Judah Ben-Hur, son of a prince of Jerusalem, is thrown into slavery in the Roman galleys by his boyhood friend, yet he lives to become a free, wealthy man – a charioteer champion of Rome – and he is out for revenge against his former friend the Roman Messala.  Judah must search for his mother and sister, last heard of imprisoned in the grim Antonia fortress; he must learn to forgive the past; and having heard the word of Christ, he makes a desperate effort to help Him on the day of His crucifixion – as He had once helped Judah.