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THE LESSON BACKGROUND.


After Jesus had been arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, he was taken to be interrogated by Annas, the former high priest (see John 18:12-13). Of course, this whole episode was a farce and illegal because Annas was not the current high priest, his son-in-law Caiaphas was (see John 18:14). If Jesus was to be interrogated, it should have been before Caiaphas, and according to the Law there needed to be at least two witnesses to testify against Jesus (see Deuteronomy 17:6. 19:15). When Annas was unsuccessful with his interrogation of Jesus, he sent Him to Caiaphas who early in the morning summoned the Sanhedrin Council to question Jesus, and ultimately find Him worthy of death (see Mark 14:53; Luke 22:66-71). This council tried to find witnesses against Jesus to put Him to death, but they could only find false witnesses, who could not agree on their own testimonies against Jesus (see Mark 14:55-56). Soon, more false witnesses against Jesus came forth saying that they heard Jesus say “I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days” (see Matthew 26:59-61; Mark 14:57-59). True to the lies of false witnesses, these witnesses lied about what Jesus said. What the LORD actually said to Jews who were asking Him questions (see John 2:13-18) was “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up” (see John 2:19). Jesus was talking about the “temple of His body” (see John 2:21-22). But for these religious leaders, the truth didn’t matter. As far as this council was concerned, Jesus had to die by hook or crook (see John 11:45-53). In response to the false accusation against Jesus, the high priest asked Him if He wanted to answer the charges, but Jesus didn’t say anything until later when Caiaphas asked Him if He was the Christ (see Mark 14:60-61). Then Jesus answered saying “I am: and ye shall see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven” (see Mark 14:62).Jesus’ answer sent the high priest into an angry rage and he tore his clothes and told the rest of the coun