But it is your custom for me to release to you one prisoner at the time of the Passover. Do you want me to release the King of the Jews? They shouted back, “No, not him! Give us Barabbas! (John 18:39-40).
Barabbas was a criminal. It is said he was involved in an uprising and was a murderer. Pilate, who was overseeing this scene asked the crowd who he should release, Jesus or Barabbas. The crowd chose Jesus. They chose to crucify the Son of God and set free a murderer.
Not much has changed. The world is not a friend of Jesus. The world is against him and those who follow Him. Jesus himself said, “You will be hated by all for my name’s sake.” (Matthew 10:22). So it should not be a surprise that the world seems to be aligned against the things of God. They are. When given a chance, they freed a murderer to crucify God’s son. When given a chance today, the ignore God’s Word for their own devices.
Too often Christianity is sold as a prescription to make everything all better. There is some truth to that – Jesus offers peace, love, forgiveness, redemption, grace, mercy, and blessings – but we need to be careful that we remember those blessings are found in Christ and not in the world. The world hates Jesus.
Jesus, after letting us know that the world does indeed hate us, he finishes his thought saying, “But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 10:22). Our endurance is found in Him. The world will hate us because of Him, but He will help us endure and will save us.
At times, it seems this world is out of control and their is no hope. That changed about 2000 years ago, when the world thought they were choosing the path of Jesus. They did not. He chose to be crucified and die for our sins: “No one takes it (my life) from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father” (John 17:18). Jesus died and was buried, on the third day He rose again. He is coming back again too. That is good news and that is where our hope should be. The world may hate us, the world may seem out of control – but OUR GOD is in control and He is our hope and our salvation. Rest in Him.
Final note – the world may hate us and may hate Jesus – know what Jesus thought about the world? He loved them, enough to die for them – John 3:16 – For God so loved the world…so if God loved the world despite their feelings towards Him, we too should love the world with the love and grace of Jesus. The world may not like you, but you are to love them, love them like Jesus.