I watched Him suffer. I saw Him die.
I believe now that He could have come down from that cross and saved Himself from the agony and pain. But He accepted that pain as the will of God. Before He died, He raised His voice in forgiveness. Forgiveness. More powerful than the armies of Rome and the strategies of all our leaders. Forgiveness.
Something changed inside me. I decided that my seat on the council was nothing to cherish; it would never again bring any honor to me. I decided that it was past time for me to raise my voice. Perhaps my silent voice might become something better–a voice of courage.
The Roman soldiers determined that Jesus was dead. I left Golgotha and went straight to the Tower of Antonio. I requested an audience with Pilate. Because of my stature in the Jewish community, he received me. I plucked up my courage and asked Pilate to release the dead body of Jesus into my custody.
Pilate was surprised to learn that Jesus had already died. Sometimes, you know, the victims suffer for days. I was not sure what Pilate would do. I knew enough about Roman law to know that those condemned to death had no right to burial. Would Pilate enforce their law? I also knew that Pilate hated us Jews. He had nothing to gain by granting me a favor. But he signed a release. Maybe he saw in me an opportunity to get back at the Sanhedrin for forcing him into this business.
Voice of courage
April 7, 2012 by joyfulpapist