HH, Godfrey Gregg D.Div
7. YOU CAN’T REMAIN INNOCENT BEFORE HIM (Matthew 27:25-26).
One of the most dreadful curses that anyone has ever uttered was the curse that the mob before Pilate uttered on themselves. Pilate said, “I am innocent of the blood of this just Person”; and Matthew writes, “And all the people answered and said, ‘His blood be on us and on our children” (Matthew 27:25). And with that, Barabbas was released to them; and after Pilate brutally scourged Jesus, he delivered Him over to be crucified.
Sadly, many people in history have taken these words as justification for great atrocities against the Jewish people. I believe that any person or group who has persecuted the Jewish people on this basis were doing a great evil—and what’s more, they were daring to touch the apple of God’s eye (Deuteronomy 32:10)!
And let’s also remember a few other things. Let’s remember that it wasn’t just the Jewish people who crucified our Lord. It was also the Gentiles who did so. We are all guilty of His blood because we are all the sinners that He died to save. Let’s also remember that all of the apostles were Jewish, and the early church was all Jewish. Let’s remember that the teaching of the Bible is that, when the Jewish people are truly restored to faith in their precious Messiah, it will be as life from the dead for this world (Romans 11:15). It’s God’s plan that it one day happen—and this dreadful curse that the Jewish people before Pilate spoke against themselves will not stop it from being so.
And let me add one more thought to the words of this curse concerning Jesus’ blood—as dreadful as that curse is. I desperately needed that blood that Jesus shed on the cross to atone for my own sins. I am utterly guilty before a holy God; and yet, it is His precious blood that washes me clean in God’s sight. And so I say those words for myself today, but with an entirely different intention. I pray, “His blood be upon me! His blood be upon my children!”
Well; here’s what the Bible says you can’t do with Him. You can’t ignore the claims about Him. You can’t help but marvel at Him. You can’t set another in His place. You can’t help thinking of Him. You can’t stay indifferent toward Him. You can’t wash your hands of Him. And when all is said and done, you can’t claim to be innocent before Him.
But what can you do with Him? Thankfully, the Bible tells us that also.
Not long after Pilate’s encounter with Jesus—after He was raised from the dead, many of these same people before Pilate heard Peter preach a powerful message to them—saying,
“Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36).
The Bible tells us that the Holy Spirit convicted them of the truth about Jesus. It says,
“Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, ‘Men and brethren, what shall we do?’” (Acts 2:37).
And then, it was Peter’s turn to give them the answer they were seeking,
“Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. 39 For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” (Acts 2:38-39).
Repent of disbelief, and be baptized in Jesus’ name as a public confession that you have placed your faith in Him—that’s the answer to that great question, “What then shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?”