Urantia Book 110. The life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, Joshua bin Joseph, Yeshua, Christ Michael, Sovereign God of Nebadon. Early Friday morning only Jesus’ sworn enemies and the unthinking populace are out and about. Pilate wanted to make one last appeal to their pity. Afraid of the mob who cried for the blood of Jesus, he ordered the guards to take Jesus and scourge him. This in itself was an unjust and illegal procedure; only those condemned to crucifixion were to receive scourging. Jesus’ enemies did not witness this scourging, but Pilate did, and before they were finished he gave the desist order. They put the purple robe back on him, and plaiting a crown of thorns, placed it on his brow. And when they had put a reed in his hand as a mock scepter, they knelt before him, saying: “Hail, King of the Jews!” They spit on him and struck him in the face. And then Pilate led out this bleeding and lacerated prisoner and, presenting him to the crowd, said: “Behold the man! Again I declare to you that I find no crime in him, and having scourged him, I would release him.” There stood Jesus in the old royal purple robe and the thorns cutting into his brow; his face bloodstained and his form bowed down with suffering and grief. The sight sent a mighty shudder through the realms of a vast universe, but it did not touch the hearts of those who had set their minds to effect the destruction of Jesus. When the crowds had recovered from the first shock of seeing the Master’s plight, they only shouted louder and longer: “Crucify him! Crucify him! Crucify him!” Finally Pilate understood that it was useless to appeal to their supposed feelings of pity, so he said: “I perceive that you are determined that this man shall die, but what has he done to deserve death? Who will declare his crime?” At that the high priest himself marched up to Pilate and angrily declared: “We have a sacred law, and by that law this man ought to die because he made himself out to be the Son of God.” When Pilate heard this, he was all the more afraid, not only of the Jews, but recalling his wife’s note and the Greek mythology of the gods coming down on earth, he now trembled at the thought of Jesus possibly being a divine personage. Pilate then led Jesus back inside the building to further examine him. Pilate was now confused by fear, bewildered by superstition, and harassed by the stubborn attitude of the crowd(185.6.1-7). Pilate sat down next to Jesus and said: “Where do you come from? Really, who are you? What is this they say, that you are the Son of God?” But Jesus could hardly answer such a question when it came from a man who declared him innocent and had him flogged anyway, who was afraid and vacillating. Pilate said: “You refuse to speak to me? Do you not realize that I still have power to release you or to crucify you?” Jesus answered: “You could have no power over me except it were permitted from above. You could exercise no authority over the Son of Man unless the Father in heaven allowed it. But you are not so guilty since you are ignorant of the gospel. He who betrayed me and he who delivered me to you, they have the greater sin.” This last talk with Jesus thoroughly frightened Pilate. This moral coward and judicial weakling now labored under the double weight of the superstitious fear of Jesus and the mortal dread of the Jewish leaders. Again Pilate appeared before the crowd, saying: “I am certain this man is only a religious offender. You should take him and judge him by your law. Why do you expect me to consent to his death because he has clashed with your traditions?” Pilate was just about to release Jesus when Caiaphus shook his finger in Pilate’s face and said: “If you release this man, you are not Caesar’s friend, and I will see that the emperor knows all.” This public threat was too much for Pilate. Fear for his personal fortunes now eclipsed all other considerations. The cowardly governor ordered Jesus brought out before the judgment seat. Pilate said, pointing at Jesus: “Behold your king!” And the Jews answered: “Away with him! Crucify him!” And then Pilate said with much irony and sarcasm: “Shall I crucify your king?” And the Jews answered: “Yes, crucify him! We have no king but Caesar!” Pilate realized that he was afraid of defying the Jews and thus could not save Jesus (185.7.1-5)****** Here stood the Son of God incarnate as the Son of Man. He was arrested without indictment; accused without evidence; adjudged without witnesses; punished without a verdict; and now was soon to be condemned to die by an unjust judge who confessed that he could find no fault in him. Pilate ordered a basin of water and there, before the crowds he washed his hands and said: “I am innocent of the blood of this man. You are determined that he shall die, but I have found no guilt in him. See you to it.” The crowd cheered and replied: “His blood be on us and our children.”

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