When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!” All the people answered, “His blood is on us and on our children!” – Matt. 27:24-25 NIV
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Jesus the Christ of the Almighty God for mankind, had commenced his journey to fulfilling destiny with the people, being mainly incited by the Pharisees, the elders and the scribes, laying the following four major accusations against him;
1. He was subverting the nation – Lk. 23:2a.
2. He was opposing payment of taxes to Caesar – Lk. 23:2b.
3. He claims that he is a Messiah, a king of some sort – Lk. 23:2c.
4. He uses his teachings to stir up dissension all over Judea starting from Galilee to Jerusalem – Lk. 23:5
The journey which commenced with his betrayal in the Garden of Getsemane by Judas Iscariot (Lk. 22:47-53) had a brief stop-over before the elders and the teachers of the law, who quickly used the opportunity to arrange their framed up charges against him before taking him before Pilate – Lk. 22:66-71.
In order to present a picture of fairness, Pilate sought the reaction of Jesus Christ to the accusations, especially that relating to his claims of being a king to which his response was in a more of, “I am in agreement with whatever you say” manner. Pilate however was not convinced about the guilt of Jesus Christ and made it known to the crowd who insisted on his being pronounced guilty, so since they had mentioned that he was from Galilee in their accusations, it provided an avenue for him to avoid getting involved in their plot by referring the case to Herod who was also in Jerusalem at the time – Lk. 23:1-7.
Because Jesus refused to respond to all the questions of Herod or react to all the accusations levelled against him by the elders and the scribes, Herod who initially had been excited to see Jesus as it fulfils a long standing desire by him, decided to send him back to Pilate, pronouncing him as not guilty, but not before he and his guards took the opportunity to mock and ridicule Jesus – Lk. 22:8-11. The Bible notes that the case became the platform that reconciled Herod and Pilate, who hitherto were enemies – Lk. 22:12.
Pilate, who was now convinced about the innocence of Jesus, in addition to the message he received from his wife warning him to steer clear of the case due to the experience she had in her dream (Matt. 27:19), offered the elders, teachers and the crowd, Barnabas, a convicted and imprisoned murderer who was involved in an insurrection as a replacement for Jesus Christ, to appease their thirst for blood but they refused and under incitement from their elders, continued to insist on having Jesus crucified.
At this stage, Pilate was left with no choice than to hand him over to them to be crucified but not before symbolically excluding himself from the action and any consequence that may result. Washing his hands with water before them, he declared himself innocent of the blood of the Jesus adding that the responsibility for all the actions rests squarely on them. They equally, in the foundation scripture for today’s devotional accepted, saying that the consequences should not only be on them but also on their children – Matt. 27:25.
If there is any gift of God for man that has been severally misused, it is probably the ability to speak. Although not all people are blessed with this gift of stringing and pronouncing words in a logical manner, most people who have it do not see any reason why they should be cautious of what is being said and in the process have found themselves in bondage due to spoken words. People may say, “talk is cheap”, but the consequence of talk may be too expensive to afford. The crowd not only voiced their acceptance of the consequences of the action that they were about to take but also extended such to their unborn generations. There was not going to be an escape for those innocent people whose only error was that they found themselves being offsprings of careless talkers. They were going to spend their lives battling a curse that they knew nothing about.
The Amalekite that brought the news of Saul’s death to David in Ziklag would probably not have died but for his carelessness with pronounced words. Just as many today talk themselves into trouble, he practically pronounced himself guilty of an offence that he did not commit – 2Sam. 1:3-16. Like David concluded, the mouth of the Amalekite was what testified against him. The inability of Moses to guard his pronouncements, even in the face of fear was what deprived him and his family of full recognition for the deliverance of the Israelites from the Egyptians and his entry into the promised land. In a very direct manner, he asked the Almighty God to send another person on a task that he had been destined for – Exo. 4:13. Many have in a similar manner lost their glory because of such pronouncements made because of fear. The prophet Elijah lost his position with the Lord because of his pronounced Words. He had told the Lord on two occasions that, his being zealous for him had made him a death target and he by his words implied that he was not willing to be a hero, being the only one remaining of all God’s prophets since the others have been killed – 1Kgs. 19:10; 14. He was promptly replaced by Elisha, even when he was still alive just as many also have today lost their position because of their loose tongue. Esau probably thought light of the implication of his pronouncements when he agreed in words to cede his position to Jacob. There was nothing he could do afterwards to change the effect of his pronouncement as it was immediately activated in the spiritual – Gen. 25:29-34.
No situation should make the human being, especially the Christian lose control of his tongue as spoken words will continue to play a significant role in deciding the fate of anyone. Many people today are groaning under the hardship that unguarded pronouncements made over their situation or even to their family members have caused.
Should you be one of those who has become a victim of such unguarded pronouncements, I bring you good news as the you have the opportunity to overcome the effect of such pronouncements by accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. The benefit of the sacrifice he made on the cross includes the rendering powerless of all such curses, which are basically negative pronouncements. The Bible says he was made a curse for us that the curses on us will be rendered null and void – Isa. 53:4. Take all those curses to the foot of the cross today as the sacrifice he made there is sufficient to set you free from them. Believe and accept him as Lord and savior and the effect of all those negative pronouncements will be wiped away. May you experience this great grace in Jesus name. Amen.