Saturday, September 18, 2021
31-32 Pilate said, “You take him. Judge him by your law.”
The Jews said, “We’re not allowed to kill anyone.” (This would confirm Jesus’ word indicating the way he would die.)
33 Pilate went back into the palace and called for Jesus. He said, “Are you the ‘King of the Jews’?”
34 Jesus answered, “Are you saying this on your own, or did others tell you this about me?”
35 Pilate said, “Do I look like a Jew? Your people and your high priests turned you over to me. What did you do?”
-John 18:31-35 The Message
Verse 31: So Pilate 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,”
Verse 32: to fulfill the word of Jesus which He spoke, signifying what kind of death He was about to die.
Verse 31 study: Pilate made four attempts to deal with Jesus:
- Putting the responsibility of Jesus on someone else
- Find a way of escaping so Jesus can be released (18:39)
- Tried to compromise by having Jesus scourged (flogged) rather than handing Jesus over to die (19:1-3)
- He tried to have a direct appeal to the sympathy of the accusers (19:15)
Everyone had to do something with Jesus. Pilate let others decide for him, and he lost because he let others decide for him.
Verse 32 study: Crucifixion was a standard method of execution for criminals that were not Roman citizens. Recorded in Matthew 20:19.
Verse 33: Therefore Pilate entered again into the Praetorium, summoned Jesus, and said to Him, “Are you the King of the Jews?”
Verse 34: Jesus answered, “Are you saying this on your own initiative, or did others tell you about Me?”
Verse 35: Pilate answered, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests delivered You to me, what have You done?”
Verse 34 study: If Pilate asked this question as Roman governor, he would have been inquiring if Jesus was setting up a rebel government. The Jews were using the word king as a means to a religious leader, the Messiah. Israel was a captive nation under the authority of the Roman empire. A rival king might threaten Rome; a Messiah would have been a purely religious leader.
Father, thank you for putting writing in the minds of the disciples. Without this, we would never know what happened. Let us remember this trial in the reminder of our sins, that he died for us. It takes courage. In Jesus’ name. Amen!