Jesus’ Life: Chapter 18 – The Passion And Death Of Jesus
Time: Good Friday: – Approximately 9.00am
Pilate’s attempt to conciliate with the Jews had failed. He judged Jesus to be innocent but the Jewish leaders, chief priests and elders successfully canvassed the crowd to demand Jesus’ crucifixion.
What were Pilate’s remaining options?
Sadly, Pilate, unwilling to place himself at odds with the Jewish people, gave way. The same people who, only days earlier sang, “Hosanna…” were now singing “Crucify Him, crucify Him” (Luke 23:21) and “a riot was starting” (Matthew 27:24) so, Pilate, not wishing to imperil himself, released Barabbas and taking some water, washed his hands before the crowd saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood. You take care of it yourselves!” (Matthew 27:24)
The Jewish leaders, elders and chief priests had achieved their goal; having dishonestly judged Jesus themselves they now, under the guise of a pretended judgement by Pilate, would see Jesus crucified, not by them but by Roman soldiers.
In a final show of contempt to Pilate, the Jewish leaders defiantly said to him, “Let his blood be on us and on our children!” (Matthew 27:25) Their hatred for Jesus contrasted sharply with their own teachings: “Lay not innocent blood to Thy people of Israel’s charge”. (Deuteronomy 21:8)
Pilate, having capitulated to all of the Jewish leaders, elders and chief priests demands, ordered Jesus’ flogging and death by crucifixion. (Matthew 27:24-26, Mark 15:15, Luke 23:24-25, John 19:16)
Am I a follower of the in-crowd or a follower of Jesus’ Gospel?
Lord Jesus, open my eyes to my bullying of others to achieve my selfish ways. Then Lord, open my heart to their human needs. Amen.
Prayer: Be At Peace (St Francis de Sales)
Do not look forward in fear to the changes in life;
rather, look to them with full hope that as they arise,
God, whose very own you are,
will lead you safely through all things;
and when you cannot stand it,
God will carry you in His arms.
Do not fear what may happen tomorrow;
the same understanding Father who cares for you today
will take care of you then and every day.
He will either shield you from suffering
or will give you unfailing strength to bear it.
Be at peace,
and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.