This week as I was reading Mark 15, these four verses stuck out to me like never before:
“And Pilate asked him, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answering said unto him, Thou sayest it. And the chief priests accused him of many things: but he answered nothing. And Pilate asked him again, saying, Answerest thou nothing? behold how many things they witness against thee. But Jesus yet answered nothing; so that Pilate marvelled.”
“… and he answering said… Thou sayest it.”
“He answered nothing.”
“But Jesus yet answered nothing…”
While Jesus was being wrongfully accused for a multitude of sins, He did not defend himself, even once.
He didn’t need to. The truth of who Jesus was, and is, was evident throughout His life. He was deeply, directly connected to His Father. He was His Father’s son, and the false accusations of men could not diminish it for even a moment. He knew crucifixion was the Lord’s perfect plan, and He saw no need to defend himself as He walked through it.
Just as Jesus’s identity was secure, as children of God, our identity is just as secure in our Heavenly Father.
Yet, when faced with any opposition for accusation, whether rightful or wrongful, we jump at the chance to defend, explain, and/or justify ourselves.
But the reality is, we don’t have to- and we shouldn’t. The world desires Christians who question their identity, waiver in their faith, and wonder if they’re really good enough…
But back to that reality I mentioned- when we belong to God:
We don’t have to question our identity because nothing in the world can ever remove the title “Child of God” from our lives. Isaiah 54:7 states, “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord.”
We can’t wander or waiver too far from God. No matter where we go, He is always right there. Isaiah 41:10 states, “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” Isaiah 41:10
We are not worthy in our own appearance or abilities, that is true. However, we are made worthy in Christ. Our worth is found in our creator. Once again, we see this truth depicted in Isaiah. He writes, “But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.” Isaiah 64:8
When Jesus willingly went to the cross to die for us, He did so in order for these things to be true of us. He did so in order for us to inherit the very same stability and security He had in the moments illustrated in Mark 15. He did so in order for us to become co-heirs.
I am so very thankful Jesus “answered nothing.” I am so very thankful I, too, am not required to answer. I am not required to explain, defend, or justify myself to the world. But I still find myself jumping to do so…
This week, let me challenge you to overcome the desire to defend yourself, as well as the expectation for explanations from others. Just as it is not our place to defend ourselves to the world, it is no one’s place to defend themselves to us. Yet, I believe this is a practice we often fall into.
But it is not a lifestyle we have to continue, and it is not a habit we can’t break. So, let’s start together- keeping these verses found in Mark’s version of the Gospel in the forefront of our minds.