Text: “Pilate saith unto them, What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ? They all say unto him, Let Him be Crucified.”
Good morning, Christian soldier! When your heart heard the universal call of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it made you think, but did nothing for your Eternal soul. When your heart and mine heard the effectual call of God the Holy Spirit - we could not resist that call to repentance and full Salvation. We immediately became soldiers of the Cross of Christ Jesus. Hallelujah!
“Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man/woman that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he/she may please Him who hath chosen him/her to be a soldier.” (2 Timothy 2:3-4)
Not all are called to be soldiers of the Living Lord Jesus Christ, some are merely called upon by human Governments to be soldiers in a temporal army. This was the lot of three Roman soldiers, the subject of my Bible Lesson for today.
There is no Spiritual Salvation given as merit for being in a temporal army! Belonging to ‘the military’ does not make one fit for Heaven.
Five brutal verses of Scripture prove the truth of what I have written thus far today. Let us reproduce them in full so as no one will be in any doubt.
“Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall, and gathered unto Him the whole band of soldiers. And they stripped Him, and put on Him a scarlet robe. And when they had platted a crown of thorns, they put it upon His head, and a reed in His right hand; and they bowed the knee before Him, and mocked Him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! And they spit upon Him, and took the reed, and smote Him on the head. And after that they had mocked Him, they took the robe off from Him, and put His own raiment on Him, and led Him away to crucify Him.” (Matthew 27:27-31)
‘The whole band of soldiers’ on duty that day were openly guilty of the cruellest torture and abuse of the Man, Christ Jesus - all willingly sinned.
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)
Soldiers Present Day: Gamblers - Gashers - and Gazers.
Soldier 1 - The Gambler: The first type of Roman soldier in our study today is obviously a gambler - one of a squad of four who cast lots for Christ’s seamless robe.
“Then the soldiers, when they had Crucified Jesus, took His garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also His coat; now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend (tear) it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be; that the Scriptures might be fulfilled, which saith, They parted My raiment among them, and for My vesture they did cast lots. These things therefore the soldiers did.” (John 19:23-24) (Psalm 22:18)
The Gambler won the toss - but lost his soul on that Crucifixion Day.
Soldier 2 - The Gasher: The second type of Roman soldier in our study today was a gasher - one who would gash and stab another person without hesitation or conscience. He plunged his spear, cruelly, into the Saviour’s side.
“But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced His side, and forthwith came there out Blood and water.” (John 19:34)
The Gasher, no doubt, got Blood on his hands, but had none to cover His sins, and lost his immortal soul on that Crucifixion Day.
Soldier 3 - The Gazer: The third type of Roman soldier relevant to our study today was a gazer - one who took part in the brutal proceedings, and as a centurion, was responsible for every torturous action. However, having watched intently how Christ Jesus had endured their cruel brutalities - something Divine happened to the gazer that day that would have Eternal consequences for his soul.
“Now when the centurion…watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, (he) feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.” (Matthew 27:54) (Isaiah 45:22)
The Gazer was lost in his sin, yet looked to Christ Jesus, owned Him as the Son of God, and Eternally lived! There is Eternal Life for a look, by faith, to Jesus.
Thought: I’m glad I’m a soldier in the army of the Lord Jesus Christ. Are you?