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Here follows an extract of Chapter 23…
Jesus and Pilate
After the council meeting, the Pharisees were in high spirits. They knew that they had their victim, Jesus, in their nets of deception. Consequently, as per their original intention, they took Him to Pontius Pilate, to have Him, arrested, prosecuted and finally-hopefully crucified.
All the commotion so early in the morning drew many people so that they eventually gathered in their thousands. Many of them had sung ‘Hosanna to the Son of David’ just a few days earlier, when Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey.
The Jewish authorities did not enter the palace. They needed to be ritually clean, in order to have the Passover meal.
Their issues with Jesus were subject to the Jewish Law. Secretly, of course, they were jealous of His relationship with the people and angry; they would not accept His new teachings.
Needless to say, it had nothing to do with Rome or Pontius Pilate.
It was Caiaphas the High Priest, who unwittingly prophesied that ‘it would be better for one man to die, rather than all the people.’(1John 18:14))
Theophilus, through all the commotion, Jesus never said a word. I think that He only responded to the truth.
When Pilate finally made an unwilling appearance and came out to meet them, the chief priests vehemently accused Jesus of various atrocities.
They fabricated anything to convince him to have our Messiah executed.
The leader of the group stepped forward. He feigned respect and half-heartedly bowed to Pilate. The hate towards the Romans was evident in his eyes and he could barely conceal the disgust in his voice.
“This man is dangerous your honour. He calls himself the Messiah, the King of the Jews and is directly opposed to the Emperor!”
Another interjected vehemently; spit flying in all directions.
“Yesh, he alsho teachesh the people not to pay taxesh to Rome.”
With disdain, Pilate held up fat little hands as if to evade the projectiles. This action restored some order.
He then addressed Jesus, without even looking at Him.
“Are You the King of the Jews?”
Without hesitation and with mercy evident in His voice, Jesus replied.
“You say that I am.”
Pilate gave a quick surprised glance at Jesus; he never expected such a reply.
He sat quietly for a while and then seemed to reach a decision.
He was already bored with this issue and realised that the accusations had nothing to do with him or Rome. He yawned and made a dismissive gesture with his hand.
“I do not find any fault with this man. To me He is innocent!”
The desperate leaders frantically, persisted with their lies.
“He is teaching riotous behaviour! Soon we won’t be able to control the people!”
One lie after the other followed.
“Yesh, He shtarted thish nonshenshe in Galilee and now it hash shpread to Judea!”
The spittle dribbled even more and the Pharisee appeared vicious, whilst shaking accusatory fists in the air.
Now they all started talking at the same time, shouting and pointing at Jesus.
Pilate rose from his seat. He perceived an opening to rid him of this nonsense. With the same bored and dismissive tone in his voice, he suggested.
“So you say Galilee!”
This quietened the raucous behaviour immediately. Pilate stared at them with jaded eyes. He thought of his warm bed and the anger he felt when they forced him out of it, so early in the morning.
“Then He falls under Herod’s jurisdiction! I will send Him to Herod! He is in Jerusalem at this moment!”
Long faced but with determination and mumbling amongst themselves, the Priests followed the soldiers who took Jesus off to Herod. The latter, weirdly enough, was extremely happy to see Jesus.
Theophilus, remember that Herod had John the Baptist beheaded and subsequently the rumour started that Jesus was a reincarnation of John.
With that in mind, Herod sought a miracle because he had heard so much about this Teacher. Jesus however, kept silent and did not react to his relentless questioning and prodding to perform some sort of miracle. Jesus also ignored the unyielding accusations of the Priests.
Before long, Herod lost his cool and became angry. He treated Jesus scornfully.
In executing Herod’s command, the soldiers mocked Jesus.
They clothed Him in an elaborate purple robe and sent Him back to Pilate. Prior to this day Pilate and Herod were enemies, however, now they became friends.