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Verses 6-10

Mark 15:6-10. Now at that feast he released unto them one prisoner The passover being celebrated by the Jews in memory of their deliverance from Egypt, it was agreeable to the nature of the feast to make this release at that time, and therefore customary. See Whitby, and note on Matthew 27:15-18. There was one named Barabbas, bound with them that had made insurrection A crime which the Roman governors, and Pilate in particular, were more especially concerned and careful to punish; who had committed murder in the insurrection He seems to have been the head of the rebels. The multitude, crying aloud, &c. Greek, αναβοησας ο οχλος ηρξατο αιτεισθαι , With great clamour, the multitude demanded of Pilate what he used to grant them. So Campbell. But Pilate answered, Will ye that I release unto you the King of the Jews? If Pilate made this proposal with a view to preserve the life of Jesus, it is hard to say which he discovers most, his want of justice, or of courage, or of common sense. While in a most mean and cowardly manner he sacrifices justice to popular clamour, he enrages those whom he seeks to appease, by unseasonably repeating that title, The King of the Jews, which he could not but know was highly offensive to them. For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him To be put to death, not from a regard to justice, but merely for envy at his popularity and goodness; and that these things, and no crime of his, either real or suspected, had made them his enemies. Pilate ought, therefore, certainly rather to have lost his own life than to have delivered Jesus to their will. See note on Matthew 27:24-25.

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