Jesus, the most innocent of people, is condemned to death. Pilate has the ability to release Jesus, but instead he gives in to what the crowd wants. Pilate thinks Jesus is innocent, but he isn’t courageous enough to stick up for Him, so he washes his own hands of the matter and ties Jesus’ hands behind His back.
The journey to the cross begins.
As we picture Jesus powerless before Pilate, we are filled with regret. Pilate officially condemned Jesus, but we are responsible too. Jesus was treated very unfairly. Pilate was only interested in giving the crowd what they wanted, rather than doing the right thing. As a child, sometimes I felt alone. Sometimes I felt that others didn’t stand up for me and defended me when I was afraid. Sometimes I didn’t feel like I was treated fairly. As a teen, I often felt stuck in situations that were out of my control. Sometimes, I too felt powerless in the face of big problems at school and in my home. As an adult, sometimes I feel abandoned and afraid as well. Sometimes I too, feel like I am treated unfairly or blamed for things unfairly. I have a hard time when people criticize me at home or at work.
“Jesus, help me be grateful for what you did for me. Help me to accept criticism and unfairness as you did, and not complain. Help me pray for those who have hurt me. It is comforting to know that Jesus can relate to us. Standing before Pilate, He probably felt the same way. When we feel powerless and unfairly treated, we can come to You, knowing that You will understand. As we set out on our journeys, help us to remember that You will stand up for us, even when no one else will.”
“It’s easy to look at this scene now and think, ‘How could they have accused you and condemned you to death? All you did was love every person you met.’ Yet they are not alone in their condemnation of you. How often do I ignore you at school in the person no one wants to talk to? How often do my words condemn you in the way that I speak about others? It was not only the Jews and Pontius Pilate who condemned you, but I stand next to them shouting just as loud, ‘Crucify Him!’ Jesus, forgive me for the ways in which I condemn and pierce others with my words and actions. Help me to love like you and to learn from your example.”
When have you been misjudged or wrongly accused?
When have you misjudged or wrongly accused others?
What does this station make you feel?
As we begin our journey, let us pray: Dear Heavenly Father, as we reflect on your Son’s Way of the Cross, we ask you to please open our ears, minds, and hearts to your Presence. Please lead us to your Son’s Cross, please lead us to your love, please lead us to salvation. This we ask, in the name of your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.