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Matthew 26:1-5: The Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified

Posted by adventbiblestudy on August 14, 2012


Matthew 26:1-5 When Jesus had finished saying all these things, he said to his disciples, (2) “As you know, Passover begins in two days, and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.” (3) At that same time the leading priests and elders were meeting at the residence of Caiaphas, the high priest, (4) plotting how to capture Jesus secretly and kill him. (5) “But not during the Passover celebration,” they agreed, “or the people may riot.”

 

After teaching in the temple court the entire morning and the garden late into the night, Jesus told His disciples, “As you know, Passover begins in two days, and the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.” Once again the disciples avoided any type of a response. Something inside of them wanted to avoid the subject of Jesus’ death. It may have been Jesus’ rebuke when Peter vowed to defend Him to the end. It may have been Jesus’ response to James and John’s request to sit on His right and left hand. The reality was beginning to set in. Many of the disciples began considering some of the lessons Jesus taught. Some of them had an eire resemblance, over tones linked to Jesus direct claim to His early death. It was something too painful to consider at the moment.

 

The disciples knew the religious leaders and Herod were a threat. The religious leaders had no authority to condemn a man to death, but assassination was a possibility. Then there was the threat from Herod. Rumors hinted at Herod’s fear Jesus was John the Baptist risen from the dead. Was it possible Herod would send an assassin? There must have been a reason Herod’s men were gathering in the temple court with the religious leaders.

 

For the first time the disciples took Jesus’ warning seriously. At the present time no question or answer to Jesus’ statement seemed adequate. Based on Jesus’ previous reactions, each disciple waited for another to address the situation.

 

Jesus knew He had only a few days remaining. The thought of death was heavy on His mind. It would have been nice to talk about it with someone, but for some reason His disciples did not seem interested in this subject. Jesus wanted to share more, but as He prayed, the Spirit seemed uncharacteristically silent. It was a feeling Jesus was not used to. He took it as a sign to end the conversation. He was certain the Spirit had already been laying the foundation to explain the situation at another time, in another place.

 

At that very moment the leading priests and elders were meeting at the residence of Caiaphas, the high priest, plotting how to capture Jesus secretly and kill him. After receiving the invitation to the evening meeting most of the priests anticipated the reason for the meeting. Most of them already formulated their opinion of the subject. They still wondered why the meeting was held at Caiaphas’ home.

 

Arriving at Caiaphas’ home, each priest was greeted at the door. As they were escorted to the meeting hall they passed a display of the high priest’s ceremonial apparel. His ephod, robe, head ware, and breast plate were majestically displayed. Many of the priests hesitated for a moment, gazing upon the scene with aspiration of becoming the next high priest.

 

As the meeting room filled, Caiaphas listened to one suggestion after another. If they could not be high priest the best thing to do is get as close to him as possible. Some wanted to stone Jesus, others suggested detailed plots to assassinate Him. A few wanted to make a public example of Jesus by throwing Him from the temple walls.

 

At last Caiaphas took his position and quieted the room. He explained the situation in greater detail than most had anticipated. Caiaphas was not only interested in eliminating the threat Jesus posed, he also wanted to ensure it was carried out in such a manner, not one of his enemies could point a finger at him.

 

The idea came to Caiaphas in the temple court. When he noticed the collection of religious leaders gathering to achieve a common cause, his first though was to lay the plans and handle the details himself. He thought this would bring him greater honor and respect. He paid particular attention to Herod’s representatives. Their silence on the matter haunted him. Caiaphas counted Herod as his greatest and most crafty threat. He knew Herod stood to earn large sums of money if the need for a new high priest suddenly became a reality. His greatest fear was to see Herod take the information he had to the Pilate. Herod could manipulate the entire future of Israel while appearing totally innocent.

 

Caiaphas announced, “we have no other choice than to turn Jesus over to Pilate, and let him pass sentence. Once Jesus’ followers see Rome’s role in His death, they will have no choice but to join us against their threat” After lengthy discussion they announced, “But not during the Passover celebration,” they agreed, “or the people may riot.”

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