On the road, this week having meetings with friends, business associates, going to Richmond Va, then to Sarasota Fla, then Saint Petersburg, then Tampa, then off to Nashville for 3 days, then to Moorhead Kentucky, then back to NJ.
This was not a relaxing trip as I did too many miles in the car. However it would not make sense to fly to these destinations, as there would be too many airline and car rental connections in such a short amount of time, so I opted to meditate on a long car journey, it will most likely end up over 3000 miles in less than a week.
Sharing the song “Amen” and “It Is Finished” this week as we celebrate the last days of Jesus right up to his last dying breath on the cross as he spoke to his Father in Heaven, with “It Is Finished”
“All churches have good and bad”
“God did not create a religion, the man did”
To begin describing what happened on Good Friday, we need to quickly recap the events that led up to this point. Basically, Jesus had been betrayed by one of his disciples, Judas, who let the authorities know where Jesus was. So after the Last Supper, and whilst the disciples were sleeping in the garden of Gethsemane, soldiers came and arrested Jesus.
Jesus before the court
During the night of his arrest, Jesus was taken to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the teachers of the Jewish law and the elders had assembled.
One of Jesus’ disciples, Peter, followed him at a distance, right up to the courtyard of the high priest. He entered and sat down with the guards to see the outcome.
The chief priests and the whole court were looking for false evidence against Jesus so that they could put him to death. But they didn’t find any, though many false witnesses came forward. Finally, two came forward and, after some questioning, were able to convict Jesus on blasphemy charges.
Peter Disowns Jesus
As mentioned earlier, Peter was sitting out in the courtyard, listening to what was taking place. At this point, a bunch of locals thought they recognized him and accused him of being a follower of Jesus.
Afraid of the repercussions, Peter denied knowing Jesus three times. It was at this point that Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” He went outside and wept bitterly, full of shame.
Judas hangs himself
Still early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders made their plans on how to have Jesus executed. They bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of the area during the time.
When Judas saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, which he was given for informing them on Jesus’ location. Judas threw the money into the temple and left. He then went away and hanged himself.
Jesus before Pilate
Meanwhile, Jesus stood before Pilate and the governor asked him about the charges leveled against him by the Jewish court. Pilate was amazed that Jesus didn’t try to deny the charges.
During these days, it was the governor’s custom at the time of festival to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd. At that time, they had a well-known prisoner whose name was Barabbas. When the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them if they wanted him or Jesus to be released.
The chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed.
“What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?” Pilate asked. They all answered, “Crucify him!” “Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate. But the mob continued to shout for Jesus to be crucified.
When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, and saw that an uproar was starting, he washed his hands in front of the crowd, telling them that ki