John 18:33-37 NRSVue

33Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” 35Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom does not belong to this world. If my kingdom belonged to this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” 37Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

Some thoughts on this scripture

Lord, that is a strange question you asked Pilate: /Do you ask this on your own?/ It pushes me back to my own piety: is it springing from the needs of my own heart, or is it second-hand, asking questions and taking answers out of books and sermons? Let me belong to the truth, listen to your voice and answer you not with borrowed thoughts or emotions, but with the gropings, however ill-formed, of my own heart.

The red carpet for Jesus is the tattered flooring in a poor house, and the crown is the headache he got from the sufferings of his people. In Jesus, the king, we are all brothers and sisters in the image of God. God is so big that we're all like him. What does that mean now? This is the big act of faith that we will soak ourselves in for the next few weeks; that God became one like us, one of us, born, lived, suffered and died like the rest of us. The real God is found in real people.