first interrogation | John 18.19-24
The high priest then questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching. Jesus answered him, “I have spoken openly to the world. I have always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all Jews come together. I have said nothing in secret. Why do you ask me? Ask those who have heard me what I said to them; they know what I said.” When he had said these things, one of the officers standing by struck Jesus with his hand, saying, “Is that how you answer the high priest?” Jesus answered him, “If what I said is wrong, bear witness about the wrong; but if what I said is right, why do you strike me?” Annas then sent him bound to Caiaphas the high priest. John 18:19-24 | ESV
Meanwhile the unofficial high priest (Annas) began his examination of Jesus, inquiring into his followers and asking about his teaching. Jesus was direct. “I with perfect clarity spoke right out in the open – I always taught in open forums, whether in synagogue or in temple courts where all our people gather and listen. I never used private chat rooms. So since it’s all a matter of public record, why are you asking me? Just ask any of the multitudes of people who were there because they know exactly what I said.” No sooner had he said this than the guard standing closest to him gave him a hard backhanded slap. “Is that how you speak to the high priest?” he spat. Jesus was nonplussed. “If I misspoke, please tell me how. Otherwise, why the slap?” Annas could see he wasn’t going to get anywhere with him, so he sent him, still bound, to Caiaphas, the acting high priest. MAV (Mike’s Amplified Version)
Your turn. Write what you see in this brief snippet of the Story. Reflect on the passage. Write down what you hear, see, and sense. There are no right answers. There’s only what you see and hear. Write it. Draw it. Try it.
What is your response when someone (or life in general) literally or figuratively slaps you? What do you learn from Jesus’ response?
Lord, show me how to creatively, wisely “turn the other cheek” when people or circumstances slap me. Show me how to hold others accountable without a narrowed, bitter spirit, but rather with a widened and ever widening spirit of grace. Through Christ.