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The Jews accuse him of feditious Practices.

537 Christ came to bear Witness to the Truth; and a careful Attendance to Sect. 186. his Testimony will be the best Proof we can give that we love the Truth, w and the best Method we can take to make ourselves acquainted with it. 50 And of so great Importance is the Truth, that it surely deserves the at-" tentive Enquiry, and the zealous Patronage of the Greatest and the Busiest of Mankind. Let us not therefore, when we begin to ask what it is, like Pilate, hurry on to some other Care, before we can receive a Ver. 38. satisfactory Answer ; but joyfully open our Minds to the first Dawnings of that Celestial Day, till it Ihine more and more, to irradiate and adorn all our Souls. On the whole, imperfect as the Character of this unhappy Governor was, let us learn from him candidly to confess the Truth, to far as we have discovered it ; let us learn, more steadily than he, to vin- Luke xxiii. dicate the Innocent and Worthy, and on no Terms permit ourselves, in 4. any Degree, to do Harm to those, in whom, on a strict and impartial Enquiry, we can find no Fault.

Pilate sends CHRIST to Herod, who having treated bim with

great Contempt, sends him back again : Pilate in vain
endeavours to persuade the Jews to consent to his Release,
who impiously prefer Barabbas, and perfit in their Demands
of a Sentence of Crucifixion against Jesus. Mat. XXVII.
15,---18. 20,---23. Mark XV. 6,---14. Luke XXIII.
53---23. John XVIII. 39, to the End.

AND they were the more IT was observed in the preceding Section, that Sect. 187.
A fierce, saying, He ftir. I when Pilate came out of the Palace, he bore,

y reth up the People, teaching

ou throughout all' Tewry, bei an open Testimony to the Innocence of Jesus. ginning from Galilee to this and declared to the Priests in the Presence of the Place,

People, that “ he found no Fault at all in him :"
But they not only continued strongly to urge
their Accusation, but were more violent than be-
fore, saying, We assuredly know, that be ftirs up
all the People, teaching the most dangerous and
seditious Doctrines throughout all Judea, begin-
ning from Galilee, that factious Country, where,
he has been most busy, and from thence making
a Progress even to this Place, and gathering up
Vol. II.


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Pilate fends CHRIST to Herod, Sect. 187. Followers every where by the Way, to the appa

r ent Danger and Damage of the State. * Luk. XXIII,

t. And when Pilate heard them speak of Galilee, 6 When Pilate heard of be presently enquired, if the Man whom they had

Galilee, he asked whether

the Man were a Galilean. 7 brought before him was a Galilean. And find my And as soon as he knew

ing that he was of that Country, and therefore that he belonged unto Hethat he properly belonged to Herod's Yurisdi&tion, rod's Jurisdiction, he fent who was Tetrarch of Galilee, he willingly em- was also at Jerufalem at that

him to Herod, who himself braced this Opportunity to clear himself of so Time. perplexing an Affair, and immediately fent bim away to Herod (a), who being himself a Jew, was also at Jerusalem in those Days, having come up to celebrate the Paffover there.

And when Herod saw Yefus, be rejoiced exceed 8 And when Herod faw ingly; for he had a long Time been very dehrous to Jelus, he was exceeding

glad : for he was desirous see him, because he had beard much concerning him to see him of a long Season, in Galilee ; (compare Luke ix. 7, 9.) and be now because he had heard many boped, that he should have an Opportunity so far Things of him ; and he to satisfy his Curiosity, as to see some Miracle done Miracle done him.

hoped to have seen some by him, and might be able also to determine, whether he was, as he had once suspected, John the Baptist risen from the Dead. (Compare Mat. xiv. 2. Vol. i. pag. 474.) And be examined 9 Then he questioned him in many Words, concerning a Variety of Par- with him in many Words ;.

but he answered him noticulars, both as to his Pretensions, and the Proof thin of his Miffion, as well as the Tenor of his Doctrine : But as Jesus knew this was not a proper Time and Circumstance to enter into those Queftions, of which Herod might long ago have been

informed, be made him no Answer. 10 And the Chief Priests and Scribes, whose Ma- 10 And the Chief Priets

lice had prompted them to attend him thither and Scribes ftood and vehe-
food in the Presence of the King, eagerly accuhng

mently accused him.
him of the fame Crimes which they had before
charged him with, in their Application to Pilate.


(a) He sent him to. Herod.] It may not be improper, for the sake of those who are less acquainted with the Jewish History, to observe, that this was Herod Antipas, the Tetrareb of Galilee, by whom Yohn the Baptift had been beheaded, and whom Chrift had juftly represented as a Fox. (Luke xiii, 32. pag. 141.) He was Son to Hered the Great, under whom Christ was born ; and Uncle to Herod Agrippa, (by whom James was bebeaded, and Peter imprisoned,) who was eaten by Worms ; (Acts xii. 2, 3, 23.) and Great Uncle to that Agrippa, who was by Paul's Discourse almost persuaded to become a Chriftian, (AEs xxvi. 28.) Christ's Arraignment before him, when he was sent back uncondemned, was a great additional Proof of the Falsehood of those Accusations, which the Jews had brought against him as a feditious Person.

covery 11.

where they array him in a splendid Robe, and mock bim. 539

in And Herod with his And Herod, with those of his Soldiers, who Sect. 187. Men of War set him at nomo

E set him at now attended him as his Life-Guard, looked up nought, and mocked him,

. and arraved him in a gor Jesus with Disdain, and treated him in a very Lukisa geous Róbe, and sent him contemptuous Manner, like a poor inconsiderable again to Pilate.

Creature,. who no way answered the Account
they had heard of him, neither saying, nor doing
any Thing to gratify their Curiosity; and having
derided (him) for, pretending to be a King, (as it
was urged by his Accusers he had done,) in pub-
lick Contempt of that Claim, whatever it was,
Herod clothed him with a splendid Robe (6), and
sent him back to Pilate; thereby intimating, that
he left him to do what he pleased with his Pri-
soner, but for his own Part, apprehended his Pre-
tensions to Royalty worthy of Decision, rather

than serious Resentment. .
12 And the same Day And whatever Pilate's real Intentions were, the 12
Pilate and Herod were made

Compliment of sending Jesus to be examined by Friends together ; for before they were at Enmity be

him, was so well taken by. Herod ; and Herod's tween themselves. sending him back to the Roman Governor, was; on

the other hand, such a publick Instance of Regard
to him ; that the same Day Pilate and Herod be-
came Friends, and were reconciled to each other :

For before this, they were at Enmity between them13 And Pilate, when he And Pilate having received an Account of what 13. had called together the Chief Priefts, and the Rulers, and had passed before Herod, called together the Chief the People,

Priests, and the Rulers, and with them the Body

: of the People that waited at the Tribunal; 14 Said unto them, Ye And said to them, You have brought me this Man, 14. have brought this Man unto me, as one that perverteth

teth Jesus of Nazareth, as one that has perverted the
the People : and behold, I People, and taught Doctrines injurious to your
having examined him before Religion, and also to the Civil Peace and the -

Roman Government; and behold, I have examined
[bim,] both in your Presence, and in private, and
heard all that could be alledged against him; but

I must


(b) A Splendid Robe.] Enla seuapov does not so properly agnify (as Le Clerc renders it,) a white Robe ; nor was it, as he supposes, intended as a Declaration of his Innocence. It was rather some gorgeous Garment, which belonged to Herod, or some of his Officers, and was, perhaps, grown old ; and they clothed him with it in Derision of his having pretended to be a King. This Usage was exceeding insolent.: Perhaps the Remorse of Conscience, which Herod had felt on Account of the Murther of John the Baptif, might render him cautious, how he joined in any Attempt on the Life of Jesus, which we do not find that he did.

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(6) No

540 Pilate at his Return proposes to fcourge, and discharge him. Sect. 187. I must folemnly declare, that I have found no you, have found no Fault in

w Crime in this Man as to the Things that you have Things whereof ye accuse Luk.XXI

1. charged bim with ; nor can I in my Conscience him; 14.

think, that you have made good any of the Ac15 cusations you have brought against him: Nor 15 No, nor yet Herod': yet bas Herod been able to make any fuch Disco

be any furch Difa for I sent you to him, and

po lo, nothing worthy of Death. very; for I sent you to him with the Prisoner, that is done unto him. you might do your utmost to convict him before that Prince, who being a Person of your own Religion, and well acquainted with your Laws and Customs, might have known more of the Matter than myself; and yet behold, it appears to have been Herod's Judgment, that nothing worthy of Death has been done by him (C); for instead of fending him back like one who deserves a Capital Sentence, he has treated him like an Ideot, rather than a Traitor, so as plainly to Thew, that he thinks him merely the Object of Ridicule, or to

deserve at most' but some light Punishment..
16 And therefore when I have chastised him by scourg. .. 16 I will therefore chaftile

ing, which will be an Admonition to him for the him; and release bim,
future not to use those wild enthusiastical Ex:
pressions, which have given so much Umbrage and
Sufpicion, I will let [him] go : And I believe you
may depend upon it, that he will give us no far.
ther Trouble ; nor would he have Interest enough

to do it, if he were inclined to the. Attempt. Mark XV.6. Now it was usual at the Feast of the Pafcover, MARK XV, 6. Now at [and] even was grown by Custom in a manner

that Feast (the Governor

was wont] (Luk. and of necessary (d), for the Roman Governor to release to Necessity he: muft] [release the People any one Prisoner, whom they defréd to unto the People) one Pribe set at Liberty, whatever Crime it was that he

foner, whomsoever they de

fired. (Mat. XXVII. 15. 7 was charged with. And there was then in Pi- Luke XXIII. 17.)*

late's Custody a very infamous and noted Prisoner, 7 And there was (then a



(c). Nothing worthy of Death has been done by him.] Flempoy Merov ałw muft here have this Signification, as the Margin of our Bible renders it ; for tho' this is something of an unusual Construction, yet as Raphelius (Annot. ex Polyb. pag. 259,) has produced many Instances of the like Nature, it would be much harsher to suppose, that a Capital Sentence, or any Treatment from Herod, which should intimate he thought yefus deserved it, thould be called afrov Javals, fomething worthy of Death.

(d) Usual, - and in a manner necessary.] There was no Law to oblige him to this; but as Åsts of Grace are generally popular Things, this seems to have been forft freely used by the Romans to please their Tributaries, and now by Custom was in a manner established. I find no substantial Reason to believe, there was in the Original of this Custom any, Reterence to the Deliverance of Israel from the Egyptian Bondage at this Time.

() W bomo

Mark XV.

It was usual at the Feast to release a Prisoner to them. 541 notable Prisoner) named Ba- whose Name was Barabbas, that lay bound with Sect. 187. rabbas, which lay bound with some other Ruffians, who had made an Insurrection them that had made Insur. J

in with him ILur, in in the City in Conjunction with him, and who badthe City, who had commit- also committed Murther in the Insurrection ; and' ted Murther in the Insur- besides the Part he had acted in this seditious rection, (Joh. and was a

Riot, he was a Fellow of a most abandoned Cha-
Robber.] (MAT. XXVII.
16. LUKE XXIII. 19. racter, and known to be a Robber, who had in-
John XVIII. -40.) felted the High-ways with his Villany; so that

it was generally concluded, he would receive Sen

tence of Death, and would be executed that Day. 8. And the Multitude And as the Power of reversing or executing such 8 [therefore when they were Sentences then lay in the Romans, the People gathered together,]: crying therefore, when they were gathered together about aloud, began to desire him to do as he had ever done the Tribunal, began with a great Noise and Cläunto them. [MAT.XXVII. mour to demand of Pilate, [that he would do] at this 17.-]

Passover, as be had always done to them upon the

like Occasions, and would discharge a Prisoner.
9 But Pilate answered And Pilate hoping that he might preserve the 9
them, saying, (Joh. Ye Life of Jesus, whose Innocence he so clearly
have a Custom, that I should faw: determined to attempt it by this Method;
release unto you one at the
Pallover :] [Whom) will ye and accordingly, that he might induce them to
(Joh. therefore] that I re- chuse him, he proposed no other Alternative;
lease unto you? (Barabbas: than that scandalous and outragious Criminal;
or Jesus, which is called
Chrift,1the King of the whom we have just now mentioned, and answer-
Jews?' (Mat. XXVII. ed them, saying, You have indeed a Custom that I
--17. JOHN XVIII. 39.] Nould release to you one at the Passover, and I am

ready now to oblige you in this Affair ; Whom
will you therefore chuse, that I release unto you?
Barábbas, that seditious and murtherous Robber ? '
or this Yesus, who is called Chrift, whom fome of
you pretend to be, in. I know not what strange
Sense, the King of the Jews, and whom you see

before you in the fine Robe, in which Herod
10 (For he knew that the has thought fit to array him? For he knew 10
Chief Priests had delivered that the Chief Priests and Rulers had not delivered
him for Envy.) [MAT. bim up into his Hands from a Regard to Justice,
XXVII. 18.)

but merely out of Envy at his Popularity; and
therefore he was willing to make the Proposal to
the People in such a Form, as might be most

likely to secure his Life.
· 11 But the Chief Priests But the Chief Priests and Elders, who were in
[and Elders] moved [ and exceedingly solicitous to obtain their End, left this

per Art

Artifice of the Governor should defeat all their
laboured Scheme, excited the most forward of


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