Read: John 18:33-37
Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”
“Is that your own idea,” Jesus asked, “or did others talk to you about me?”
“Am I a Jew?” Pilate replied. “Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?”
Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”
“You are a king, then!” said Pilate.
A King? A King!
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Take a moment to think about a powerful and mighty king. If you had to describe such a king, what would he be like? What would he wear? What would he say? What would he do? How would people treat him? (Perhaps your family could even pause this devotion to discuss what you are thinking about.)
Maybe you are picturing a king wearing fancy clothes, a royal robe, and a crown. Maybe you also picture him sitting on a throne or a riding a great big horse. Maybe you are thinking about a king giving commands, or winning battles, or people bowing down humbly before him.
What about the picture of a king from today’s Word of God? He’s riding on a donkey. He’s arrested and betrayed. People are spitting on him and hitting him. He’s wearing a crown of thorns and a fake robe. He’s bleeding all over, and he’s hardly speaking a word.
That doesn’t sound very powerful or mighty. That doesn’t look very triumphant or royal. In fact, it doesn’t seem much like a king at all. And yet, those words describe the greatest King of all—Jesus Christ.
As we see Jesus before the Roman governor Pontius Pilate in these verses from John 18, Jesus does not look like the kind of king this world would expect. That’s why Pilate was so confused. But Jesus explained to him, “My kingdom is from another place.” You see, Jesus’ kingdom is a spiritual and heavenly kingdom.
Just think, Jesus loves us so much that he set aside his power as true God to suffer and die for us and for our sins. But when he did so, he showed just how powerful he is. He paid for our sin. He crushed the devil. He conquered death and rose again. Jesus is in fact the most powerful, mighty King of all!
One day soon, Jesus will come back again. But on that Last Day, Jesus will show all his power and glory as King of kings and Lord of lords. And best of all, he will take you to be in his kingdom forever! What a mighty and loving King we have!
Lord Jesus, King of kings, we praise you for your great power in defeating death and the devil. We look forward to the day when you will return in all your glory. Amen.
The questions below are to help families discuss this devotion. The questions are divided by age group as suggestions, but anyone could reflect on any of the questions as they desire.
Questions for Younger Children
- Why do we call Jesus our King?
- Think of one way Jesus is better than any king in this world.
Questions for Elementary Age Children
- Why was Pilate so confused when Jesus said he was King?
- What are ways that we can show honor to Jesus as our King?
Questions for Middle School and Above
- For Jesus our King, first came the cross and then came the glory. Explain how our life in this world will be just like our King’s.
- Why can it be considered a good thing that God allows us to suffer in this world before we have the glory of heaven? What value does suffering have for us as Christians?