Mark also depicts Jesus as innocent of committing any crime against Rome, and Pilate as extremely reluctant to execute Jesus, blaming the Jews for his death.6 In Matthew, Pilate washes his hands of Jesus’ execution and grudgingly sends him to his death.7

In Luke’s Gospel, Pilate not only agrees that Jesus did not conspire against Rome, but Herod Antipas, the tetrarch, admired Jesus as a saintly miracle worker,8 and finds nothing treasonous in Jesus’ actions.9 In the Book of John, shockingly, the warm, amiable feelings express between Pilate and Jesus are mutual, where Pilate finds no fault in Jesus,10 and Jesus finds no sin in Pilate.11

It could be said that Matthew, singlehandedly, is responsible for the first blood libel against the Jews. The first Gospel claims that after the Roman governor begged the frenzied crowd to spare Jesus’ life, the Jews answer him, “We take his blood upon ourselves and our children!” In these chilling verses, Matthew provides deep insight as to how the mind and soul of your acquaintance were poisoned by the slander conveyed against our people in the New Testament. Pilate said to the Jews:

“What then shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?” They all [the Jews] said to him, “Let Him be crucified!” Then the governor said, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they cried out all the more, saying, “Let Him be crucified!” When Pilate saw that he could not prevail at all, but rather that a tumult was rising, he took water and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, “I am innocent of the blood of this just Person. You see to it.” All the people answered and said, “His blood be on us and on our children.

(Matthew 27:22-25)



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