Wintonbury Lent Devotional | Week 3
God is Our Voucher
by Corey Lee
Jesus Before Pilate
Mark 15:1-5, 15
As a young man, I did many reckless things. On one such occasion, I was driving and my youthful indiscretion played a part in me getting into a car accident. I tried negotiating a lane change while talking on my cellphone and as a result collided with a semi-truck that shredded the right side of my vehicle. Thankfully, I and the other motorist walked away unscathed. But before I could apologize for my infraction, I was greeted by a very belligerent driver shouting accusations at me.
I understood his anger but judging by how my car looked compared to his truck, which was completely unscratched, I could only justify his frustrations for so long. Rather than argue, I calmly called my insurance company to explain what happened. The agent expressed her sympathy which helped put my mind at ease. Shortly after, the local Norfolk State University campus police showed up. When they arrived I thought to myself "Finally the law is here to de-escalate the situation". This wasn't the case. The officer kept telling me to get off my phone, but even when I told her what I was doing she wouldn't listen. Moreover, the way she and the semi-truck driver were conversing, I felt like I was being teamed up against. Without gathering any further information, the officer let the man go and only she and I remained.
She ran my license and for whatever reason, it turned up in the computer as suspended. I knew for a fact that this wasn't the case and the system had made a mistake. Consequently, I was handcuffed and placed in the back of the squad car. I continued to plead my case while detained, but my words fell on deaf ears. After the calamitous ordeal, I was issued a number of citations and was ordered to appear in court. I felt alone. No one was on my side, and everything and everyone was working against me despite my innocence. Now, clearly, I instigated this incident by not following the rules of the road but what ensued after was completely out of hand.
Mark 15 illustrates another injustice when Jesus was brought before Pilate, falsely accused of perpetrating crimes by the very ones sworn to uphold the law. They used the law to condemn the Son of God sent to forgive those sins that were being committed against him in real time. Yet he didn't have to say anything in order for the truth to be revealed; it was self-evident to everyone present.
When I finally had my day in court, I carried with me a piece of paper from the DMV to vouch that my license was not and had never been suspended. As a result, many of the citations were reduced and I walked away without needing to say more. Jesus in similar fashion was silent before his accusers, taking upon himself the pain of death, so that you and I could be free despite the charges against us, because God is our voucher.
Questions for Reflection:
When offended are you allowing Christ to defend you?
What does grace look like when being confronted with criticism?