“Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” asked the governor. “Barabbas,” they answered.
“What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called Christ?” Pilate asked. They all answered, “Crucify him!”
“Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate. But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!”
When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!” All the people answered, “Let his blood be on us and on our children!”
Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified. (Matt. 27:21-26)
So, if you were in the crowd, what name would you yell? You probably want to believe that you would be different from everyone else and you would cry out “JESUS.” Unfortunately, each one of us would have most likely joined in with the crowd and yelled “Barabbas” right along with the rest. At the beginning of that week everyone wanted Jesus, but things had changed.
Have things changed in your life? Did you at one time cry out for Jesus, but now He is being crowded out? Beth Moore states that “if we aren’t worshipping God then we are worshipping something else.”
What are you choosing to worship? Personal desires, Wants, Success, Money, Comfort, Family? Kathy Troccoli in her study on How to Live a Fulfilled Life presents the following thoughts:
In our affections, something else steals His place
In our addictions, something else holds His place
In our desires, something else fills His place
In our relationships, someone else takes His place
What or Who are you choosing to fill His place? Joshua challenged the people in Joshua 24:15 with the question – whom will you choose to serve? Both Joshua and the people picked to serve God. If we pick God, then we are also choosing to obey God and put away all other Idols (or things that take His place). “Then put away the foreign gods that are among you, and incline your heart to the Lord, the God of Israel” (Joshua 24:23).
If you have chosen to pick Jesus – You Choose God – You have chosen Life! (Read Deut. 30: 15-20)
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (James 4:8).
When we draw near (pick) to God, He will draw near to us. God requires that we exercise our desire toward Him first and He will embrace any believer no matter how long or to what extent we went away from Him. God stands ready to accept us with open arms. “The Lord is near to all who call upon Him” (Psalm 145:18).
Choose today to PICK JESUS!
Written by Lynne Jahns. Lynne is currently the Director of Barbara’s Place, the addiction recovery for women at America’s Keswick.