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John 18:29-30

18:29 So Pilate came outside to them and said, “What accusation 1  do you bring against this man?” 2  18:30 They replied, 3  “If this man 4  were not a criminal, 5  we would not have handed him over to you.” 6 

1 tn Or “charge.”

2 sn In light of the fact that Pilate had cooperated with them in Jesus’ arrest by providing Roman soldiers, the Jewish authorities were probably expecting Pilate to grant them permission to carry out their sentence on Jesus without resistance (the Jews were not permitted to exercise capital punishment under the Roman occupation without official Roman permission, cf. v. 31). They must have been taken somewhat by surprise by Pilate’s question “What accusation do you bring against this man,” because it indicated that he was going to try the prisoner himself. Thus Pilate was regarding the trial before Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin as only an inquiry and their decision as merely an accusation.

3 tn Grk “They answered and said to him.”

4 tn Grk “this one.”

5 tn Or “an evildoer”; Grk “one doing evil.”

6 tn Or “would not have delivered him over.”

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