Difference between revisions of "Episode:Jesus Faces Death—Brought to Trial (Part 10)"

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*** And don't miss that Barabbas was the "son of a priest."  The priests are joining in to pardon a rebellious one of their own, so to speak.  Quite problematic.
 
*** And don't miss that Barabbas was the "son of a priest."  The priests are joining in to pardon a rebellious one of their own, so to speak.  Quite problematic.
 
** The still deeper problem remains...
 
** The still deeper problem remains...
 +
  
 
* The Jewish people and their flawed frame and worldview (their own [[preconceived opinions...]])
 
* The Jewish people and their flawed frame and worldview (their own [[preconceived opinions...]])

Revision as of 22:45, 10 March 2020

March 3, 2020 [Paper 185:5, p. 1993]

Pilate addressed himself to the solution of the problem which confronted him, by asking the assembly of Jewish rulers and the pardon-seeking crowd, "What shall I do with him who is called the king of the Jews?" And they all shouted with one accord, "Crucify him! Crucify him!" The unanimity of this demand from the mixed multitude startled and alarmed Pilate, the unjust and fear-ridden judge.

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Keywords: Urantia, Jesus, Pilate's Predicament, Claudia's Dream, Barabbas's Favor



Notes by Brad

  • "Behold the man," not the mere facts of the text.
    • Read this as the story of a man and those who associated with him.
    • Don't read this as dry, dusty theology. That won't make it relevant or living for us today.
    • Put yourself in the shoes of these people. How would you act? Would you do better? Really?
      • This author reports that "What would I have done in Pilate's shoes?" he concluded, "I would have failed on Day One. I am not that caliber of a mortal. Despite Pilate's flaws, he still was a 'great man' in Plutarch's sense of the word."


  • Don't set the bar too low. Don't short-circuit yourself.
    • Set high concepts as remotely as possible, so you may go in quest of the great prize.
    • Faith. Love. Truth. Don't be sure you've found these things. You won't find the definitions in a dictionary
      • Faith is not credulous belief. Reverencing some divine falsehood is not faith.
      • Love is not just a feeling.
      • Genuine love exists within a context—a context of truth.
      • Jesus said "through faith, by love..." If we don't even understand faith, how can be know the true meaning of love?
    • Today, any word suggestive of spirit or eternity tends to just be watered-down feelings.
      • For example, a very intense feeling-filled fact, today, often is referred to as "a truth." No. It's just a strong feeling.
      • Before the 5th ER, most discussion of spirit affairs has not gone past the second level of meaning.
    • Is there a possible shadow cast into the feelings from the true spirit essence of concepts like faith, love, and truth?
      • Possibly. Possibly not. Maybe it's better to set all that aside and start from the 5th ER's principles.
    • This will be a many-lives-long process for us—the point where truth is a definitive experiential possession is a long way off.
      • But you can start today. Long before you grasp them experientially and directly, you can work out some framework for these. Separate one word from another. Abstract them into distinct elements.
      • So then may recognize the experience when it comes upon you.


  • Concerning frames of reference and lenses
    • Many people start with, say, the Bible, and then read The Urantia Book in light of it.
    • Can you try starting with The Urantia Book?
      • Through this, can you find more tolerance for other belief systems? Instead of becoming self-righteous and hardened against them?
      • Though don't end with only reading The Urantia Book (it's not a sacred text)! It should make you hungry for much more study.
    • Not everyone can start with The Urantia Book
      • Some people started their lives with The Bible, and confess they seem unable to remove it as their foundational premise.
      • So be it.
    • Even if The Urantia Book were your principal text for approaching life philosophically, you still have some lens you're reading it through!
      • To bring anything to a focus in your mind, you need a lens. A frame. You will have one lens or another.
    • Given that you, today, have a subjective lens, can you go in quest of the objective lens?
      • People sharing the one true objective lens is what yields kindred minds and brotherhood of man.
      • Careful! False philosophies like positivism assert there is no objective lens. They admit there are lenses, but nihilistically give up on objectivity.
      • We're swimming in false philosophies like this these days. Don't unwittingly let them poison you. You need courageous and independent cosmic thinking.
    • If you can't find the one objective frame immediately (who can?), can you at least change from one subjective frame to another?
      • Don't be so sure. This author notes how even in the sciences people cling to their old frame (paradigms) long after direct observation falsifies them. Because you can rationalize anything.
    • Do you think you already know the story of Pilate, Jesus, and Barabbas from the Bible?
      • If you think so, you'll breeze through these sections and it will be all affirmation, no revelation.


  • Don't be so sure recent Bible translations (e.g. Revised Standard Version) are superior to the King James Version
    • "the substance of things hoped for" (KJV) is a truer translation, because spirit is a substance.
    • Don't be so sure "people of faith" know how to translate the Bible properly.


  • Pilate's false leadership: here he's trying to lead by following here.
    • "Behold the weasel!"
      • Taking a straw poll of the mob, as it were? And making a decision based on that to appease them? That's not leadership.
      • Pilate is supposed to be so much more than this. He literally has a judgment seat: a symbol of his strength and objectivity. He should be wholly just.
      • "I can find no fault in him worthy of punishment. But I can punish him if you like." Not the thoughts of a just leader.
      • "How should I vote so that you'll reelect me?" "What does 51% of the population want?" That's not true leadership.
      • He even gets swayed in an ad hoc fashion, moment to moment, by one mob and then another mob. Purely opportunistic to preserve his power.
    • We are so accustomed to such behavior in politicians today, we might miss how improper and false it is!
    • Sophistry!: "Our elected officials are supposed to reflect the people, so polling the crowd is appropriate."
    • Concerning true leadership, a true leader:
      • should believe they possess more wisdom, insight, and foresight than the plain man.
      • Should have courage of their convictions to act. "This wisdom, insight, and foresight I possess should be the basis of our actions."
      • Engages the evolutionary process definitively.
      • Should not be afraid to fail. Maybe you will. If so, it's OK: tribulation can lead to wisdom.
      • Acts definitively and deals with the consequences.
      • Makes a decision definitively, and then deals with the consequences.
    • We need to be led.
      • We figured this out, long ago, via war. If we forget this, we'll have to go back to war.
      • People need a leader, not an affirmer.
      • A system of 1,000 inhabited worlds have one leader: a sovereign, no less.
      • just because there always exist those who will rebel at any leadership, it does not invalidate leadership.
    • Yet, Pilate is not the deeper, real problem here...


  • The deeper problem at play here: a rebellion being fomented against the Roman empire
    • The 5th ER reveals a different color to this event. This mob already had schemed to have Barabbas pardoned. The mob isn't even concerned about Jesus!
    • Barabbas' was a treasonist against the Roman empire, and the mob was demanding his release.
    • If you were a rebellious leader and knew you'd be pardoned no matter how outrageous you are, are there any limits to what you'd do?
    • This presages the eventual fall of Jerusalem.
    • Be careful when applying mercy to a collective phenomenon. Mercy is for individuals. Justice is needed for impersonal control of the group, to avoid anarchy.
      • A merciful policy of pardoning (intended to appease the masses) is having major unintended consequences!
      • Rome is allowing rebellion leaders to be set free each year, via the mob's scheming.
    • The chief priests, like Pilate, saw this mob opportunistically.
      • They joined the cry to pardon Barabbas (they did not start it, as the Bible seems to imply).
      • So the chief priests, here, joined in essentially a scheme for rebellion against Rome.
      • And don't miss that Barabbas was the "son of a priest." The priests are joining in to pardon a rebellious one of their own, so to speak. Quite problematic.
    • The still deeper problem remains...


  • The Jewish people and their flawed frame and worldview (their own preconceived opinions...)
    • They were materially minded, wanted a material uplifter and material savior.
      • They rejected the rule of Rome. And, in turn, rejected the "Most Highs" who "rule in the Kingdoms of men" (i.e., the Most High Observer).
      • Their rejection of Jesus is not as problematic, as regards their people, than their rejection of the Most High Observer (by way of Rome)
    • They had one thing on their mind: "We want a leader, the Son of God, to rain down awesome fire and brimstone upon Rome, our oppressors."
      • Is it any wonder the materially-minded mob didn't recognize Jesus as the Son of God? He wasn't going to be the son of "the volcano god"
      • They don't recognize the majesty of Jesus in this moment (as our authors do). They see the opposite: a material weakling who's been arrested.
      • This mob thought Barabbas was closer to a rainer-of-fire-and-brimstone than Jesus could possibly be.
      • They'd rather pardon an insurrectionist, a potential material messiah who might overthrow Rome for them.
    • These people were drawn to Jesus when imagining him manifesting power. They had no interest in him manifesting personality.
    • Their narrative of Jesus wasn't even accurate. "Jesus drove the moneychangers form the temple on Monday!" Ah... no he didn't.
      • How much do you, too, identify with a narrative and figment of Jesus instead of the real Jesus?
      • Christians today also identify with this powerful Jesus whipping people and flipping over tables. The fictitious Jesus.
      • Christians today mostly want power and glory. Not personality and love.
    • Your animal nature wants the same thing this mob wanted: to use Jesus for you own material better ends.
    • Can you be a true human and want Jesus for his personality and love instead? Even his apostles struggled with this (they, too, often wanted power and glory)
    • Yikes: If you love the fictitious Jesus, you love a figment of your mind. So, in a real way, you only love yourself, not Jesus.


  • Concerning this mob
    • This mob has only avowed enemies of Jesus, and people who barely cared about Jesus and only wanted Barabbas released
      • None of Jesus' friends (they were in hiding hiding) or those loyal to Jesus, because Pilate didn't call them.
    • This mob is purely animal and emotional.
      • So Pilate's appeals to civilizational logic ("what evil has Jesus done?") utterly fail.
      • Pilate tries to slow things down, reclaim some control, but there are no humans here, only fancy animals.
    • A multitude of fancy animals shouting in unison.
      • This is uniformity, aka poor man's unity. Human's crave unity, but fancy animals only can achieve uniformity.
      • And there's a zealous spirit-like charge on unison chants. It can feel pleasant and make it all feed on itself.
      • This author reports being in a mob once that chanted "This is what democracy looks like" in unison. And it was terrifying upon reflection. Democracy in the form of mob rule can be terrifying.


  • Civilization needs judges and leaders who stand apart from transient animal-origin emotions.
    • It's sad to record how not-like-a-judge Pilate is here, playing off the emotions of the mob (malice, hatred, envy).
      • To be a judge that is law-abiding and just, they must stand apart from the emotions of the mob.
      • Those who are set apart from the emotions of the moment are the ones who are supposed to lead civilization through troubled, emotional times.
      • Instead, Pilate is being led around by the nose-ring here, as it were, by the mob and his own fear and insecurity.
    • Without laws and justice, all you have are folkways. A civilization cannot be founded or maintained on folkways.
    • A judge should be "just and courageous" (earlier in the text)
      • But Pilate here is "unjust and fear-ridden"
      • He asks the mob, "What should I do?" Why what a judge is this!
    • But let's give Pilate a little credit here.
      • Repeatedly, he tries to save Jesus from the semi-civilized mob. He was a civilized man, and no plain man at that.
      • Yet, he's not merely fearful now, but actually terrorized. Not a high state for a judge to be in.