Dr. Montia Setzler, Senior Pastor
March 13, 2016

Series:  March to the Cross
The Miscarriage of Justice that Changed the World

Matthew 27:11-26 (NIV)

11 Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?” “Yes, it is as you say,” Jesus replied.  12 When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. 13 Then Pilate asked him, “Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?” 14 But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge – to the great amazement of the governor. 15 Now it was the governor’s custom at the Feast to release a prisoner chosen by the crowd. 16 At that time they had a notorious prisoner, called Barabbas.

17 So when the crowd had gathered, Pilate asked them, “Which one do you want me to release to you: Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?” 18 For he knew it was out of envy that they had handed Jesus over to him. 19 While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.” 20 But the chief priests and the elders persuaded the crowd to ask for Barabbas and to have Jesus executed. 21 “Which of the two do you want me to release to you?” asked the governor. “Barabbas,” they answered. 22 “What shall I do, then, with Jesus who is called Christ?” Pilate asked. They all answered, “Crucify him!” 23 “Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate. But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!” 24 When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!” 25 All the people answered, “Let his blood be on us and on our children!” 26 Then he released Barabbas to them. But he had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.


God sat in silence while the sins of the world were placed upon his Son. Was it right? No. Was it fair? No. Was it love? Yes. In a world of injustice, God once and for all tipped the scales in the favor of hope.  Max L. Lucado (1955- )

  • Because I follow Jesus, some will be out to get me.
  • Sometimes false accusers appear for no apparent reason.
  • Because of Jesus, I must seek to correct injustice.
  • Jesus had already faced Annas, Caiaphas, Herod and now Pilate a second time.
  • Pilate had to hear the case because of the charge of treason.
  • Pilate was concerned more about the crowd than justice.


  • When you know your purpose, no one can “use” you.
  • What others mean for harm, God uses for good.
  • The game of “politics” requires two players, Jesus refused to play the game.

Our Lord promised a cross and scars, not medals, down here. The honors are given out later.  Vance Havner

  • He gave no answer, therefore Pilate condemned Him. v 14

Realities about Jesus’ death sentence:

  • Annas could have cleared him, but he didn’t put him on the cross.
  • Caiaphas spearheaded the inquisition, but he didn’t put him on the cross.
  • Herod sent him back to Pilate, but he didn’t put him on the cross.
  • Pilate gave the order, but he didn’t put Jesus on the cross.
  • The Roman soldiers crucified him, but they didn’t put him on the cross.
  • It was my sin that put Jesus on the cross.
  • The trial was not just a vehicle of death, but of destiny.
  • The trial demonstrated Jesus’ willingness to give Himself for us.

John 15:13 (HCSB)

No one has greater love than this, that someone would lay down his life for his friends.

The trial of Jesus was a travesty of justice, but served as the vehicle of salvation for mankind as Jesus took the sins of the world.