John 19:22 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

John 19:22, NIV: Pilate answered, 'What I have written, I have written.'

John 19:22, ESV: Pilate answered, “What I have written I have written.”

John 19:22, KJV: Pilate answered, What I have written I have written.

John 19:22, NASB: Pilate answered, 'What I have written, I have written.'

John 19:22, NLT: Pilate replied, 'No, what I have written, I have written.'

John 19:22, CSB: Pilate replied, "What I have written, I have written."

What does John 19:22 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

History suggests Pontius Pilate relied heavily on violence and cruelty as governor of Judea. Incidents in his administration demonstrate contempt for Judaism. He was removed from this position not long after Jesus' crucifixion, likely for provoking more civil unrest. However, Pilate was by no means stupid. He knew Jesus was innocent (John 18:36–38) and that His enemies were pursuing a personal feud (Matthew 24:18). It was only by political maneuvering that Jewish religious leaders were able to get what they wanted: a death sentence for Jesus of Nazareth (Matthew 27:24).

Once he realized his position, Pilate seems to have shifted to political maneuvers of his own. His main tactic is repeatedly referring to Jesus as "King of the Jews," even over the objections of Jesus' accusers (John 19:14–16). Pilate even uses this as the "official" reason for Jesus' crucifixion, placing a label to that effect on the cross (John 19:19). This allows Pilate to claim that Jesus is being executed as a message to any would-be rebels.

Jesus' enemies (John 11:48–53) are offended at this label, which is just another bonus for Pilate. They would prefer it be stated that Jesus "claimed" to be King (John 19:21), so they can deny that any Jews really accepted Him in that role. Now that the crowd has gotten what they want, however, Pilate is not going to budge on something like this inscription.