In this instance, it was to send Jesus to see Herod. Where Herod was staying is anybody's guess as there were many palaces in Jerusalem. At some point, largely to placate the high priests and the Sanhedrin, Pilate orders Jesus scourged. The scourging, perhaps, was at the Antonia Fortress, a huge tower were Roman soldiers were garrisoned and built to protect the northern approach to the city. When this failed to satisfy the blood lust, Pilate ordered Jesus to be crucified.  

The Antonia Fortress is gone, but the floor etched with gambling games of later origin remains. Also remaining are sadistic instructions of the proper way to scourge a prisoner so he feels the maximum amount of pain but does not die.

From ancient sources, we know that those condemned to die under Roman rule had a sign with their crime written on it and hung around their neck as they were paraded through the streets on the way to their death. If anyone had evidence that could exonerate the condemned, they were to bring it forward at this time and a new trial would be held. Pilate wrote on Jesus' sign "King of the Jews." The whole nation of Israel was gathered for Passover and no one brought any evidence to the contrary.

Rebekah Montgomery is the editor of Right to the Heart of Women ezine and the author of numerous books on spiritual growth. In September - November 2005, she and Dana Kempler plan to walk across Israel, reporting on it for She can be contacted for comments and speaking engagements at


Dr. Paul Wright is president of Jerusalem University College (JUC) on Mount Zion. JUC is an extension campus for more than 100 accredited Christian Universities. Take a photo tour at Jerusalem University College Home Page.

World Travel Express, the leading tour operator to Israel and the Middle East, helped to make this article possible. For more information, visit them at

Coming Next Friday: Jesus' Steps into Eternity

Photo by Rebekah Montgomery: 
The Temple Mount is clearly visible from the school courtyard built on the site of the Antonia Fortress. Jesus was likely scourged here.