Church of St. John 5: Now we see a follower of Jesus
in the rank of a councilor, Joseph of Arimathea, who confesses Jesus and requests Jesus’ body, 15:42-43.
Now Pilate comes into the picture, again higher in rank, who contrary to custom releases Jesus’ body for burial, 15:44-45.
Pilate’s character here is quite different from that of the Jewish-Christian Passion tradition. He is no longer the fickle despot dependent on the moods of the unpredictable and easily influenced mob.
Pilate is here a sovereign ruler who makes an appropriate and reverent decision.