This man was a real outlaw. For years he got away with it. His main grudge was
against the government and he made his feelings known. Demonstrations in the
street were no quiet affair for him. Under his shirt was a knife, always ready
Any opposition had to watch carefully or they would be on the receiving end of
his anger. In fact, there came a day in a street fight when he slew a man in
As we know, crime doesn’t pay — at least most of the time. Behind
bars he awaited his death sentence to be carried out. But instead, one
morning, the authorities set him free. Straight out the door. Gone.
The Roman governor that day had set free someone other that the man whose case
was being heard!
It was customary in that culture to emancipate a prisoner at that time of the
year. But the crowd who brought Jesus to Pilate loudly demanded his death and
a substitute to be set free. That’s how Barabbas came to walk out of
jail. In a very real sense, Jesus died in his place.
Before His death, Jesus said the often-quoted words, “Greater love has
no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends”. On
Veteran’s Day in November you will hear those words again as it is
pointed out that many war heroes gave their lives to protect their country.
They are our substitutes in a way. They died instead of us.
At Easter, we remember Jesus laid down His life not only for friends but for
enemies as well. On the cross, while they taunted him, He prayed Father,
forgive them, they don’t know what they’re doing.
Yes, it was for us He died. In our place. For what reason? An old song says it
well: “There was no other good enough to pay the price of sin; He only
could unlock the gate of heaven and let us in. We may not know... what pains
He had to bear, But we believe it was for us He hung and suffered
Have you ever asked the risen Christ to forgive you and set you on the right
road? Why not?