Distracted By Jesus

While ploughing through back issues of The Irish Jurist I was completely diverted from my quest for articles on unenumerated rights in Irish constitutional law (no prizes for guessing that Comparative Human Rights is my “fun but impractical” Masters course choice) by “The Trial Of Jesus As A Conflict Of Laws?” (1997 32 Ir. Jur. 398 for any similarly sad lawyer type who’s interested).

It tackles the three main areas of concern in the subject: jurisdiction, choice of law and enforcement of judgments, basically: who had the jurisdiction to put Jesus on trial, Pilate (as Roman governor of Judea), Herod (as tetrach of Galilee and a client-king of Rome), or the Sanhedrin (as highest Jewish court of law)? What law would be applied in the trial, Roman or Jewish? Lastly, if in answer to the first two questions we discover that the Sanhedrin decided, applying Jewish law, would Pilate be prepared or required to enforce the judgment?

It ultimately concludes that there was only one trial, before Pilate, who applied Roman law, which seemed a sensible if not revelatory stance, but it was a refreshing diversion none the less.