Holy Week Good Friday

It was a Roman captain who officially made the arrest of Jesus. Even though Jesus went willingly, the captain illegally bound him. It was illegal because he had not been convicted. In fact, he hadn’t even been formally charged.

Both the Jews and the Romans were very strict about their rules but over the next few hours they would break 43 specific laws.

Jesus faced 3 Jewish trials and 3 Roman trials.

The first was before Annas. Annas was the Father-in-law to Caiaphas the High Priest. He was the leader of a family that had held the office of High Priest for many years and was the leader of the Sanhedrin. He was a wicked man. Jesus was questioned about his teachings and, when Annas didn’t like his answer, he slapped him, bound him, and sent him to Caiaphas.

Caiaphas accused Jesus of blasphemy and condemned him to death. The officials spit in his face, blindfolded him, mocked him, and struck him with their fists.

Jesus was then taken for an official trial before the Sanhedrin, who were a council of 71 elders. They were much like our Supreme Court. It was here Jesus was formally convicted. The death penalty was not allowed for the Sanhedrin under Roman law, and they wanted him dead, so they took Jesus to the palace of Pontius Pilate the Roman Governor.

The Jews refused to go into the palace because it belonged to a Gentile, and they didn’t want to be considered unclean. Apparently, they had no issues with murdering, lying, or blatantly breaking Jewish laws with their trials.

The Jews demanded Jesus be tried for blasphemy, though they were willing to change that charge to whatever was necessary to get him condemned to death. Ultimately Jesus would be convicted for treason.

Pilate tried to release Jesus. He told the Jews he found no fault in Him. When he discovered Jesus was Galilean, he turned him over to Herod Antipas, ruler of Galilee.

Herod was excited to see Jesus. He’d heard a lot about Him and hoped He’d perform some signs and miracles for his entertainment. He asked Jesus a lot of questions, but Jesus refused to answer. Herod ridiculed and mocked him but not finding any fault with him sent him back to Pilate.

Pilate again tried to convince the Jews to let Jesus go. He reminded them that no one could find anything to convict him of.

It was customary to release 1 Jewish prisoner during the Passover, so Pilate gave them a chance to release Jesus. They refused and demanded Barabbas, a robber and murderer, be set free instead.

The bloodthirsty leaders kept demanding Jesus be put to death.

Pilate tried a 3rd & final time to convince them to let Jesus go.

He had Jesus scourged in an attempt to appease them.

They still were not happy.

He realized his attempts were useless. He was afraid of a riot, so he washed his hands of the situation saying that he claimed innocence in the death of Jesus. So, Jesus is condemned despite never being legally convicted and never formally sentenced.

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