Pilate then called together the chief priests, the leaders, and the people (210). He said to them, “You brought this Jesus to me & claimed that he was misleading the people. Now, I have examined him here in your presence, and I haven’t found him guilty of any of the crimes you accuse him of. And Herod didn’t find him guilty, either. There is nothing this man has done to deserve death. So I intend to have him whipped & beaten, and then to let him go.”
Pilate really wanted to find a way to set Jesus free, and everyone could see this. But then some in the crowd began shouting, “If you set him free, that means that you are not the emperor’s friend, because anyone who claims to be a king is an enemy of the emperor!”
When Pilate heard these words, he sat down on the judge’s seat & brought Jesus outside. It was then almost noon of the day before the Passover. Pilate said to the people, “Here is your king!”
But the crowd shouted back, “Kill him! Kill him! Crucify him!” Pilate asked them, “Do you want me to crucify your king?” The chief priests answered, “The only king we have is the emperor!”
Pilate would resist the crowd no more; he washed his hands before them.
Then he set Barabbas free & handed Jesus over to them to be crucified.
(210) Matthew 27:24-26, Mark 15:15, Luke 23:13-25, John 19:4-16a