Peace of Rome?
John 14:27 “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.”
The Roman kingdom under Caesar claimed that they were fair, and they were for peace. They even had the edict called “Pax Romana” which means “the Peace of Rome” and it is supposed to be built on justice. But the hypocrisy of the Roman system is exposed in John 19:4&6 “Pilate went outside again and said to the people, “I am going to bring him out to you now, but understand clearly that I find him not guilty.” When they saw him, the leading priests and Temple guards began shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” “Take him yourselves and crucify him,” Pilate said. “I find him not guilty.” We see the hypocrisy in that, firstly, Pilate could have handed the person he found guilty to be flogged. Pilate examined Jesus, found Him innocent but he still flogged, whipped, and ripped His back. Is that justice? Secondly, Pilate was willing to hand an innocent person to a violent mob so that they can kill Him. Yet Pilate was supposed to be representing a peaceful system. Unfortunately, sometimes in this world, the system just does not work.
John 19:6- 8 “When they saw him, the leading priests and Temple guards began shouting, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” “Take him yourselves and crucify him,” Pilate said. “I find him not guilty.” The Jewish leaders replied, “By our law he ought to die because he called himself the Son of God.” When Pilate heard this, he was more frightened than ever.” Why was Pilate frightened? He was frightened because interestingly it was only Caesar that could lay claim to being the son of God. That was how they worshipped the emperor. This is the first thing they used in manipulating Pilate and making him afraid. It was only Caesar that could claim to be the Son of God and they said, “he called himself the Son of God…” If word got to Rome that Pilate ignored such a crime, he could lose his throne as the governor because he was already in a precarious situation even with Caesar. What was the precarious situation?
From history, Pilate came to power through his connection with a man called Sejanus. Sejanus was a very powerful person in the Roman empire. There is this group of people known as ‘friends of Caesar’. Apart from the general populace, they show alliance to Caesar, there was an elite group called ‘friends of Caesar’, Sejanus was one of them. And because of Sejanus’ influence, he made Pilate a governor and a friend of Caesar. Sejanus brought Pilate into the click. Sejanus then began plotting to overthrow Caesar. Caesar overpowered and executed Sejanus. So, all eyes were on everybody that was loyal to Sejanus and Pilate was number one. Pilate already had a problem with Rome, so for the message to get to Rome that someone said he was the Son of God and Pilate let him go free, frightened Pilate. When we know the history behind scripture, it helps us deepen our understanding of the events that took place and heighten our revelation.
Prayer [song]: You are the Sovereign King. My praise to You I bring. No stone can take my place. I’ll praise You all my days. Amen!