The whole group rose up and took Jesus before Pilate,
where they began to accuse him: "We caught this man misleading our people, telling them not to pay taxes to the Emperor and claiming that he himself is the Messiah, a king."
Pilate asked him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" "So you say," answered Jesus.
Then Pilate said to the chief priests and the crowds, "I find no reason to condemn this man.
But they insisted even more strongly, "With his teaching he is starting a riot among the people all through Judea. He began in Galilee and now has come here."
When Pilate heard this, he asked, "Is this man a Galilean?"
When he learned that Jesus was from the region ruled by Herod, he sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem at that time.
Herod was very pleased when he saw Jesus, because he had heard about him and had been wanting to see him for a long time. He was hoping to see Jesus perform some miracle.
So Herod asked Jesus many questions, but Jesus made no answer.
The chief priests and the teachers of the Law stepped forward and made strong accusations against Jesus.
Herod and his soldiers made fun of Jesus and treated him with contempt; then they put a fine robe on him and sent him back to Pilate.
On that very day Herod and Pilate became friends; before this they had been enemies.
Pilate called together the chief priests, the leaders, and the people,
and said to them, "You brought this man to me and said that he was misleading the people. Now, I have examined him here in your presence, and I have not found him guilty of any of the crimes you accuse him of
Nor did Herod find him guilty, for he sent him back to us. There is nothing this man has done to deserve death.
So I will have him whipped and let him go."
The whole crowd cried out, "Kill him! Set Barabbas free for us!
(Barabbas had been put in prison for a riot that had taken place in the city, and for murder.
Pilate wanted to set Jesus free, so he appealed to the crowd again.
But they shouted back, "Crucify him! Crucify him!
Pilate said to them the third time, "But what crime has he committed? I cannot find anything he has done to deserve death! I will have him whipped and set him free."
But they kept on shouting at the top of their voices that Jesus should be crucified, and finally their shouting succeeded.
So Pilate passed the sentence on Jesus that they were asking for.
He set free the man they wanted, the one who had been put in prison for riot and murder, and he handed Jesus over for them to do as they wished.