This Week's Story

With new courage Joseph asks, "May I have the body of Jesus?"

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

The Courage to Face Payback and Pilate, part one

“Joseph, what happened when you asked Pilate for Jesus’ body? What a man you are to risk Pilate’s questions! He probably wondered why you wanted the body of a convicted criminal. I expect you will receive nasty payback from the Jewish religious leaders. They know that you did not approve of their manipulation of the trial and crucifixion of Jesus.”

“Please, tell me what happened. I know you to be a good and fair man.”

“I will share with you, Maya.

“I have become a believer in Jesus Christ. For three years I have been trying to avoid attention for my growing belief that Jesus is God! I have heard him speak. I have stood with other religious leaders as they tried to prove that he was a fraud. They failed.

“I have seen many miracles he did. I am convinced that he was God appearing in flesh. Some of the religious leaders told him, ‘You are of your father, the devil.’

“Maya, have you listened to him?”

“Yes! I believe that he was sent by God and did God’s will.”

“I have been a foolish husband to not share my thoughts with you about Jesus.

“After Jesus was tried and crucified, I was tormented about what might happen to his body. I wanted him to receive a burial that showed respect. Since I am not one of his earthly relatives, I expected to be questioned about why I wanted his body.

“We had much to lose! We are wealthy and I am a member of the Jerusalem Sanhedrin, the most powerful ruling body in Jewish society, outside of Rome’s supreme authority.

“I did not want the judgment of the Jewish Sanhedrin. Many of them are poisoned with jealousy of Jesus. I also did not want the local Roman authority turned upon us. Pilate is the Roman governor of all Judea. He presided at the trial of Jesus and gave the order for his crucifixion.

“However, If I wanted the body of Jesus after he was killed in the crucifixion, I would have to get permission from Pilate.

“Maya, let me tell you about my meeting with Pilate. The evening of the day Jesus was crucified I went boldly to Pilate and said, ‘Sir, I request the privilege of being given the body of Jesus. I wish to bury it according to the customs of our people.’

“Pilate asked a Roman officer who was in charge at the crucifixion, ‘Has the prisoner Jesus died? Is he on the cross?’”

“Yes, he is dead and remains on a cross.”

“Joseph, you may have the body for preparation and burial. You will be responsible for taking the body off the cross.”

To Joseph’s surprise there were no further questions. Later that day Nicodemus, another secret follower of Jesus and a member of the Sanhedrin came to Joseph’s home to prepare the body for burial.

Return for part two entitled “A Short Burial.”

Today’s recording is brought to you by Todd Warren and Barbara Steiner. Join us at

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