Barabbas or Jesus Barabbas (literally "son of the father" or "Jesus, son of the Father" respectively) is a figure in the accounts of the Passion of Christ. He is the insurrectionary whom Roman bureaucrat Pontius Pilate freed at the Passover feast in Jerusalem on the demand of the crowd, instead of Jesus.
According to the four canonical Gospels of the Bible and the non-canonical Gospel of Peter (attributed to St. Peter but written decades after his death), there was a prevailing Passover custom in Jerusalem that allowed or required Pilate, the praefectus or governor of Judea, to commute one prisoner's death sentence by popular acclaim, and the "crowd" (ochlos), "the Jews" and "the multitude" in some sources, were offered a choice of whether to have either Barabbas or Jesus released from Roman custody. According to the Synoptic Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and the accounts in the Gospel of John and the Gospel of Peter, the crowd chose Barabbas to be released and Jesus of Nazareth to be crucified. A passage found only in the Gospel of Matthew has the crowd saying, "Let his blood be upon us and upon our children," a supposed justification of Jewish blood libel down the ages.
The story of Barabbas has special social significance because it has historically been used to lay the blame for the crucifixion of Jesus on the Jews, and to justify anti-Semitism. There is no evidence for such a prisoner-release custom outside of the Gospels, and more recent scholarship has called into question the veracity of the story. The curious detail that Barabbas' full name is essentially identical to Jesus' might indicate that Barabbas and Jesus were originally two descriptions of the same man, and that the story was deliberately distorted to support the blood libel.
Bar Abbas was a follower of the Son of God who was captured by the Roman army of Pontius Pilate. Two Romans, Marcus and Lucius, determined to collect the reward for the Son of God's capture, beat on Bar Abbas in the hopes that he knew who the Son of God was. He didn't, but he pointed them in the direction of a red-bearded captive.