Monday, October 24, 2016

John 18:19-24

John 18:19-24
Contemporary English Version (CEV)

  The high priests hated Jesus -- they hated him for the threat he posed to their positions of power.  They were secure at the top of the religious food chain, but here came Jesus, preaching selflessness and sacrifice and submission, and they had spent so much energy securing themselves and their position that the idea of serving others had become repulsive to them.
  It's hard to follow Jesus -- there is a part of us that hates submitting to his Lordship, because our selfish hearts view it as sacrifice that costs everything but gains nothing.  We worry what we will get out of it.
  Jesus, however, paints a new picture, and it takes a lifetime of faithful obedience to train our hearts to understand this new paradigm.  He promises us the Kingdom, and he shows us the way to God -- he IS the way to God! -- assuring us that our sacrifice may seem painful at the time, but it is actually the road to blessing.  Jesus sacrifices for us, then fills our hearts with grace and love, pointing us outward, to share what we have received.
  But the high priests only view it as a threat.  They don't realize it is actually the road to satisfaction, if we are willing to receive what Christ offers.

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