Washed in Blood

Washed in Blood

So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man's blood; see to it yourselves.”  And all the people answered, “His blood be on us and on our children!” Then he released for them Barabbas, and having scourged Jesus, delivered him to be crucified.
Matthew 27:24-26

The scene is full of irony.  Pilate pleads for his innocence.  He does not realize that there is only one who is innocent and that is the man standing before Him.  The innocent One is put to death in place of all those who are guilty.

The crowds say that Jesus’ blood can be upon them and their children.  They act like it is a bad thing that they are willing to endure to be rid of this troublemaker.  The reality is that the only hope they have of being made clean and being declared as innocent is by Jesus’ blood.

Pilate also washes his hands as if water could make him clean.  No amount of washing would him clean except being washed in the blood of the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.  The blood that poured from his head, his hands, his side, only this blood could make anyone clean.

In Revelation 7, John sees in the vision a multitude of people, dressed in white robes standing before the Lamb, who was slain.  Then one of the elders declared to John that these were ones who had “washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.” (7:14) As we hear the Passion account read again this week and reflect on our Lord’s journey to the cross, the irony is not missed on us.  What Pilate searched for, we have found in Jesus – being declared righteous and cleansed.  What the crowds thought would be bad makes this Friday good, when Jesus sheds His blood for us and our children.  Everything that Jesus came to do, though the crowds intended for evil, God meant it for good.  Thanks be to God that we have been washed in the blood of the Lamb.

Prayer – O Jesus Christ, You are worthy to be praised for took upon Yourself the punishment that we, by our sins, deserved.  Through the blood that You shed on the cross, wash us and cleanse us that we might stand before You with all Your saints and all the company of heaven in glory everlasting, where You will reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen. 

Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan


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