Jesus was brought before Pilate by the chief priests and scribes. They falsely accused him, but Pilate found nothing wrong with Jesus, nothing deserving crucifixion. 

Then they rose up in a body and took him off to Pilate and began their accusation in these words, “Here is this man whom we found corrupting our people, and telling them that it is wrong to pay taxes to Caesar, claiming that he himself is Christ, a king.”

But Pilate addressed his question to Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?” “Yes, I am,” he replied.

Then Pilate spoke to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find nothing criminal about this man.”

But they pressed their charge, saying, “He’s a trouble-maker among the people. He teaches through the whole of Judea, all the way from Galilee to this place.”

Pilate send Jesus to Herod. After Herod examined him, he sent Jesus back to Pilate.

Then Pilate summoned the chief priests, the officials and the people and addressed them in these words. “You have brought this man to me as a mischief-maker among the people, and I want you to realise that, after examining him in your presence, I have found nothing criminal about him, in spite of all your accusations. And neither has Herod, for he has sent him back to us. Obviously, then, he has done nothing to deserve the death penalty. I propose, therefore, to teach him a sharp lesson and let him go.”

But they all yelled as one man, “Take this man away! We want Barabbas set free!” (Barabbas was a man who had been put in prison for causing a riot in the city and for murder.) But Pilate wanted to set Jesus free and he called out to them again, but they shouted back at him, “Crucify, crucify him!” 

Then he spoke to them, for a third time, “What is his crime, then? I have found nothing in him that deserves execution; I am going to teach him a lesson and let him go.” 

But they shouted him down, yelling their demand that he should be crucified.

Their shouting won the day, and Pilate pronounced the official decision that their request should be granted. He released the man for whom they asked, the man who had been imprisoned for rioting and murder, and surrendered Jesus to their demands.;

Pilate didn’t want to kill Jesus at the beginning, but he wanted to satisfy the leaders and the crowd. So he set the man who was guilty free, and the man who was innocent was crucified.


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