Matthew 27:11-31 is loaded with drama. Jesus stands silently before Pontius Pilate – both men are under judgement.
Where will the gavel fall in favor – maintenance of the status quo, control and order; or the brazen, divergent reign of the Prince of Peace, a reign that is not of the current scheme of things?
Divergent is the title of a freshly released movie set in a dystopian post apocalyptic future. The cohesion and security of the city is assured by dividing its citizens into factions, according to temperament and related tasks. Those who don’t fit any of the nominated categories are deemed divergent and dangerous, and are either marginalised or disposed of. Themes in the screenplay seem sometimes in close parallel with the drama unfolding on Pilate’s podium. For example it is interesting that the faction marked by “selflessness” is deemed the most threatening by two of the more powerful blocs.
Pilate’s message is “Conform, submit, play by our rules.”
Jesus’ response is silence. Pilate’s demand cannot contain the wholesome reality of the reign of heart and mind that Jesus represents and envisions.
Pilate attempts first to neutralise and marginalise Jesus by offering the release of Barabbas in his place. This tactic fails, and Pilate hands Jesus over for execution.
Lent draws to a close, the journey into Holy Week begins.