Then the chief priests and the elders of the people assembled in the palace of the high priest, whose name was Caiaphas, and they plotted to arrest Jesus in some sly way and kill him. (Matthew 26:3–4, NIV 1984).
My Musings – When was then? Immediately following Jesus’ Olivet Discourse, which He closed by relating how the goats will be separated (“to eternal punishment”) from the sheep (“to eternal life”) and then stating “as you know, the Passover is two days away—and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.” (Matthew 26:2, NIV 1984).
Crucifying Jesus was meant to silence Him. To put an end to His teaching. Instead of an ending with a period, it was a beginning with an exclamation point. No other event in history has changed the world more, because it changed the eternal destiny of all who put their faith in Him (the sheep). Today, some 2000 years later, people (the goats) are still trying to silence Him, change His message, or claim it is no more relevant than any of the other world religions.
But, “I am far within the mark when I say that all the armies that ever marched, and all the navies that ever were built, and all the parliaments that ever sat, and all the kings that ever reigned, put together, have not affected the life of man upon this earth as powerfully as that one solitary life—Jesus!” (Attributed to, Dr. James Allen Francis).
My Advice – Who do you trust for the truth? CNN or Fox? A Democrat or a Republican? This religion or that? How about the Son of God? How about someone who willingly gave their life to separate you from the goats and make you a sheep? Someone who rose from the dead? A fact attested to by over 500 witnesses who saw Him alive after His death (sworn to by the Roman death squad) and burial (His tomb sealed and guarded by Roman guards). A truth that has never been debunked.
Jesus claimed to be the truth. He also claimed to be the only way to God. He did not come and die and rise from the dead to merely form one more religion. His mission, from the Throne of God, was much more critical than that. He came to redeem mankind from being thrown “outside, into the darkness [Hell], where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 25:30, NIV 1984). He did not come to send us there. He came to save us from going there.
“You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about His [doing all that He did, merely to form just one more religion].” (C. S. Lewis, edited).
My prayer for all who read this, is that they will “fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God.”