As we continue to
follow Jesus' final hours before the crucifixion, we are going to
examine the timing of the events. The Son of God was arrested by the
Jewish religious authorities shortly before 3:00 am. The Sanhedrin was a
legitimate judicial authority but they intentionally disregarded their
ethical obligations when they ramrodded a guilty verdict in less than
three hours. Jesus was in the custody of the High Priest's soldiers
until 8:00 am when He was turned over to the Roman governor.
Jewish leadership did not want to enter the palace of Pontius Pilate and
contaminate themselves spiritually since it was the Passover week. Their
Talmudic laws stated they would be unclean but they had no qualms about
perverting justice to convict an innocent man.
Pilate was forced
to go outside to talk to these pious Jews and hear their accusations. He
felt there was no case against Jesus and ordered the Son of God to be
taken to the judgment hall where He could be questioned in private. When
Pilate learned that Jesus was from Galilee, he transferred Jesus to King
Herod, who happened to be in Jerusalem that week. The Jewish leadership
pressured Herod, who returned Jesus back to Pilate.
Herod and Pilate
both agreed that Jesus was innocent of the charges against Him but
politics is a dirty game and Caiaphas and his ilk were relentless that
Jesus must die. Pilate tried to pacify the Sanhedrin by having Jesus
whipped but they became incensed when Jesus was to be set free and
called all the more loudly for Jesus to be killed. Pilate yielded to the
Jewish leadership and ordered Jesus to be flogged and crucified. He then
performed a publicity stunt by washing his hands of the matter and
declared he was innocent of Jesus’ death.
give the illusion of a fair legal process, deciding the fate of the
accused beforehand to secure a conviction. This happens by manipulation
of true court proceedings and/or by denying the accused a proper
defense. The Sanhedrin obviously favored a speedy trial over proper
procedure. Jesus got more injustice from Pilate, who weakly argued with
the Jewish leadership that the Son of God was innocent. When the Jews
insisted that Jesus must die, Pilate caved and Jesus never got a fair
trial. It was nothing less than political murder. Studying these events
shows us the horrible suffering our Savior endured at the hands of evil
men and gives us an appreciation of His great love for humanity.
Print out the sermon outline and let's examine the
Scriptures together Sunday morning at 9:00 AM PST.
Yours in Christ,
Pastor John S. Torell