John 18:28-19:16

Pilate asks Jesus questions

28 The Jewish leaders took Jesus from Caiaphas's house to the Roman ruler's big house. It was early in the morning. The Jewish leaders wanted to follow the Jewish rules so that they could eat the Passover meal. They did not go into the ruler's house, because it would have made them unclean.

18:28During the time that Jesus lived on the earth, the Romans ruled over Israel. The Roman ruler (Pilate) lived and worked in a special house. It was called the Praetorium. It had a big yard inside, where people waited to see the ruler.
18:28The Jews had special rules about who could go to their festivals. They had to keep themselves clean and ready to worship God. So they could not go into the houses of people who did not believe in God. If the Jewish leaders had gone into Pilate's house, they would not have been clean for the Passover.

29 So Pilate, the Roman ruler, went outside to meet them. He asked them, ‘What wrong thing do you say that this man has done?’ 30 They replied, ‘We would not have brought him to you if he had done nothing wrong.’ 31 Pilate said to them, ‘You yourselves take him away. You should judge him by your own laws.’ The Jewish leaders replied, ‘We do not have authority to kill anyone when they have done something bad.’ 32 Jesus had already told people how he was going to die. These things happened so that he would die in that way.

18:31The Jewish leaders wanted to kill Jesus. But the Romans did not let them kill anyone. Only the Roman ruler could cause his soldiers to do that.
18:32The Romans fixed a person on to a big cross of wood to kill him. Then they let the person hang there until he died. Jesus had said that people would ‘lift him up’. This is what he meant. And when Jesus said something, it had to happen.

33 Pilate went back inside his big house. He told Jesus to come and stand in front of him. He asked Jesus, ‘Are you the king of the Jews?’ 34 Jesus said, ‘Is that your own idea, or have other people spoken to you about me?’ 35 Pilate replied, ‘I am not a Jew, am I? It was your own people and the leaders of your priests who brought you to me. What have you done?’ 36 Jesus said, ‘My kingdom does not belong to this world. If it did, my disciples would have fought for me. They would have fought so that the Jewish leaders could not take hold of me. No, my kingdom belongs to another place.’ 37 Pilate said to him, ‘So, that means you really are a king!’ Jesus answered, ‘You have said that I am a king! I was born for this reason: I came into the world to tell people the truth about God. Everyone who believes the truth listens to my message.’ 38 Pilate said, ‘I do not know what truth is.’

When Pilate had said that, he went outside again to the Jewish people there. He said to them, ‘I do not see that this man has done anything wrong. I have no reason to punish him. 39 But every year we do something for you Jews. We let one man go free from the prison at the time of your Passover festival. Do you want me to let the king of the Jews go free?’ 40 They shouted their answer, ‘No, we do not want him! Let Barabbas go free!’ (Barabbas was a bad man who had attacked people and robbed them.)

John 19

1 Then Pilate told the soldiers to take Jesus outside. He told them to hit Jesus many times with a whip.

2 The soldiers took some branches with thorns and they made a crown for Jesus. They put it on his head. Then they took a dark red coat and they put that on him. They did all this as if he was a king. 3 They came to him many times and they were saying to him, ‘Hello, King of the Jews, you are great!’ At the same time they slapped him with their hands.

4 Pilate went outside once more. He said to the crowd, ‘Listen to me. I will bring Jesus out here to you. You should know this: I do not see that this man has done anything wrong. I have no reason to punish him.’ 5 Then Jesus came out, with the circle of branches on his head. He was wearing the dark red coat. Pilate said to them, ‘Look. Here is the man!’ 6 When the leaders of the priests and their officers saw Jesus, they shouted, ‘Kill him! Kill him on a cross!’ Pilate said to them, ‘You take him yourselves, and you kill him on a cross. I can find no reason why I should punish him.’ 7 The Jews answered, ‘We have a law which says that he must die. He must die because he said, “I am the Son of God.” ’

8 When Pilate heard that, he was even more afraid. 9 He went back into the house. He asked Jesus, ‘Where are you really from?’ But Jesus did not answer him. 10 Pilate said to him, ‘Are you refusing to speak to me? Remember that I have authority. I can let you go free, or I can let them kill you on a cross.’ 11 Jesus answered, ‘You could have no power against me unless God had given it to you. So, the man who sold me to you has done a worse thing than you have done.’ 12 From that moment, Pilate tried to let Jesus go free. But the Jewish leaders shouted back, ‘If you let him go, you are not Caesar's friend. Nobody should say that he himself is a king. That shows that he is against Caesar!’

13 When Pilate heard those words, he brought Jesus outside. Pilate sat down on a special seat for the judge. The seat was in a place called ‘Gabbatha’ in the Jewish language. There were large flat stones there, which covered the ground. 14 It was about noon on the day when they prepared the Passover meal. Pilate said to the Jews, ‘Here is your king!’ 15 But they shouted, ‘Take him away! Take him away! Kill him on a cross!’ Pilate asked them, ‘Do you want me to kill your king on a cross?’ The leaders of the priests answered, ‘Caesar is the only ruler that we call king.’ 16 Then Pilate gave Jesus to them, so that they could kill him on a cross.

They fix Jesus to a cross

The soldiers took hold of Jesus.