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Nonviolent Protest for Peace First in History

Against Fiction of a Saintly Pilate in NT

                                                                                                               
by Dan Allen

Pilate's rule in Judea was a mirror image of the ancient Roman Empire's overall brutality & oppression!

Yet, in the trial of Jesus, the New Testament portrays Pilate, as a meek, ineffectual tool controlled by the Jews, he himself tyrannizes.

This should come as no surprise!

The "Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with that of their sacrifices," 1 the gory description of Pilate’s character, is, after all, deeply buried, in the New Testament.

Was Pilate, responsible for crucifying Jesus? Or was he, as, in the incredible Bible passage below, a mere lackey, controlled by the very Jews, he ruthlessly oppressed?

"The chief priests & the elders, however, had persuaded the crowd to demand the release of Barrabas & the execution of Jesus. So when the governor” (Pilate) “spoke & asked them,’
which of the two do you want me to release for you?’ they said,’Barabbas,’But in that case Pilate said to them,’What am I to do with Jesus who is called Christ? ‘They all said’ Let him be crucified!"
2


Pilate Washing His Hands, 1663
Mattia Preti

Pilate, ridiculously “washes” his hands of the Roman crime of crucifying Jesus in this New Testament rewrite of history.

A role reversal occurs. The oppressed Jews get the blame for the ultimate decision to crucify Jesus. I am innocent of the blood of this just man, you decide, Pilate, the man who tyrannizes the Jews declares.

All this, even after, the Rome (now in the heart of modern Italy) destroyed Israel & changed its name to "Palestina", now Palestine in order to erase all Jewish connection with the land.


-2-

Why?’ he asked. ‘What harm has he done?’ But they shouted all the louder,’ Let him be crucified!’ Then Pilate saw that he was making no impression, that in fact a riot was imminent. So he took some water, washed his hands in front of the crowd and said,’ I am innocent of this Man’s blood. It is your concern.’ And the people to a man, shouted back,’ His blood be on us & our children!’ Then he released Barrabas for them. He ordered Jesus to be first scourged and then handed him over to be crucified " 2

Why are the passages, above & below, not a true model of Pilate's character? Why is the New Testament, a rewrite of history?

"...Pilate was anxious to set" Jesus "free, but the Jews shouted, ‘If you set him free you are no friend of Caesar’s; anyone who makes himself king is defying Caesar.’…It was Passover Preparation Day…’Here is your king,’ said Pilate to the Jews..’ Take him away, take him away!’ they said,' Crucify him! Crucify him!’ ‘Do you want me to crucify your king?’ said Pilate. The chief priest answered,’ We have no king except Caesar.’ So in the end Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified." 3

Why is the role of the Jews as persecutors, instead of victims, totally ridiculous slander? Historical evidence shows Pilate’s rule of Judea was nothing but a likeness of Rome's heartless rule. Openly contemptuous of Jewish laws, Pilate began his rule by stepping up Caesar's position as God & King. Pilate, consequently, stealthily introduced into Jerusalem at night, images of Caesar, called Military Standards. Judaism's basic commandment of "Thou shall not make unto thee any graven image..."4 was, accordingly, instantly violated!


-3-

Israelites, in one of the first recorded instance in history of nonviolent resistance, around 26·36 ACE, marched from Jerusalem to Pilate's base in Caesarea to protest the removal of the Military Standards.

A great disturbance, inescapably, followed this incitement.

"Because this would be an insult to the emperor," Pilate summarily rejected the protester's request in Rome's deliberate attempt to abolish the Jewish Laws and any competition with the Emperor's "Divine Kingship."

The protector's resisted nonviolently, in what probably was an inspiration to Jesus himself. They lay, on the ground six days, in protest.

Pilate's reaction to this nonviolence was, typically brutal. He immediately threatened to “cut” the protestors to pieces unless they accepted the images of Caesar & nodded to the soldiers to draw their swords. “At this point,” Josephus, Roman Emperor Titus’ Historian writes,” the Jews as by concerted action, flung themselves in a body, bent their neck, shouting they were ready to be killed rather than transgress their laws.”5  This kind of nonviolent civil disobedience predated famous men like Ghandi & Martin Luther King, Jr.


- 4-

Pilate, according to Josephus's lame excuse,” amazed at the Jews religious fervor," immediately removed the Military Standards. The real reason, for this postponement of Caesar's policy is Roman troops probably did poorly in their clashes with warlike Jewish freedom fighters, & Pilate was waiting for additional reinforcements.

Pilate's removal of the Military Standards to Jewish protesters, at the point of death, was only a temporary setback.

Later on, Pilate "stirred up further trouble by expending the Jewish Temple sacred treasury known as 'Corbanas,'upon the construction of an aqueduct..."

Pilate foresaw the upcoming “tumult.” Protestors were infuriated at this confiscation of sacred treasury for Temple upkeep & charity. So Pilate used deception, one more Time. He got his soldiers to: 

“mix with the crowd wearing their civilian clothing, over
their armor, & with orders not to draw their sword, but to beat the rioters with their clubs.
The Jews were cudgeled, so that large numbers died from the blows and
many were trampled by their friends in the ensuing   flight. Cowed by
the fate of the victims, the crowd was horrified into silence.” 6


-5-

From the two episodes above & the general overall conditions of a merciless Roman occupation, it is clear, Pilate crucified Jesus in order to enforce the Roman Emperor's position of "Divine Kingship."

The Biblical inventions of the Gospels are plain anti-Jewish slander.

The overwhelming majority of Jews, could never utter, John’s perverse report in his Gospel, ”we have no king, except Caesar." This kind of remark, was clearly, treasonous in Roman-occupied Judea. Clearly, anyone, in the world, in the world, who considers the foreign oppressor of his country, his king, is considered a traitor.

Pilate did not take water to "wash his hands” from the crucifixion of Jesus, as Matthew’s famous legend tells us. Rather, a constant repetition of this famous “myth” made this Gospel “the Truth." Consequently, the New Testament today, still makes history stand on its head. The merely, human Gospel “truth” of Mark, Matthew, Luke, & John are, quite simply, the Christian Bible’s “Holy Fiction.”


 

- 6 -

Jesus was crucified for treason against the unrivaled Kingship of Caesar. The Roman sign on Jesus’ Cross, ”King of the Jews," heralded the end of a momentous conflict between Jesus & Caesar. As for the last conflict in Pilate's term as governor of Judea, he reveals a ruthless nature, not different from the last two past episodes.

Here, Pilate, denied passage to Samaritans visiting their holy Mount. When some of them confront Pilate with arms, Pilate kills many, takes many prisoners, & makes the rest flee.

A subsequent complaint to Pilate's superior, the governor of Syria, from the "Samaritan high Council" against persecution of Samaritans, who protest "loyalty" to Rome, results in the end of Pilate's rule of Judea. Pilate is stripped of his office & sent to trial in Rome, to answer against charges of injustice and cruelty. A subsequent complaint to Pilate's superior, the governor of Syria, from the "Samaritan high council" against persecution of Samaritans, who protest "loyalty" to Rome, results in the end of Pilate's rule of Judea. Pilate is stripped of his office & sent to trial in Rome, to answer against charges of injustice & cruelty.7

The only popular source, quite briefly, to report on Pilate is the Christian Bible. The Bible, unfortunately, is a mere testament of religious faith. No independent historical record confirms any of the Bible stories.


-7-

The episodes above, cited in Josephus are the only independent picture of Pilate. All these episodes reduces to the absurd, any notion of Pilate handing Jesus over to the Jews to be crucified, as totally out of character. Josephus, the only knowledgeable historian of the era, moreover, does not even mention the trial & death of Jesus. Two events, in general, quite briefly make the New Testament’s Jewish trial of Jesus irrational. 

The first and most important is Rome oppressed and in the end destroyed Israel.

The second is, Josephus furnishes the only historical account of those times. Finally. it is inconceivable for a Roman Governor to ask his oppressed Jewish subjects to render a decision about “anything.” The only decision Rome forced Israel to make was to “erase” it, as a state, till its modern rebirth.

The Jewish trial & death of Jesus is, clearly, an invention of, the Gospel writers, to vanquish their Jewish rivals.


Just Rebel, Inc.; Copyright © 2006 | January 1, 1997 by Dan Allen



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