A Fresh Start
Imagine a man sitting in the filth of a Jerusalem prison cell. He’s a notorious thief, murderer and conspirator. He was caught red-handed and his guilt is a forgone conclusion. Sitting in his cell he awaits his execution by crucifixion. As he waits his mind scans through a life filled with mistakes and bad choices. If only he had one more chance he would do things differently this time. But one more chance and a fresh start are beyond the realm of possibilities for this guilt stained man. He’s a prisoner in a cage of his own making with no hope of freedom. Suddenly, he’s summoned before the governor. What’s this? What’s going on? Unable to fully comprehend what’s happening the man finds himself standing in the presence of the governor. An angry crowd looks on. As he sheepishly glances to his right he notices another man. He’s never seen this man before, but he can’t help but notice there is something different about him. He hears the governor make a proclamation to the crowd. He’s going to set one of these men free – who will it be? The thief is amazed when he hears the crowd start to chant his name – “Barabbas,” over and over again. Could it be? Was his wish for freedom about to come true? As his dream turns to reality and Barabbas is lead away, he turns to look at the other man, who now is looking at him. As the thief departs he feels great joy at his new found freedom, but knows his freedom has come at the expense of the other man. His life was spared and I like to think he vowed to live differently from this point forward.
This is the scene portrayed in Matthew 27:15-23 as Barabbas is spared and Jesus condemned. The scene paints the picture of a righteous transaction that takes place in the life of every believer. We are guilty of sin and yet we are set free. However, our freedom comes at the expense of another, Jesus. Jesus has set you free and given you a fresh start. Live the rest of your life basking in the joy of this new found freedom. Live for him who set you free.
Consider this big idea thought as you go through your day…"In Christ, I’ve been given a fresh start."