Faithlife Sermons

What Drives You?

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Introduction

Why did you come today? What it a rough week? Has it become habit? Is it a spiritual offering to God? Are you being obedient? Maybe you are here because you really do not want to have that “Monday morning, I missed you yesterday” conversation. Our efforts, our reason for being here has to be all about Jesus Christ. The interesting thing about this perspective that John provides in chapter 19, either we can lead like Christ or we can lead like Pilate. Typically we fall into one category or the other. In Pilate’s mind I believe he wanted to do right by Christ. Similar to many of us, we want to do right by Jesus but because we are so crowd driven we make indifferent decisions in hopes to protect us from a crowd that does not care about us in the first place. Or we can lead like Jesus. Despite ridicule, despite attempted embarrassment we make the right decision pertaining to God. As leaders we have to restore the spirit of desiring leadership and wanting to live a life that is pleasing unto the Lord.

Two Styles of Leadership

In this text we have two styles of leadership. Pilate a prisoner of a reactionary, crowd driven leadership style and Jesus a God focus, mission driven style of leadership.
Beginning in verse 1, we see Pilate reacting rather than being proactive when it came down to punishing the wrongfully accused.
We know that Pilate was willing to release a guilty prisoner rather than doing the right thing for Jesus.
When you are indebted to the crowd and driven by the crowd, your emotions, your faith, nor your decisions belong to you.
Your emotions are crowd dependent.
Your faith is crowd dependent.
Your decisions are crowd dependent.
Pilate initially had Jesus scourged because he believed the Jews would accept that rather than execution. Historically speaking many prisoners never made it to the cross because they were killed by the scourge.
If we are not careful our church can take on a Pilate mentality rather than being mission focused like Christ.
You have to be careful of people who are crowd driven. In verse 4 Pilate says “behold I am bringing Him out to you so that you may know that I find no guilt in him” People with a Pilate mentality say one thing but do another.
Pilate presents a wounded Jesus, a bleeding savior in a purple robe (a color that signified status). He states he wants to present him as innocent but refuses to acknowledge him as king. “Behold the man”
The crowd devises the plan but hides during the implementation. Then the chief priest and the elders of the people gathered in the palace of the high priest, who name was Caiaphas, and plotted together in order to arrest Jesus by stealth and kill him.
Think about how backwards this is. Why would Pilate say he desired to show the innocence of Christ, but refuse to do what it took, not to mention he had the power to do so!
Pilate is the epitome of “if you stand for nothing you’ll fall for anything”.
Church we have to understand the crowd will never be pleased. Sometimes there are folks in the church, with a crowd mentality. Understand that a crowd mentality does not work in a spiritual realm.
It is interesting to note, that Pilate was protected by Roman Law to present Christ as innocent but as long as we are crowd focused we will miss our opportunity to trust be a leader and minister to folks the way God intended.
But the one who did not know, and did what deserved a beating, will receive a light beating. Everyone to whom much was given, of him much will be required, and from him to whom they entrusted much, they will demand the more.
Understand that regardless of Pilate’s poor leadership skills, Christ will be recognized.
Besides, while he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent word to him, “Have nothing to do with that righteous man, for I have suffered much because of him today in a dream.”
This text exemplifies Pilate’s lack of leadership. He is sitting in the “judgement seat” allowing everyone to make decisions but him.
Why be in the position if you are afraid to make tough decisions.
Poor leaders will hide their ineffectiveness by attempting to pass the buck. “Pilate said to them what shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?”

Jesus’ Leadership Style

Sometimes leadership hurts. They dressed Jesus in purple, mocked him and beat him.
The crown from the crowd does damage to your head. Be careful of being crowned by the same people that will crucify you.
Jesus stuck to his mission. This is what God centered leaders do, no matter what you do, no matter what Satan throws your way you stay on the course of the mission.
“But Jesus gave him no answer” Real leaders do not have to parade around with the megaphone of life exclaiming “I am a LEADER”. Real leaders do not have to say it, people see it.
You would have no authority over Me, unless it had been given you from above; for this reason he who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.
Those operating under the Jesus style of leadership understand where their power comes from. Jesus knew that his power did not come from the crowd. Matter of fact Jesus often times avoided the crowd.
When Jesus saw the crowds, He went up on the mountain; and after He sat down, His disciples came to Him.
Understand that although all of us may not operate in the capacity of an formalized position we all have leadership responsibility in some way shape or form. For instance, Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.
Although this story had to happen to pave the way for the purpose of Jesus, I still believe there are traits in the personality and character of Pilate that we can learn to avoid.
The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.
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