Pilate says to Jesus: Hearest thou what these testify against thee, and answerest thou not? 1875 And Jesus answered and said: Every man has power to speak either good or bad, as he wishes; these also, therefore, having power, say what they wish. 1876
The Jews said to Him: What have we to say about thee? First, that thou wast begotten from sin; second, that on account of thee, when thou wast born, the infants 1877 were murdered; third, that thy father and thy mother fled into Egypt, because they had no confidence in the people.
To these the Jews who were there present, God-fearing men, answered and said: We say that his birth is not from sin; for we know that Joseph received into keeping his mother Mary, according to the practice of betrothal. Pilate said: Consequently you lie who say that his birth is from sin. They say again to Pilate: All the people testify that he is a magician. The God-fearing Jews answered and said: We also were at the betrothal of his mother, and we are Jews, and know all his daily life; but that he is a magician, that we do not know. And the Jews that thus said were these: Lazarus, Astharius, Antonius, James, Zaras, Samuel, Isaac, Phinees, Crispus, Dagrippus, Amese, and Judas.
Pilate therefore says to them: By the life of Cæsar, I wish you to swear whether the birth of this man is without sin. They answered: Our law lays down that we are to swear not at all, because an oath is great sin. Notwithstanding, by the life of Cæsar we swear that his birth is without sin; and if we lie, order us all to be beheaded. And when they had thus spoken, the Jews that were bringing the charge answered Pilate, and said: And dost thou believe these twelve single Jews more than all the multitude and us, who know for certain that he is a magician and blasphemer, and that he names himself Son of God?
Then Pilate ordered them all to go forth out of the prætorium except the said twelve alone. And when this had been done, Pilate says to them privately: As to this man, it appears that from envy and madness the Jews wish to murder him: for of one thing—that he does away with the Sabbath—they accuse him; but he then does a good work, because he cures the sick. For this, sentence of death is not upon the man. The twelve also say to him: Assuredly, my lord, it is so.
Comp. John xix. 11.427:1877
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