Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

Pontius Pilate wasn’t just a character in the story of Jesus. He was a real person. From 26 – 36 A.D., Pilate was the Roman prefect (or governor) of Judea, appointed through the intervention of Sejanus (an influential Roman politician). His primary job was to keep Judea under control and make sure that his Roman masters were pleased.

Pilate incurred the wrath of the Jews when he hung images of Emperor Tiberius throughout Jerusalem and had coins minted, which included pagan symbols. (Jerusalem had been the only major city in the Empire without these kinds of displays). But after the Jews protested violently, he withdrew those images.

Reflecting his unpopularity, Pilate was described by first-century Jewish philosopher Philo as “inflexible, stubborn, and cruel.” Eventually, he was ordered back to Rome to stand trial for cruelty and oppression, and was charged with executing men without a proper trial.

According to one tradition, Pilate killed himself on orders from Emperor Caligula in 39 A.D. However, another tradition claimed that Pilate and his wife converted to Christianity. (As a result, she became a saint in the Eastern Church.)

Throughout time, Pilate has been a symbol of people who are obsessed with power, and willing to compromise to please other people and get ahead without concern for truth or the things of God.

As you think about Pilate, ask yourself if you’re willing to compromise to please others. Or are you absolutely committed to the truth? Dedicate yourself wholeheartedly to God. Do not be intimidated by the world but seek to please Him.