Why Did Pontius Pilate Condemn Jesus To Death

Why Did Pontius Pilate Allow Jesus to Be Crucified?

Pontius Pilate seems to vanish from the pages of the Gospels almost as quickly as he emerges. Despite this, this Roman soldier plays such a significant part in the crucifixion that he is mentioned in the Apostles’ Creed as a result. As one of the most essential explanations of Jesus, what he performed on earth, and the many other fundamental teachings and beliefs that are central to the Christian faith, the Apostles’ Creed may well be the most important summary available. Those who have read about Pilate in the Gospel stories may recall him as a man who saw that Jesus was innocent, but who allowed his fear of the multitude to overpower his judgment.

The story of Pilate may be found in Matthew 27 and John 18:28-40, among other places.

He couldn’t bear the thought of allowing a guiltless guy to endure such a horrific death.

We’ll get into these and other questions in further detail below.

Who Was Pontius Pilate?

The Roman prefect (or governor) of Judea in the early first century was Pontius Pilate. He was known for his harsh treatment of the Jews (about 26-36 AD). According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, Pilate is believed to have risen to such a high position as a result of a recommendation from one of Emperor Tiberius’ favorite bureaucrats, a man named Sejanus. Pilate, although having landed a significant position, wreaked chaos for his position from the get-go. Pilate had fallen out of favor with Emperor Tiberius as a result of his insulting the faith of the Jews and operating an administration characterized by “corruption, violence, thefts, and bad treatment of the people.” When Sejanus, the administrator who had recommended Pilate for the role, vanished from the scene – having murdered Tiberius’ son and plotting to assassinate the Emperor himself – the Emperor increased his scrutiny of Pilate.

Every one of his movements had to be closely scrutinized.

With his own fate and deeds hanging in the balance, Pilate finds himself confronted by a Jewish man with whom he can find no fault at this point in his life.

In the worst case scenario, if he refuses to cave in to their demands, they will notify Caesar (John 19:12).

They do, however, state their views clearly. Either you assassinate Jesus or you are no longer a friend of Caesar. The Roman governor, Pilate, caves in and enables them to crucify Jesus, wiping his hands clean of any blood that could be shed.

Why Did Pontius Pilate Crucify Jesus?

Despite the fact that Pilate clearly possessed considerable power, why would he sentence a guilty man to death? Even if he looks to be ignoring his conscience, wouldn’t the act of doing so haunt him nearly to death, knowing that he has doomed a sinless man to die, be a source of great anxiety for him? We must bear in mind a number of factors that contributed to Pontius Pilate’s decision to yield to the throng. After all of the evidence stated above, it should come as no surprise that Pilate was in poor status with Caesar.

  1. And the Jews believed that siding with Jesus was a grave error.
  2. For the second time, we’ll see that opponents of Christianity frequently assert that the Bible is untrustworthy and that Jesus may have never been at all.
  3. If you want a more in-depth explanation of this, see Lee Strobel’s book “The Case for Christ.” In truth, Jesus’ ministry – with a few notable exceptions, such as the woman at the well – was solely for the benefit of the Jewish people of the time.
  4. The Romans were largely uninterested in Jewish matters.
  5. According to their records, he was in compliance with their tax regulations and otherwise a good citizen (Mark 12:17).
  6. Furthermore, unless the Jews were leading a revolt or insurrection against Rome, the Romans were not very interested in the affairs of the Jews.
  7. Furthermore, Romans regarded persons who held Roman citizenship as being of higher significance than those who did not hold it.
  8. Despite the fact that Pilate understood he was innocent, he did not plan to risk his career and his life for a non-Roman citizen.
  9. In spite of his convictions that Jesus should not have been put to death, he neglected his conscience and succumbed to peer pressure from the surrounding community.

Why Is Pontius Pilate Included in the Creed?

Pilate even goes so far as to wash his hands of the wrongdoing, figuratively speaking (Matthew 27:24). The Jews did not legally condemn Jesus to death, did they? If this is true, then why does the Creed state that Jesus was “crucified by Pontius Pilate?” In the story recorded in Matthew 27, Pilate is given the opportunity to release Jesus, but he declines to do so. However, even if he abstains from interfering with the execution, he still plays a role in the process of carrying out the punishment.

The stoning method was used by the Jewish people to murder individuals (Acts 7:54-60).

Furthermore, Don Stewart notes that it was a Roman type of punishment reserved solely for people of the lowest social status, criminals, and rebels, as Don Stewart discusses in this article.

Considering that individuals who were killed were regarded “cursed,” as Stewart indicates above, it is possible that Jews brought Jesus before the Roman authorities.

Because crucifixion was a Roman method of punishment, and because Pilate stood there with his hands up and let the crowd to do whatever they wished, Jesus was brought to be killed by him, as well.

Why Does This Matter?

When it comes to the crucifixion of Jesus, it’s critical that we understand who Pilate was and what role he played. First and foremost, we may learn from Pilate what not to do when we are troubled by a stirring in our conscience. However, despite Pilate’s repeated assurances that Jesus is innocent, the crowd stationed outside is successful in convincing him otherwise. Secondly, by understanding about Pilate’s past, including his disagreement with Caesar, we may better appreciate why Pilate would be reluctant to take a chance on a Jew.

  • The killing of Christ was a collaborative effort between Jews and Gentiles, we can see that at its conclusion.
  • Credit for the image goes to Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain Image/Antonio Ciseri on the Internet Archive.
  • More than 1,200 of her pieces have been published in a variety of journals, ranging from Writer’s Digest to Keys for Kids, among others.
  • Jenkins and Michelle Medlock Adams.
  • She is also a co-author of the Dear Heroduology, which was published by INtense Publications and is available for purchase online.
  • You may learn more about her by visiting her website.

Pontius Pilate

Pontius Pilate was a Roman governor who served under Tiberius the Great during the first century AD. His most well-known role is that of the judge in Jesus’ trial.

Who Was Pontius Pilate?

When Tiberius became emperor in the first century, Pontius Pilate became governor of Rome under his reign. Probably the most well-known of his accomplishments is his role as the judge at Jesus’ trial.

Prefect of Judea

Pontius Pilate was appointed prefect of the Roman provinces of Judaea, Samaria, and Iduma by the Roman Emperor Tiberius in 26 A.D., although Pilate is best remembered for his leadership of the Roman province of Judaea. While the average tenure for a Roman prefect was one to three years, Pilate was to keep his position as the fifth Roman procurator for a period of ten years, which was unprecedented at the time. Pontius Pilate became the successor of Valerius Gratus when he assumed his position.

His responsibilities as a prefect included routine activities like as tax collecting and project management for building projects.

However, it is possible that his most important role was that of preserving law and order. Pontius Pilate made every effort to achieve this goal by whatever means necessary. What he was unable to negotiate, he is supposed to have done by using raw force to achieve.

Jesus’ Crucifixion

Pontius Pilate, as governor of Judaea, was confronted with a clash of interests between the Roman Empire and the Sanhedrin, the Jewish religious council. When Pontius inquired as to whether Jesus was the King of the Jews, he asserted that Jesus had accepted the title, which he never had done. The Roman authority regarded this claim as treasonous and prosecuted the accuser accordingly. Pontius Pilate, according to some historians, worked in collaboration with Jewish officials, who considered Jesus’ claim to authority as a political danger, when it came to pursuing Jesus.

All four of the Gospels portray him as a weak man who eventually caves in to the Jewish rulers’ demand to put Jesus on the cross.

Only Matthew 27:24 describes Pontius Pilate as refusing to participate in Jesus’ crucifixion: “So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood; see to it yourselves,” he said.

INRI was a Latin abbreviation for Jesus’ given name as well as his title as King of the Jews.

Mysterious Death

The circumstances surrounding Pontius Pilate’s death, which occurred about 39 A.D., remain a mystery and a matter of debate. According to some legends, the Roman emperor Caligula ordered Pontius Pilate’s death by execution or suicide, which was carried out. According to some stories, Pontius Pilate was exiled and eventually committed suicide of his own free will. Some stories hold that after committing himself, his body was thrown into the Tiber River, which is where he is buried. Others, on the other hand, feel that Pontius Pilate’s destiny was tied to his conversion to Christianity and his canonization.

Whatever happened to Pontius Pilate in the end, one thing has been established: that he was a real person who lived in the first century A.D.

Antonio Frova discovered a piece of limestone etched with Pontius Pilate’s name in Latin, establishing a link between Pilate and Emperor Tiberius’ reign in the city.

Why Did Pontius Pilate Turn on Jesus?

Your point is well-taken; Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor who turned Jesus over to his soldiers to be killed, stated on several occasions that he did not believe Jesus had committed any crime. Jesus was examined by the judge, who said, “I see no foundation for charging this man with any crime” (Luke 23:4). Pilate ultimately caved in to the pressure of those who desired Jesus’ death, but not before it was too late. Why? The only plausible explanation is that Pilate was a morally shaky individual who, rather than standing up for the truth, was solely worried about himself and his own personal destiny.

  • The opponents of Jesus “continued yelling at Pilate, ‘If you let this guy go, you are no friend of Caesar,'” when Pilate attempted to let Jesus free.
  • Pilate, fearful of his predicament, finally gave up and ordered Jesus’ execution.
  • And it is considerably more common than most of us understand that this may occur.
  • Are you following in the footsteps of the multitude and Pilate, or are you following in the footsteps of Christ?

Prevent yourself from going down the wrong path by committing your life to Jesus Christ now via faith. He was the only one who could proclaim, “I am the way, the truth, and the life” (John 14:6).

Why Did Pontius Pilate Wash His Hands?

Pontius Pilate was the Roman governor of the provinces of Judea, Idumaea, and Samaria from 26 to 37 AD. He was the father of Jesus Christ. His most well-known accomplishment was his leadership of Judea. The highest judge in his position as Roman prefect meant that he had the ability to order the execution of a criminal on his orders. His early life was shrouded in obscurity, which is why there is disagreement concerning his place of birth. Non-biblical sources characterize him as a barbarian king who wilfully disregarded the customs of the Jewish people, and this portrayal is supported by the Bible.

See also:  Where Was Mary The Mother Of Jesus Born

Pontius Pilate washed his hands of the subject of Christ’s crucifixion because he did not believe Jesus had committed any crime worthy of death.

Pope Pontius Pilate is a fascinating and divisive character in the history of the world.

If you stop to think about it, Christianity would not have existed if Jesus had not been killed on the cross.

Jesus Handed Over to Pontius Pilate

As recorded in Matthew 27, the elders and chief priests conspired against Jesus with the goal of putting Him to death. After tying Jesus Christ on a cross, they brought him before Governor Pontius Pilate. He felt regretful after learning that Jesus had been convicted and returned the 30 pieces of silver that had been presented to him by the chief priests and elders of the congregation. Upon receiving the pieces, he flung them down in the temple and afterwards hung himself because he had sinned by betraying the innocent blood of Jesus Christ, who had died on the cross.

  • At that time of year, it was customary for the governor to release at least one prisoner to the general public for the festival of Passover.
  • When the throng was asked who they preferred to be freed between Jesus and Barnabas, the response was unanimous.
  • Barnabas was the man they picked.
  • Pontius Pilate inquired of the crowd as to what they want to be done with Jesus Christ, and they said that he should be crucified.

Later, he released Barnabas to the crowds and handed Jesus over to be executed on the cross.

Symbolism of Pilate’s Hand Washing

Pilate made the decision to sentence Jesus to death by crucifixion, yet he saw that he had made a mistake. Despite the fact that he was well aware that it would have a negative impact on his reputation, he pushed forward with the terrible agreement. His washing of his hands was a significant gesture. He wished to demonstrate his innocence. Despite the fact that he washed his hands to demonstrate his innocence, many people are curious as to whether he considered his soul. The fact that he sentenced Jesus to death by washing his hands did not diminish the fact that he declared his innocence via the act of handwashing.

  • It implies that he was directly or indirectly responsible for the miscarriage of justice.
  • This suggests that the judicial system is faulty, which means that it is far from being ideal.
  • Even though it made him feel better about himself, hand washing did not have any effect on him.
  • We are prone to blaming others for forcing us into wrongdoing, just as Pilates was compelled to submit to the Jewish commandment.
  • Our guilt is not lessened when we are coerced or persuaded into doing something wrong.

Lessons Christians Can Learn from Pontius Pilate

The vast majority of Christians are those who are appalled by Pilate’s actions and wish him no harm. It is because he was aware that Jesus was innocent and that he has the authority to free him. He opted to stay out of the issue out of fear. Despite the fact that some people hold Pilate to a higher standard than others, there are some occasions in which we as Christians are compelled to behave in the same manner as others. For example, in Deuteronomy 6:6-7, parents are instructed to properly raise their children so that when they grow up, they would not stray from the teachings of their parents.

  • However, other parents, like Pilates, choose to abdicate their responsibilities as parents entirely.
  • During a dream, Pilate’s wife was reminded of the virtues of Jesus, and she subsequently delivered a message to her husband.
  • It demonstrates that he was defending his status as governor by washing his hands with soap and water.
  • The certainty that God is always in charge comes when we are confronted with hardships.
  • Making the wrong decision as a leader does not set a positive example.
  • However, this occurred in order for us to have a deeper understanding of the Lord’s goodness.
  • The arrest might have been avoided if he had wanted to, with the assistance of God.

To live a full life, we learn that self-examination and admitting our faults to God via prayer are essential components of the process.

Despite the fact that we may face hardships and persecution, genuine triumph is only obtained through God.

In times of disaster, crying out to God is absolutely necessary since he is the only one who can save us.

Even in the midst of sorrow and pain, He exemplified love and forgiving.

Jesus was well aware that God had prepared an everlasting home for him.

Christians must have confidence in God if they are to survive persecution. Standing up for what is right and being courageous at all times is an essential step towards overcoming difficulties.

Crucifixion of Jesus

It was a horrible death that resulted in public humiliation for Jesus. It is said that the Roman soldiers put stones on Jesus’ head and a staff in Jesus’ hand, which they used to hit him. Instead of jumping to conclusions, it instructs Christians to pursue the path of righteousness. It is preferable to be on the right side of history than to make a mistake in order to appease a crowd. Pontius Pilate consented to sentence Jesus to death by crucifixion, yet he saw that this was wrong. Pontius Pilate, the governor, was torn between the interests of the Sanhedrin Jewish council and the interests of the Roman Empire, and he was forced to choose.

  • The Roman governor Pontius Pilate considered Jesus to be a political threat, according to certain accounts.
  • The crucifixion of Jesus Christ is a significant event in Christian history that has shaped their beliefs.
  • The Apostle Creed might be thought of as a condensed version of what Jesus accomplished throughout his earthly ministry.
  • He was terrified that one mistake might cause him to lose his job or his life altogether.

In Conclusion

In the gospel narrative of Jesus’ trial, Joseph and Philo criticized Pontius Pilate for being harsh and brutal to the accused. His weakness was presented in the four gospels as a result of his submission to Jewish authority’s demands that he put Jesus to death on the cross. When we read about Pontius Pilate washing his hands in Matthew 27:24, we see that he did so as a sign of his unwillingness to participate in the execution of Jesus. He was well aware that he would gain nothing by doing so, but once the riot erupted, he had no option but to sentence Jesus to death by beheading.

Christians must understand the crucifixion of Jesus because it teaches them that God sacrificed his only son in order to atone for the sins of all humanity.

Pontius Pilate

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Pontius Pilate best known for?

Pontius Pilate, full name Marcus Pontius Pilatus, was a Roman prefect (governor) of Judaea from 26 to 36 CE under the emperor Tiberius who presided over the trial of Jesus and delivered the order for his death. He died after the year 36 CE.

Historical and traditional accounts of the life of Pontius Pilate

Historically speaking, Pilate was a Roman equestrian (knight) belonging to the Samniteclan of the Pontii, according to the traditional version of his life (hence his name Pontius). He was appointed prefect of Judaea as a result of the intervention of Sejanus, a Roman emperor Tiberius’ favorite who was also a friend of the emperor. (An inscription from Caesarea in ancient Palestine attests to the fact that he held the position of prefect.) Despite being protected by Sejanus, Pilate alienated Jews in Roman-occupied Palestine by offending their religious sensibilities, such as when he posted portraits of the emperor around the city and had coins with pagan religious symbols produced.

Following Pilate’s onslaught on them on Mount Gerizim, the Samaritans reported him to Vitellius, the Syrian legate (36ce).

In the following months, he was sent back to Rome to stand trial for cruelty and persecution, notably on the claim that he had killed prisoners without due process of law. Eusebius of Caesarea’s Ecclesiastical History claims that Pilate committed suicide on the command of the emperorCaligula.

Pilate in the New Testament

Decisions about the man himself must be made inferentially, almost completely on the basis of subsequent Jewish and Christian literature, particularly those of Josephus and the New Testament, which are the most reliable sources. Josephus’ allusions appear to be constant throughout his writings. Their depiction seemed to be of a brash strictauthoritarianRoman commander who, although being both sensible and practical, never seemed to know how far he should go in a particular situation. He incited riots among both Jews and Samaritans, according to the Bible.

  • Josephus expresses his inferential conclusion that Pilate “was strongly moved by their solid resolution,” implying that he had a strong character himself.
  • Could it be that the crowd would be just as joyful if he freed Barabbas on the feast day instead of Jesus (Mark 15:6 ff.)?
  • A revelatory dream she has had about Jesus is communicated to him by his wife, who encourages him to “have nothing to do with the innocent man” (Matthew 27:19), and Pilate abdicates his responsibility to the emperor.
  • While Pilate is pronouncing judgment from a tribunal in front of the prefect’s palace, John’s depiction of Pilate does not conform to standard Roman protocol.
  • Jesus in the presence of Pilate Jean Fouquet’s illuminated book of hours for Étienne Chevalier, c.
  • Photograph courtesy of the Hulton Archive/Getty Images Even into the early twenty-first century, some churches continued to hold fast to an early church tradition that had taken a favorable view of Pilate.

His wife and himself are honoured in the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, and their feast day is celebrated on June 25. Those in charge of editing the Encyclopaedia Britannica Michael Ray has made several revisions and updates to this article in the most recent version.

BBC – Religions – Christianity: Who killed Jesus?

It is believed that no trial or death in history has had such a dramatic effect as Jesus’ trial and execution in Roman-occupied Jerusalem two thousand years ago. But, more importantly, was it an execution or a judicial murder, and who was to blame? Beginning with Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem on a donkey, the tale opens with the Galilean rebelJesus, who is consciously fulfilling a prophesy in the Hebrew Bible about his advent as Messiah. He’s surrounded by a throng of admirers. Following that, Jesus enters the Temple, the center of Jewish Judaism, and assaults money-changers, accusing them of defiling a sacred space.

See also:  When Jesus Come

Jesus is captured in the Garden of Gethsemane and brought before Caiaphas before being judged by the Roman Governor.


Caiaphas was in an advantageous position. Caiaphas was a master political manipulator and one of the most powerful men in Jerusalem at the time of Jesus’ death. As High Priest of the Temple, he’d already lived 18 years (the average High Priest only lasts 4), and he’d formed a solid alliance with the Roman forces in control of the temple complex. Caiaphas was well-connected to everyone who mattered. At the time, he was the de-facto king of the whole Jewish community around the world, and he intended to maintain it that way.

This is the basis for the death penalty.

What were Caiaphas’ motives?

Caiaphas’ power was threatened by Jesus. Caiaphas could not afford to allow any upstart preacher to get away with challenging his authority, especially at such a sensitive time of year as Passover was approaching. This was the most important Jewish holiday, and academics estimate that over two and a half million Jews would have gathered in Jerusalem to celebrate the occasion. Caiaphas did not want to be seen as a fool.

Jesus threatened Caiaphas’ relationship with Rome

Caiaphas’ power foundation was the Sanhedrin, the ultimate Jewish council that ruled over both civil and religious law in the time of Jesus. It was comprised of 71 members, the majority of whom were chief priests, and Caiaphas presided over its proceedings. There were enormous benefits for the effort, since contemporary archaeologists have revealed that Caiaphas and his companions lived luxurious lives in homes that were vast and elaborately adorned. However, the Sanhedrin was only able to rule because the Romans granted them permission, and the only way to keep the Romans pleased was to maintain order in society.

In other words, if Jesus was causing difficulty, it was causing trouble for both Caiaphas and Pilate – and trouble for Pilate was still trouble for Caiaphas, as well.

Jesus was unquestionably a danger; the general public admired him, and it is possible that they paid more attention to him than they did to the priests; and the general public listened attentively to his criticism of what he perceived to be wrong with the religious system.

Jesus threatened the Temple’s income

Jesus was also posing a danger to a valuable source of revenue for the Temple’s priests. When it came to simple concerns like cleansing and the remission of sins, the Temple equipment brought in tremendous sums of money. Archaeologists have unearthed 150 mikvehs in the area surrounding the Temple of Solomon. Mikvehs are ceremonial baths that Jews take to cleanse themselves before participating in any religious activity. People who were ritually unclean could not enter the Temple, and practically everyone who arrived in Jerusalem for Passover was regarded to be ritually unclean.

  1. The mikvehs were under the supervision of the priests, who charged people to use them.
  2. Jesus felt the whole thing was a load of nonsense.
  3. The Temple’s apparatchiks have received some bad news.
  4. If this gets out of hand, it might spark a riot in the Temple.
  5. Jesus stormed into the Temple and accused the moneychangers and dealers of sacrificial doves of extortion and of turning the Temple into a den of thieves, according to the Gospel of Matthew.
  6. And God, as every Jew was well aware, has the authority to do so – he had shown this many times before.
  7. He needed to do something to demonstrate that he was still in charge, and he needed to do it soon; Jesus was on a roll, and no one could predict what he would do next.

What Caiaphas did

You don’t get to be High Priest unless you’re capable of making difficult decisions and seeing them through to completion. A gathering of the chief priests was summoned by Caiaphas as it became clear that Jesus had to be stopped. According to Matthew’s Gospel, Caiaphas informed them that Jesus would have to be slain. This was something that the priests were not entirely certain about. If Jesus were to be executed, there may be rioting. Caiaphas, on the other hand, received his judgment and put it into effect immediately.

We may disapprove of certain of Caiaphas’ self-interested motivations, such as maintaining his wealth and power base, but this does not amount to a crime of any kind in our eyes.

Jesus was raising a commotion in the city of Jerusalem. The man was a well-known rebel, and he was risking public order at a time when enormous and turbulent crowds were thronging the streets of New York. The decision to arrest him was totally justified.

The rigged trial

Caiaphas had stepped over into the wrong side of the law at this point. He arranged the trial in his favor. Caiaphas took on the positions of chief judge and prosecuting attorney, which are often incompatible. Scholars are familiar with the laws that applied to Jewish trials during that time period, and the trial of Jesus defied several of those norms, including the following:

  • It took place at night since Jewish trials were required to take place during the day. A feast day had been observed, which was not permitted. Despite the fact that it took place at Caiaphas’ house, it should have taken place in the council chamber.

Caiaphas’ trial did not go according to plan. To establish that Jesus had threatened to demolish the Temple, which would have been treason and an offense against God, he would have to produce evidence. The witnesses, on the other hand, couldn’t agree on what Jesus had said. As a result, the accusation was dismissed. Caiaphas made the decision to see if he could trick Jesus into saying something he shouldn’t have. He confronted Jesus with a direct question: “Are you the Son of God, the Son of the Most High, the Son of the Most Holy?

  • It’s sufficient.
  • The other members of the Court are in agreement.
  • There was only one problem: the court lacked the authority to carry out executions.
  • Actually, there are two issues: first, blasphemy against the God of the Jews was not considered a crime under Roman law, and second, unless Caiaphas can come up with anything better, it may not be enough to persuade the Romans to execute Jesus unless he can come up with something better.

Caiaphas’s fate

Caiaphas was dismissed from office shortly after Jesus’ death and retired to his farm in Galilee, where he lived in peace.

The case against Pontius Pilate

What was Pilate’s reasoning for executing Jesus when he thought him to be guiltless? Pilate was the Governor of Judea, which was a province of the Roman Empire at the time of Jesus’ death. He had 6,000 crack troops with him and another 30,000 on standby in neighboring Syria, according to reports. When it came to keeping Rome happy, Pilate had total authority, including the power of life and death, as long as he kept the peace with the people. The argument against Pilate is that he judged Jesus not guilty, but ordered his execution in order to maintain public order and maintain the peace.

The two Pilates

We don’t know what Pilate was like in his personal life. The Bible portrays him as a weak but innocent guy who did not want to put a man to death who he felt was innocent, but who caved in to political pressure because he was weak. Some historians, however, are of the opposite opinion. Philo, who was writing at the time, described Pilate as cold-blooded, harsh, and merciless. He was presumably a typical Roman with a contempt for any other civilization, believing that the Jews were not nearly as civilized as the Romans were.

Pilate was well-known for executing people without a trial, therefore it would not be surprising if he was the one responsible for the death of Jesus on the cross.

What were Pilate’s motives?

Pilate was determined to maintain the status quo. His ability to administer the province smoothly and effectively was critical to his future advancement in the Roman Empire. He had 6,000 soldiers on standby to preserve the peace in a metropolis with a population of 2.5 million Jews, which he commanded. The religious leaders, whose cooperation he required in order to live a peaceful life, urged him to put Jesus to death, and there was an angry throng clamoring for Jesus’ blood. It was conceivable that releasing Jesus would have sparked a riot, and Pilate may have lost control of the city and probably the entire province.


No matter how little he cared for the people of Judea, Pilate was unable to avoid attending the most important event of the year, the Passover. The message of Passover was one that was guaranteed to cause consternation among those who were attempting to maintain control over the Jewish people, for it commemorated the moment when God transported the Israelites out of Egypt and into the Holy Land, allowing them to shake off foreign occupation. Consequently, it is no coincidence that practically all of the riots that we learn about in the first century took place around the festival of Pesach.

And because unrest in such a circumstance is contagious, Pilate realized that he would have to be harsh in order to put an end to any chaos that arose in the situation.

When Caiaphas brought Jesus before Pilate, it’s likely that he was completely unprepared for the dilemma that was about to confront him.

A trial for treason

Instead of beginning with the conviction for blasphemy, Caiaphas asserted that Jesus was guilty of sedition, which was later overturned. Caiaphas said that Jesus believed himself, or that his supporters believed, or that people believed that he was the King of the Jews. The crime against Rome was a capital offense, and Pilate was obligated to deal with it, whether he wanted to or not. The rumor spread quickly throughout Jerusalem, claiming that Jesus of Nazareth was being tried for his life. Crowds began to form, some of whom were undoubtedly members of a mob organized by the Temple officials; this was exactly what a Roman governor looking for a quiet Passover did not want.

  • Jesus didn’t say much or didn’t say anything at all.
  • There was just no proof to support Jesus’ claims.
  • The ruling infuriated the audience, who erupted in chants calling for Jesus’ execution on the cross.
  • The alternative, on the other hand, was the execution of an innocent man.
  • In ancient times, there were Passover amnesty laws in place, which authorized the Roman governor to free a prisoner during the holiday.
  • They called for Barabbas to be liberated from his prison cell.

In his verdict, Pilate pronounced Jesus to be innocent and sentenced him to death by crucifixion. In front of the throng, he symbolically washed his hands, as if to assure them that he was not responsible for Jesus’ death.

Pilate’s fate

Pilate was summoned to Rome in order to face prosecution for his ruthless treatment of Jews, but the Emperor Tiberius died before the trial could take place, and Pilate was never prosecuted. It is believed that he committed suicide in 37 AD, not long after the crucifixion had taken place. In Christian belief, Pilate and his wife finally converted to Christianity, according to the Bible.

See also:  What Do The Name Jesus Mean In Hebrew

The case against Jesus

Did Jesus have any idea what he was getting himself into during the events leading up to his execution? Many scholars think that Jesus himself was the one most responsible for the killing of Jesus, more so than anybody else in history. There is a substantial amount of evidence to imply that everything he did was premeditated and that he was fully aware of the repercussions of his decisions.

Jesus’ motive

Jesus had a genuine belief that he was on a mission from God, and everything he did was in the service of that mission’s fulfillment.

Acting out the prophecy of the Messiah

When it comes to the events of Holy Week, it appears that Jesus is purposefully carrying out the prophesy in Hebrew scripture about Israel’s rightful ruler, the anointed one, the Messiah, who would come at long last to be God’s agent to rescue Israel. Even while his entry in Jerusalem on a donkey was a fulfillment of prophecy, it would not have been sufficient reason to have Jesus crucified on its own.

Attacking the religious establishment

When Jesus arrived to the Temple, he began not just a direct attack on the moneychangers’ business activities, but also a symbolic attack on the structure of the Temple itself. Jesus was well-versed in the religious traditions of his day, and he was well aware of the potential ramifications of his acts. He understood what it meant to declare the Temple’s destruction and to assert that a new kingdom, the Kingdom of God, was developing in its place. Jesus was well aware that the authorities would take action against him in due course, and he was well aware that the penalty would almost certainly be death.

But Jesus continued to put himself in harm’s way, staying in Jerusalem and celebrating the Passover with his disciples despite the threat.

In the midst of their meal, Jesus alluded to the bread they were eating as his broken body, and the crimson wine they were drinking as his spilled blood, as he sat with his disciples.

One of the Gospels records Jesus telling Judas, “Do what you have to do, but don’t take too long doing it.”

Jesus sweats blood

The account of Jesus’ night in Gethsemane provides compelling medical evidence that lends credence to the argument that he understood exactly what he was doing. It was at this place that Jesus was struck with a terrifying sense of uncertainty – was death, after all, what God had planned for him? He pleaded with God to save him from his predicament. It was at that point, according to St. Luke, who was himself a doctor, that Jesus sweated droplets of blood into the path in front of him. Doctors are aware that little blood veins supply the sweat glands that are found throughout our bodies.

The medical word for this condition is haematohydrosis, which means “blood sweat.” If Jesus had known what he was in for, he would have been unable to endure the tension, which would have caused him to break out in hives and sweat blood.

So was Jesus guilty of his own death?

Not in the sense of remorse that the majority of people would comprehend. A soldier who embarks on a mission that is almost guaranteed to result in death is a brave guy, not a coward or a criminal. However, Jesus was not culpable in the same way that Caiaphas and Pilate were. He remained true to his calling, even though it resulted in death.

Pontius Pilate: The Man Who Sentenced Jesus Christ to Death

Christ in the presence of Pilate Mihály Munkácsy, 1881, Hungarian National Gallery; Pilate washing his hands, by Nicolaus Mosman, after Matthias Stom, 1744-1787, The British Museum; and Pilate washing his hands, by Nicolaus Mosman, after Matthias Stom, 1881, Hungarian National Gallery. In human history, Pontius Pilate is one of the most divisive and, at the same time, mysterious characters to have ever existed. Despite the fact that it was not his objective, his activities resulted in the establishment of a universal religion.

  1. At the very least, on this scale?
  2. Christ before Pontius Pilate, 493 – 526, Basilica of Saint Apollinaire Nuovo, via Europeana, Rome, Italy Pilate Pontius was a Roman prefect of Judea who is most known for sentencing Jesus Christ to death in the book of Matthew.
  3. The governor’s existence is only partially documented by archaeological evidence.
  4. What little is known about this historical figure is based on folklore and unsubstantiated traditions that exist on the precipice of historical fact and religious belief.
  5. According to the four Gospels, Pilate sentences Jesus to death after hearing accusations from the Jewish community.
  6. So that they would not be held responsible for anything, the Romans pretended to be the ones who would attempt to avert the crucifixion at all costs if there was any prospect of success.
  7. 1625-1630, is housed in the Louvre.
  8. He was harsh and merciless, and he was well-versed in the techniques of his trade.

The fact that he has such extraordinary leadership abilities is sufficient evidence. ARTICLE RECOMMENDED FOR READING:

Pontius Pilate In Judea

Aqueduct built by the Romans at Caesarea. Pilate’s responsibilities were essentially military in nature when he first arrived in Judea. In the Roman province, he was successful in maintaining a calm atmosphere. It is important to note that the capital was Ceasarea Maritima, not Jerusalem, as many people believe. In the same way that every Roman was, Pilate Pontius was a very devout individual. The Romans were distinguished by two characteristics: they were brutal warriors in combat and exceedingly pious when it came to the observance of religious regulations dedicated to their gods.

For all of the empire’s emperors, the religion of gods and politics had become inextricably intertwined.

Inscriptions from Caesarea, which were constructed during the reign of Emperor Tiberius, are among the few surviving pieces of evidence of Pilate’s authority.

Pontius Pilate’s First Orders In Judaea

The British Museum has a painting of Pilate washing his hands by Nicolaus Mosman, after Matthias Stom, which dates from 1744-1787. According to Roman sources, Pilate is a long cry from the Christian figure that is assigned to him in the Scriptures. He understood how to scare a mob and keep order in an area that was rebellious to authority. His initial activities as a prosecutor in Judea came dangerously close to resulting in a bloodbath. Soldiers from Rome were to be dispatched to the Holy Land, according to his commands.

  1. The enraged Jews demonstrated in front of Pilate, who devised a plot to scare them away from the city.
  2. As soon as Pilate led the Jews inside his palace, he ordered his men to draw their swords in preparation for battle.
  3. The Jews, on the other hand, were brought to their knees and did not attempt to fight back or flee.
  4. Pilate retreated because his first responsibility was to keep calm among the populace.

The Role Of Pilate In The History Of Jesus

The Sacrament of Ordination, often known as The Kimbell Art Museum houses a painting by Nicolas Poussin, who lived between 1636 and 1640. The fact is that Jesus was not the first Messiah to emerge in Judea, as is often believed today. There had been others before him, each with their own set of new religious ideas. The Romans were aware of them and were continually on their trail. The trial of Jesus began on the basis of allegations brought against him by prominent members of society. That the nobility in Jerusalem had a hand in the execution of Jesus Christ is established by this evidence.

  1. There are several distinct stories of Christ’s true conviction, which may be found in the Bible.
  2. After announcing the decision, Pilate washed his hands and recited a few prayers to the gods, as was customary for Roman rulers to begin the day after receiving the judgement.
  3. According to another source, there were multiple trials before the final conviction was reached.
  4. According to some traditions, Pilate felt that Jesus was innocent and even stated as much when they arrested and tried him.
  5. Pontius Pilate is a character about whom we know very little.

He lived and served as the governor of Judea throughout Jesus’ trial and execution, though, and this is all we do know about him. Historical researchers and archaeologists are the only ones who can uncover the genuine facts about one of the most important persons in human history.

Pontius Pilate’s Disappearance

Christ in the presence of Pilate The Hungarian National Gallery has a painting by Mihály Munkácsy from 1881. After Pilate’s ten-year tenure over Judea, there is practically nothing recorded about him in the Bible. He was expelled from the country and returned to Rome, where he essentially vanished. After his return, there was no more published about him or his exploits. The Emperor Caligula, according to some, ordered his execution, while others say he was banished after his last years of power were fruitless.

He may have even gotten another post and continued his life in the Roman Empire, for all we know.

Pontius Pilate In Art

“Can you define truth?” Geoffrey Chaucer’s Christ and Pilate The Tretyakov Gallery has a painting by Nikolay Nikolaevich from 1890. Depictions of Pontius Pilate in art have been extremely popular from early Christian times, particularly after the 4th century CE, and have continued to be so up to the current day. He is frequently shown alongside Jesus Christ, or he is shown washing his hands in confession. Despite the fact that there are several pieces of art that depict Pilate washing his hands, one of the most bizarre depictions of Pilate washing his hands is found in a painting by J.M.W.

In spite of the fact that the artwork was created in 1830, its use of color might be considered impressionist at a period when impressionism was not yet in existence.

Leo Tolstoy, the Russian author, considered this to be one of his favorite pieces of art.

Many artists have chosen to show Pilate at the moment he cries “Ecce Homo” (Behold the Man) when presenting Christ to the Jewish people just before the crucifixion, which occurred shortly before Christ’s death.

Pilate has also featured as a fictional character in literature, playing a significant role in medieval passion plays as well as a number of literary works centered on the life of Christ.

ARTICLE RECOMMENDED FOR READING: Leonardo da Vinci was a Renaissance artist who lived from 1452 until 1519.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.