Pontius Pilate, the governor of Judea, would have been much happier at his Roman enclave in the heavily fortified port city of Caesarea. But he was expected to be in Jerusalem during Passover week to maintain order. He didn’t want to deal with this latest problem. Early in the morning, the Jewish authorities had brought an itinerate preacher for trial. They claimed the man called himself King of the Jews and had violated some Roman laws. They demanded He be put to death.
Pilate questioned the prisoner closely and quickly realized the man was not guilty of any crime worthy of death. Pilate told the crowd, “He is innocent.” The crowd roared in anger, “Crucify Him!” Pilate saw a riot developing, so he washed his hands of the matter and gave the decision to the crowd-release this “King of the Jews” or a murder. The crowd chose the murderer.
Pilate, as governor, had the power to convict and the power to set free. He knew the right choice, but instead let the crowd intimidate him into sending Jesus to the cross. Pilate knew the truth but tried to sidestep it. His decision forever linked his name with a failure of leadership.
In every person’s life, events occurs that require a stand for the truth. How we respond defines how others will remember us.
John 19:6 NLT- “Take him yourselves and crucify him,” Pilate said, “I find him not guilty.”