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Matthew 27:24

When Pilate saw that he could gain nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see you to it.
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Cornelius a Lapide

AD 1637
When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude. α̉πενίψατο, washed away. "He adopted," says Origen, "the Jewish custom, and wished to calm them down, not by words only, but also by deed." He washed his hands, but not his conscience. But this took place after the scourging and crowning, of Christ. (See S. John.) Here is a transposition. Saying, I am innocent. I condemn Him against my will. Ye are the offenders. Ye are guilty of His death. How foolish was this timid, heartless, and slothful Governor in speaking thus! Why opposest thou not the injustice of the people? "Seek not to be Judges , if thou canst not by thy power break through iniquities" (Eccles. vii6). At another time thou didst let loose the soldiers an the riotous mob (Joseph. B. J, xviii4). Why dost thou not act thus firmly now? If thou canst not, through the fury of the Jews, set Him free now, at least delay thy sentence ...

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
Taken water. It was the custom of the ancients, when they wished to show themselves innocent of any alleged crime, to take water and wash their hands in public. (St. Remigius) Because the element of water naturally signifies purity. See Virgil, Æneid xi. ver. 718. Me bello è tanto digressum, et cæde recenti Attract are nefas, donec me flumine vivo Abluero. ...

Jerome

AD 420
Pilate accepted the water in line with that prophetic saying, “I will wash my hands among the innocent,” that he might cleanse the works of the Gentiles by the washing of his hands and in some way separate us from the wickedness of the Jews who cried out “Crucify him!” What he intimated was this: I truly wanted to release an innocent man, but a riot is breaking out and the charge of treason against Caesar has been brought against me. So “I am innocent of the blood of this just man.”  The judge who was induced to pass judgment against the Lord does not condemn the defendant but puts the blame on the plaintiffs. He declares him to be a just man who was meant to be crucified. “See to it yourselves,” he says. “I am the administrator of the laws. It is according to your word that his blood is being shed.” . ...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Do you see how many things Christ did in order to recover them? For like as He often times checked Judas, so likewise did He restrain these men too, both throughout all His Gospel, and at the very time of His condemnation. For surely when they saw the ruler and the judge washing his hands of it, and saying, I am innocent of this blood, they should have been moved to compunction both by what was said, and by what was done, as well when they saw Judas had hanged himself, as when they saw Pilate himself entreating them to take another in the place of Him. For when the accuser and traitor condemns himself, and he who gives sentence puts off from himself the guilt, and such a vision appears the very night, and even as condemned he begs Him off, what kind of plea will they have? For if they were not willing that He should be innocent, yet they should not have preferred to him even a robber, one that was acknowledged to be such, and very notorious. ...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Why then did Pilate allow him to be sacrificed? Why didn’t he rescue him, like the centurion had rescued Paul? For that man too was aware that he could have pleased the Jews and that a sedition may have taken place and a riot; nevertheless he stood firm against all these. But not so Pilate. He was extremely cowardly and weak. He joined in their corruption. He did not stand firm against the bullying crowd or against the Jewish leadership. In every way he allowed them an excuse. For they “cried out exceedingly,” that is, cried out the more, “Let him be crucified.” For they desired not only to put him to death but also that it should be on a trumpedup charge of iniquity. And even though the judge was contradicting them, they continued to cry out against him. The Gospel of Matthew, Homily ...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Do you see how many things Christ did in order to give them a chance to do right? Do you remember how many times he had checked Judas? So likewise did he restrain these men too, both throughout all his ministry and at the very time of his condemnation. For surely when they saw the governor and judge washing his hands of it, saying, “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” they should have been moved to compassion both by what was said and by what was done. The same is true when they saw Judas had hanged himself as when they saw Pilate himself offering them the choice of another in the place of Christ. The Gospel of Matthew, Homily ...

Leo of Rome

AD 461
By what law is it, my Jewish friends, that what is unlawful to do is lawful to desire? By what standard is it that what defiles the body does not taint the heart? You fear to be contaminated by the shedding of his blood that you would take upon yourselves and your children. Since your wickedness will not commit so great a crime, allow the procurator to pass judgment. But, prevailing upon him impetuously, you do not allow him to swerve from that goal you deceitfully abstain from. Pilate sinned by doing what he did not want to do. He acquiesced in your judgment, doing whatever your rage wrought by force. Such was your observance of the law that you eschewed placing into the treasury the money which the seller of Christ returned to you, wary lest the blood money pollute the sacred coffers. Whose heart is guilty of this pretense? The conscience of the priests accepts what the money box does not receive. Thus with untold shades of deceit you cover yourselves, and a deal is made with the tra...

Maximus of Turin

AD 423
For Christ conquers when he is judged, because in this way he is proven innocent. Hence Pilate says, “I am innocent of the blood of this just man.” It is a better case which is not defended and still is proved. It is a fuller righteousness that is not supplemented by words but is still supported by the truth. It must be that the tongue should keep silent when justice itself is present to itself. Let the human tongue keep silent in a good affair, inasmuch as it has also been accustomed to speak out in favor of bad causes. I do not want righteousness to be defended in the same manner that wickedness is usually excused. It is not by reason of speech but because of virtue that Christ vanquishes, for the Savior, who is wisdom, knows how to vanquish by keeping silent and how to overcome by not responding. Therefore he prefers to establish the truth of his case rather than to speak about it. What in fact would compel him to speak when silence is enough to conquer? But perhaps fear would compe...

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. - 2 Peter 1:20

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