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Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
July 21, 2019
Many years ago I was able to witness our justice system at work in the case of a man that was in my Bible study. As his spiritual leader and confidant, I knew the truth in the case. If the end result had not been so tragic, it would have been funny to watch the two lawyers involved go back and forth trying to convince the jury that they were the ones trying to uphold the law. The tragedy was that neither of them or the judge were interested in the truth or justice. While our judicial system may still be one of the better ones in the world, the reality I witnessed proved that it was not really a “justice” system. True justice will only come when Jesus Christ is on the throne as judge. Until then we can only attempt to fairly apply the law.
Do cases where justice fails demonstrate that God is either uncaring or not active? Not at all! This morning we will examine a very unjust trial. The judge in the case will conclude that the accused is innocent, yet will still unjustly sentence Him to death. The sentence is completely unjust, but it actually demonstrated that God was in complete control of the situation and even used the sin of men to fulfill the ancient prophecies. Turn first to John 18:28. We are also going to be examining the parallel passage in Matthew 27; Mark 15 and Luke 18.
We have already covered Jesus’ betrayal by Judas, (See: Betrayed & Sorrow Unto Death), denial by Peter, (See: Sorrow Unto Life), and the illegal and unjust trials before the Jewish religious leaders – Annas, Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin. (See: No Justice Here!). This morning we continue in the historical narrative as the Jewish religious leaders take Jesus to the Roman authorities to have the death sentence pronounced upon Him.
28 They led Jesus therefore from Caiaphas into the Praetorium, and it was early; and they themselves did not enter into the Praetorium in order that they might not be defiled, but might eat the Passover. 29 Pilate therefore went out to them, and said, “What accusation do you bring against this Man?” 30 They answered and said to him, “If this Man were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him up to you.” 31 Pilate therefore said to them, “Take Him yourselves, and judge Him according to your law.” The Jews said to him, “We are not permitted to put anyone to death,” 32 that the word of Jesus might be fulfilled, which He spoke, signifying by what kind of death He was about to die.
Remember that these Jewish religious leaders were trying to avoid the crowds that had gathered in Jerusalem for Passover, so it is very early in the morning when all of this takes place. Pilate will pronounce his sentence on Jesus by around 6 a.m.
Jesus is taken from Caiaphas’ house to the Praetorium, which was the official residence of the Roman governor in Herod’s old palace on the west side of Jerusalem. They do not enter into the Praetorium themselves because they did not want to risk defiling themselves by being in a Gentile home before they ate the Passover meal. This is a case of gross religious hypocrisy. They were worried about becoming ceremonially defiled, but they had no concern about the illegal arrest and trial of Jesus or the evil they were now bringing about. But that is the nature of religious hypocrites. They are very concerned about the minute details of their own religious standards, but have little or no concern for breaking God’s commands.
John’s comment about them eating Passover creates a question about the timing of Passover since Jesus and His disciples ate it the previous night. As I have pointed out before, the question is answered in the different method of time keeping among the Galileans who started the day with sunrise and Judeans who started the day with sunset. This allowed the Galileans to slaughter and eat the Passover on Thursday and the Judeans to do so on Friday. This would also allow Jesus to be able to eat the Passover with His disciples and still die as the Passover lamb on Friday.
After they arrive at the Praetorium, someone gets Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea, and he comes out to them. Pilate held the civil, criminal and military authority for the area, but he in turn was under the authority of the legate of Syria. It is early in the morning, but it was common for people of the ancient world to be up very early.
Pilate’s first question is the logical one about why Jesus has been brought to him. Their answer, “If this Man were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him up to you,” shows antagonism between Pilate and these Jews. It is not an answer, but a statement designed to intimidate. In other words, “Don’t ask questions, just confirm what we have already decided and do what we ask.”
The Jews had a lot of freedom to set and carry out their own laws even though they were under Roman rule. Not knowing even the nature of the charges, Pilate properly refers Jesus back to them to be sentenced and punished according to their own laws. Only then does he find out that the charge is serious requiring death of the accused. Luke 23:2 records they then specifically charge Jesus with “misleading our nation and forbidding to pay taxes to Caesar, and saying that He Himself is Christ, a King.”
John comments verse 32 that the reason for all this was so that Jesus would die the proper type of death. Their statement about being concerned about not carrying out capital punishment except with Roman approval was a lie. That had not stopped them in the past, nor would it stop them in the future. They had already attempted to kill Jesus several times. Acts 7 records that they had no hesitation in stoning Stephen. They were able to get away with mob actions, but they could not crucify a man and that was important to them for two reasons. First, they wanted to avoid the blame for Jesus’ death by having Rome condemn and execute Him. Second, Deuteronomy 21:22 states that a person who committed a sin worthy of death was to be hung on a tree. Their goal was to destroy Jesus’ reputation by having Him crucified on a tree and thus show that He was cursed by God. Little did they realize that was the precise reason and way that Jesus Himself said He would die (John 3:14). He would take upon Himself the curse of man’s sin.
After this exchange, Pilate brings Jesus into the Praetorium.
The charges they made against Jesus were serious and needed to be investigated, especially the accusation that Jesus was claiming to be a king. In the Roman legal system it was proper for Pilate to question Jesus directly and so Jesus will respond to his question about being a king. Of course, Jesus, though He was the prisoner, was the one who was in control. He will not answer Pilate’s question until it is first clarified the nature of His kingdom. Jesus was not a political king, but He was even then the real spiritual king of the true Jews.
33 Pilate therefore entered again into the Praetorium, and summoned Jesus, and said to Him, “Are You the King of the Jews?” 34 Jesus answered, “Are you saying this on your own initiative, or did others tell you about Me?” 35 Pilate answered, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests delivered You up to me; what have You done?” 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting, that I might not be delivered up to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm.” 37 Pilate therefore said to Him, “So You are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say [correctly] that I am a king. For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” 38 Pilate ^said to Him, “What is truth?” And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews, and ^said to them, “I find no guilt in Him.
Pilate’s response indicates some of his own disdain for the Jews. He was not a Jew and was only asking the question because that was the accusation, but Pilate could see that Jesus gave no appearance of being a political king, especially since it was the Jewish religious leaders that brought him. It is likely he suspected there was something else behind their accusations. Pilate simply wants to know what Jesus had done to get them so upset to seek His death.
This opened the door for Jesus to explain Himself and the nature of His kingship. Jesus makes two points in verse 36. First, He is a king. Second, He was not a political king otherwise His followers would be physically fighting to protect Him. This is further clarified in verse 37. Pilate does not understand how Jesus could be a king and not have an earthly kingdom. Jesus affirms Pilate’s rhetorical question. It was just as Pilate said. That is the sense of, “You say that I am a king.” Jesus was a king and it was for that very purpose that Jesus had been born and come into the world. Jesus did not inherit His kingdom or gain it through revolution. He was born a king. The alien nature of this kingdom is seen in that it was for this purpose “He came into the world.” Jesus was from another realm, namely heaven. His kingdom was not based on earthly values, but was related only to those who would listen to the truth to which Jesus was testifying. It was a kingdom of those who sought and listened to the truth.
Pilate’s cynicism is seen in his statement in verse 38, “What is truth?” Certainly Pilate had seen enough of cruelty and injustice during his life to have given up any idealism he may have had as a youth. He is governor over a people he does not understand or like. The Emperor, Tiberius, is a suspicious man, so Pilate must be very careful not to attract his attention in the wrong way. That makes it difficult to govern. And Pilate, like many of the leading Romans of the time, had probably given up the traditional pagan beliefs about the gods, though there was still enough belief to leave them superstitious. The truth was standing before him, but Pilate’s skepticism and cynicism did not allow him to see it.
That Pilate was not looking for an answer to his question is seen in that he immediately turns and goes out to the Jews to pronounce the official verdict of his investigation. He found no guilt in Jesus which should have allowed Him to go free at this point, but Pilate’s interest in justice was skewed by his fear of the Jews.
Mark 15:3 records the reaction – “the chief priests began to accuse Him harshly.” Matthew 27:12-14 states, 12 And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He made no answer. 13 Then Pilate said to Him, “Do You not hear how many things they testify against You?” 14 And He did not answer him with regard to even a single charge, so that the governor was quite amazed.
The normal reaction of any prisoner in this sort of situation is to either 1) deny the accusations or 2) start pleading for mercy. Jesus remains silent. The evidence had already been examined and the verdict of His innocence had already been pronounced, so there was no need for Jesus to make a defense or say anything. This also fulfilled the prophecy given in Isaiah 53:7 that He would be oppressed and afflicted yet would not “open His mouth; like a lamb that is led to slaughter, and like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, so He did not open His mouth.”
Luke 23:5-8 records, 5 But they kept on insisting, saying, “He stirs up the people, teaching all over Judea, starting from Galilee even as far as this place.” 6 When Pilate heard it, he asked whether the man was a Galilean. 7 And when he learned that He belonged to Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who himself also was in Jerusalem at that time. Pilate jumped at the chance to transfer the problem of Jesus to Herod, so he sent Jesus to Herod.
Second Phase – Jesus Before Herod Antipas – Luke 23:8-12
8 Now Herod was very glad when he saw Jesus; for he had wanted to see Him for a long time, because he had been hearing about Him and was hoping to see some sign performed by Him. 9And he questioned Him at some length; but He answered him nothing. 10 And the chief priests and the scribes were standing there, accusing Him vehemently. 11 And Herod with his soldiers, after treating Him with contempt and mocking Him, dressed Him in a gorgeous robe and sent Him back to Pilate. 12 Now Herod and Pilate became friends with one another that very day; for before they had been enemies with each other.
Herod was curious about Jesus and so questioned Him for sometime, but Jesus “answered him nothing.” Herod could not find any point of guilt in Jesus even with all the accusations made by the chief priests and scribes. Herod finally got tired of the whole thing, but he had Jesus mocked by his soldiers including putting a royal robe on Jesus before sending Him back to Pilate. Herod and Pilate became friends that day.
Luke 23:13–16 continues the narrative after Jesus arrives back at the Praetorium before Pilate. 13 Pilate summoned the chief priests and the rulers and the people, 14 and said to them, “You brought this man to me as one who incites the people to rebellion, and behold, having examined Him before you, I have found no guilt in this man regarding the charges which you make against Him. 15 “No, nor has Herod, for he sent Him back to us; and behold, nothing deserving death has been done by Him. 16 “Therefore I will punish Him and release Him.”
That idea did not go over well with the crowd, so Pilate came up with another idea to free Jesus and still appease the Jews. Matthew 27:15-18 explains. 15 “Now at [the] feast the governor was accustomed to release for the multitude [any] one prisoner whom they wanted. 16 And they were holding at that time a notorious prisoner, called Barabbas. 17 When therefore they were gathered together, Pilate said to them, “Whom do you want me to release for you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?” 18 For he knew that because of envy they had delivered Him up.
Pilate did not have the strength of character to act according to the verdict He had already reached and pronounced twice. He wanted to release Jesus but also wanted to somehow appease the Jews. He sees an opportunity when “The crowd went up and began asking him to do as he had been accustomed to do for them” (Mark 15:8). This custom of releasing a prisoner of the people’s choice at Passover would allow him offer the choice of releasing Barabbas, whom Mark 15:7 specifically states was an insurrectionist and murderer and therefore a danger to both Rome and the people, and Jesus who had never harmed anyone and was so popular among the people.
Matthew 27:19 records and additional pressure to release Jesus was added by his wife. And while he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, “Have nothing to do with that righteous Man; for last night I suffered greatly in a dream because of Him.” The Romans put a lot of weight in dreams and Pilate would have taken this message from his wife very seriously. Pilate was now under great pressure in both directions. Justice and his wife’s dream pressured him to release Jesus. The Jews and fear for his position pressured him to condemn Jesus.
Pilate knew the religious leaders were envious of Jesus, but he did not know it was as strong as it was. While Pilate was reading and considering the message from his wife, Matthew 27:20 states, “But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the multitudes to ask for Barabbas, and to put Jesus to death.” When Pilate then said to them “Which of the two do you want me to release for you?” And they said, Barabbas” (Matthew 27:21). Luke 23:18 records they were vehement in their statement, “Away with this man, and release for us Barabbas!” This seems to surprise Pilate, who then responds (Matthew 27:22), “Then what shall I do with Jesus who is called the Christ?” Mark 15:12 adds that he referred to Jesus as Him “whom you call the King of the Jews.” Matthew 27:22 states they shout back, “Let Him be crucified!” Luke 23:20 is specific that “Pilate, wanting to release Jesus, addressed them again,” but it escalates into them continuing to call out, “Crucify , crucify Him” (Luke 23:21). Luke 23:22 then states, And he said to them the third time, “Why, what evil has this man done? I have found in Him no guilt demanding death; I will therefore punish Him and release Him.” Matthew 27:23 states, They kept shouting all the more, saying, “Let Him be crucified!”
I should point out here that there is a cameo of the gospel in this example of Barabbas. Guilty Barabbas went free because the innocent Jesus would take his place. Each of us is guilty of many sins against God because we disobey His commandments, but we can go free because Jesus took our place and paid sin’s penalty for us.
The demand for Barabbas to be released instead of Jesus puts Pilate in a more desperate position to find some way to appease them and yet not give into their desire to crucify Jesus, whom he had found to be innocent. His next effort is to inflict Jesus with a lesser penalty and perhaps cause the crowd to have pity on Jesus. It does not.
John 19:1-5, 1 Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and scourged Him. 2 And the soldiers wove a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and arrayed Him in a purple robe; 3 and they [began] to come up to Him, and say, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and to give Him blows [in the face.] 4 And Pilate came out again, and ^said to them, “Behold, I am bringing Him out to you, that you may know that I find no guilt in Him.” 5 Jesus therefore came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. And [Pilate] ^said to them, “Behold, the Man!”
Scourging was a vicious punishment, but in Pilate’s mind it was at least better than having Jesus crucified. Scourging involved being whipped by a scourge which had a short wooden handle to which were attached several leather thongs which had pieces of lead, brass and sharp bits of bone tied to them. The victim was usually bent over with his back laid bare. The scourge would tear and lacerate the skin, and depending on how many strikes were applied, it could turn a person’s back into a bloody pulp with inner organs sometimes being exposed. Pilate’s hope was that this horrible treatment might invoke sympathy for Jesus.
But the torture did not end with the scourging. The texts are not clear if Pilate was present for this or not, but his soldiers then put on Him a purple robe and crown of thorns in a mock coronation. There are many plants in Judea from which the crown of thorns could have been made. Tradition has it that it was a Palinrus shrub or Spina christi which as long thorns and leaves that resemble the ivy used to crown emperors and generals. The blood would have flowed from Jesus’ head. The soldiers mocked Jesus, spat upon him and struck Him with their fists while taunting Him to prophecy who had hit Him. Jesus endured all of this, as 1 Peter 2:21-24 states, “while being reviled , He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting [Himself] to Him who judges righteously; 24 and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.”
Pilate then goes out to the Jews still waiting outside the Praetorium and again pronounces his verdict that he found no guilt in Jesus. He then brought Jesus out still wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe which would have been heavily stained now with His blood. Again, Pilate’s effort was designed to invoke pity for Jesus so that he could then release Him without the Jews being antagonized by it. Jesus was innocent and should have been released at the beginning, but Pilate does not have high honor or integrity nor is he trying to uphold true justice. He is trying to find a compromise. He calls on them to look at the pathetic sight of Jesus in the midst of His suffering, but like a pack of sharks, they smell blood and want more.
What the Jews then say in John 19:7 makes Pilate’s dilemma even worse. The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and by that law He ought to die because He made Himself out to be the Son of God.” Remember that Pilate grew up being taught the Roman pantheon of gods and goddesses who had children that would dwell among men. That explains his response in John 19:8, Therefore when Pilate heard this statement, he was even more afraid. Could Jesus be a deity? He must now question Jesus further.
John 19:9-11, and he entered into the Praetorium again, and ^said to Jesus, “Where are You from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. 10 Pilate therefore ^said to Him, “You do not speak to me? Do You not know that I have authority to release You, and I have authority to crucify You?” 11 Jesus answered, “You would have no authority over Me, unless it had been given you from above; for this reason he who delivered Me up to you has [the] greater sin.”
Jesus had already given Pilate a clue about where He was from, but then, if Pilate had understood that he would have already released Jesus and surely would never have scourged Him. Pilate deserves no answer and Jesus gives him none. Pilate is afraid and he covers the fear up with an effort to put himself back in the position of authority. It is not an uncommon thing for people who are afraid to boast to cover it up.
Jesus’ answer takes Pilate off guard. Here is a man that has claimed to be a king and is charged with being the Son of God, yet He understands authority and is Himself submissive to it. Jesus does not deny Pilate’s authority to release or crucify Him, but simply points out that Pilate’s authority came from someone else with even higher authority to whom he would be accountable. Jesus was referring to God (Romans 13:1), but whether Pilate understood that or thought of the legate in Syria or the Emperor is unknown. However, it was clear that there was no sedition in Jesus. He was not rebellious against Roman rule.
The greater sin belonged to those that had delivered Jesus to Pilate, for they had not received any authority from God to do what they did. The High Priest and the Sanhedrin had authority, but they had exceeded it when they illegally tried and brought Jesus to Pilate to confirm their sentence of death. Pilate was corrupt and cowardly, but he was also ignorant of much of what was occurring. Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin were not. They were well aware of their illegal activity in trying to have Jesus crucified.
If Pilate had integrity and sought justice, he would have released Jesus after the first questioning. If Pilate had any honor or decency, he should have released Jesus after wrongly having Jesus scourged. But Pilate is not such a man and even after this questioning, John 19:12-16 record his greatest failure of character.
John 19:12-16, As a result of this Pilate made efforts to release Him, but the Jews cried out, saying, “If you release this Man, you are no friend of Caesar; everyone who makes himself out [to be] a king opposes Caesar.” 13 When Pilate therefore heard these words, he brought Jesus out, and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called The Pavement, but in Hebrew, Gabbatha. 14 Now it was the day of preparation for the Passover; it was about the sixth hour. And he ^said to the Jews, “Behold, your King!” 15 They therefore cried out, “Away with [Him], away with [Him,] crucify Him!” Pilate ^said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar.” 16 So he then delivered Him to them to be crucified.”
Admittedly, Pilate made more efforts to release Jesus, but he utterly failed because he lacked the integrity to do what was right. Pilate, by his own admission, had the authority to release Jesus. His problem was that he did not want to do so unless he could get the Jews to agree to it. He had, in effect, given over his authority in the decision to the Jews, and they, as stated in Luke 23:23, “were insistent, with loud voices asking that He be crucified. And their voices began to prevail.”
In the end, Pilate was controlled by temporal fear. The Jews’ statement that if he released Jesus he would not be a friend of Caesar was a real threat. They would tell Emperor Tiberias, a very suspicious man, that Pilate had released a man who claimed to be a king. Pilate knew they were lying about their claim of loyalty to Caesar, but he also knew they would carry out their threat. In addition, the mob was becoming increasingly unruly, no doubt provoked by Pilate mocking them when he brought Jesus out wearing the crown of thorns and the bloodied purple robe and then proclaimed, “Behold your king.”
Matthew 27:24-25 states, When Pilate saw that he was accomplishing nothing, but rather that a riot was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this Man’s blood; see to that yourselves.” 25 And all the people said, “His blood shall be on us and on our children!”
Pilate thought he could transfer his guilt to the mob and absolve himself, but of course he could not. In fact, his guilt was compounded by washing his hands because he again proclaimed Jesus to be innocent. His statement showed he had the power to do what was right, but he refused to so. He would let the mob “see to it,” but they did it by the authority he granted to them.
The crowd willingly accepted the responsibility, but they would only do so for a short time. By Acts 5:28 they are indignant that the preaching of the apostles was accusing them of being responsible for the blood of Jesus. They no longer wanted to have that responsibility, but it was theirs and they could not get rid of it.
After Pilate gave in to the will of the crowd, he did not give Jesus any further consideration or compassion. He let the normal course of events of a crucifixion take place. Matthew 27:26, Then he released Barabbas for them; but after having Jesus scourged, he delivered Him to be crucified.
We will study Jesus’ crucifixion next week. But for this week, note first the utter failure of both Pilate, the religious leaders and the mob. The evidence was in and the verdict pronounced. Jesus is exactly who He claimed. He is the Son of God. He is without sin, and He is king over everything. Pilate, the religious leaders and the mob rejected the truth in favor of what they thought was in their best immediate interests. You are now in the same position. What will you do with the truth about Jesus? You will either believe and follow Him, or you will reject Him. You will either be for Him or against Him. Ultimately, there is no fence sitting.
Second, note Jesus’ successes. He had prepared Himself so that He was able to remain calm and at peace despite the injustices and cruelties He suffered. He kept His faith in God the Father for His future and fulfilled the prophecies. We can face the injustices we will encounter in this world the same way. God is still in control and uses all things, including the evil actions of others, to accomplish His will in the lives of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).
Sermon Notes – July 21, 2019
Failures of ____________ in this world do not reflect on God’s character or sovereignty
Jesus has already been betrayed by Judas, denied by Peter and gone through three _________ trials
The religious leaders were gross __________to be concerned about being defiled for entering the Praetorium
Galileans counted time from Sunrise while Judeans from Sunset – hence Passover on Thursday & ________
Pilate asks a logical question, but they answer with sarcasm before making specific charges of ___________
They wanted Jesus to be __________in order to discredit Jesus and have Rome take the blame for His death
Pilate wants to know what Jesus did to cause the religious leaders to seek His _________
Jesus explains that He was born a _________, but of an alien kingdom of truth seekers and not of this realm
Pilate is ___________about knowing truth – but neither was he seeking truth
Pilate finds no guilt in Jesus & should have freed him, but his justice was skewed by _________of the Jews
Jesus simply remains _________for the evidence was already examined & Pilate pronounced Him not guilty
When Pilate learned Jesus was from Galilee, he quickly sent Him to ____________ Antipas
Second Phase – Jesus Before Herod Antipas – Luke 23:6-12
Herod was curious about Jesus, but Jesus remained silent. Herod ________Him and sent Him back to Pilate
Third Phase – Jesus Before Pilate Again – Matt. 27:15-26; Mark 15:6-15: Luke 23:13-25; John 18:39-19:16 Pilate sought to free Jesus and appease the crowds by following a custom of ____________ a prisoner
Pilate, who would have been superstitious, was warned by the _________ of his wife to leave Jesus alone
The crowds’ great _____________toward Jesus to release Barabbas and crucify Jesus seems to shock Pilate
Barabbas is a cameo of the _________ – the guilty set free by the substitute of an innocent man
John 19:1-5 – Scourging was ___________ , but in Pilate’s mind, a better option than crucifixion
The scourging was followed by mocking and physical ___________ by Pilate’s soldiers
After scourging, Pilate again pronounces Jesus not guilty and brings Him out hoping to prod ______for Him
The Jews reveal Jesus claimed to the ______________ which causes Pilate to fear and question Jesus again
Jesus does not answer Pilate’s initial question so Pilate cites his position and _________to release or crucify
Pilate is caught off guard by Jesus’ answer, but recognizes Jesus is ______________
Jesus does not excuse Pilate’s sin, but He does place the ________sin on those who delivered Him to Pilate
Pilate lacked integrity, justice, honor and decency otherwise he would have ____________ Jesus
John 19:12-16 – Pilate utterly __________ due to temporal fear and he yielded his authority to the mob
Matthew 27:24-25 – Pilate sought to transfer the responsibility to the mob, but he remains ____________
The crowd accepted the responsibility, and then later became indignant about it – but they remain _________
Pilate _____________, and no longer considerate of Jesus, he allowed normal crucifixion to take place
The evidence is in and the verdict pronounced – but what will _____ do about Jesus?
Jesus was successful because He was prepared and _____________ the Father in all things
We must face injustice in this word the same way – God is still in control and we must _________ Him
Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – Do one or more of the following: 1) Count how many times the Pilate is mentioned. 2) Talk with your parents about Pilate’s verdict about Jesus and why he failed to carry out justice.
THINK ABOUT IT!
Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. How have you seen injustice manifested in our society? Does such injustice demonstrate that God is either uncaring or not active? Why or why not? What had already happened to Jesus the night prior to being brought to Pilate? Why was it hypocritical of the Jews to be concerned about being defiled by entering the Praetorium? Why didn’t the Jews just stone Jesus instead of going through all the trouble of getting Pilate to crucify Jesus on accusations of sedition? How can Jesus be a king and yet not a threat to Roman authority? Why would Pilate be so cynical about truth? Why does Pilate pronounce Jesus as not guilty if he does not believe Jesus is a witness to the truth? Why does Jesus remain silent while the chief priests make more accusations against Him? Why does Pilate send Jesus to Herod Antipas? What was he hoping would happen? Why does Jesus remain silent to Herod’s questions? Why does Herod mock Jesus? Why does Pilate offer the crowd a choice of him freeing either Barabbas or Jesus? What was the effect of warning given by Pilate’s wife because of her dream? Why is Pilate surprised by the reaction of the Jews to release Barabbas and crucify Jesus? How is Barabbas a cameo of the gospel? Why did Pilate have Jesus scourged? What was he hoping to accomplish? Describe scourging. How else did the soldiers abuse Jesus? What was Jesus’ response? How did that fulfill prophecy? Why did Pilate fear when the Jews said that Jesus claimed to the Son of God? Why didn’t Jesus answer Pilate’s initial question? Why and how does He answer Pilate’s statement about authority? Why does this cause Pilate to increase his efforts to free Jesus – and yet not exercise his authority to do it? What was their threat in the claim that if Pilate released Jesus he would not be a friend of Caesar? What controlled Pilate in the end to agree to release Barabbas and have Jesus crucified? Why couldn’t Pilate “wash his hands” of the responsibility for Jesus’ crucifixion? How was the mob responsible for Jesus’ crucifixion? What is the evidence that Jesus is the sinless Son of God? What is your reaction to that fact? Why was Jesus able to so successfully endure the injustice and abuse He suffered? How can you respond in a godly manner to the injustice and abuse you will encounter in this life?
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