Mar. 12, 2012
At daybreak the council of the elders of the people, both the chief priests and the teachers of the law, met together, and Jesus was led before them. “If you are the Messiah,” they said, “tell us.” Jesus answered, “If I tell you, you will not believe me, and if I asked you, you would not answer. But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the mighty God.”
They all asked, “Are you then the Son of God?” He replied, “You say that I am.” Then they said, “Why do we need any more testimony? We have heard it from his own lips.”
Imagine this interrogation scene. Before assembled elders, chief priest and Scribes, i.e. – the Jerusalem Sanhedrin, no witnesses speak. No references are made about Jesus’ miracles or teachings or sayings. The entire questioning only addresses Jesus himself. The Sanhedrin only deal with two issues: whether Jesus is the Messiah and if he is God’s son.
Notice that Jesus’ answers are not a direct response to the questions.
To the first question, his knows the Sanhedrin will only hear what they want to hear, not what he has to say. From his answer, the Council then questions if he is God’s Son. In this answer, he does not deny this. He throws the question back to his accusers. They are saying this, he says, even if they don’t believe it.
The council’s conclusion: witnesses aren’t needed. He has convicted himself and they quickly turn him over to the Roman governor. On this alone, he is scooted off to Pilate. It’s the Council’s way to not assume responsibility for what will happen to Jesus.
Most people like to win an argument. Some will go so far as to keep at it until they feel that they have won. Watch any courtroom situation. Carefully crafted sentences and questions lead witnesses in the direction council desires for the line of questioning to go.
But somehow, Jesus raises above all the bantering and postulating. Some may think he resigns from the courtroom battle. He knows what is going to happen anyway. Why feed into the Council’s line of thinking and questioning?
Personally, I do not see resignation in Jesus. I see a posed man, willing to accept what is required of him. It’s not about him, in the end. It’s about the rest of humanity. He quietly shifts the focus from himself and onto what he is willing to do for everyone else.
So who wins the courtroom discussion? The Council or Jesus? While the Sanhedrin arrogantly feels they can place the checkmark under their “win” column, Jesus quietly knows who will win the ultimate victory.
Let us pray: O victory in Jesus, my Savior forever! He sought me and bought me with his redeeming blood. He loved me ere I knew him and all my love is due him. He plunged me to victory beneath the cleansing flood. Amen.