“And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar's friend…”
If you are a disciple of Jesus, you probably believe that God had a plan that directed his life on earth to a particular end—crucifixion. Thus his words, “O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.”
However, as he does in most cases, God used human agencies and players to work his ultimate will. Jesus was not crucified because he was the Son of God, not directly. He was crucified for his defiance of Roman authority.
The moneychangers that he drove from the Temple, the Jewish Council, and the penny he refused to carry, and so had to ask for, were all tokens of Roman rule. Pilate knowing him innocent of anything worthy of crucifixion, and wanting to let, was finally swayed by one argument—if you don’t crucify him—you are defying Caesar’s will to have his rule honored without question.
I stood in a church yesterday and heard an announcement that I imagine was going on in churches all over America. The pastor, an honest and sincere man whom I love as a brother in Christ, was preparing his hearers for closing the church at the first whiff of a government mandate.
That was an error the first time. The same people, without repentance for the first error, are planning how to compound that mistake to mollify the fearmongering of the government-run media. No matter how you twist it, this is not what Jesus would do, and you have only to look at his life to know it.
If you think you need to take precautions—take them, there is no word in scripture contrary to thinking for yourself and doing what you feel is right. You are not at liberty to decide the proper course for anyone else.
Cite me the Golden Rule and I will tell you that what I want others to do for me is stand up in Jesus’s footsteps and say, “This is the way, walk in it.” I will do the same for others.
Count me a heretic if you will, it is my intention never to be seen again in any church walking this path. I shall not be ashamed of the company with which that label lumps me. Being true to Christ has always meant taking sides. Time to take yours.