In a world where the person who has the most outrageous content on social media is considered the most successful, and where our political leaders have no filters, and where the grossest of all violence equates with the highest video ratings, it is easy to assume that loud means strong, and quiet means weak. The Bible, though, tells us just the opposite.
On the night He was betrayed, Jesus quietly endured six trials. He faced three religious trials: He stood before Annas, the High Priest Emeritus; He faced Caiaphas, the High Priest; and, He was taken before the entire Sanhedrin.
Jesus also endured three civil trials: He was presented to Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea. Once Pilate realized that Jesus was from Galilee, he sent Him to be tried before Herod Antipas, the Governor of Galilee, who happened to be in Jerusalem at the time. Herod could find no guilt in Jesus and returned Him to Pilate. Pilate had Jesus scourged, hoping to satisfy the Jews, but the people demanded His death.
During this entire time, Jesus – the Son of God – remained quiet. He did not raise His voice. He did not threaten. He did not smirk. He did not swear. He did not call 10,000 angels to rescue Him. He submitted to the will of His Father. To all who looked on, Jesus seemed weak.
They confused meekness with weakness. In His meekness rests redemption for the entire world. Because of His submission to the will of His Father, the nails that secured His hands and feet to the cross also secured our salvation. Our sins – all of them – died on the cross with Jesus. Our lives were resurrected with Him the following Sunday.
Jesus said few words at His trials, but it is what He said at His crucifixion that I most cherish. These 10 words:
Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.
When the world looks at you, do they see Jesus? Do they see meekness, love, and forgiveness?
Father, I pray that when the world looks at me, they instead see the character of your Son.
Zechariah chapter 13:7 (NIV)
“Awake, O sword, against my shepherd,
against the man who is close to me!”
declares the LORD Almighty.
“Strike the shepherd,
and the sheep will be scattered”