Apr 20, 2016 10:17 PM EDT
John 18:33 Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?"
18:34 "Is that your own idea," Jesus asked, "or did others talk to you about me?"
18:35 "Am I a Jew?" Pilate replied. "It was your people and your chief priests who handed you over to me. What is it you have done?"
18:36 Jesus said, "My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jews. But now my kingdom is from another place."
18:37 "You are a king, then!" said Pilate. Jesus answered, "You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me."
18:38 "What is truth?" Pilate asked. With this he went out again to the Jews and said, "I find no basis for a charge against him.
Here, Pilate is summoning Jesus to find any condemn point. It is that he tries to see any defect from the Lord who is the lamb without defect. This conversation is so profound and we need to see the wisdom of Christ. Through the conversation, we can see how to answer before the worldly authority.
In Luke 23, the people accused Jesus before the Roman governor, Pilate, saying "He claims to be Christ, a king." The Jews insisted they had found Jesus subverting their nation. Therefore, Pilate questioned Jesus, "Are you the king of the Jews?" But the Lord didn't fall into his trap, and just asked in return. Then, Pilate replied "Am I a Jew?" He meant he and Roman law were not related to that. There was no foundation for the accusation. The case was invalid in principle.
Jesus said "My kingdom is not of this world." His Kingdom doesn't belong to the world such like Rome ruled by power, combat, or greed. This is the Kingdom where the law of love and God's truth overflow. This should be accomplished in our heart. We should not be confused with both. The Kingdom of God is not a place to gain through political combat. This Kingdom is being built now step by step through our prayer and the Gospel.
The Lord is not a worldly king in the terms of politic; He is the King of the Kingdom of Heaven. He came to us as the 'King of the truth'. The one who belongs to the truth listens to His voice. Therefore, the governor of the world, Pilate couldn't see this truth. The Kingdom of truth was hidden from his eyes.
Pilate asked "What is truth?" The worldly power which is full of hatred and blood, war, and conflict, cannot know the truth. Is the Roman law the truth? How about the universal truth pursued by Greek Philosophers? The Lord said, "I am the way and the truth and the life". The truth is Jesus Christ who loved us and ransomed this sinful world by giving out His everything, even His life. He proclaimed the truth of "if it dies, it produces many seeds" through His whole life and His cross.
Finally, Pilate made a declaration, "I find no basis for a charge against him". This is very important. John emphasized that Jesus' cross was the death of the innocent Lord. It is the unspeakable blessing for us to know Christ who is the truth. We are so blessed to see His Kingdom. Let us boldly proclaim the truth before the world just as the Lord did.