Pilate didn't want to order Jesus' crucifixion. Why? He didn't want to give the Jews, whom he despised, the satisfaction (Mark 15:10). But he had other reasons:

  • Pilate's wife had a dream warning him to have nothing to do with that "innocent man" (Matt. 27:19)
  • Pilate was afraid that Jesus might actually be the Son of God (John 19:7-8)

But Pilate was also pulled in another direction:

  • He was manipulated into believing that if he spared Jesus he would be opposing Caesar (John 19:12)
  • And the crowds, stirred up by the Chief Priests, were demanding Jesus be crucified (Mark 15:11-14)

Pilate was corrupt, he didn't want to condemn Jesus to death - to give the Jews what they wanted.

Pilate seemed to do everything he could to have Jesus released, but rather than stand by his convictions, he instead bowed to the will of the crowd.

In the end, Pilate chose to be a people pleaser. Thinking he could have it both ways, he publicly "washed his hands" of any responsibility (Matt. 27:24).

So Pilate joined the High Priest, the Chief Priests, and the crowd in their corruption. They were all now party in the humiliating public death of an innocent man.

Like all of us, Pilate had a conscience. Like all of us, Pilate had influences on both sides. Yet he chose to be a people pleaser in the short term and is remembered today as a fool.

We are confronted with decisions all day long - some are inconsequential while others may change our lives - and the lives of others - forever. Among these choices, some may require you to decide: will you please people or will you please God? As difficult as it may seem, as confusing as the circumstances may be, make every effort to please God. Don't be a people pleaser.