Matthew 27:18  For he knew that for envy they had delivered him.

19 When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.

20 But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.

21 The governor answered and said unto them, Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you? They said, Barabbas.

22 Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let him be crucified.

23 And the governor said, Why, what evil hath he done? But they cried out the more, saying, Let him be crucified.

24 When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it.

25 Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children. 

Introductory Thoughts

Every choice in life can yield eternal consequences, some vastly significant, some of lesser importance. No clearer demonstration exists than the many decisions surrounding Christ’s crucifixion. The Jews had unjustly delivered Jesus to the governor. As a gesture to the people at the Roman feast, Pilate frequently released to them a prisoner. In this instance, he gave the Jews a choice between two prisoners—a vile man or the innocent Son of God. Barabbas was justly imprisoned as a robber (John 18:40) and murderer (Mark 15:7). This simple decision turned quite complex for the Jews. The people rejected the sinless Son of God and chose to release a guilty man. With evil hearts and wicked intentions, they cried out for the release of Barabbas. Making matters worse, they demanded that Jesus be crucified though He had done nothing worthy of death. The people became pawns of Satan though they were unaware that Jesus was born to die. He was brought to this point to bear the very sin they just committed, along with the sins of the whole world.

 Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): What is likely to happen when mom or dad ask you to pick up your toys and get ready for bed and you choose to keep on playing? How does the Lord feel about this kind of a decision?
  • (For everyone): It is important to be a decision maker, but equally important to make the right decisions. What were the wrong decisions made by those in our passage?
  • In this passage, the decisions made by the people showed that they rejected Jesus. Are there times when your decisions reflect the same type of behaviour? What can you do to avoid making these decisions?

 Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask the Lord to help you avoid making evil decisions. Ask Him to help you understand the consequences of these choices.
  • Pray that the Lord will show you how your evil decisions have an affect on you, others around you, and God too.