We must turn away from the “crowd” and focus more on the truth of Jesus.
Passage – Mark 15
Introduction – Kirk leads with a video clip of Pilate asking the crowd who they want freed: Jesus or Barabbas. The crowd chooses Barabbas.
Kirk goes on to explain the various roles, groups, and political powers, who are involved in Jesus’ trial.
Sanhedrin – the Jewish high court in the area. It takes request to Pilate, who then has the authority to grant the request and make it legally approved.
Pilate – he’s the governor of the Roman territory of Judah. He has the legal authority from the Roman empire to issue a death sentence. The Roman empire takes control away from their territories regarding death sentences.
The charges – Pilate is frustrated with the Sanhedrin because they aren’t charging him with anything that warrants death. He is frustrated because the Sanhedrin is asking him not to do his role as Judge and Governor, and instead they only want him to grant his request – basically usurping Rome’s power.
The crowd – the Jewish people are stirred up by the Sanhedrin against Jesus. This reminds Pilate of the Sanhedrin’s power but he realizes that it isn’t the Sanhedrin who is making the final request — which means it is up to Pilate to satisfied the crowd and to prevent civil unrest.
Barabbas – a rebel against the Roman empire, a man trying to use murder and violence to free the Jews from under the Roman rule.
Kirk then focuses on Pilate. We read Mark 15:1-15.
Pilate – he has the authority of Rome behind him. He has armies at his command. He feels as though he has the ultimate power in this territory. Yet he ends up bending to the pressures of the crowd, and the political situation. Caesar had sent word to Pilate that he must not allow another insurrection to occur. If it does Pilate would be removed from his role and lose all his political status and power.
Kirk poses the question: The crowd or the cross? Who are you listening to when it comes to the person of Jesus? Who are you seeking to please with your perspective and understanding of Jesus? We must turn down the “crowd” and focus more on the truth of Jesus. This can be done in 4 ways:
1. Get into God’s Word. Reading the Bible for a few weeks is great, but don’t stop there! Make the decision to do it. Make a declaration.
2. Get out of the situations that draw you into “the crowd” (Prov 11:3, Mark 14:66-72)
3. Surround yourself with a Godly inner circle for support and accountability. (Prov 13:20)
About the Speaker
Kirk Wood is the associate pastor of community engagement at SouthRidge Church in Langley. He grew up loving hockey and even became a pro hockey ref, as well as a fire fighter, all before becoming a pastor.
About the Mark Series
The Mark Series was started in January of 2013 with the purpose of learning about the man who claimed to be God’s son. This series of messages will cover Jesus’ life, his values, his teachings, his actions, and his claim to be the saviour.