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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament

Perverting

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PERVERTING (διαστρέφω, Luke 23:2; ἀποστρέφω, Luke 23:14).—The word occurs principally in the trial of Jesus before Pilate, where the first charge brought against Him was that of ‘perverting the nation.’ Such a charge, though somewhat vague, implied that He was a conspirator against the State, spreading a spirit of disaffection and rebellion among the people, and thus turning them against the Imperial Government. The charge was utterly false, but it revealed the bitter malice of the Jews and their determination to bring about the death of Jesus. The power of life and death was not possessed by the Sanhedrin: no merely religious offence could be visited with capital punishment (John 18:31), and therefore the object which they clamoured for could be accomplished only through the instrumentality of the civil power. Accordingly, the leaders of the Sanhedrin lay aside the charge of blasphemy, which really weighed with themselves, but of which they knew Pilate could take no cognizance, and they bring Jesus before the Roman governor as a political offender, guilty of setting Himself and others in opposition to the ruling power of Rome. A charge of this character Pilate was in duty bound to consider and examine.

Dugald Clark.

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Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Perverting'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. https://www.studylight.org/dictionaries/eng/hdn/p/perverting.html. 1906-1918.

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