Greeley Daily Tribune from Greeley, Colorado on April 18, 1973 · Page 30
Get access to this page with a Free Trial

Greeley Daily Tribune from Greeley, Colorado · Page 30

Publication:
Location:
Greeley, Colorado
Issue Date:
Wednesday, April 18, 1973
Page:
Page 30
Start Free Trial
Cancel

Wed..April 18,1173 GREELEY (Colo.) TRIBUNE 31 The judge of Jenu-ll Pilate consolidates power ..../.', Edltor'i note: Thi is the sec:' and InsUllment of » flve-pirt ;,,,,E«sler series about Pontius PI", ; ,Ute, the Roman governor who ;,i, judged Jesus and sentenced · him to death. It is drawn from ' .biblical and other historical sources, with secondary de: .iscrlptive detail added to round · it out. , By GEOKGE W. CORNELL j :; AP Religion Writer '*"..'; Music of flutes, timbrels an *i".lyres emanated from the easi \ ern hill overlooking Jerusalei and Pontius Pilate, having backrub in his rooftop soi · rium, glanced up, squinting mo the sun. Another flock of rifal peasants, he assumed, invapg ··· this already overpacked jcity V for their religious frolic. vV" These affairs, particularly r the big one called Pas/over, ;-·· usually.meant trouble or the ; Roman occupation government and Pilate regularly trought extra troops from Ca the city's garrison at tress of Antonia to k · any threatening disor For the moment, h »· '.'· was at ease. He had · how to control these . intractable Jews am the sys · tern worked, evenithough he had to lop off somerash heads ; now and then. j The hillside mebdies faded · and Pilate relaxei again, his . skin tingling as its manslave drew the bone strigilis to and , fro. Pilate had bem here about "; three years now, ind except for i one jolting reprimand from Ti- · berius, he had shrewdly consol- · idated his power, especially in .firming up his working alliance ·, -with the Temple chieflains. ; It was an astute arrange- .-·ment, though personally irksome. They were pseful to ' him. · They seemed about as adamant as he against jhe various -· .Sicarii revolutionaries and oth- · er provocateurs ani'dissenters, including that one from Galilee called Jesus, with his bids to the poor, his promises of "release to the captires," to "set at liberty those who are oppressed" under fie banner of '· .some fuzzy notiin of a "King_ ;dom of God." . . "A puzzling ;jne,V Pilate's wife, Procula, lad once commented. ; "A braying jack," Pilate had said. A wild talker, indeed, even more reckless,lhan his forerun- '· ner, the bapUzer, John. The baptizer had been nuisance' enough, Pilate reflected, even luring some if Rome's legionnaires to hezr him before his beheading. '; But things seemed quiet . enough, for ihe time being. Pilate took satisfaction in the way he had tightened lines of support with thj powerful and mo- nied Temple managers. Their collaboration was not paraded openly. It couldn't be, and fine fo: that, he mused dis- · tastefully. No Jew could remain acceptable to his fellows if he so much as supped with Romans, eniered their dwellings .or even clasped their hands. A native's customary attitude was to turn his back at the sight of a Roman helmet and spit. Consequently, Pilate and the Sadducean high priest, Joseph Caiaphas, had to work together in secret. Their tie was obvious, however, to any thoughtful observer, since the chief religious post was subject to the ". governor's appointment. Moreover, so closely did the foreign · Roman overlord and the Temple aristocracy collaborate that funds from the Temple's sacred corban were secretly relayed to Pilate for a building project. He frowned slightly, remembering the bloody riot this eventually provoked when word of it got out. It had gone smoothly at first, though. The Temple overseers supplied the funds and Pilate · had his architects and engineers begin constructing a flumed aqueduct 54 furlongs in length (seven miles) from springs at Bethlehem to Jerusalem's huge underground reser- . voirs beneath the Temple. Pilate had calculated thnt it would boost his status with the emperor to expand the city's inadequate water system while, at the same time, keeping im- : perial tax tribute flowing unabated into Rome. A shrewd move. But then, knowledge of the transfer from the Temple ^treasury somehow had slipped out, and a storm broke loose. , ' Popular indignation swept the ^city, relates Joscphus, a pro- Koman historian of that era. Jews were outraged that the heathen Roman oppressor would get hands on the shekel tithes given for their Temple in worship of God, they had vented their fury on Pilate. "Many tens of thousands of people came together, and made a clamor against him," Josephus writes. "Some of them also used reproaches and abused the man, as such people usually do." "Infidel plunderer!" they cried, shaking their fists outside the governor's praetorium. "Thieving tyrant!" Even the normally heavy Ro-" man levies, in land tax, grain and livestock tax, head tax and custom duties, were bitterly resented by the subjugated peoples «ven though paid in Roman commercial coins and not in the sacrificial shekels offered at the Temple. .To divert these holy funds to pagan purposes was seen as utter profanation. "Robber of the Lord!" the protesters shouted. Pilate, however, had the highest inside cooperation, up. to the Temple's Rome-picked Caiaphas himself. With that upper-class backing, the governor had been emboldened to deal rigorously with the bellowing swarm of hoi polloi. When the crowd had refused to disperse, he had quickly resorted to force and also to some of his typically deceptive tactics. He had directed four centuries of 400 soldiers, disguised as Jewish civilians but armed with swords and clubs hidden under their cloaks, to mingle with the demonstrators. At his signal, they were to lay on. When again the mob refused to disperse, he thrust his "vitus" staff upward, and the troops went to work. They "equally punished those that were tumultuous and those that were not," Josephus recounts. Cries, moans and the crunch of blades turned the scene into mass panic. "There was a great number of them slain," Josephus relates. "Many of them were trodden to death. , .Others of them ran away wounded. The shock at the horrible fate of the casualties brought the people to silence." Around Pilate's praetorium, the grounds and streets ran withstood, littered with struggling or inert bodies. The slaughter had been worse than he had intended, he recalled now but it had thoroughly proved his authority. No question about that. · He smiled wanly. He could not have backed down again, as he had done in the face of that outburst at Caesarea when he first took office. The punishment had been brutal, but effective. / "How can you justify it?" Procula had demanded. "I dori't need to. Power justifies itself." · Pilate dismissed the masseur and swung off the cushioned table. A dresser brought his tunic and toga, slipped the sandals on his feet, and the governor went downstairs for his noon meal. Ho, was an ambitious, crafty man, a strict pragmatist, trained to the disciplines of the Kymnn legions, determined to exploit every opportunity for advancement. He had a taste for devious methods, as shown by his use of disguised soldiers in crushing the Jerusalem protest, by his surreptibus nighttime erection of the imperial standards in Jerusalem, by his later bloody ambush of a group of Samaritans -- methods paralleling his collusion with Temple officialdom. An Alexandrian philosopher of the times, Philo, says Pilate was a "naturally inflexible and stubbornly relentless" man who committed "acts of corruption, insults, rapine, outrages on the people, arrogance, repeated murders of innocent victims, and constant and most galling savagery." Jesus himself, in Luke 13:1, mentions "the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices." Although details of the episode are lacking, the implication is that a number tif Galileans had come to Jerusalem to make theii festival offerings and while they were at worship Pilate's troops fell on them and massacred them on the spot. They may have included Zealots, a faction of Jewish patriots which flourished in Galilee and which advocated armed revolt against Roman domination. "No ruler but God," was their motto. One of Jesus'apostles was a Zealot. The Romans called them the Sicarii, so named for the short, concealed daggers many of them carried. They had fomented resistance against alien rule ever since Rome installed Herod the Great as King, with thousands of them crucified in Jesus' boyhood. The outbreaks continued under the Roman procurators, eventually mounting into an all- out but unavailing war against the occupation regime. Pilate, following the massacre of Jerusalem protesters against his use of Temple funds, had again inflamed local feeling by having gilded shields dedicated by him to the emperor hung in Jerusalem's Hero- dian palace. When he spurned pleas to remove them, Herodian princes complained to the emperor Tiberius in Rome. Tiberius sent a message sharply rebuking Pilate for his "rash innovation and uncompromising manner," ordering' him to remove the shields. The memory made Pilate wince. Dining now in the shade of a terrace awning, Pilate had finished his mushrooms and pig's liver and was sipping a goblet of wine when again his ears caught the noise of a procession on the slope entering the city's eastern gate. This time, it was a real bell- ringer. Pilate stepped to the balustrade, watching uneasily. A huge, ecstatic river of people lined the road into the Sheep gate, waving leafy branches spreading fronds and their own garments along the way, shouting "Hosanna!" It meant, "Save us!" In the midst of the adulation, a benrdec) man rode astride a burro, a knot of men following him. "Hosanna! Son of David! Blessed be he who comes in the name of the I/ord, even the King of Israel! Hosanna in the highest.!" They seemed beside themselves, enraptured at the approach of some longed-for moment, shouting those phrases implying restoration of- the old Judean monarchy. Pilate tapped his "vitus" stick nervously on the bannister. The demonstration obviously had been organized in Jerusalem in advance to produce such an enormous turnout. This was not just a welcome of relatives to rural pilgrims. It was an extensively planned, widely supported display of Jewish yearning for a new order. Pilate sent agents into the, streets to check the extent of it and the reports came back. It was the Galilean spellbinder, Jesus. "All the city is moved," the observers reported. "The world has gone after him." The governor scowled. He would have to tame this Galilean adventurer. Tomorrow: Chaos in the City. In the courts April 12 Judge James Rucker Jessie Montez, 1128 5th St., driving while under the influence, $125 and costs; driving while under denial, dismissed. Lawrence W. Goedert, Arvada, speeding, $35 and costs. Steven C. Allen, La Salle, leaving scene after striking unattended vehicle, dismissed; careless driving, $15 and costs. Jode K. Bodley, 2737 W. 14th St., speeding, $25 and costs. Anthony W. Jachetta, Brighton, speeding, $25 and costs. Glenn E. Cawthra, Fort Lupton, disregarding stop sign, $15 and costs. Janet I. Cordsen, Cheyenne, driving while ability impaired, $50 and costs. Frank J. Sarck, Denver, spending, $35 and costs. Timothy I. Mans, Denver, speeding, $30 and costs. Judge Scott Clngston Charles L. Mount, Littleton, speeding, $50 and 7 days in jail and costs; jail sentence suspended on condition defendant has no other speeding violations within one year of this date and no driving while license suspended. Michael R. Vogl, Littleton, speeding, $25 and costs. Donna L. Hoel, Longmont, speeding, $25; no valid license, $10andcosls. $15 on count l a n d $10 on count 2 suspended. Gerald R. Armes, 1801 llth St., driving while ability impaired, $100 and costs. Daniel G. Brothers, Pueblo, speeding, $25 and costs, $15 suspended. Sharlene S. Palovvez, Denver, speeding, $25 and costs, (costs suspended). Kenneth R. Jastclcky, Lovcland, speeding, $25 and costs. Edward A. K u h n , Westminster, driving while ability impaired, $75 and cosls and one day in jail with one day credit for lime already served. Have A HAPPI o Dold Bone-In H IJ Jft BJI llnfYl HUH HILF ,79- WHOLE HAM ,, W PORK ROAST 85 C PORK STEAK : 95 e Boneless Defatted Bar-S or Dold HAM BACON Whole or Half Lb. Taste Treat 1 Lb. Pkg. ICE CREAM CREAM PIES Colorado Fresh Assorted Flavors Vi Gal. ANGEL PINEAPPLE I l l v h n l W mm MARSHM ALLOWS '"' Crushed, Sliced for -" SUGAR CREAM CHEESE TUNA [GREEN BEANS -^i ,,.. rrr "- N O- '/* Size Can l PBICE flPFLIES QUIT WITH THIS C Pillsbury's BEST FLOUR Coupon COFFEE MJB i IS ^ 69c Without Coupon jf5 Plus Free 98' Pillsbury Bake OH £( ' f Cook Book g' Good Only at Jerry's Market g § Coupon Expires April 23, 1973 Ss 2 Lb. Can 3 Lb. Can AVOCADOS POTATOES JERRY'S MARKET 513 14th Avenue . V.V. 1 ' Prices Good Through Monday, April 23 Open 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. 6 Days A Week

What members have found on this page

Get access to Newspapers.com

  • The largest online newspaper archive
  • 9,800+ newspapers from the 1700s–2000s
  • Millions of additional pages added every month

Try it free