Barabbas – E

The Roman authorities at this time held a prisoner named Barabbas, who was under sentence of death. This man had claimed to be the Messiah. He claimed authority to establish a different order of things, to set the world right. Under satanic delusion he claimed that whatever he could obtain by theft and robbery was his own. He had done wonderful things through satanic agencies, he had gained a following among the people, and had excited sedition against the Roman government. Under cover of religious enthusiasm he was a hardened and desperate villain, bent on rebellion and cruelty.

By giving the people a choice between this man and the innocent Saviour, Pilate thought to arouse them to a sense of justice. He hoped to gain their sympathy for Jesus in opposition to the priests and rulers. So, turning to the crowd, he said with great earnestness, “Whom will ye that I release unto you? Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ?”  {DA 733.1}

     Like the bellowing of wild beasts came the answer of the mob, “Release unto us Barabbas!” Louder and louder swelled the cry, Barabbas! Barabbas! Thinking that the people had not understood his question, Pilate asked, “Will ye that I release unto you the King of the Jews?” But they cried out again, “Away with this Man, and release unto us Barabbas”! “What shall I do then with Jesus which is called Christ?” Pilate asked. Again the surging multitude roared like demons. Demons themselves, in human form, were in the crowd, and what could be expected but the answer, “Let Him be crucified”?  {DA 733.2} 

Jesus had hardly passed the gate of Pilate’s house when the cross which had been prepared for Barabbas was brought out and laid upon His bruised and bleeding shoulders. He had borne His burden but a few rods, when, from loss of blood and excessive weariness and pain, He fell fainting to the ground. When He revived, the cross was again placed upon His shoulders, and He was forced forward. He staggered on for a few steps, bearing His heavy load, and then fell as one lifeless to the ground. The priests and rulers felt no compassion for their suffering victim, but they saw that it was impossible for Him to carry the instrument of torture farther. They were puzzled to find anyone who would humiliate himself to bear the cross to the place of execution.  {CC 325.2} 

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