The company of soldiers, the commander, and the Jewish Temple police arrested Jesus and tied Him up. First they led Him to Annas for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jews that it was advantageous that one man should die for the people. (John 18:12-14)
The Binding: Jesus was bound and tied for a reason. The nature of sin, is that once we commit it, it enslaves us. The cords of sin are like the cords of rope that tied Isaac to the sacrificial altar Abraham had to build. In this act of obedience God was making a reality of Isaac’s shadow in Jesus, when the soldiers tied him up. What do we feel like when we are bound? Helpless. The burden of sin makes us helpless, and Jesus took on that feeling for us, so that we never really need to suffer from helplessness. We always have help in overcoming the consequences of sin because Jesus suffered, paying the price and giving us strength to overcome our helplessness. Genesis 22:9-14.
The Arrest: When John the cousin of Jesus was arrested, Caiaphas was high priest, Luke 3:2, but now as Jesus is arrested, the son-in-law Caiaphas is side-stepped and his Father-in-law the previous High Priest Annas is being consulted first. Their actions spoke like they were making excuses for the young Caiaphas’ plot of killing Jesus to be given clout from the older Annas. Historically, Annas had 5 sons, all of which took turns being High Priest. The real crime, Jesus must feel is that his “quasi-trial” starting here is really already finding him guilty as charged before the actual trial takes place. They and others had already conspired to kill Lazarus, Jn. 11:49-12:11, now they wanted Jesus dead. He had previously escaped a stoning, so now they would get the Romans to help them and kill him ‘their’ way. The plot is in process and Jesus must feel dread in seeing his execution unfold. Jesus practiced what he preached. The pain of determination in the midst of persecution. “You have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: but I say to you, do not resist him that is evil: but whoever hits you on your right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if any man would take you to court, and take away your coat, let him have your cloak also. Mt. 5:38-40. The hitting of Jesus in the presence of the High Priest was susceptible to a reverse charge against the injurious action, called “the Zuzim”, Jn. 18:23. But his false-accusers had no interest in true justice. “And some began to spit on him, and to cover his face, and to slap him, and to say to him, Prophesy: and the officers received him with smacks of their hands. Mark 14:65. This is to take the weight of sin, and absorb the wrath of God against our sin, he was letting the burden of sin be placed on his face. God prophesied this: “I gave my back to the beaters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off my beard; I hid not my face from humiliation and spitting”. Isaiah 50:6
The Charge: Being arrested late on a Thursday night, Jesus had to be brought to a deadly conclusion before dusk Friday evening, the beginning of the Sabbath. Making an arrest at night, especially those involving capital offences were illegal. But illegalities did not deter the Priests, who had no conscience. The speed to have Jesus killed put illegality upon illegality. Perhaps one day, a Jew can explain why the initial verdict of blasphemy was allowed to become a charge of sedition, perverting the Nation and opposing Caesar. The law of Israel concerning capital accusations allowed argument for acquittal to be aired, with the custom of younger members speaking first, so that they would not be easily swayed by more mature members, but that is totally ignored as Jesus is first taken to the murky character of old Annas before any kind of a trial begins. The pain of a false charge must hurt Jesus inwardly, because He was proving to them that He was the truth, the way and the life, in full view of their lies & hate.
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