HOST: Ron House
Pilate then called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people, and said to them, “You brought me this man as one who was misleading the people. And after examining him before you, behold, I did not find this man guilty of any of your charges against him. Neither did Herod, for he sent him back to us. Look, nothing deserving death has been done by him. I will therefore punish and release him.” But they all cried out together, “Away with this man, and release to us Barabbas”— a man who had been thrown into prison for an insurrection started in the city and for murder. Pilate addressed them once more, desiring to release Jesus, but they kept shouting, “Crucify, crucify him!” A third time he said to them, “Why, what evil has he done? I have found in him no guilt deserving death. I will therefore punish and release him.” But they were urgent, demanding with loud cries that he should be crucified. And their voices prevailed. So Pilate decided that their demand should be granted. He released the man who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, for whom they asked, but he delivered Jesus over to their will.
While Matthew and Mark’s accounts of this event focus on other aspects, Luke focuses his attention on Pilate. This Roman governor had found no fault in Jesus and had no reason to see Him punished. He knew what was right and what should happen. Even if the Jewish accusations were correct, Jesus was only guilty of misleading the people. But they had demanded that He be put to death in place of a convicted rebel and murderer. To Pilate’s credit, he tried again and again to reason with the Jews and argued for Jesus’ release, but all of his arguments fell on deaf ears. However, lest we become too sympathetic toward Pilate, let us remember that ultimately he gave into the pressure of the situation and did what he knew was unmerited and unjust. The persistence and determination of the Jewish leaders had won out and Pilate “delivered Jesus over to their will.”
What lessons are there to be learned from Pilate?
Don’t forget to pray and have a great day!