December 10 - Luke 23:1-7

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Luke 23:1-7 – Jesus with Pilate

The Sanhedrin had denounced Jesus and now for their plan to come to fruition, they needed the Roman government to pass sentence. Pilate was the only one who could sentence Jesus to die. He had come to Jerusalem because it was Passover and there had been many threats of nationalism from some of the Jewish zealots. During the Passover, with so many Jews in the city and memories of their Exodus at the forefront, if there would be trouble, it would happen now. Having Pilate on hand during this time was important so that trouble could be dealt with swiftly.

The charges against Jesus when he was before the Sanhedrin were religious. His claim to be the Son of God and the Messiah were blasphemy. They twisted everything before they took him to Pilate so that his crimes would be portrayed as political crimes. Rather than blasphemy, Jesus was accused (in front of Pilate) of subverting the nation of Israel, opposing payment of taxes to Caesar and claiming to be a King … all of which could be interpreted as a crime against the Emperor.

Pilate asked one question – “Are you the king of the Jews?”

He already knew that Herod was in place as the king. Having another man claim to be king of this pitiable Jewish nation wasn't really going to be a problem for Pilate.

Jesus responded in the affirmative and Pilate decided he wasn't going to be bothered by the infighting among the Jewish leaders. He set it aside.

They pressed forward and then revealed that Jesus had come from Galilee. This was the perfect way for Pilate to rid himself of the entire problem. Send him on back to Herod and let the man deal with his own people. That’s why Rome left him in office. He was there to keep the peace so they didn't have to deal with the Jews.