TUESDAY, MARCH 27
“So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called Jesus and said to Him, ‘Are you the King of the Jews?’ Jesus answered, ‘Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about Me?’”
John 18:33-34 ESV
WRESTLING WITH THE TRUTH: REPUTATION
John Wooden was one of the most respected basketball coaches in the history of sports. He led UCLA to 10 national titles, including 7 in a row. From 1966-1973 his record was 205-5, which included 3 consecutive undefeated seasons. He was national coach of the year six times. However, John Wooden would have been the first to tell you those were just numbers. Wooden once said, “Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.”
In John 18, Jesus asked Pilate, “Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about Me?” He was in essence asking Pilate, “Are you asking about Me because you really want to know who I AM or is this about public perception?” It seems that Pilate genuinely wrestled with the truth about Jesus but ultimately made a wrong decision based on protecting his own reputation.
Worrying about what others think of us can make it difficult for us to wrestle with the truth. Dave Ramsey has recently popularized an old saying, “We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.” The same can be said about our faith decisions. We are often trying to impress others and it’s leading us to make poor decisions. Can you think of anything you would do differently if you weren’t so concerned about what others thought? Would you spend your money, time or affections differently? Ask God to show you how protecting your reputation may be hindering your walk with Jesus.