You know that there were really two phases of the trial of the Lord Jesus Christ. First of all, he was tried before the religious authorities. Secondly, he was brought before a Roman authority. There was a religious aspect to His trial and then there was also a civil aspect to the trial of the Lord Jesus Christ. He has been brought before religious authorities. They have decided to accuse them of blasphemy. He is now going to be brought before Pontius Pilate, the governor, and they are going to seek to get him to confirm the sentence which they have already determined. We are brought face to face with this man known in the Bible as Pontius Pilate. He is referred to numerous times in these verses as the governor. We know because of verse 2 of this chapter that it is Pontius Pilate who is the governor at that particular time.
Pontius Pilate was a very hard man. He had been born as a slave but had risen through the ranks. He had married a close relative of Caesar. Because of this had been able to move himself into a leadership posture. He was a very cold, calculating, cruel man. He was a man who would do anything in order ta further his own purposes and his own power. He is responsible at this particular time for maintaining order among the Jewish people. Now, the Jews didn't like Pontius Pilate. He had done several things that had outraged them. One of the things he did is on the ensigns he had put the official Roman insignia and that had offended them. He had taken money from the temple treasury and used it to build an aqueduct. That had enraged them. I guess the thing that really did get them is that on their shields, the Roman soldiers, by Pontius Pilate had placed the image of Caesar and that indeed outraged them. So, the Jews hated Pontius Pilate. The feeling was mutual. The last thing he needed at this particular time was another riot. He couldn't have another riot on his hands. It would put him in disreput ...
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