"Now it was the custom at the festival to release a prisoner whom the people requested. A man called Barabbas was in prison with the insurrectionists who had committed murder in the uprising. The crowd came up and asked Pilate to do for them what he usually did.
“Do you want me to release to you the king of the Jews?” asked Pilate, knowing it was out of self-interest that the chief priests had handed Jesus over to him. But the chief priests stirred up the crowd to have Pilate release Barabbas instead.
“What shall I do, then, with the one you call the king of the Jews?” Pilate asked them.
“Crucify him!” they shouted.
“Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate.
But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!”
Wanting to satisfy the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas to them. He had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified."
A simple point, though one thats been on my mind: We, I and you, are Barabbas. We are sinners - murderers, thieves, liars, proud, arrogant. We mock, we reject God, we rebel against him. Even if we are 'good people' we are still sinful and rebelling against God. Yet Jesus dies instead of us if we are Christians. We deserve death and God's wrath which is hell eternally, instead Jesus dies and we are set free. He is murdered for our sake. We don't deserve it - like Barabbas, but yet we have it freely. Why? Because God is gracious, wonderful, awesome, loving and kind. Because by it God displays his attributes - his justice and wrath, his perfection and holiness his love, mercy, grace and compassion. What an awesome God! What a marvellous saviour we have in Jesus!