Last week of Jesus' Ministry

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Pilate Sentences Jesus

Now it was the custom at the feast of Passover that the authorities would release a prisoner. And there was one notable prisoner, a murderer and a rebel against Rome named Barabbas.

And the multitude went up to Pilate and began demanding their annual gift of a released prisoner. Pilate saw this as an opportunity to escape his difficulties over Jesus.

When they had gathered together, Pilate asked them:

Would you like me to release Jesus, the King of the Jews? I have examined him and I can find no fault in him.

Herod cannot find anything wrong with him either. According to your custom, I will chastise Jesus and then release him.

Or I can release Barabbas. Which would you like me to release to you, Barabbas, a murderer and a rebel or Jesus?

But they cried out all together, saying:

Away with this man, release Barabbas.

While Pilate was sitting in the judgment seat, a message came from his wife. The message said:

I have had terrible dreams regarding this man Jesus, you must release him and have nothing further to do with him.

The chief priests and the elders stirred up the multitude so that they should demand the release of Barabbas and destroy Jesus.

They cried out again saying:

Not his man, but Barabbas.

Pilate spoke to them again trying to persuade them that he should release Jesus.

The crowds would hear none of it and began shouting:

Crucify, crucify him.

They all said:

Let him be crucified.

Pilate tried the third time, asking them:

What evil has this man done? I can find nothing in him that deserves death: I will chastise him and release him.

But the crowds just became more agitated, saying:

Crucify him. Let him be crucified.

Then Pilate took Jesus and scourged him.

And the soldiers forced a crown of thorns on his head and put a purple robe around his neck. They came to him and said:

Hail, King of the Jews!

And they struck him with their hands.

Pilate hoped that the crowd would be satisfied with the humiliation and punishment of Jesus. He had Jesus brought out in front of the people wearing a crown of thorns and a purple robe. Pilate said to them:

Behold, the man!

When the chief priests and the officers saw him they cried out:

Crucify him, crucify him.

Pilate said:

Take him and crucify him yourselves, for I can find no crime in him.

The Jews answered him:

We have a law that he should die, because he made himself out to be the Son of God.

When Pilate heard this he was even more afraid and went into the Praetorium again, taking Jesus with him.

He questioned Jesus:

Where did you come from?

But Jesus did not give him and answer. Pilate said to him:

But Jesus did not give him and answer. Pilate said to him:

Jesus answered:

You would have no power against me, except it was given to you from above. Therefore, he who delivered me up to you has the greater sin.

Hearing this Pilate sought even more to release Jesus.

But the Jews cried out saying:

If you release him then you are no friend of Caesar’s. Everyone who makes himself a king is in opposition to Caesar.

When Pilate heard these words he brought Jesus out and sat him down on the judgment seat at a place called The Pavement, (in Hebrew it was called, Gabbatha.)

It was the Preparation of the Passover, about the sixth hour. And he said to the Jews:

Behold your King.

They cried:

Away with him, away with him. Crucify him!

Pilate asked:

Shall I crucify your King?

The chief priests cried out:

We have no king but Caesar.

Finally, Pilate gave up. The harder he tried to release Jesus the more agitated the crowd became in their determination to have Christ crucified.

Pilate took water and washed his hands before the people. He said:

I am innocent of the blood of this righteous man. And the people answered and said, His blood be on us, and on our children.

Pilate then released Barabbas and turned Jesus over to them, to be crucified.

The soldiers of Pilate led Jesus away to the Praetorim court where they gathered other soldiers.

And when they had gathered a band of soldiers together, they stripped Jesus and clothed him again in purple robes, and again they placed the crown of thorns on his head and began mocking him.

They kneeled down to him and saluted him, saying:

Hail, King of the Jews!

And they spat on him and struck his head with a stick, and bowed their knees as if they were worshipping him.