Espied on Facebook home-page this exceptional insight into the counterfeiter by dear Steve Hepden at the beginning of an eventful day. It fits so well as a lead-in to another at the top of my emails and just can’t get it off my mind. Also tallies with my short series on the strategies of our adversary and accuser. May you be blessed too…
Son of The Father or son of the father?
In my study and research for the chapter ‘Abba Father,’ I came across something at the very end of Jesus’ life: that Satan used to deceive the people, and humiliate and destroy Jesus. At Passover, there was a custom, which gave the Jews the choice to release a prisoner. Pontius Pilate used this to appease them in an effort to keep the peace. The two men Pilate offered to the people were Barabbas and Jesus.
Barabbas was a ‘freedom fighter,’ an insurrectionist, part of a revolutionary movement, and he with others were in prison because they had committed murder in the uprising, Mark 15:6-15. Amazingly Jesus was actually accused of participating in similar activities when He was before the Roman authorities. As far as Pilate was concerned, Jesus had done nothing wrong. He knew that Jesus was not a criminal, but he didn’t know who He was.
Was the choice of Jesus in contrast to Barabbas no accident, or was it premeditated, and malevolent?
These are two Messianic figures with a choice between one who led an armed struggle, and took life to gain a better life with a promise of freedom and a new kingdom; and then the mysterious Jesus who also promised freedom and a new Kingdom, but who talked about laying down your life as the way to gain life.
Pilate had no option but to put it to the people as he was under such pressure. It was a no-win situation, as the people began to chant ‘give us Barabbas,’ and soon it became a frenzied shout due to the crowd psychology of the few stirring up the many. It reached a peak when the mob assumed the guilt of Jesus’ death and said, “Let his blood be on us and on our children,” Matt 27:25. As we know the consequences were severe.
Look at the meaning of Barabbas’ name. His last name, Barabbas, means son (bar) of the father (abba). Jesus had always referred to himself as the Son of the Father. Barabbas’ first name was significant too. Pilate asked them, “Which one do you want me to release to you: Jesus Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?” Matt 27:17, NIV.
Amazingly Barabbas’ first name was Jesus. So you see Jesus son of the father opposing Jesus Son of the Father! Two people with the same name!
It is important that we see this event as Satanic malevolence as the father of lies, John 8:44, deceiving and confusing the people with a counterfeit Messiah. Satan’s purpose was to rob Jesus of His identity by stealing His name, as well as His status as Son. Is this another attempt at the ‘final solution’? Jesus knew He could have asked His Father to put at His disposal the legions of angels that were watching since Gethsemane, Matt 26:53, but He didn’t, He did the better thing, and let Satan have his way. We know why……
What about our choice? Are we going to let Satan undermine our relationship with Abba Father, steal our inheritance as Abba’s children, plunder our identity, or our right to call God “Abba,” because we would lose our capacity to commune and communicate with Him with affection and intimacy?