We all need friends.
"One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother." Prov 18:24
Most of us have a circle of friends. Often times, our friends will have the same passions, be from the same socioeconomic backgrounds, and share our same interests. Some things may be slightly different, but for the most part our friends would think along the same lines as we do. After all, if our upbringing was from a conservative Christian environment, we probably wouldn't be close friends with an atheist, for example, for the simple reason of avoiding offenses against our beliefs.
All of us have experienced rejection, this evil emotion, to some degree. Some of us more than others. We hear of the "spirit of rejection." So think of rejection almost as an entity.
Rejection comes when we expect it the least, when our heart is not guarded. It sneaks up on us out of nowhere. Unfortunately, rejection often comes from the people we like or trust the most. Or does it? If only we were more like Jesus, we would be immune to it. Surely Jesus doesn't have issues with rejection, right?!
As it was the custom at the time, the political powers would present the crowd two prisoners to chose from. One would be set free of all charges against him. The other one would be condemned. This time one of them was falsely accused with fabricated arguments, while his counterpart was guilty on all counts.