Tag Archives: justice

Mark Caserta: “Which one do you want released, Jesus or Barabbas?”

14 Jan

Why do we allow the loudest voices in the crowd to prevail?

Mark Caserta has been an opinion columnist for over 22 years and is editor for Free State Patriot.

January 14, 2023

“Reproductive rights are human rights!  Border security is discrimination!  Mankind is responsible for climate change!  New gun laws will save lives!  The U.S. Constitution is antiquated in today’s world!”

“Crucify Him!”

Why do we allow the loudest voice in the crowd to prevail???

Now, it was customary before the Passover feast for the Roman Governor to release to the people any one prisoner they chose.  At the time, two of the prisoners they were holding were Jesus of Nazareth and Barabbas.

Jesus was the Christ, son of the living God, He had been arrested under the guise of treason.  Jesus had done no wrong, committed no sin.  In fact, He drew crowds by the thousands because of His compassion, His ability to heal the sick, restore sight to the blind and raise the dead.  The Bible depicts numerous stories of how enormous crowds followed Jesus, the Messiah for whom they had waited for years.  He emerged as the prophesied arrival of the Son of Man of whom John the Baptist had foretold and ultimately lost his life defending. 

Jesus’ arrival had stirred the hearts of the people and caused them to gather in masses!  They believed in Him.  They followed Him.  He gave them hope.

Barabbas was a notorious criminal, deserving of imprisonment. He has been arrested and imprisoned for being a murderer, an insurrectionist who wanted to overthrow the Roman government.  Barabbas was deserving of imprisonment. 

But Jesus was a threat to the religious status quo.  His popularity threatened the power of few, self-serving, individuals who sought only to exalt themselves above others.  He must be stopped.  The chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd congregating to see the “judicial” reality show, to ask for Barabbas and to put Jesus to death.

“Which of the two do you want me to release for you?” Pilate asked the crowd.

“Barabbas”, the crowd yelled.

“Then what shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?”  Again, they all said, “Crucify Him!”

“Why, what evil has He done?” Pilate asked the people.  But the few who had gathered had no legitimate reason for their response.  They kept yelling and yelling, “Crucify Him!”

Rather than starting a riot, Pilate took water and metaphorically washed his hands in front of the crowd, saying “I am innocent of this Man’s blood; see to that yourselves.”

And the mob which had gathered, ignorantly yelled, “His blood shall be on us and our children”. 

Barabbas was released and Jesus, the Son of God, was put to death because of a few people who had been purchased by the leaders of the day to be the loudest, most vocal people in the crowd.

I’ve often wondered, where were the thousands of people who supported Jesus during his 3 years of ministry?  Surely, once they heard of this travesty of a trial they would rise to Jesus’ defense.

Surely thousands of Jesus’ followers would be heard above the few who had been lawlessly influenced to yell, “Crucify Him” at the trial!  Where were these people when Jesus needed them???

Can’t you see how this story is meant for us, today? Look around you!  Can’t you see that the voices of only a persistent few are being heard above the righteous – above Christians who follow Jesus!

Surely, these thousands of Jesus’ followers will be heard above the few who have been purchased and compelled to espouse anti-Christian beliefs among society!

Surely, they won’t allow the children to be murdered!  Surely, they’ll help uphold the laws of the land!  Surely, they’ll stand for Jesus, the one who willingly gave His life so that we can have life more abundantly!

Brothers and sisters, we are as guilty as those who hid in the shadows during Jesus’ crucifixion if we allow the minority of evil voices around us to control the events that unfold.

Our society is rapidly declining at a rate I never thought possible. And I refuse to believe it is the will of the majority of the people! It is a result of the minority, albeit loudest voices among us!

Are you hiding among the shadows?  Are you raising your voice in protest of the wrongs surrounding your children?

Would you be one of those who allowed Jesus the Christ to be crucified?  Or would you have risen to His defense?  What is justice worth to you?

It’s the same scenario! This story is meant for our day!

Willing or unwilling, this blood shall be on us and our children if we stay silent.  Just as it was on that sorrowful day, this blood will be on our hands and our children will pay the price.

What will you choose to do?

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