Jesus Before Pilate
Then the whole company of them arose and brought him before Pilate. 2 And they began to accuse him, saying, “We found this man misleading our nation and forbidding us to give tribute to Caesar, and saying that he himself is Christ, a king.” 3 And Pilate asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” And he answered him, “You have said so.” 4 Then Pilate said to the chief priests and the crowds, “I find no guilt in this man.” 5 But they were urgent, saying, “He stirs up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, from Galilee even to this place.”
Observations and Reflections
If we recall from the previous passage, the religious leaders were able to accuse (falsely) Jesus of blasphemy which is how they justified this whole charade. Now they bring Jesus before the Roman prefect (not the Roman emperor). We should think of Pilate as more of a governor than a ruler. He still had to answer to the Roman emperor. But does Pilate care if Jesus was a blasphemer? Of course not. The only thing he cares about is keeping the peace between Rome and Judea which has been difficult in the last 2 centuries. This is why the religious leaders tell Pilate that Jesus was forbidding people to pay tribute to Caesar and called himself king. This is a grave offense to Rome.
However, even Pilate was not able to find a reason to punish Jesus. The Romans were not known for their kindness so we can assume that Pilate was just trying to stay out of this dispute if possible and allow the Jewish leaders to deal with their own problems. But their is no appeasing the Jewish leaders. They won’t stop until they have Jesus murdered.
The religious rulers as they called themselves, would stop at nothing to disprove that Jesus is not who He says He is. Their main goal is to showcase that Jesus is fraud and a threat to the Roman rule of that time. They tried to play Him off as a blasphemer. From their they moved on to Him being a political threat. There was nothing they would not do or say in order to destroy Jesus once and for all.
Once again we see Jesus is being questioned by another authoritative figure on who He is. However, this time when He answers the same way, Pilate is not able to find any fault in what He says. Scripture does not tell us whether or not it is because He actually believed Him but it is interesting to note that Pilate did not find Him guilty. I believe this was to show that Jesus was truly innocent when He went to the cross.
There was absolutely nothing that they could find that was wrong with Him. However, this is to also show just how much sin had destroyed this world and because of that, there was urgency for God to rectify the situation. This was a dire and necessary sacrifice because of our sin and what sin could do to us if it continued to run rampant in this world. There had to be one who was sinless and pure to take our place because we were too full of sin to save ourselves.
Jesus was a perfect sinless being. He did not commit sin a day in His life. He was spotless, blameless and perfectly Holy. This sets the scene for how deep of a sacrifice Jesus paid in going to the cross. Innocent and perfect, He took on the full of weight of the sin of the entire world because of His unconditional love for us.