We Want Barabbas
As I read the story of Jesus and Barabbas, I realize this story is a reflection. Barabbas makes a very quick appearance in this story so I wanted to dig deeper and get a better understanding of who he was. Barbabbas- the murderer, the thief, and the felon. Barabbas was also a political rebel. Still I think it is crazy that when the Jews had to pick who to release and who to take to the cross, they chose Barabbas to be released.
Okay, so if Barabbas was this kind of person and if the Jews wanted to release him, then Jesus must have been someone worse-Right? Jesus- the King of Jews, the one who performed miracles, the one who healed the blind and raised the dead.
This story began to intrigue me into researching why the Jews wanted Jesus to be crucified so badly, over Barabbas. I could look at this as a government and political fight, but then I looked deeper into the reflection; the foreshadow. This decision that the Jews made is a reflection of us humans choosing sin instead of Jesus.
Let's break the story down and see how this was played.
Jesus and Barabbas are both standing in front of Pilot, where he is weighing the crime of both men. After hearing and seeing who each of these people are, Pilot finds no fault in Jesus. Still, the crowd cries out "Give us Barabbas, we want Barabbas" and "Crucify Jesus". Giving into what the crowd wants, even though he finds no fault in Jesus, Pilot releases Barabbas. Barabbas walks away, says nothing to Jesus, there is no "thank you" no acknowledgement of what Jesus just did for his life. Barabbas would have been sentenced to death. At this time, you would think Jesus would do something crazy- some kind of miracle or to show them who He really was. Jesus sat there silently on the platform, letting them take Barabbas and letting them take Him. But Jesus was obedient. Obedient to what His Father sent Him there for. Jesus knew now that the Father would have to treat Jesus like Barabbas, so He could treat Barabbas like Jesus.
Jesus didn't just die instead of Barabbas, Jesus died for Barabbas. Jesus loved Barabbas, enough to carry his sins to the cross. See, the thing is, Barabbas never acknowledged what Christ actually did for him. He didn't see the depth of His love. He thought it was an easy way out; to still go on living like he was living. Us humans do the same. Most of us don't fully understand the cross. We do not accept what it actually meant. But Jesus died as us. He took on our fleshly desires, our pride, our lies, our faults, nailed it to the cross and BECAME our sin. Not only did he nail it to the cross, but He left our sin there! Many of us live as though the cross did not even exist. We still live like we are bound. We do not live in bondage anymore- We are FREE! Free indeed. He gives us Grace and sees our sin no more.
I am so grateful that we had our Jesus take the blame of our sin and our sin as a whole! There is no more condemnation, no more guilt. He took it all on that day. THAT is the pure definition of love. THAT is who Jesus is.
To hear Pastor Judah Smith's illustration of Barabbas and Jesus watch this video. Judah Smith: Jesus is Loving Barabbas- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IPah8hxFTaM. This video had me in tears. Also, if anyone is curious about who Jesus' character is, Judah has an amazing book that opened my eyes to the true heart of Jesus, called "Jesus Is ___."