What Jesus Did! 'From the Beginning' — Matthew 26:57-68

Thursday, December 7, 2017

The men that arrested Jesus led him to the house of Caiaphas the high priest. The teachers of the law and the older Jewish leaders were gathered there. Peter followed Jesus, but he did not come near Jesus. Peter followed Jesus to the yard of the high priest's house. He went in and sat with the guards. Peter wanted to see what would happen to Jesus. The leading priests and the Jewish council tried to find something against Jesus so that they could kill him. They tried to find people to lie and say that Jesus had done wrong. Many people came and told false things about Jesus. But the council could find no real reason to kill Jesus. Then two people came and said, "This man (Jesus) said, 'I can destroy the temple of God and build it again in three days.'" Then the high priest stood and said to Jesus, "These people have said things against you. Do you have something to say about these charges against you? Are these people telling the truth?" But Jesus said nothing. Again the high priest said to Jesus, "You are now under oath. I command you by the power of the living God to tell us the truth. Tell us, are you the Christ, the Son of God?" Jesus answered, "Yes, I am. But I tell you, in the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right side of God. And you will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven." When the high priest heard this, {he was very angry}. He tore his clothes and said, "This man has said things that are against God! We don't need any more witnesses. You all heard him say these things against God. What do you think?" The Jewish leaders answered, "He is guilty, and he must die." Then they spit in Jesus' face. And they hit him with their fists. Other people slapped Jesus. They said, "Show us that you are a prophet, Christ! Tell us who hit you!"
— Matthew 26:57-68 NLT
Illustration of Matthew 26:57-68 NLT — "Show us that you are a prophet, Christ! Tell us who hit you!"

Key Thought

As I read this, I can't help but think of the horrible mocking and abuse that Jesus took! But Matthew let us see from the outset that the religious power base would not use their knowledge of Scripture to find the Messiah, but instead would use their knowledge to try to exterminate him. Jesus, from the moment of his birth, was a threat to the religious powers in control. He was God's Son, his Chosen One, his Anointed, his King. Because of this, everyone who held a position of authority and status was threatened. Jesus brought a Kingdom that was different. He preached that the last would be first and the first would be last. This would not go unnoticed by those who were first. Jesus' lack of response to the mocking, insults, and abuse are not a sign of weakness, but of his infuriating power to those pretending to be powerful. But he promises that they will know his power when he comes again. This time, the angels he could have called then, will be with him. There will be no denying, no escaping, and no avoiding. They will bow and name him King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He will no longer be the suffering Messiah, nor servant Messiah, he will be the conquering Son of God, Messiah!

Today's Prayer

Dear Father of mercy, thank you for your grace for me in Jesus. Thank you, Jesus, for bearing the shame and mockery. Thank you for showing your character when those who opposed you lost theirs. But most of all, thank you for remaining true to mission even though you lived your whole life in the shadow of the cross. I embrace your cross and your shame and proudly proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord. In your name I offer my praise. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Isaiah 53:3-6
  • Matt. 2:1-4
  • Phil. 2:9-11


About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.