Pilate - Career Opportunist
Luke 23: 1-24
A Man with a dilemma
Career or justice
Who was Pilate?
Procurator of Judea
power of life and death/
appointed High Priests/
controlled Temple and funds
First recorded action (Josephus: Ant. 18: 55) was setting up Roman Standards (bearing the image of the emperor) in Jerusalem thereby breaking with previous practice and inflaming jewish feelings (against the Roman occupation and sacrilege as the emperor was by this stage deified) so much that he had to remove them 6 days later.
Character trait: Vain and Haughty
Weak in Character in not
Second recorded action (Jos. Ant.18 60) was appropriating Temple funds to build an aqueduct into Jerusalem. When the jews protested he sent in the troops and caused a massacre
Character trait : Embesslement and Violence
The third recorded action (Luke 23) of Pilate was the crucifixion of Christ.
Character trait : Injustice: Expediency
The last recorded action (Jos. Ant. 18 85-89) of Pilate was the massacre of Samaritans at Mount Gerizin. This led to such a protest that Vitellus, Governor of Syria recalled him and sent him to the emperor to explain his actions.
Character trait: A Man of unnecessary violence
Philo (De Legatione ad Gaium 301) sums up Pilate as
by nature rigid and subbonly harsh
of spiteful disposition and an exceedingly
full of bribes,acts of pride acts of violence,
outrages,cases of spiteful treatment, constant
murders without trial and ceaseless and
We, on the other hand, are a New Creation (2 Cor.5:17) and are created in Christ Jesus unto good works (Eph.2:10)
Note cart not before the horse. The horse is the New Creation ( being born of God 2 John 3) and the cart is good works.
We are in the world but not of it.
Cannot retreat into our "ivory towered monasteries"
As Christians we are to proclaim the Good News and we can do this by our lives.
People will see that we know God by the way we speak.
Story of the actor and clergyman Psalm 23
Actor giving an after dinner speech asks the audience to request a poem that he should recite.
no one replies until an old clergyman asks him to recite the 23 Psalm
he agrees if the clergyman will also do the same.
clergyman replies I’m not a good orator but if you insist I will.
actor recites 23 Psalm and gets a tremendous response
clergyman then recites the 23 Psalm and brings tears to the audiences eyes
actor gets up and says:
I tickled your ears but this gentleman has moved your hearts. I know the 23rd Psalm but he knows the Shepherd.
Pilate was an example of how we are not to be
We need integrity
not holding grudges (Rom 12 17-20)
Paul tells us to bless our enemies (Rom. 12.20) as does Proverbs (Prov 25:21 and 22)
We are not to please just men but God
to run with the crowd
to be obsinate or stubborn (Rom.10:21 Is.65:2)sin of the Israelites.
e are to stick by what we believe if essential (Ps.15:2)to respect our bosses but not fear them (1 Tim 6:1)to put God first (Matt. 6:33).
But Peter and John replied, after the Sanhedrin had ordered them not to speak or teach in the name of Jesus,
"Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen or heard."
The Lord has our careers in His hand.
He has an eternal plan for us before the foundation of the World
Acts 4: 27 and 28:
Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your Holy Servant Jesus whom you anointed. They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen.
We need to trust the eternal purposes of God
He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men that they cannot fathom what God has done from the beginning to the end.
This goes for you career too. He has a beautiful plan. We need to seek it.He will look after you.
" Seek ye first the Kingdom of Heaven and all these things will be added unto you" (Matt. 6:33)
I prayed for a Christian coworker in my department. The Lord brought Tony this year in I believe in answer to prayer.
Believe that God has everything IN HIS HANDS.