Pontius Pilate and His Ring

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Luke 23:5-7 But they were urgent, saying, He stirs up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, from Galilee even to this place. When Pilate heard this, he asked whether the man was a Galilean. And when he learned that he belonged to Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent him over to Herod, who was himself in Jerusalem at that time.

Pontius Pilate was the Roman Governor over Jerusalem and Israel from 26 AD to 36 AD. Pontius was his family name. Pilate comes from the Latin “Pilatus”. This means: one armed with a javelin.

Historically, Pilate was not kind to the Jewish people. He flaunted Roman symbols of power and authority in Jerusalem and in the Temple. He stole the Temple tax funds to build an aqueduct.

Jesus knew of Pilate and commented about his murderous actions. Pilate showed no regard for Jewish lives and Temple worship service. Tradition holds worshipping Jews were sacrificed by Romans in the Temple.

Luke 13:1-2 There were some present at that very time who told Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And He answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way?”

In 36 AD, the Governor of Syria brought charges against Pilate. The historian Eusebius indicated Pilate committed suicide after being sent to Vienne in Gaul (modern day southeast France). -The Compact Bible Dictionary.

Drawing: J Rodman
Photo: C Amit, Hebrew University

Fifty years ago, a copper alloy ring was found. Not much attention was given to the ring until recently. In 1968 and 1969 archaeologist Gideon Foerster led the dig at Herod’s burial tomb and palace at Herodium.

Today, archeologist Roi Porat requested the ring be cleaned and re-examined. The ring is nothing fancy or regal.

The specific date of the ring is unknown. The ring was located with other artifacts including: glass, ostraca, pottery, decorated mud stoppers, and abundant metal artifacts (iron arrowheads, a large number of First Jewish Revolt coins). The find is estimated to be dated no later than 71 AD.

“It was important to publish a careful scientific article. But in practice we have a ring inscribed with the name Pilate and the personal connection just cries out,” said Roi Porat.

Historically, the last name “Pilate” was very rare in Roman culture.

“The family name Pontius was common in central and northern Italy during that era, but the name Pilatus was ‘extremely rare.’” -The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

Skeptics find it hard to believe Pontius Pilate would have worn the ring of a common citizen.

“Simple all-metal rings like the Herodium ring were primarily the property of soldiers, Herodian and Roman officials, and middle-income folk of all trades and occupations. It is therefore unlikely that Pontius Pilatus, the powerful and rich prefect of Judaea, would have worn a thin, all copper-alloy sealing ring.” -skeptical authors

“There is no way of proving either theory 100% and everyone can have his own opinion. It’s a nice story and interesting to wrap your head around.” -Roi Porat

https://www.timesofisrael.com/2000-year-old-ring-engraved-with-pilate-may-have-belonged-to-notorious-ruler/

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Paul Lehr

About Paul Lehr

Paul Lehr is a Speech Pathologist and home health provider. The majority of his work focuses on swallowing disorders in neurologically impaired patients. He has been a business owner for the past 20+ years. Paul earned his BS in Speech Pathology and Audiology from Oklahoma State University. His MA was completed in Speech Pathology at Oklahoma State University. When Paul’s son was born prematurely in 2003, there was lots of support from family and friends. Keeping up with phone calls was too much. So he provided e-mails with updates on health and well-being. In time, his son was healthy and came home. The e-mails stopped but Paul was encouraged to keep writing. Three years later, Paul was asked to assist in writing a Sunday school curriculum. The lessons were well received by the local body and on the church website. Again, he was encouraged to keep writing. Next, Paul taught a Sunday School class for junior high and high school students. He would share notes with others from the class he was teaching. In 2010, a young man at a local church encouraged Paul to start a blog. The website focuses on topical studies such as creation, God’s Appointed Holidays and Feasts, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, end times prophecy, ancient Hebrew cultural customs, the Prophet Isaiah, and various topical studies. Three years later, Paul’s 10 year old son told me, “Dad, you need to do updates on how the news is tied to the Bible.” The “Trend Update” was born. In the spring of 2016, a friend and fellow Boy Scout father encouraged Paul to start a YouTube channel. His friend thought it was a natural fit considering the content and subscribers from the website. God’s prophetic words have reached millions in over 190 countries. Isaiah 55:11 So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. That same Boy Scout father would later introduce Paul to the movies of Trey Smith and the God in a Nutshell Project… Guest speak and presenter duties have focused on the topics of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in God’s Appointed Spring Feasts, Mystery Babylon, the antichrist, Ezekiel 38-39, and current events related to Bible prophecy. At this time, Paul would like to encourage each individual to learn about who God is. Because one way or another, we are all eternal. The issue is our destiny. Welcome to PaulthePoke and www.paulthepoke.com
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