Matthew 26:47-75

by | Dec 20, 2023 | Matthew, Uncategorized

47And while He was still speaking, behold, Judas, one of the twelve, with a great multitude with swords and clubs, came from the chief priests and elders of the people.
48Now His betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “Whomever I kiss, He is the One; seize Him.”
49Immediately he went up to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed Him.
50But Jesus said to him, “Friend, why have you come?” Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and took Him.
The kiss was a customary greeting.
Jesus needed to be identified in the crowd. He didn’t stand out in a crowd

51And suddenly, one of those who were with Jesus stretched out his hand and drew his sword, struck the servant of the high priest, and cut off his ear.
52But Jesus said to him, “Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword.
John 18:10 tells us that it was Peter who tried to defend Jesus.

53Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels?
Legion = 6,000. 12 Legions = 72,000
In 2 Kings 19:35, one angel killed 185,000 soldiers in one night.
Jesus could have been defended against 13,320,000,000 people. Twice the Earth’s present population.

54How then could the Scriptures be fulfilled, that it must happen thus?”
There was more help available for Jesus than could ever be realized.
Jesus was in total control, and submitted to the Father’s will.
Jesus was not a victim, but was a willing sacrifice, called by the Father to die for the sins of mankind.

55In that hour Jesus said to the multitudes, “Have you come out, as against a robber, with swords and clubs to take Me? I sat daily with you, teaching in the temple, and you did not seize Me.
56But all this was done that the Scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled.” Then all the disciples forsook Him and fled.

57And those who had laid hold of Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled.
a. On the night of His betrayal, and the day of His crucifixion, Jesus actually stood in trial several times, before different judges. It will be helpful to fill in the gaps provided by the other gospel accounts.
1. Before Jesus came to the home of Caiaphas (the official high priest) He was led to the home of Annas, who was the ex-high priest and the “power behind the throne” of the high priest (John 18:12-14, John 19-23).
2. As recorded here in Matthew 26, Jesus was then led to the home of Caiaphas, the sitting high priest. He was tried before an ad-hoc gathering of the Sanhedrin that met during the night.
3. After the break of dawn, the Sanhedrin gathered again, this time “officially,” and they conducted the trial described in Luke 22:66-71.
Where the scribes and the elders were assembled: This nighttime trial was illegal according to the Sanhedrin’s own laws and regulations. According to Jewish law, all criminal trials must begin and end in the daylight. Therefore, though the decision to condemn Jesus was already made, they conducted a second trial in daylight (Luke 22:66-71), because they knew the first one – the real trial – had no legal standing.
i. This was only one of many illegalities made in the trial of Jesus. According to Jewish law, only decisions made in the official meeting place were valid. The first trial was held at the home of Caiaphas, the high priest.
ii. According to Jewish law, criminal cases could not be tried during the Passover season.
iii. According to Jewish law, only an acquittal could be issued on the day of the trial. Guilty verdicts had to wait one night to allow for feelings of mercy to rise.
iv. According to Jewish law, all evidence had to be guaranteed by two witnesses, who were separately examined and could not have contact with each other.
v. According to Jewish law, false witness was punishable by death. Nothing was done to the many false witnesses in Jesus’ trial.
vi. According to Jewish law, a trial always began by bringing forth evidence for the innocence of the accused, before the evidence of guilt was offered. This was not the practice here.
58But Peter followed Him at a distance to the high priest’s courtyard. And he went in and sat with the servants to see the end.

59Now the chief priests, the elders, and all the council sought false testimony against Jesus to put Him to death,
60but found none. Even though many false witnesses came forward, they found none. But at last two false witnesses came forward
61and said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.’”

62And the high priest arose and said to Him, “Do You answer nothing? What is it these men testify against You?”
63But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, “I put You under oath by the living God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!”
64Jesus said to him, “It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
a. Do You answer nothing? Jesus sat silently until He was commanded by the office of the high priest to answer the accusations against Him. Finally, the high priest demanded to know if Jesus was the Messiah, the Christ, the Son of God.
b. It is as you said: Jesus isn’t at this trial to defend Himself. We think of the amazing defense He could have made. Jesus could have called witness after witness, and pointed to irrefutable evidence that He was indeed the Christ, the Son of God. But He knows that these hardened hearts care nothing for the facts of this case, so He simply testifies to the truth: It is as you said.
c. You will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven: Jesus did add this one word of warning. He warned them that though they sit in judgment of Him now, He will one day sit in judgment of them – and with a far more binding judgment.

65Then the high priest tore his clothes, saying, “He has spoken blasphemy! What further need do we have of witnesses? Look, now you have heard His blasphemy!
66What do you think?” They answered and said, “He is deserving of death.”
67Then they spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him with the palms of their hands,
68saying, “Prophesy to us, Christ! Who is the one who struck You?”
69Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, “You also were with Jesus of Galilee.”
70But he denied it before them all, saying, “I do not know what you are saying.”
71And when he had gone out to the gateway, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, “This fellow also was with Jesus of Nazareth.”
72But again he denied with an oath, “I do not know the Man!”
73And a little later those who stood by came up and said to Peter, “Surely you also are one of them, for your speech betrays you.”
74Then he began to curse and swear, saying, “I do not know the Man!” Immediately a rooster crowed.
75And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times.” So he went out and wept bitterly.