On the eve of His crucifixion, knowing that Judas was on his way with soldiers to lead Him away to His execution, Yeshua said:
“I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming, and he has nothing in Me. But that the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father gave Me commandment, so I do. (John 14:30-31)
There are two main points that stand out here. One is that the Adversary didn’t have authority to come and take the Messiah and have Him crucified; Yeshua was simply submitting to the Father. He was acting in obedience to the Father’s purpose. Yes, the adversary was permitted to influence others to commit the deed, but the reality is that, as Yeshua said, no one was taking His life; He was laying it down of His own volition.
The other important point is that Messiah said the ruler of this world has “nothing in Me.” The Adversary is the accuser of the brethren and he accuses them every day. Where we are concerned, sometimes he has good reason to accuse us; thankfully, the blood of Messiah covers our sin. But when it came to Yeshua, he didn’t have anything truthful he could use to accuse Him of. He had nothing in Him because he had nothing on Him.
Think about that. Think of the liberty God’s people could walk in if the Adversary had nothing on us. In other words, how many of us would want our past lives to be opened up and spread out for everyone to see and analyze? No one would enjoy that. Were it not for the Messiah, the Adversary WOULD have something in us and something on us. Maybe we should remember that when we’re tempted to rise up in criticism of our brother or to accuse others when they stumble. It’s quite appropriate to offer correction in sincerity and love with the intent of restoration. It’s entirely another thing, when we rise up to accuse and criticize just because we feel that righteousness is on our side.
Being obedient to death, Yeshua bore all of our iniquity and sins. In being stripped naked and put to shame for all to see, He bore our shame – all of it. Thus, the Adversary doesn’t have anything on us if we are in Messiah. And if we are in Messiah, then we should behave as Messiah would behave and exhibit His attributes. Matthew, quoting the prophet Isaiah, reveals to us what some of those attributes were.
“Behold! My Servant whom I have chosen, My Beloved in whom My soul is well pleased! I will put My Spirit upon Him, and He will declare justice to the Gentiles. He will not quarrel nor cry out, nor will anyone hear His voice in the streets. A bruised reed He will not break, and smoking flax He will not quench, till He sends forth justice to victory.” (Matthew 12:18-20; Isaiah 42:1-3)
According to Isaiah, when Yeshua encounters someone who is like a reed that has been broken and is just hanging on by a thread, He isn’t going to snap it off and put it out of its misery. He’s not going to be critical or accusatory, but instead will try to repair and heal that which is broken. When a person’s life has become like a dying flame and nothing is left but a smoldering ember, He’s not going to snuff it out. To the contrary, He will gently breathe upon it and revive the flame and restore it to what it should be. According to Isaiah, this pleases the Father and so, if we are to please the Father, we must adopt these same characteristics and methods.
Rather than being inclined to break someone off who’s already broken, we must strive to bring healing and restoration. Think of it this way: If we are supposed to be one in Messiah and, according to the Messiah, the Adversary has nothing in Him, it behooves us all not to let the Devil have something on our brother. Refusing to help our brother who has stumbled hinders us all. Let’s not help the Adversary hold something over somebody and wear them down but let us learn to be merciful and compassionate, even as our Father is merciful and compassionate. That is pleasing unto Him.