Today we are reading from Mark 14: 53-65:
53 They took Jesus to the high priest; and all the chief priests, the elders, and the scribes were assembled. 54 Peter had followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest; and he was sitting with the guards, warming himself at the fire. 55 Now the chief priests and the whole council were looking for testimony against Jesus to put him to death; but they found none. 56 For many gave false testimony against him, and their testimony did not agree. 57 Some stood up and gave false testimony against him, saying, 58 “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, not made with hands.’” 59 But even on this point their testimony did not agree. 60 Then the high priest stood up before them and asked Jesus, “Have you no answer? What is it that they testify against you?” 61 But he was silent and did not answer. Again the high priest asked him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?” 62 Jesus said, “I am; and
‘you will see the Son of Man
seated at the right hand of the Power,’
and ‘coming with the clouds of heaven.’”
63 Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, “Why do we still need witnesses? 64 You have heard his blasphemy! What is your decision?” All of them condemned him as deserving death. 65 Some began to spit on him, to blindfold him, and to strike him, saying to him, “Prophesy!” The guards also took him over and beat him.
We now start the trial and crucifixion of Jesus. These are some of the hardest passages in all the Bible. While we are starting here this week, it is interesting to see that Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent is next week. I guess we are getting a head start.
Today we see Jesus go before the religious leaders. They have false testimony against Him, They abuse Him. They begin to beat, mock and dishonor Him. They begin the process towards the cross. During this notice the abuse that He suffers. Notice the pain, the shame, the dishonor that He goes through.
See what happens to Jesus in all of this.
Pay attention to the insults and all that He endures. See what He is doing for me, for you, and for the sake of the world. Don’t rush past. Don’t move past.
Pay attention to what happens on the way to the cross. Pay attention to the cross. Pay attention to what Jesus goes through. Pay attention to all that He endures for our sake.
Don’t get in such a rush to get to the empty cross that you miss the cross. To understand the beauty and the miracle of the cross, you have to understand the pain and the same of the cross.
Pay attention to what happens to Jesus. Then we will see how great His love is for us.
If you’d like to get each day’s daily scripture reading sent to your phone along with this reading guide, text @39110 to 81010 to sign up!