|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
23:6-12 Herod had heard many things of Jesus in Galilee, and out of curiosity longed to see him. The poorest beggar that asked a miracle for the relief of his necessity, was never denied; but this proud prince, who asked for a miracle only to gratify his curiosity, is refused. He might have seen Christ and his wondrous works in Galilee, and would not, therefore it is justly said, Now he would see them, and shall not. Herod sent Christ again to Pilate: the friendships of wicked men are often formed by union in wickedness. They agree in little, except in enmity to God, and contempt of Christ.
Verse 11. - And Herod with his men of war set him at nought, and mocked him, and arrayed him in a gorgeous robe, and sent him again to Pilate. He treated him, not as a criminal, but as a mischievous religious Enthusiast, worthy only of contempt and scorn. The "gorgeous robe," more accurately, "bright raiment," was a white festal mantle such as Jewish kings and Roman nobles wore on great occasions. It was probably an old robe of white tissue of some kind, embroidered with silver. Dean Plumptre suggests that we might venture to trace in this outrage a vindictive retaliation for the words which the Teacher had once spoken - with evident allusion to Herod's court - of those who were gorgeously apparelled (Luke 7:25). It was this Herod of whom the Lord had spoken so recently with for him a rare bitterness, "Go ye, and tell that fox [literally, 'she-fox'] Herod" (Luke 13:32).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And Herod, with his men of war,.... Or his soldiers, his bodyguards that attended his person, who came with him from Galilee, and were both for his security and service, and for his pomp and magnificence:
set him at nought; made nothing of him; had him in no account; treated him as a silly, and contemptible creature, that could not do any thing that was reported of him; nor able to say any thing for himself; but took him to be a mere fool and idiot; and so they used him:
and mocked him; as a king, and made sport and pastime with him:
and arrayed him in a gorgeous robe. The Vulgate Latin renders it, "a white robe"; a token of his innocence, though not so designed by them, but rather by way of derision, as a symbol of his simplicity and folly. The Syriac version renders it, "scarlet"; and the Arabic and Persic versions, "red". It is very likely that it was an old worn-out robe of one of the officers, or soldiers, which they put on him; in contempt of his being a king, as the Roman soldiers afterwards did, upon the same account:
and sent him again to Pilate; uncondemned, not knowing what to make of him, or the charge against him, and he might be unwilling to have any hand in his death, not having forgotten the case of John the Baptist; and therefore remits him to Pilate, to do as he thought fit with him.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. his men of war—his bodyguard.
set him at naught, &c.—stung with disappointment at His refusal to amuse him with miracles or answer any of his questions.
gorgeous robe—bright robe. If this mean (as sometimes) of shining white, this being the royal color among the Jews, it may have been in derision of His claim to be "King of the Jews." But if so, "He in reality honored Him, as did Pilate with His true title blazoned on the cross" [Bengel].
sent him again to Pilate—instead of releasing him as he ought, having established nothing against Him (Lu 23:14, 15). "Thus he implicated himself with Pilate in all the guilt of His condemnation, and with him accordingly he is classed" (Ac 4:27) [Bengel].
at enmity—perhaps about some point of disputed jurisdiction, which this exchange of the Prisoner might tend to heal.
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