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Reformation Study Bible – John 18:13
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John 18:13

18:13 Annas. One of the most influential Jewish leaders of that age. Although deposed from the high priesthood by the Romans, he was still known by this title among the Jews. It is difficult to determine whether this verse and vv. 19–24 represent one or two phases of a trial before the Jewish authorities. Matthew, Mark, and Luke refer to an additional phase before the Sanhedrin. Judging from the description of rules for trials found in the Mishnah of some two hundred years later, the proceedings here were marked by serious irregularities and violations of Jewish law. The Sanhedrin was not supposed to meet at night; the death penalty could not be declared on the day of the trial; there was false evidence, and false witnesses were used (Matt. 26:59, 60); Jesus was exposed to blows from attendants during the trial (v. 22; Mark 14:65). In addition to all this, it was illegal for the Sanhedrin to meet for a capital case on the eve of a Sabbath or a feast day. These violations show that Jesus’ condemnation by the Jewish authorities was a travesty of justice.