Matthew, Chapter 27
Matt. 27:1, 2
Matt. 27:1 "When the morning was come, all the chief priests and elders
of the people took counsel against Jesus to put him to death: 2 And when
they had bound him, they led him away, and delivered him to Pontius
Pilate the governor."
The chief priests and the elders of the people of Judah
had no authority under Roman law to put anyone to death. Their action
also was such that they, knowing that they had no charges against him
that were true, were purposely committing murder in order to get rid of
In order to put Jesus to death under Roman law, the chief
priests and elders of the people had to convince the Roman authorities
that Jesus had committed some crime in which he was worthy of death.
Many people today reject conspiracy theories about world
events and think that every thing in world events or national events
happens simply by the results of happenstance or circumstances or
environmental factors. Yet here is a case of great conspiracy against
the very God of heaven. The chief priests and elders of the people took
counsel. That is they conspired together to put Jesus to death.
They delivered him to Pontius Pilate the governor.
Because they had no authority to put someone to death, they took Jesus
to someone who did have such authority, the Roman governor.
Matt. 27:3 "Then Judas, which had betrayed him, when he saw that he was
condemned, repented himself, and brought again the thirty pieces of
silver to the chief priests and elders, 4 Saying, I have sinned in that
I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us?
see thou to that. 5 And he cast down the pieces of silver in the temple,
and departed, and went and hanged himself. 6 And the chief priests took
the silver pieces, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the
treasury, because it is the price of blood. 7 And they took counsel, and
bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. 8 Wherefore
that field was called, The field of blood, unto this day. 9 Then was
fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they
took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom
they of the children of Israel did value; 10 And gave them for the
potter's field, as the Lord appointed me."
Many things have been written and stated about Judas
Iscariot. People constantly argue about whether Judas is a child of God
or not. They argue about whether he will be in heaven or hell. The truth
is Judas betrayed the Lord for money. Now he repented himself and
brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and
elders. He declared that Jesus was innocent. This, of course, was of no
consequence to the chief priests and elders, who said, "What is that to
us?" They were not interested in knowing that Jesus was innocent.
Nothing they were doing was based on the guilt or innocence of Jesus.
What they were doing was based on their envy of Jesus and their fear of
losing their positions of honor and prestige.
Now Judas cast down the pieces of silver in the temple
and went out and hanged himself. Either Judas was greatly disturbed by
what he had done or he was disturbed by the stigma that he believed
would be associated with what he had done. Either way his mind was so
disturbed that he no longer wanted to live on earth.
Notice the hypocrisy of the chief priests and elders in
that they had no qualms about committing murder, but they did not want
to be accused of violating the temple service by placing the thirty
pieces of silver in the treasury. God knew all about the hypocrisy of
these and moved his prophet to prophecy of their actions centuries
before: "And the chief priests took the silver pieces, and said, It is
not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of
blood. 7 And they took counsel, and bought with them the potter's field,
to bury strangers in. 8 Wherefore that field was called, The field of
blood, unto this day. 9 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by
Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver,
the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel
did value; 10 And gave them for the potter's field, as the Lord
appointed me." This prophecy is found in Zechariah 11:12 "And I said
unto them, If ye think good, give me my price; and if not, forbear. So
they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver. 13 And the LORD said
unto me, Cast it unto the potter: a goodly price that I was prised at of
them. And I took the thirty pieces of silver, and cast them to the
potter in the house of the LORD." These words were spoken by Jeremiah
the prophet and written by Zechariah the prophet.
Matt. 27:11 "And Jesus stood before the governor: and the governor asked
him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And Jesus said unto him,
Thou sayest. 12 And when he was accused of the chief priests and elders,
he answered nothing. 13 Then said Pilate unto him, Hearest thou not how
many things they witness against thee? 14 And he answered him to never a
word; insomuch that the governor marvelled greatly."
The second trial of Jesus was the trial before Pilate the
governor. The other gospels have also accounts of this trial:
1. Mk. 15:1 "And straightway in the morning the chief
priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole
council, and bound Jesus, and carried him away, and delivered him to
Pilate. 2 And Pilate asked him, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he
answering said unto him, Thou sayest it. 3 And the chief priests accused
him of many things: but he answered nothing. 4 And Pilate asked him
again, saying, Answerest thou nothing? behold how many things they
witness against thee. 5 But Jesus yet answered nothing; so that Pilate
2. Lk. 23:1 "And the whole multitude of them arose, and
led him unto Pilate. 2 And they began to accuse him, saying, We found
this fellow perverting the nation, and forbidding to give tribute to
Caesar, saying that he himself is Christ a King. 3 And Pilate asked him,
saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answered him and said,
Thou sayest it. 4 Then said Pilate to the chief priests and to the
people, I find no fault in this man. 5 And they were the more fierce,
saying, He stirreth up the people, teaching throughout all Jewry,
beginning from Galilee to this place."
3. John 18:29 "Pilate then went out unto them, and said,
What accusation bring ye against this man? 30 They answered and said
unto him, If he were not a malefactor, we would not have delivered him
up unto thee. 31 Then said Pilate unto them, Take ye him, and judge him
according to your law. The Jews therefore said unto him, It is not
lawful for us to put any man to death: 32 That the saying of Jesus might
be fulfilled, which he spake, signifying what death he should die. 33
Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall again, and called Jesus, and
said unto him, Art thou the King of the Jews? 34 Jesus answered him,
Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of me? 35
Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Thine own nation and the chief priests have
delivered thee unto me: what hast thou done? 36 Jesus answered, My
kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then
would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but
now is my kingdom not from hence. 37 Pilate therefore said unto him, Art
thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this
end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should
bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my
We note the following things about the trial of Jesus
1. The Jews who brought accusation said nothing about the
charge they had condemned Jesus with, that is, blasphemy. They had
condemned him to be worthy of death because of the false charge of
blasphemy, yet they did not even mention this charge before Pilate. The
charges they brought before Pilate were not punishable by death under
the Jewish law, yet the charge of blasphemy was not punishable by death
under the Roman law!
2. The Jews accused Jesus of perverting the nation,
forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, saying that he was Christ a king,
stirring up the people, and of being a malefactor. No doubt, Jesus is
Christ the King, but the other charges had no merit. The only charge
Pilate gave further diligence to investigate was the charge that Jesus
said that he was a king. After examining Jesus, as we will see, Pilate
proclaimed Jesus of being innocent.
Matt. 27:15 "Now at that feast the governor was wont to release unto the
people a prisoner, whom they would. 16 And they had then a notable
prisoner, called Barabbas. 17 Therefore when they were gathered
together, Pilate said unto them, Whom will ye that I release unto you?
Barabbas, or Jesus which is called Christ? 18 For he knew that for envy
they had delivered him. 19 When he was set down on the judgment seat,
his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just
man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.
20 But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they
should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus. 21 The governor answered and
said unto them, Whether of the twain will ye that I release unto you?
They said, Barabbas."
It was a Roman custom to honor the Jew's Passover feast
day by releasing a prisoner who was to be punished. The choice of who to
release was one that the Jews were allowed to make. Barabbas, according
to the scriptures was a malefactor: Matt. 15:7 "And there was one named
Barabbas, which lay bound with them that had made insurrection with him,
who had committed murder in the insurrection." Thus, the Jews choice was
to release a murderer and to crucify the Lord Jesus Christ!
Barabbas was worthy of the punishment, and Jesus, who was
altogether innocent was punished in his placed. This is the very
principle that Jesus suffered God's wrathful judgment in the place of
his elect children who were worthy of the punishment, but were released
and Jesus suffered in their place.
Pilate desired to release Jesus, but God allowed him to
be persuaded otherwise. Pilate knew that the Jews had delivered Jesus
because of their envy. However, his wife had had a dream and had
suffered many things in the dream as she said, because of that just man
called Jesus. She warned Pilate to have nothing to do with Jesus.