Day 1 - Pilate
The Voice of Pilate
Pontious Pilate became Prefect of the Judaean province a few years before Jesus was baptized. His relationship with the Jews and Samaritans during his time as Prefect was filled with contempt and disdain as he held their religious controversies as trivial and inconsequential. In return, the province had a history of rebellion against occupying powers.
In the midst of this enters Jesus of Nazareth. Pilate is aware of Jesus and his following, but reports are contradictory. “He is political. He claims to be a king of the Jews.” But Jesus doesn’t seem to be doing anything of real concern. There is rumor of healings and religious teachings about peace. Most of the rabbi’s followers are poor. For some reason Jesus poses a threat to other religious leaders, but Pilate does not think it worth his time. Perhaps, Pilate hears about crowds cheering Jesus as he enters Jerusalem—one pocket of zeal among thousands of pilgrims to the Jewish feast.
Then their lives intersect. Jesus moves from the background to the forefront.. The Jewish leaders seize Jesus, bring him to Pilate, and demand punishment. They want to put him to death, but using Roman law—not their own. When Pilate and Jesus finally meet, the rabbi’s words are quietly confident, but equally confusing. Is he really a king? For Pilate, Jesus is an unwelcome, forced choice.
We mirror Pilate’s indifference towards Jesus when we view Jesus only through a historical lens. “Nice man. Serving the poor and all.” But that’s where it ends for some.
We reflect Pilate’s reluctance to choose for or against Jesus when we don’t hear him imposing on us.
What will you do with Jesus?
Is he more than a king—is he your king?