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Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of October 8, 2006

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of October 8, 2006 ********** As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 7, 2006
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      Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of October 8, 2006

      **********

      As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
      Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
      devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a
      Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.

      Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
      meditation. We hope you will be blessed.

      Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.

      Easily persuaded

      "Now the chief priests and the elders persuaded the
      crowds to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus killed.
      The governor again said to them, 'Which of the two
      do you want me to release for you?' And they said,
      'Barabbas.' Pilate said to them, 'Then what should
      I do with Jesus who is called the Messiah?' All of
      them said, 'Let him be crucified!'"
      Matthew 27:20-22

      Despite the urgent message received from his wife,
      Pilate hesitated too long. The influential chief
      priests and elders easily persuaded the crowd to
      choose the life of Barabbas, a convicted felon,
      over the life of Jesus. The hostile authorities
      smelled blood and seized their opportunity without
      hesitation. They would never again have Jesus so
      vulnerable and within their malicious reach.

      Humans sometimes have a herd mentality and are
      easily persuaded. Every crowd has a personality
      that can be influenced and swayed by skilled and
      determined ringleaders. These ringleaders were
      leading citizens and leaders in the religious
      community. It is hard, if not impossible, to
      stop the momentum when the masses collect and
      begin to shout. The most law-abiding citizens
      can get swept up with the rioting crowds.
      Violence erupts and can quickly escalate out
      of control.

      Pilate was faced with a potential riot on his
      hands, and he lost his courage in the face of
      the frenzied shouts to crucify Jesus. He was
      dumbfounded by the intensity of the entire
      situation. Whatever resolve Pilate had to
      rectify this grievous situation was lost in
      the chaos of the tragic and regrettable
      situation. Barabbas was a hardened criminal.
      Jesus had done nothing wrong, but he was
      clearly a victim of religious hate. A riot
      was brewing and Pilate had to make a decision
      within seconds or lose complete control of the
      crowd and situation. Crucifixion is a horrible
      way to die, and it was usually reserved for
      the worst offenders. What would he do?

      Again pause and learn from the crowd and Pilate
      through our holy musings. Can you imagine being
      as easily swayed by corrupt religious leaders
      and their rhetoric of hate? Has there ever
      been a contemporary situation where an innocent
      person was condemned through public opinion,
      swayed by influential leaders with a special
      interest agenda? Where are you in this riled
      crowd? What would you do if you were Pilate?

      God, give me courage and strength to learn the
      hard lessons in today's scripture reading. As
      this holy story continues, transform me with
      understanding and insight as I ponder this
      horrific situation. Amen.

      Grace and peace,

      Chi Rho Press

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