not be of God.
Dear Heavenly Father,
My heart is overwhelmed with the price you paid for my soul and all others. There are no other words to say how grateful I am, so listen to my heart. You are the “common enemy” of all that is evil who laid down your life so we can be saved and see God again. Thank you, just thank you for you have done, are doing and will do.
In Jesus Name, Amen