The Protection of Silence
“Dave, whatever you do in your doctoral defense keep control of your mouth! Answer exactly what they ask you, succinctly, and clearly. Don’t hang yourself by having diarrhea of the mouth.”
For this New Yorker raised in a family of five where we made our points by talking louder and faster, this was wise advice, but tough to implement. Years later I’m still working on learning the protection of silence. So today I need to watch Jesus closely in his trial before Pilate so that I can learn the protection of silence, knowing when it’s time to seal my lips.
“Right away, early in the morning the chief priests with the elders and the religious legal experts with the entire Sanhedrin came to a decision about Jesus. Binding Jesus, they led him away and handed him over to Pilate.
Pilate asked him, ‘Are you the King of the Jews?’ Jesus replied, ‘You are saying...’ Now the chief priests were bringing many charges against him. So Pilate asked him again, ‘Will you not say anything to all these charges?’ Jesus had nothing further to say in response and Pilate was astounded.”
If Jesus came right out and said that he was the King of the Jews, he would have been directly accused of insurrection against Caesar and fallen right into the hands of the religious leaders’ false charges against him. Zealots would have seized upon this declaration and as in the days of the Maccabees initiated insurrection.
So Jesus answered Pilate’s question with a question, and when the priests kept hurling false charges against him, his silence, as we will discover on Monday, moved Pilate to see the true motivations behind all the yelling and accusations. Sometimes a question and then silence is the only way to preserve the truth.
LORD, control my tongue today, especially when I feel judged or misunderstood. Help me to allow Jesus’ Spirit living in my life to know when it’s time to seal my lips.
For more from Dave Wyrtzen please visit TruthEncounter.com!