Friday, March 6, 2009


(John 18:38-39)
The Jews didn't like him. On three different occasions, Pontius Pilate had broken God's law-two of the being one of the commandments handed down by Moses.

When Jesus was arrested and tried, the crowd wouldn't let Pilate rule in anyway except how they wanted. They wanted this man Jesus crucified. Their collective attitude was, “If you don't do as we want, we will again report you to the Emperor.

But Pilate believed Jesus innocent of the charge. He wanted to free this itinerant preacher. He bargained with the crowd. He would honor the Passover tradition of releasing one prisoner. He would exonerate that prisoner. He would release the Nazarene But the crowd yelled, “Crucify him, Crucify him.”

In the end Pilate did as the crowd demanded. But how did all this set in his mind?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Although he acted as governor of Judea—appointed by Rome, he was a people-pleaser at heart. Herod acted big for the guests at his birthday party. His step-daughter had danced for those in attendance. After she finished, Herod boasted he'd do anything she asked, he was so appreciative of her dancing.

Her mother, Herodias, put her up to it. She told her to ask for John the Baptist's head on a platter. This bothered Herod. He actually liked John, except when his preaching went to meddling into Herod's life.

Herod first thought Jesus was John the Baptist come back to life. When approached by the crowd, he didn't know what to do about Jesus.

Monday, March 2, 2009


Prior to the Roman occupation of Judea, the office of High Priest was held for life. But that changed to an annual appointment. Caiaphas,the one selected for that year, spent his time looking out for himself. Scholars describe him as selfish and closed-minded.

He was convinced Jesus should die. But he didn't know how. Add to his quandary the Jewish Community needed permission from the Roman government before any execution could be carried out.

Caiaphas told the religious leaders it was better for one man to die for the people rather than the whole nation. He prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation and for the scattered children of God to bring them together and make them one. (John 11:49-53)

His usual method of operating was to remove anyone who threatened his power. After the resurrection, he didn't believe Jesus had risen from the grave. He ordered the soldiers to tell people someone had stolen the Master's body from the tomb.

Caiaphas, in all his plotting and planning, was used in God's plan.

Fear, Courage: God Is With Us  Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD ...