In this message, from week seven, Pastor Greg shares the story of the Passion of the Christ through the eyes of Barabbas, the murderer who was let go in place of Jesus in a dramatic monologue presentation. It all ends with Jesus’ words on the cross “Tetelestai! (It Is Finished!)”
Pilate asked, “What is truth?” When he had said this he went back outside to the Jewish leaders and announced, “I find no basis for an accusation against Him. But it is your custom that I release one prisoner for you at the Passover. So do you want me to release for you the King of the Jews?” Then they shouted back, “Not this man, but Barabbas!” (Now Barabbas was a revolutionary.) ~ John 18:38-40
Now the men who were holding Jesus under guard began to mock Him and beat Him. They blindfolded Him and asked Him repeatedly, “Prophesy! Who hit you?” They also said many other things against Him, reviling Him. ~ Luke 22:63-65
Then Pilate took Jesus and had Him flogged severely. The soldiers braided a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and they clothed Him in a purple robe. They came up to Him again and again and said, “Hail, king of the Jews!” And they struck Him repeatedly in the face. Again Pilate went out and said to the Jewish leaders, “Look, I am bringing Him out to you, so that you may know that I find no reason for an accusation against Him.” So Jesus came outside, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, “Look, here is the man!” When the chief priests and their officers saw Him, they shouted out, “Crucify Him! Crucify Him!” Pilate said, “You take him and crucify Him! Certainly I find no reason for an accusation against Him!” ~ John 19:1-6
Then Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus, and carrying his own cross he went out to the place called “The Place of the Skull” (called in Aramaic Golgotha). There they crucified him along with two others, one on each side, with Jesus in the middle. ~ John 19:16-18
One of the criminals who was hanging there railed at Him, saying, “Aren’t You the Christ? Save Yourself and us!” But the other rebuked him, saying, “Don’t you fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? And we rightly so, for we are getting what we deserve for what we did, but this man has done nothing wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when You come in your kingdom.” And Jesus said to him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with Me in paradise.” ~ Luke 23:39-43
After this Jesus, realizing that by this time everything was completed, said (in order to fulfill the scripture), “I am thirsty!” A jar full of sour wine was there, so they put a sponge soaked in sour wine on a branch of hyssop and lifted it to His mouth. When He had received the sour wine, Jesus said, “Tetelestai! “(It is finished!) Then He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. ~ John 19:28-30
ALOHA GROUP DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
READ: John 18:37-40
1) Why did Pilate answer Jesus “What is truth?” How does his question relate to the way many in our culture still view the concept of truth?
2) Pilate said he found no basis to accuse, let alone, torture or kill Jesus. Yet he went along with the plan of the ruling Jews to crucify Jesus. Why would he do that?
3) Barabbas was essentially a terrorist as far as the Roman Empire was concerned. He was a murderer, a zealot, a revolutionary, a rabble-rouser. What was it that Jesus was doing that made the Jews feel He was a bigger risk to their way of life than Barabbas?
4) In our modern day culture it is still common for people to elevate rabble rousers while continuing to have a negative view of Jesus. Why do you think that is?
READ: John 19:1-6
1) Pastor Greg, as Barabbas, went into a great amount of detail about scourging and its effects. How did that make you feel to think of Jesus undergoing that kind of torture. Greg pointed out that this beating was the cost of our sin. When you realize that every sin you commit is another piece of those 39 scourging stripes across Jesus’ back does it give you pause and make it easier for you to resist temptation? Why or why not?
READ: John 19:16-18 & Luke 23:39-43
1) Pastor Greg, as Barabbas, pointed out that this image of Jesus hanging between two thieves, one who mocks Him and rejects Him and one who humbles himself and receives Him is a microcosm view of all of human history. At the cross, all of humanity was divided into two giant categories, those who receive Jesus and those who reject Him. Honestly speaking, which thief do you agree with more? Why?
READ: John 19:28-30
1) Pastor Greg, as Barabbas, pointed out that Jesus shouted the Greek word “Tetelestai” and mentioned that it was a farming term, indicating your work in the fields was done for the day, and you had accomplished everything you wanted to. Does it feel odd for Jesus to be shouting such a sentiment while hanging bloody and broken on across after the horribly painful day He had? Why does Jesus seem to feel good about this day?