Right now, I’m thinking about the trial of Christ.
And Gamaliel, who was probably the most prominent rabbi in Judaism at the time.
"Um, fellas, we don’t actually have the full Sanhedrin here. We don’t even have what our Roman ‘friends’ would call a quorum. Also, where are the accusing witnesses? And no fair going out and trying to round them up after the fact. And isn’t he supposed to have defense witnesses? And is there a reason we’re having this trial at night? That’s kind of in violation of the Law, too, you know.
Also, a lot of people hold that this Jesus guy is a prophet, maybe the Messiah even. I figure, if God isn’t with him, his little movement will go the way of the dinosaur in about a New York Minute, but if this dude is God’s Messenger, there won’t be anything we can do to stop him. I think we’d better let him go."
A couple of hours later, a lone figure ditches his eleven remaining pals and returns to Gethsamane, kneels beside a stone and prays, “Father, I think we’re going to have to implement Plan B…”
I’ve been wondering lately why Gamaliel wasn’t at the trial. I suppose it’s possible that he wasn’t in town at the time, but that seems unlikely. More like, if a bunch of Jewish priests are going to railroad a guy in a trial that is in violation of Jewish Law from top to bottom, Gamaliel is probably someone you definitely would not want to have around.
Am I full of beans on this? Any Jewish Dopers who know more about the life and teachings of Gamaliel want to weigh in on this?
And, actually, the main thrust of the thread is,
What other historical events would have turned out significantly differently if some prominent figure of the day who was absent from the proceedings had been on the scene?