|The Foundations of Faith:||Seminar 7|
The Paschal Mystery stands for the passion, death, resurrection, and glorious ascension of Jesus Christ to heaven. It encompasses a series of events:
The Purpose for Jesus' Suffering
The following night after the Last Supper, Jesus sacrificed Himself by voluntary surrendering to injustice of sinners, and finally dying on the cross. Jesus' death on the cross is significant in four ways:
Who Crucified Jesus?
We know Jews did not break one, single commandment of God by rejecting Christ and delivering Him to Roman hands to be crucified, yet as the exchange between Jesus and Pontius Pilate revealed, the Jews are fully accountable for the crucifixion of Christ:
6 When the chief priests and the temple guards saw him, they shouted, "Crucify him! Crucify him!" Pilate said to them; "You take him then, and crucify him. I find no reason to condemn him." 7 The crowd answered back, "We have a law that says he ought to die because he claimed to be the Son of God". 8 When Pilate heard this, he was even more afraid. 9 He went back into the palace and asked Jesus, "Where do you come from?" But Jesus did not answer. 10 Pilate said to him, "You will not speak to me? Remember. I have the authority to set you free and also to have you crucified". 11 Jesus answered, "You have authority over me only because it was given to you by God. So the man who handed me over to you is guilty of a worse sin". 12 When Pilate heard this he tried to find a way to set Jesus free. But the crowd shouted back, "If you set him free, that means that you are not the Emperor's friend! Anyone who claims to be a king is a rebel against the Emperor!" JN19:6-12
Clearly, Pontius Pilate used every possible
political means at his disposal trying to release Jesus as he knew that
Jesus was innocent but Jews, using their political power imposed Christ's
crucifixion on Romans. Jews were the masterminds, Romans only did the dirty
work for them.
How did others see Him?
Jesus came in very turbulent times. Through Jewish teachings of TORAH many Jews had the capacity to perceive Jesus' divine mission, yet, due to the presence of Roman occupation Jews became confused and divided as to what Jesus' "salvation" and "deliverence" represented. The militant Zealots perceived Jesus as their potential military leader and future king of Israel who would crush the Roman domination with a mighty sword. Only very few Jews, Jesus' disciples among them, actually tried to understand the true meaning of Jesus' presence and His Holy mission. In the end, their humble meek voices were overshouted by the confused loud majority screaming "Crucify Him!"
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Movie: Jesus of Nazareth part 3 - Sanhedrin trial clip