Note: Devotion taken from last Sunday's sermon on Matthew 27:15-25.
When he [Pilate] was set down on the judgment
seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just
man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him
One of the unique details provided by Matthew in
his account of Christ’s passion is the reference to Pilate’s wife and the message
she sent to her husband in the midst of our Lord’s trial.
Notice four things about this:
First, she declared that the Lord Jesus is a “just
[righteous] man.” This is a reminder to any who read this account that Christ
had committed no actual transgression. He was not worthy of death in any sense
(cf. Rom 6:23 where Paul says the wages of sin is death; Christ committed no
sin; he was undeserving of death).
Her testimony of Christ’s innocence comes on the
heels of that of another unbeliever, Judas, who said to the Jewish leaders, “I
have sinned in that I have betrayed innocent blood” (27:4).
Second, there is an ironic contrast in that this pagan
woman sees and acknowledges something that the Jewish men who serve in elite
offices as chief priests and elders cannot see and refuse to acknowledge.
Third, she claims that her conscience has been
burdened, suffering all day about this matter because of “a dream” she
received. This is another ironic contrast with the Jewish leaders, because they
have the Scriptures and the all the things which the prophets wrote about Christ
(cf. 26:24: “The Son of man goeth as it is written about him”), but they do not
recognize him. All this woman had was an extra-biblical experience, apart from
Scripture, and yet she understood that Christ is a just man (cf. Romans 2:14-15).
she anticipates many Gentile women who will eventually come to recognize,
trust, and serve the crucified and risen Christ. Luke, for example, will say of
Paul’s ministry in Thessalonica, “And
some of them believed, and consorted with Paul and Silas; and of the devout
Greeks a great multitude, and of the chief women not a few” (Acts 17:4).
and peace, Pastor Jeff Riddle