MEDITATIONS ON THE PASSION OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST: Then Pilate Willing To Satisfy The People, Adjudged, That Their Petition Should Be Done ~ Fr. Francois Coster S.J.
Pilate Washing his Hands (No. 9)
Then Pilate willing to satisfy the people, adjudged, that their petition should be done: and he dismissed unto them him, which was sent to prison for murder and sedition, Barrabas, whom they demanded: but Jesus being whipped he delivered to their will, that he should be crucified.
Consider first, that the Priest sinned in the death of Christ of envy; the people, through the persuasion of the Elders; Pilate, to satisfy the people. None was free from sin: for the first sinned of malice, the second of ignorance, the third of fraility. For Christ underwent the punishment of the Cross for all sorts of sinners whatsoever.
Consider secondly the manner of his condemnation, never used before: for First, omitting all crimes, for which he ought to be condemned, he was pronounced, just, by the judge himself: I am innocent (saith he) from the blood of this just man: as if he should say, who is not condemned for his faults, but for his justice. Secondly, a guilty person, loaded with most grievous crimes, is let go, that the just man may be condemned: for our lord died to this end, that he might by his death deliver all sinners from eternal death. Thirdly, he was not only adjudged after the accustomed manner to the Cross, but also to be tortured upon the Cross, according to the will of the Jews. For these are the words: he delivered him to their will, that he should be crucified. For he would be delivered wholly to the will of the wicked, that thous shouldest yield thyself entirely to his will. Pray therefore unto thy Lord, not to deliver thee to the will of thy enemies, but that through this most unjust sentence of his death he will deliver thee from the just judgment of everlasting death.