Call Me Barabbas — Jesus Paid the Ultimate Price

Written by: jbhoward

He died in my place! I was a Dead Man Walking, and He snatched me from the jaws of death and went in my place.

Call me Barabbas. All four Gospel writers wrote about me. Matthew called me “a notorious prisoner.” 1 Mark said I “was in prison with the insurrectionists who had committed murder in the uprising.” 2 Luke charged me with “insurrection in the city [and] murder.” 3 John simply stated that I “had taken part in a rebellion.” 4

A condemned man, I was guilty on all counts. Just like the character of the Gospels, this modern day Barabbas is a murderer and insurrectionist. Here are some more headlines from my “notorious” life:

Barabbas Indicted For Hatred, Murder

AUSTIN, TX (AP)
Jim Bob Howard (aka Barabbas) today was found guilty of murder. In scathing statements, several members of his local church–who wish to remain anonymous–brought testimony of unkind, hateful acts and statements made toward others within and outside the church body.

Quoting Himself, Chief Justice Jesus of Nazareth found Barabbas guilty when he said,

“Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer.” (John 3:15)

Riotous Barabbas Back In Court

AUSTIN, TX (AP)
Notorious murderer, Barabbas–known to the world as Jim Bob Howard–was back in court today under charges of inciting a riot. Arguments heard today showed Barabbas had repeatedly spoken behind others’ backs, broken confidences, told off-color jokes, engaged in slanderous speech and–avoiding all good counsel against it–did willingly and knowingly commit sins against his spouse, children, friends, co-workers and God Himself.

Presiding over the court again was Jesus Christ, Chief Justice. Reading from Proverbs, Jesus stated that Barabbas in this instance was described fully in Chapter 16, verses 27-29, which state:

A scoundrel plots evil, and his speech is like a scorching fire. A perverse man stirs up dissension, and a gossip separates close friends. A violent man entices his neighbor and leads him down a path that is not good.

Short of a miracle, a verdict of “guilty” is expected later today.


But then… a miracle DID happen!!!

I knew that the wages of sin was death (Romans 6:23), but the next day, this was the headline:

Barabbas Exonerated; Jesus Crucified

JERUSALEM (AP)
Bailiff Pontius Pilate, acting on behalf of The Court, followed the order of The Chief Justice today in a scene that is best told in the word of eyewitnesses. According to one reporter, who identified himself simply as Matthew,

Then he [Pilate] released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.
Matthew 27:26

Can you believe that? He died in my place! I was a Dead Man Walking, and He snatched me from the jaws of death and went in my place. I owe Him my life. What else could I do but give it to Him? For:

because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made [me] alive with Christ even when [I was] dead in transgressions.
Ephesians 2:4-5

1 At that time they had a notorious prisoner, called Barabbas. (Matthew 27:16)
2 A man called Barabbas was in prison with the insurrectionists who had committed murder in the uprising. (Mark 15:7)
3 Barabbas had been thrown into prison for an insurrection in the city, and for murder. (Luke 23:19)
4 Now Barabbas had taken part in a rebellion. (John 18:40)

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