Chapter Seven- The Trial of Jesus

The Trial of Jesus, presented by Joseph Reisinger in his book Jesus of Nazareth, takes place in different scenarios: the first part is a meeting between Jewish leaders in Caiaphas’ house, the interrogation before the Sanhedrin, and the Trial of Jesus before Pilate. The aim of the Trail from the Sanhedrin’s standpoint is to kill Jesus and Pilate seeks to save Jesus; meanwhile, he wants social peace during the Jewish feasts. To each of the three scenarios, Ratzinger, provides reasons, misunderstandings, worries, and preferences from the Sanhedrin as well as from Pilate that led Jesus to the Cross. However, the third part, the Trial of Jesus before Pilate, has deep theological description behind the motives to what happened to Jesus. That is, Ratzinger describes the truth about Jesus’ kingship and his proclamation to be the Son of God, the two motives for Jesus’ condemnation and hidden theophanies to the eyes of Pilate and Jewish leaders. The Jewish expected the Messiah for centuries but when they had him in the fragile, tortured, and helpless person of Jesus their blindness to the truth unable them recognize him. For them, the truth is limited compared to the whole truth that is God, who is supreme and absolute truth.  Creation, for example, becomes what means to be as long as if it reflects God, the eternal Reason by which has emerged. Man, on the other hand, reaches his true nature when becomes according to God. That is, God is the measure of being for man. With it is understood that the truth is perceivable when God is known, an ability that Jewish leaders and Pilate did not possess.


5 thoughts on “Chapter Seven- The Trial of Jesus”

  1. I like the part when you speak of the expectancy of the Messiah and the reality of the Messiah -Jesus- meaning that they were expecting a powerful, strong leader and in front of him they have a fragile, wounded, beaten Jesus that is not capable of being of being the Messiah they are waiting for. Speaking of our days, how many times we are denied to find Jesus in the broken, lonely, poor, and we seek the person of Jesus in those who speak or has a good appearance. Thank you !

  2. Excellent summary, Leo! The trial of Jesus before Pilate does have some powerful theological points for reflection. I especially liked the part that you mentioned of the world not being able to recognize the Messiah since He did not look like the Messiah they had in their minds. Often times we try to put Jesus in a box. We try to mold Him into the type of God that we want. By doing this we are making ourselves take the place of God and try instead to control Him. This, of course, never works out! So we must meditate on what it means to be a follower of Jesus. Our we truly living as faithful disciples? Or are we giving the appearance of discipleship that the world has in mind?

  3. Excellent and descriptive review. May we recognize Christ however he choses to act in our lives! In sin we all chose to reject him, the same as those in the Gospels.

  4. Great job, Leo! The thing that I find most intriguing in the scene before Pilate is the message from Pilate’s wife that Matthew adds to his account. Her warning to Pilate and her bringing him to the Truth about Jesus underlines the importance of providence in our lives. The fact that Pilate still goes on to allow for the murder of Jesus shows how providence is not enough.

  5. The Jews were expecting a messiah but one like a political power taking the land by force. The manner in which Jesus came to us is quite the opposite, being meek and humble. Great job in summarizing the three scenarios in which Jesus is put on trial for who He claims to be, the Messiah.

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