We have a picture in our hallway that simply says, “Silence is sometimes the bestanswer!” But unless you are a brilliant communicator who understands how others think, you probably won’t know when “silence” is the best answer. I think of the song by Ronan Keating in the film called Notting Hill which says, “You say it best when you say nothing at all.” Still living in dangerous territory with that thought. Perhaps I could try and get by with the following proverb in mind. “Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.” Proverbs 17:28, NLT.
But none of the above is the reason why we read that Jesus was silent before the accusations. The Governor and Pilate had trouble getting Jesus to try and defend the case against him.
Now Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus said, “You have said so.” But when he was accused by the chief priests and elders, he gave no answer. Then Pilate said to him, “Do you not hear how many things they testify against you?” But he gave him no answer, not even to a single charge, so that the governor was greatly amazed. Matthew 27:11-14, ESV.
Jesus knew that there was a purpose for him to remain silent as is recorded in Isaiah. Jesus was on a mission not to save himself but rather to save mankind. Jesus took our place!
“He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth.” Isaiah 53:7, NIV.
“For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21, ESV.