- Please keep the Colston family in your prayers. Bobby and Diane lost their daughter-in-law this week.
- Please pray for Andrew Helton and our Library staff and please don't be upset with any of them over the Eckankar meeting that is taking place on Saturday. This is not their fault. As a County facility the Library cannot "cherry pick" what groups use the meeting room.
- Eckankar is not affiliated with any other religious group. Followers believe its purpose is to help individuals find their way back to God through direct personal spiritual experiences. It is not a Christian religion. I am praying that they will not get a foothold in our community.
Scripture for Sunday
John 18:28-40 (ESV)
Then they led Jesus from the house of Caiaphas to the governor's headquarters. It was early morning. They themselves did not enter the governor's headquarters, so that they would not be defiled, but could eat the Passover.  So Pilate went outside to them and said, "What accusation do you bring against this man?"  They answered him, "If this man were not doing evil, we would not have delivered him over to you."  Pilate said to them, "Take him yourselves and judge him by your own law." The Jews said to him, "It is not lawful for us to put anyone to death."  This was to fulfill the word that Jesus had spoken to show by what kind of death he was going to die.
 So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called Jesus and said to him, "Are you the King of the Jews?"  Jesus answered, "Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about me?"  Pilate answered, "Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you over to me. What have you done?"  Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world."  Then Pilate said to him, "So you are a king?" Jesus answered, "You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world— to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice."  Pilate said to him, "What is truth?"
After he had said this, he went back outside to the Jews and told them, "I find no guilt in him.  But you have a custom that I should release one man for you at the Passover. So do you want me to release to you the King of the Jews?"  They cried out again, "Not this man, but Barabbas!" Now Barabbas was a robber.
Questions for reflection
1. How might a politician rationalize his or her bending of the rules in order to please a group of concerned citizens?
2. When have you been tempted to do what works rather than what’s right?
3. How did Jesus affirm Pilate? (18:37)
4. Why is it easier to observe religious traditions than to love other people?
5. When have you felt betrayed or used by people hiding behind religious motives?
6. When, like Jesus, have you been willing to stand your ground regardless of the consequences?
7. When, like Pilate, have you been willing to sacrifice your principles in order to do something self-serving?