top of page

FROM THE PAVEMENT TO GOLGOTHA



VI. PILATE WASHED HIS HANDS OF THE WHOLE AFFAIR






















In the end Pilate washed his hands of the Jesus affair to show that 

he does not approve of what has just happened.


The act belonged to an obvious and almost universal symbolism. Pilate probably chose it, partly to ease his own conscience, and partly to appease his wife’s scruples. It was also a non-verbal appeal in a dramatic way to the sensibilities of the people. It is almost as if he was sayinglook I find this man innocent won’t you change your minds”? But the crowd had been whipped into a frenzy and were out for Jesus’ blood. Pilate feared that if he forcefully stood up to them there would be a riot – so he chose this way out. Pilate could not convince them what was happening was unjust and unreasonable. So he washed his hands of the whole affair – be it on your heads then, I’m not responsible.


In response to Pilate’s action, the leaders proclaimed His blood be on us and on our children! The Jewish authorities were taking full responsibility for what happened to Jesus.  How many people have run afoul of tyrannical leaders and have been brutally put down? They have nice words for it now to disguise the unjust crushing of people – Ethnic Cleansing! It’s a euphemism that hides the nastiness, the violence, the degradation, the merciless persecution… of a people. Once you deny a group’s personhood, all kinds of atrocities can be carried out against them with impunity of guilt or conscience. A typical example was the Nazi persecution of the Jews. In Rwanda the Hooties labelled the Tooties as “cockroaches” and what do you do with “cockroaches’? It happened not so long ago in Serbia and the Balkans. It taking place today in China and Myanmar.


How many times have we seen the same scenario carried out?

  

Where is it happening today?


Camus said, “the problem is that we read history like a novel and so we are condemned to repeat history over and over without ever learning from it.” That is why people like Camus always insist that we read good and unbiased newspapers. You always need to get yourself informed and not just swallow the news from the Tabloid media wholesale!


Of course, on the other hand, God will never wash his hands of us. God never dismisses anyone. God is very much people orientated, and He accepts even the people we dislike!


REFLECTION


Who have we washed our hands of?

 

What situations have I walked away from?

  

In what area am I not taking responsibility seriously?

  

Have I joined any group like Amnesty International to give support to those that oppose ethnic cleansing regimes?

  

Do I buy goods from known sweat shop industries because their goods are cheaper?

  

What group do I regard as not having the same dignity as my group?

4 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page