The life, testimony, ministry, and teachings of one Jesus from Nazareth
Before the world was established, God—the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—dwelt outside of time in pure righteousness, holiness, and absolute justice. And the Almighty, infinite One had a plan: to make man after His own image and to create a perfect world in which man could live and walk in fellowship with Him. So God got started on this massive project, and within five days had breathed stars into existence, shaped the earth, formed the dry land, placed the sun and moon into orbit, and brought forth life in the many forms of plants and trees, birds and fish, and creatures to dwell on the earth. When all was ready and perfect, then and only then, God created His greatest masterpiece. He took dust from the earth, forming it into the image and likeness of Himself, and breathed into it His very own breath of life. Thus man became a living being, created by the very hands of God and brought into existence by the same breath that spoke the world into being and placed the galaxies in orbit. Next, God deemed that it was not good for man—His prized creation—to live alone. So while man was under God-induced sleep, the Creator took from man a rib and hand-fashioned another human being later named woman. Thus, in a perfect world under God’s direct management, began the history mankind.
But all was not to remain so idyllic…
Can you guess who this man was? Need a hint? Think pompous, Roman, and chicken…any closer? The person we’re going to look at next is the Roman governor who signed Jesus’ death warrant: Pontius Pilate. Now Pilate is often viewed as one of the bad guys in Bible history, and while he did send our Lord to the cross, we have a lot more in common with him than we realize.
Well, what did you think about our last two character studies on Malchus and Pontius Pilate? Did aspects of their life convict, encourage, and exhort you? Which one did you relate most with?
We have two more people to look at before finishing this series. But before we get into the next character, let’s take a moment to reflect and focus on our Savior as He carries the cross—which should be ours—up the hill Golgotha.
The gospel of John doesn’t give us nearly as much detail surrounding the actual crucifixion as the other gospel writers do. However, John alone gives us a glimpse into Jesus’ private conversation with Pontius Pilate, and the bold statement Jesus made during His defense.
As we leave the Upper Room Discourse and enter into the events leading up to and after our Savior’s crucifixion, and the crucifixion itself, we’re going to look into the lives of the people Jesus brushed shoulders with during His harrowing, yet victorious, journey.
So as we look at John 18, the first obscure person we meet is a man named Malchus. This man is mentioned as a fleeting character in one verse of all four gospels, and the introduction is not all that pleasant.