“Give us Barabbas!”  you shouted.

Give us the criminal.

Give us the filth, the vice, the darkness.

Give us what we want.

We choose him.


Hearts are dark.

The Light is standing right there.

He is ready to surrender His very life for you.

And yet you say, “Away with this man!”

You want to hold onto dark and give up the Light?

You want to eat from the trough and forego the banquet table?


Just give us Barabbas.

We want to stay down here in the mud, in this pit, in this pain.

We want to stay in rebellion.

In pride,

In moral decay.

In depressive thoughts.

In distraction from the Truth.


Away.   The Way, The Truth, The Life, is led.

To ridicule.

To torture.

To death.

To what seems like a  snuffing out of the Light.


Light, though, will not be snuffed.

It penetrates darkness.

It draws you in with its warmth.

It is hope.


Jesus died.

So did Barabbas.

Jesus burst out of that grave, conquering King!

And why did we choose Barabbas again?

Oh yeah, we wanted the world, the dark, the muck…

When we could have had eternity.

When we could have had the Light.


There’s still time.

Don’t choose Barabbas.

– Susie Stewart


Matthew 27:11-26

Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“You have said so,” Jesus replied.

When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer.  Then Pilate asked him, “Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?” But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.

Now it was the governor’s custom at the festival to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd.  At that time they had a well-known prisoner whose name was Jesus Barabbas.  So when the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them, “Which one do you want me to release to you: Jesus Barabbas, or Jesus who is called the Messiah?”  For he knew it was out of self-interest that they had handed Jesus over to him.

While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.”

But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed.

“Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” asked the governor.“Barabbas,” they answered. “What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called the Messiah?” Pilate asked.

They all answered, “Crucify him!”

“Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate.

But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!”

When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!”

All the people answered, “His blood is on us and on our children!”

Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.

Luke 23:18

But the whole crowd shouted, “Away with this man! Release Barabbas to us!”

John 18:40

They shouted back, “No, not him! Give us Barabbas!” Now Barabbas had taken part in an uprising.

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