Thugs and the Son of Man - Dave's Daily Devo - July 18


Thugs and the Son of Man   

Mark 14:64-65

The prisoner sits in a chair with his feet and hands bound. The interrogators get in his face and shout obscenities and then do far more. They take their fist and start pounding the defenseless prisoner again and again. We might not have seen it in person, but we certainly have seen it on TV or in the movies. 

Torture, ridicule, physical assault, humiliation, religious bigotry, and the hopelessness of helplessness in the face of controlling power—it’s happening today in the Middle East in the Syrian War and in the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, and it was happening one thousand nine hundred and eighty-five years ago in the high priest’s courtyard in Jerusalem as at the climax of Jesus’ hearing before the high priest. The shouts of “Blasphemer! Blasphemer!” seized the group. 

“’You’ve heard the blasphemy! You’ve heard this man claim to be the Messiah and the Son of God. What do you think?’ And they all condemned him, committed to the punishment that he deserved to die. Then some began to spit on him. They blindfolded him and punched him saying, ‘Prophesy!’ And the guards took him and beat him.”     Mark 14:64-65

A few hours before an unnamed woman crashed a private dinner party and tenderly anointed Jesus body with a year’s worth of perfume foreshadowing his death. Now though they were all dressed up in religious robes and paraphernalia, the gathering in the high priest’s court behaved like thugs. 

I need to live in this account of Jesus passion and decide which character I will be. Will I tenderly cherish Jesus and be devoted to him, or will I explode with anger, bigotry and hate against someone I believe is attacking my position, my place of worship, and my way of life?  

Think about it. Jesus had just said that he would sit in the power position at the right hand of God. He would return to earth as the great heavenly judge Daniel prophesied would come. These thugs might have blindfolded Jesus and thought he couldn’t recognize their faces but will he remember their faces at the final judgment? 

LORD,  use what happened to your son to warn my friends who are police officers and soldiers to never give in to these powerful impulses of torture and abuse. Help me to realize how ugly religious leaders can get when they feel threatened. 

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