Matthew 27:1-2

When morning came, all the chief priests and the elders of the people conferred together against Jesus in order to bring about his death. They bound him, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate the governor. Matthew 27:1-2

I took a long break from writing daily devotions at the end of Matthew 26. So today I want to pick up where we left off. I want to spend the remainder of Lent slowly walking through the last two chapters of Matthew. I invite you, as we slowly move, to notice the story. To notice the characters in it. To watch their interactions. To see, perhaps for the first time, how Matthew tells the story.

Today, the day after Ash Wednesday, is the second day of Lent. For the next 40 days (Sundays don’t count) Christians reflect on what it means to follow Jesus to and through his death and resurrection. As we begin that journey, we do so by joining a group of religious leaders plotting how to kill Jesus.

We don’t know what they said. We don’t know who spoke up first or whose voice dominated the discussion. All we know is that their best idea was to tie Jesus up and hand him over to Pilate. To Pilate, the governor. To Pilate, the local Roman ruler.

That is the image that leads us into Lent. A man, bound by ropes, led by a group of religious leaders and handed over to the chief government official. Spend some time today imagining that scene in your head. This is where the end begins.

Let us pray: Gracious Lord, lead us through this Lenten season. May it be, for us, a time of renewal, a time for you to open our eyes, and open our lives, to the work of your Spirit in us. Draw us into your story, as we draw you ever deeper into ours. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

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