Today’s readings come from Luke 23-24.
Imagine you are with the multitude following behind Jesus lamenting for him. How long will you follow? How far will you go with him? Will you stay with him as He hangs on the cross? In another account it says that Simon helped Jesus carry the cross. Would you consider this darkest hour intimacy a privilege? What does it look like today, for you to help Jesus carry the cross?
Why do you think a person who “stirred up the people” was more threatening to the crowd than a “murderer”? What does it mean that Jesus stirred up the people? In what ways did his life, ministry, and teachings stir up society? Would you say that your life is stirring society in similar ways?
Pilate appears to have known what was right as he declared Jesus innocent, though he allowed the accusing voices to prevail. In what ways are you tempted to give in to the crowd and make a decision based on what others think you should do? In what ways do we join prevailing, demanding voice of the crowd, crying, “crucify him”.
When you are accused, insulted, and mocked what is your response? What enabled Jesus to not respond in defense? 1 Peter 2:23 speaks of Jesus “entrusting yourself to Him who judges rightly”? How can you cultivate a lifestyle of entrusting your identity and reputation to God instead of other people?
Do you think there has been a time when Jesus himself drew near to you like he did the two men on the road to Emmaus but your eyes were kept from recognizing? In what ways is our recognizing Jesus hindered?
According to this passage, who were the first to witness the empty tomb and to be sent to proclaim what they’ve seen and heard? The women would have been unlikely messengers in first century culture. We are all called to testify to what we have seen and heard. The only requirement is that we experience and encounter the risen Christ. What are you seeing and hearing? What are you testifying of?
In vv 44-49 Jesus leaves the disciples with some parting words. What are his ministry instructions in vv 46-48? What is the promise in v 49? Luke’s story continues in Acts where we see the Holy Spirit coming upon the believers and the gospel spreading to the edges of the known first century world. It is the Holy Spirit that enables us to minister. Have you received the promise of the Father; Are you experiencing the empowerment of the Holy Spirit daily in your life?