He should have listened to his wife. (Are you husbands paying attention?) “While Pilate was sitting on the judge’s seat, his wife sent him this message: “Don’t have anything to do with that innocent man, for I have suffered a great deal today in a dream because of him.” (Matthew 27:19). Pilate ignored his wife’s advice, and he paid the price for it.
He should have listened to his own conscience. He knew that Jesus was innocent. He tried to argue for Jesus’ release. Finally, he famously washed his hands of the incident–“…I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!” (Matthew 27:24). I wonder if he later wished that he had listened to the inner voice that told him to let Jesus go.
Finally, Pilate should have listened to Jesus. During their conversation, Jesus told Pilate, “…Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.” (John 18:37). Yet instead of listening to Jesus, Pilate gave in to the Jewish religious leaders and handed Jesus over to be crucified.
He should have listened.
Maybe we could do a better job of listening too.