Ellen G. White Writings

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Humble Hero, Page 333

Christ’s Trial Before the Roman Governor

This chapter is based on Matthew 27:2, 11-31; Mark 15:1-20; Luke 23:1-25; John 18:28-40; 19:1-16.

Christ stood bound as a prisoner in the judgment hall of Pilate, the Roman governor. Around Him was the guard of soldiers. The hall was quickly filling with spectators. Just outside were the judges of the Sanhedrin, priests, rulers, and the mob.

After condemning Jesus, the Sanhedrin had come to Pilate to have him confirm and execute the sentence. But these Jewish officials would not enter the Roman judgment hall. According to their ceremonial law, entering that place would defile them and prevent them from taking part in the Passover. They did not see that murderous hatred had defiled their hearts. They did not see that since they had rejected Christ, the real Passover Lamb, for them the great feast had lost its significance.

Pilate looked on the Savior with no friendly eyes. Called from his bedroom in haste, he determined to do his work as quickly as possible. Putting on his most severe expression, he turned to see what kind of Man he had to examine.

He gazed intently on Jesus. He had had to deal with all kinds of criminals, but never had a Man of such goodness and nobility been brought before him. On His face, he saw no sign of guilt, no fear, no boldness or defiance. He saw a man whose expression bore the signature of heaven.

Pilate’s better nature was stirred. His wife had told him something of the wonderful deeds the Galilean Prophet had performed, curing the sick and raising the dead. He recalled rumors that he had heard from several sources. He demanded that the Jews state their charges against the Prisoner. “Who is this Man, and why have you brought Him?” They answered that He was a deceiver called Jesus of Nazareth.

Again Pilate asked, “What accusation do you bring against this Man?” The priests did not answer his question. In irritation, they said, “If He were not an evildoer, we would not have delivered Him up to you.” When the Sanhedrin brings you a man it considers worthy of death, is there need to ask for an accusation against him? They hoped to lead Pilate to give in to their request without going through many preliminaries.

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