Thursday, April 26, 2012

Trial #3&4, and Judas' end.

Friday 3:00am - 5am
Trial #3
This is where the sentencing ttook place. - there was to be a break of 24 hours between th conviction and the sentencing, but in Jesus' case there was only 2 hours.
After He  appeared before Annas, leaders put Jesus into a holding area, possilby a dungeon nearby. We do not know if had food or water, but he was in there for about 2 hours. Then they brought him out for sentencing.

Matthew 27

 1 Early in the morning, all the chief priests and the elders of the people made their plans how to have Jesus executed. 2 So they bound him, led him away and handed him over to Pilate the governor.

it was about 5am - Jesus is brought back to court for sentencing. They said to him " Now lets go through this one more time. Are You the Messiah?" Christ responds with an answer that, at first seems confusing " If I should tell you, you wouldn't believe." 
These people were not looking for the God's Anointed one... They were looking for the Messiah that was to destroy the Roman empire. And they were not convinced that this guy was the one that was to be dying for peoples sins. 
- Jesus was saying  = Even if I told you what the Messiah is really like, you wont believe Me. " If I should ask you a question you wont answer Me." 
This wasnt Jesus' first encounter with these people. - He'd talked to them many times about  this very thing. and He knew that their hearts were hardened beyond he could ever change.

Then the leader's asked him "So,  you're the Son of God??" - if they could catch Jesus blaspheming God's name, they'd be putting Him to death - blasphemy was a capital offense. Jesus wasn't blaspheming, and both His life and words proved that. But the leaders chose to ignore His teachings. They  were blinded to the truth of His claims, Thus, the relegated HIm to the status of being a mocker and blasphemer. 
When Jesus answered truthfully by saying "its just as you say: 'I AM,'" the leaders then cried out "he deserves to die." they grabbed Him, and bound Him and took Him to the Roman Governor, Pontius Pilate.

Judas' End.
During the trial in the courtroom, outside something else was going on outside the city.
Matthew 27: 
3 When Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders. 4 “I have sinned,” he said, “for I have betrayed innocent blood.”
   “What is that to us?” they replied. “That’s your responsibility.”
 5 So Judas threw the money into the temple and left. Then he went away and hanged himself.

Apparently Judas had been following the trials of Jesus, to see what the outcome was to be of his betrayal. When he saw that Jesus was going to be put to death, he had a change of mind. - He was filled with guild, realized that he was responsible for the innocent Christ being tortured and sentenced to die. 
Before realizing the consequences of his sin, Jesus enjoyed being the center of attention. He delighted in his power and the money that had come his way. 
But now he was filled with guilt. the 30 pieces of silver he had wanted so bad now haunted him, leaving him empty. He went to the chief priests, hoping to remove this guilt by them taking this money back.
Judas was mistaken - they had used him for their own wicked plans, they wanted nothing to do with Judas now, and were irritated that he came back, at an important hour. They cruelly sent him way saying "what does that matter to us, deal with that yourself." If Judas has been truly repentant.  If only he had asked forgiveness for his horrible sin. Instead he was overcome with guilt and despondency. Throwing the silver at the feet of the elders, Judas fled the temple, found a tree overhanging a cliff and hung himself.

Jesus before Pilate

Friday 6-7am
Trial #4

The Jewish leaders hated Pilate, and despised the fact they had to seek permission  to put Jesus to death. Yes, they had passed their own judgments, but Romans had the last word in capital punishment. What made matters worse was that it was now Passover weekend, a time of heightened political and social tension. The leaders knew Pilate would be cautious during this major holiday. Pilate hated the Jews too. Pilate was feeling pressure from his boss, Tiberius. 
Tiberius was a cruel and paranoid individual, known to kill people for the littlest thing - or none at all. Meaning that Pilate and other provincial governors  were subject to the whims of this crazy man.

SO - Here they are in Pilate's courtyard, early on this Friday morning, - one side was the Jewish leaders, and the other side, was Pilate. Between them there was the greatest Jew ever lived - Jesus the Messiah. 
Jesus Before Pilate
At first everything goes well. 
Pilate says to the leaders "what accusation do you bring against this man? what's the charge?
-They don't have a charge... But they didn't want say to Piate, "see this pathetic, bleeding Jew right here? He says He's God! And that makes us mad."
if they would have started with that then Pilate would have said "take your silly religion and get lost." 
So they didn't have a formal charged so they had to improvise.  "Look Governor - we're the supreme court, do you think we are here on Passover weekend because we want to be here?- Don't you think this is serious? - Pilate, just please, give us the 'go-ahead' and kill Him." 
Pilate wasnt in the mood to play their game. - Besides this was a good way for him to really get at the Jews. - Which he dedpised. so he said to them " You have your own law- do what you have to do" this forced them to say - "we're not permitted to put anyone to death." 
They must have hated to admit that they were subject to Roman law. 
But by having to go through the Roman law they would actually be fulfilling prophesy. 

If Christ would have been killed by the Jews rather than Romans, he wouldn't have been Crucified, instead by stoning... God didn't want  Christ to die by stoning. - Stoning would have been a very quick death. Stoning is gruesome, but not near as gruesome and humbling as the crucifixion. God wanted His On, Jesus Christ, to die a horrible death and to be lifted up for all to see. 
Perhaps  he knew that we was modern Americas we would need something graphic to get our attention. The crucifixion gets our attention. 

False Accusations-

Luke  232 And they began to accuse him, saying, “We have found this man subverting our nation. He opposes payment of taxes to Caesar and claims to be Messiah, a king.”
 3 So Pilate asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?”
   “You have said so,” Jesus replied.
 4 Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”
 5 But they insisted, “He stirs up the people all over Judea by his teaching. He started in Galilee and has come all the way here.”

the first 2 of these charges - being a bad influence and not paying taxes weren't going to fly with Pilate. The third, got pilates attention:"... Saying that He Himself is Messiah, a King." 

You can see what Pilate's thinking here.. "a king? there's only one king Caesar... what will happen  if Tiberius hears about this on Passover weekend? This was the one weekend that Jews celebrated their freedom for the Egyptians, he didnt want to hear about them getting their freedom from Rome either. 
Jesus' reactions to the charges blew Pilate's Mind - Pilate was used to people pleading for mercy. - But there's Christ - in dignity, silent before the charges, 
He was beaten and bleading, sweat and blood mixed together and matted his hair. BUt He denies Pilates demand that he defend Himelf... he stood there calmly not saying a single word. 
Pilate decided to take Jesus  where the Jews wouldnt follow, he wanted to talk to Jesus one-on-one. - and hearing first hand what this is all about.
Pilate asked Jesus if He was the King of the Jews, - The reply was  very straightforward - Yes you're right... its just as you're saying - but do you really care? 
THis made pilate mad "Am I a Jew?" - He ated the Jews. - 
"your own nation and chief of priests delivered you to me, so you mist have done something very  bad in order to be in so much trouble, to have them bring you to me on Passover weekend ...
THis must have broken Jesus' heart. 
The people rejected him , but he remained  cool and calm in the midst of all of Pilates insults.

John 18:36

36 Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.”

--Basically he's saying - Look Pilate, I'm not a threat to the Roman Empire, I don't have an army, If I did, then don't you think they'd be fighting for Me right now? Don't you think they would've begun fighting the moment I was arrested? I have no army, for My kingdom is not of this world. 

John 18: 37-38a

You are a king, then!” said Pilate.
Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”
38 “What is truth?” retorted Pilate. 

By this time Pilate doesn't want to talk about the truth - and then Jesus said "I am the way the life, and the Truth. 
Pilate never got the clue.- He no doubt had head philosophers talking about the truth, but he turned away the one person who would have shown him ultimate truth.

After interviewing Jesus, Pilate was convinced that He wasnt a threat. and considered the charged that He was brought on silly. -- How could a Jew that was beated, worn down, and collapsing be a threat to the Roman Empire?
Pilate went outside and told the Jews what he thought - get outta here... 

Luke 23:4-5

Then Pilate announced to the chief priests and the crowd, “I find no basis for a charge against this man.”
But they insisted, “He stirs up the people all over Judea by his teaching. He started in Galilee and has come all the way here.

Then Pilates ears perked up when they mentioned "Galilee".. .why? 
Pilate didn't rule over Galilee... Herod did... and do you know who was in town  that weekend??- Yup, Herod, So he decided to hand Him over to Herod.