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Humble Hero

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    Pilate’s Last Chance

    Even now Pilate was not left to act blindly. An angel had visited his wife and in a dream she had talked with the Savior. Pilate’s wife was not a Jew, but as she looked at Jesus in her dream, she knew that He was the Prince of God. She saw Pilate give Jesus to the scourging after he had declared, “I find no fault in Him.” She saw him give Christ up to His murderers. She saw the cross uplifted, the earth wrapped in darkness, and she heard the mysterious cry, “It is finished!”HH 337.6

    Still another scene met her gaze. She saw Christ seated on the great white cloud and His murderers fleeing from His glorious presence. With a cry of horror, she awoke and immediately wrote words of warning to Pilate.HH 337.7

    A messenger pushed through the crowd and handed him the letter from his wife, which read, “Have nothing to do with that just Man, for I have suffered many things today in a dream because of Him.”HH 337.8

    Pilate’s face grew pale. He was confused by his own conflicting emotions. While he had been delaying to act, the priests and rulers were inflaming the minds of the people. He now thought of a custom that might serve to gain Christ’s release. It was customary at this feast to release one prisoner whom the people might choose. There was not a shadow of justice in this custom, but the Jews greatly prized it. The Roman authorities at this time held a prisoner named Barabbas, who was under sentence of death. This man claimed authority to establish a different order of things. Whatever he could obtain by theft and robbery was his own. He had gained a following among the people and had stirred up revolt against the Roman government. Under cover of religious enthusiasm he was a hardened criminal, bent on rebellion and cruelty.HH 338.1

    By giving the people a choice between this man and the innocent Savior, Pilate thought he might awaken a sense of justice in them.HH 338.2

    “Whom do you want me to release to you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?” Like the bellowing of wild beasts came the answer, “Release to us Barabbas.” Thinking that the people had not understood his question, Pilate asked, “Do you want me to release to you the King of the Jews?” But they cried out again, “Away with this Man, and release to us Barabbas.” “What then shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?” Demons in human form were in the crowd, and what could be expected but the answer, “Let Him be crucified!”HH 338.3

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