So you want Barabbas?
Matthew 27: 21-22: Which of the two do you want me to release to you asked the governor? Barabbas they answered.
This is the most intense time of the Christian year. This week called Passion is a hard time for the true believer. It begins with the triumphantal entry known as Palm Sunday, followed by the Last Supper on Maundy Thursday, the taking of Jesus by the soldiers in the Garden of Gethsemane, the trial in Pilate’s Court which led to a guilty verdict by Pilot. Christ was beaten then nailed on the Cross to die for our sins on Calvary’s Hill just outside of Jerusalem’s gate. How can this be called Good Friday?
They took his body down and placed it in a borrowed grave and waited 3 days. Mary Magdalen and Mary the mother of Jesus went to go anoint the body to preserve it. When they entered the tomb, they found the tomb empty accept for two angels announcing his resurrection. Wow what a week.
Jesus died so we could know freedom. There was a glimmer of hope to spare Jesus’s innocent life in this week of passion. Each year at Passover, the Roman Governor would ask the people of Jerusalem which condemned man they wanted him to release from jail. The crowd was given a choice of who should be released. Did the crowd want to release the man of peace, healing and hope or did they want Pilot to release the guilty criminal murderer and insurrectionist named Barabbas? The crowd wanted Barabbas. So you want Barabbas? Why did Jesus just stand there and not say a word or plead for his own life? Why did He who knew no sin become our sin remain silent?
Jesus allowed the crowed to cry out for the release of this wicked murderer. Why? So that Barabbas might be free. Not so that he could be free from the steel bars of a Roman jail but rather he would have the opportunity be free from sin deep in his soul. That sin showed up in his hatred and violence. Barabbas could be free deep in his soul and spirit if he would only see Jesus as the savior and put his trust in the One who took his place.
Jesus wanted Barabbas in heaven. Jesus knew the only way that could happen. If he took the sins of us all upon himself and die in our place on the Cross. We like Barabbas can become people of faith and receive eternal life rather than be left in a prison of self-centeredness called sin. The choice is ours.
We are not sure what happened to Barabbas. We don’t know if he received Christ and became a believer or if he stayed in the ways of insurrection, hatred and murder. We do know that Jesus is compassionate and came to give us life and life more abundantly. The compassion of Christ showed again even while he suffered death on the cross. Do you remember the conversations he had with the two other men who were crucified on either side of him? One man mocked Christ. The other man understood and accepted the punishment for his crime and believed Christ. Jesus forgave that man and said to him, “Today you shall be with me in paradise.”
The key is where we put our faith and trust. If you put your faith and trust in Jesus then you will have forgiveness of sin, hope for today and heaven as your home tomorrow.
Come and celebrate God’s love with us each week at the United Parish.
See you soon,
The office will be closed Monday May 30th Memorial Day. Cheri will not be in the office to answer your phone calls or to help you. She will be in the office the following day on Tuesday MAy 31st. If you have an emergency please contact Pastor Calvin Miller. Thank you!
If you missed our Sunday Service or just want to refresh youself !
Our Sunday Service will be broadcast on Winchendon Public Access Cable TV Channel 8 Fridays, 9:00-10:30 AM and 4:00 - 5:30 PM
Wednesady nights Pastor Cal will be having an hour of prayer from 6-7pm here at the United Parish in the sanctuary. Where one or two are gathered together in His name, Jesus's presence is there. Please come and join Pastor Cal and enter into the presence of the Lord while praying for others who are in need.
Mega Sports Adventure is coming this summer to the United Parish.
Tuesday June 21st - Thursday June 23rd 8:30 AM - 12:00 PM
All kids having completed Kindergarten thru Fifth Grade are welcome to join in the fun!!
Click here to fill in the online registration form