“Thus, when they saw him, the chief priests and the assistants screamed out, ‘Crucify! Crucify!’ Pilate said, ‘Take him yourself and crucify, for I find no cause in him.’”
Pilate is playing a dangerous political game with the Jews at this point. On one level, his contempt for being manipulated by these Jewish officials shows through, but on another level, the chief priests have whipped the people into such a mob that there is no telling what is going to happen next. It is a very dangerous game of chess that he is playing and it seems as if his king is being boxed in move by move, each verbal interchange that is taking place.
Yet as intense as this interplay must have been at the time, God has superintended it all to bring it to the conclusion he has designed for his Son. Jew and Gentile are here together vying to see who would be responsible for the actual death of Jesus while the guilt fell on both groups. Sin is sin whether you are the hand that carries it out or whether you provide the thought that instigates it. There is no other word but “evil” to describe what is taking place.
But indeed, there is another word…and that is grace. Though the working and debating of Pilate and the Chief Priests is evil unbounded, God is overseeing these events to leave none guiltless and then to offer grace to those who turn toward his Son in faith. Loved ones, this is why Jesus is before these wicked men. It is not because of the plans of the wicked but it is because of the design of God the Father, that he, God the Son, be crushed for our sins and that he bear the iniquity of all believers upon his shoulders that we (believers) might become the righteousness of God. There are not words to describe the debt of gratitude and love we owe for this gift of grace…all we can do is commit our lives to serving Him who has given his life to save us.