Matthew Chapter 26 [KJVwc]

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1 And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, he said unto his disciples,
2 Ye know that after two days is the feast of the passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be crucified.
3 Then assembled together the chief priests, and the scribes, and the elders of the people, unto the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas,
4 And consulted that they might take Jesus by subtlety, and kill him. By subtilty – Hesitating only lest it should cause tumult. R4702:2

And kill him – Anger, envy, hatred, united in branding him as an imposter and in sending him to death "for the good of the cause." R4702:2

So far as Caiaphas was concerned, his mind was already made up in respect to Jesus, and he merely sought opportunity to carry it into effect, to kill him. R2780:3


5 But they said, Not on the feast day, lest there be an uproar among the people. Not on the feast day – But our Lord eluded them and returned only at the time of the Feast of the Passover. R2312:3[R2312]

On the feast day – The chief priests were only concerned that there would be an uproar amongst the people if they took Jesus "on the feast day." The fact that they were in violation of The Law did not seem to concern them in the slightest degree.

The feast day was Saturday Nisan 15 (beginning at sunset on Friday of what we would refer to as the 14th.) Nisan 14 (daylight) fell on Friday in the year 33 A.D. It is clear that our Lord celebrated the Passover one day before the nation of Israel.

6 Now when Jesus was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper, Now when – Maybe on the night before his betrayal two days before the feast of the Passover; but the consensus of opinion seems to be that it occurred on the Sabbath evening preceding the triumphal ride to Jerusalem. R4702:2, 3877:1

Supposedly about a year and a half after a similar entertainment and anointing in the home of another Simon. (Luke 7:36-50) R2625:3

In the house – One of the Evangelists says that Lazarus sat at the feast, Martha was one of those who served, but the story deals especially with the work of Mary. R3877:2

Simon the leper – Not mentioned in the narrative; probably already dead. He is conjectured to be either the father of Lazarus, Mary and Martha; or that Martha was his widow, and that Lazarus and Mary were younger than she. R2743:3

Quite possibly he had been healed by the Lord, and this may have been the beginning of the intimate acquaintance with the family of Lazarus, Martha and Mary. R3877:2

We ourselves also had the leprosy of sin, condemnation, and were children of wrath even as others; but our sins have been graciously covered by the Redeemer, the leprosy has been cleansed. R3878:4


7 There came unto him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and poured it on his head, as he sat at meat. A woman – Mary, sister of Martha and Lazarus. R3877:2, 4702:2

Let the Marthas serve the Lord in one way and the Marys pour out their most precious spikenard perfume, assured that neither service will be forgotten. R2744:4

An alabaster box – Our alabaster boxes are our hearts, which should be full of the sweetest perfumes of good wishes, kindness and love toward all, but especially toward Christ, head and body. R2744:3

Our hearts are receptacles for the holy Spirit, the spirit of love, the choicest perfume, most precious to the Lord and to men. R2744:3

The flowers you mean to send for the coffin, send to brighten and sweeten your friends' homes before they leave them. R3878:3*

Precious ointment – Equivalent to a year's wages. R3535:1, 3877:2

400,000 full-grown roses are required to make one ounce of this perfume. R2448:2

Mary's love was so intense that it knew no economy. R2743:6

Our Lord wished that all who should know the good tidings should know also of his appreciation of such devotion to him, and that the more it costs us, the more he appreciates it. R2744:5

Expensive because it cannot be gathered rapidly. It requires patient perseverance in well-doing to be "filled with all the fullness of God." (Eph. 3:19) R2744:3

And – While Christ was still alive. A week later and it would have been too late. Do not keep the alabaster boxes of your love and tenderness sealed up until your friends are dead. Flowers on the coffin cast no fragrance backward on the weary road. R3878:3

Poured it – The twelve apostles were too cold, calculating and business-like; Mary made up for this deficiency in the warmth of her loving devotion. R3877:5

She was not a woman's rights advocate; she found no fault with her Lord that he had not chosen her and Martha to be members of the company of apostles. R3877:3

These climaxes of character are not reached suddenly. Mary's love had been growing from the first. R2745:4

It behooves us to anoint the brethren with kindly words, loving sympathies, tender expressions, while they are still in the valley of conflict, before they have reached the end of the journey. R3878:1

On his head – The perfume of her act of love, kindness and adoration has come down through the ages, filling the entire church with its sweet odor of devotion, and illustrating the noblest and truest qualities of the feminine heart. R3877:4


8 But when his disciples saw it, they had indignation, saying, To what purpose is this waste? Indignation – Instigated by Judas. R4702:3, 4487:6, 3877:2

The one who made the greatest ado on behalf of the poor, and who objected most to the expression of Mary's devotion, was the thief and murderer, Judas. R2744:5

To what purpose – We may sympathize with the apostles, for they were all poor men, unused to such luxury and extravagance. R3877:2

This waste – Considered in the light of the odor, blessing and refreshment which it has shed upon all the Lord's people throughout this Gospel age, Mary's alabaster jar of perfume, very costly, has proved to be extremely cheap. R3535:3

The Lord's followers are to be prudent and economical, but not parsimonious, miserly, stingy or hoarders of wealth. R3877:6

Similarly, we were once inclined to consider conventions of the Lord's people entirely too expensive, but do so no more. R3877:6

If we should err on either side, would it not be safest and best that we should err on the side of too great generosity rather than on the reverse? R3878:6


9 For this ointment might have been sold for much, and given to the poor. Might have been sold – Mary may have prepared the perfume herself, for the objection is not to its having been purchased for a large sum, but that it might have been sold for 300 pence. (Mark 14:5) R2744:1

Given to the poor – It is a mistake to suppose that time or money spent in the Lord's service or in the study of his plan means that so much less will be given to the poor. R3877:5

Fellow-disciples tell us that we should not be seeking to anoint the saints with the sweet perfume of his present truth, but should, on the contrary, be going to the outcasts of society in slum-work or foreign missions. R2744:6


10 When Jesus understood it, he said unto them, Why trouble ye the woman? for she hath wrought a good work upon me. A good – How appreciative was the Great Teacher of everything done for him! R4702:3

Our Lord appreciated the matter fully; the sweet odor of the heart which prompted the act still more than the sweet odor which filled the entire house. R2743:6

Money is not the only thing of which people are sorely in need. R2448:3


11 For ye have the poor always with you; but me ye have not always. Ye have the poor – Yet we have no evidence whatever that the Lord or the apostles attempted to break the chains of the "slavery of labor." NS730:3

Always with you – Until the end of the reign of sin and death, the poor will be here. R4702:6

By and by there will be no poor; for, under the kingdom conditions, love will be the ruling principle instead of selfishness. R4702:6

Me ye have not – So the body of Christ will not always be here to be ministered unto. Whatever we can do now for our fellow- members of the body of Christ, the Head will reckon as done unto him. R567:6, 4702:6


12 For in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, she did it for my burial. On my body – The feet members of the body of Christ are still with us, and it is still possible to anoint them with the precious spikenard perfume. R3878:5

For my burial – Which occurred later the same week. NS779:2[NS779]

Probably Mary had no thought of perfuming the Lord's body for burial. R2744:2


13 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her. A memorial of her – The person who is economical and penurious in his dealings with the Lord is sure to be the loser thereby. "The liberal soul shall be made fat." (Prov. 11:25) R3535:4[R3535]

Memorials to their praise, testimonies of their love. R2744:4

It was not merely Mary that our Lord wished to memorialize, but especially her deed. R2744:5


14 Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went unto the chief priests, Then – No doubt reasoning that, since Jesus was about to die, he might as well sell the Lord and get what he could out of the transaction. R3878:6

Judas Iscariot – The very one who had objected to Mary's act of love and devotion. R2744:5, 3878:4

Representing some who, for earthly advantage for themselves, are willing to deliver other members of the Lord's Body up to tribulation, adversity and reproach. R3366:6

Judas hailed from the south of Palestine, while the other eleven of Jesus' disciples were Galileans. R5552:1

It is inferred that, because of superior business qualities, Judas was made treasurer of the apostolic company. R5552:1

Critical of the Master and fault-finding. From his standpoint, Jesus was carrying on the campaign for the throne in an improper manner. R4487:5

Made acquainted with the heavenly gift and the powers of the age to come (Heb. 6:4,5) not by direct reception of the spirit, but by the indirect blessing which came upon the twelve through our Lord's special impartation to them. R4488:2; Q382:5, 639:1

He had justification through faith; he had accepted the Lord as the Messiah. Q639:1

We find no reason for believing that Judas was a bad man at the time of his selection by Jesus to be one of the twelve apostles. R5552:1, 3887:4


15 And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver him unto you? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver. I will deliver him – It was not compulsion on Judas' part, not his duty. Q382:2

Covenanted with him – It would appear from the Greek text and the Revised Version that Judas received the money for his work in advance. R2745:1

The murder of Jesus was plotted in advance. R5561:1

Thirty pieces of silver – The price of a slave. "So they weighed for my price thirty pieces of silver." (Zech. 11:12) R2745:1

Those who teach for money that which they know is not the truth have the Judas spirit. R2779:4

Doubtless Judas reasoned that he could make the money out of the transaction without working any injury to the Lord. R4488:1

Which, on the basis of labor, amounted to between $200 and $300 in value. R5552:2

It was not merely the thirty pieces that influenced the ingrate. Rather, it was pride. He had thought to be associated with the Master in an earthly throne. R4708:4

No doubt others today, willing less directly to sell the Lord for earthly advantages or influence or money, find ways of excusing their perfidy. R2745:2[R2745]


16 And from that time he sought opportunity to betray him. To betray him – While the Master himself cannot be betrayed today for pieces of silver, "his brethren" can be thus dealt with. R4488:2

17 Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover? The first day – The day before the Passover proper began, on the 14th day of Nisan. R2771:5, 1800:2

While holding that the Memorial supper was instituted on Thursday, we have no contention with those who suppose that these events took place on other days of the week. R3879:1, 4713:6, 3375:1

Of the feast – Not the principal feast, which lasted a week; but the roast lamb supper, which preceded the general feast. R3879:2, 3363:1

It was not the Passover Feast, but the supper, that Jesus observed, and after which he instituted, as instead of it, a memorial of his death in the bread and wine. R833:3

Unleavened bread – Typifying the world's proper condition during the Millennial age. R1800:3

For thee to eat – Jesus was a Jew and, therefore, obligated to every feature of the Mosaic Law. R4703:1

The passover – The type has, for more than 18 centuries, been in process of fulfillment. R4703:1


18 And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples. Go – Luke tells us that it was Peter and John who were sent on this mission. R3363:6

To such a man – Probably the man was a believer, or there may have been some previous arrangement with him. R1800:3

At thy house – During the passover week, hospitality was recognized as a duty in Jerusalem; hence the readiness with which the Lord's request for a room was granted. R1800:3


19 And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the passover. They made ready – In the sense of furnishing and preparing the lamb, the unleavened bread, bitter herbs and the fruit of the vine. R3363:6

20 Now when the evening was come, he sat down with the twelve. Even was come – The killing of the lamb was on the evening of the fourteenth day, or more correctly, according to the original, between the evenings; that is, between the sun's declining and its setting, about 3 p.m. R2953:2*

21 And as they did eat, he said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me. They did eat – The time had come for the fulfillment of the antitype of the Passover. Jesus himself was to be the Passover lamb. R4703:3

One of you – No ray of hope for Judas' restoration. The goodness of God only hardened his heart, and therefore there was no remedy. R1800:6


22 And they were exceeding sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto him, Lord, is it I? Lord, Is it I? – The Greek word would seem to indicate that the question signified, Lord, do you mean to accuse me? I am not the one, am I? R2772:1

They were not overconfident, but each seemed to fear his own stability. They had the spirit of self-examination. R1800:6

Each one asked, feeling it incumbent to thus prove his innocence of such a charge. R3879:2, 3364:3

It is well that each one ask himself this searching question, to see that he is not in any way sacrificing the truth. R4907:4


23 And he answered and said, He that dippeth his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me. He that dippeth – It was not the attacks of the Scribes and Pharisees, but the defection of his closest friends, that most troubled his heart; wounded by professed friends. R3820:2

Shall betray me – Despite the custom that to receive another's hospitality was, especially in the East, a pledge of friendship. R3879:3, 4907:1


24 The Son of man goeth as it is written of him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born. Goeth – To death. R4909:3

Woe unto that man – Upon Judas alone our Lord placed the full responsibility, the full guilt, of his death. R4909:3, 1962:5

Judas was a free moral agent; by entertaining selfish and evil thoughts he became the willing tool of Satan. R4487:2,3

We are not to consider that Judas was simply fulfilling a prophecy irrespective of his own responsibility. R4907:2, 3879:4, 3364:2

He sinned against great light; there is no hope for him in a future life. R4907:2, 4703:6, 5552:6

Betrayed – Today some are willing to sell the Lord for the good things of this present life: salary and honor amongst men, etc. R4907:4

Had not been born – Because the advantages of his useless, wasted life did not overbalance the sorrows and anguish which terminated in despair, suicide and the second death. R3879:4, 4907:3

This statement would not be true if Judas were to have an opportunity during the Millennial age. R5683:3, 4909:3, 1962:6; Q382:4, 639:1

Every suicide, by his act, confesses his wish that he had never been born. R3364:3, 5552:5, 4907:3

Judas had not been begotten again of the holy Spirit, for spirit-begetting was not possible until Pentecost; but this does not prove that he could not die the second death. R5683:2

Judas was one of the twelve upon whom Jesus had specially conferred a measure of his spirit, enabling him to perform miracles. This made him specially responsible. R4907:3

These words leave no question, we think, that Judas had already enjoyed his full share in the great atonement work, through his intimate opportunities and corresponding responsibilities. R3879:4, 3364:3

But if God has anything for Judas in the future, you will not find me making any objection. Q382:5

May the meaning not be that it would have been better for Judas if he were not born yet? This seems to be the meaning in the Diaglott translation. R2283:3*


25 Then Judas, which betrayed him, answered and said, Master, is it I? He said unto him, Thou hast said. Judas – Judas brazenly challenged the Master's knowledge of his deceitful course and said, Is it I? R4703:6

The Judas class are those whose hearts are not loyal, but selfish, and enter into the Adversary's schemes heartily. R4908:1, 4907:6

Master, is it I? – If he did not also ask, it would imply his acknowledgment that he was the one. R3879:3, 2772:1

Such was his spirit of bravado. R3364:3

Thou hast said – Yes, I refer to you. R3879:3, 4703:6

At this point, Judas left the room to consummate the betrayal. R2772:2

Probably Judas was not with the others when our Lord washed their feet and subsequently instituted the memorial; so only loyal, devoted disciples of Christ should meet to celebrate his death on its anniversary. R2772:2

Not a threat, not an imprecation, not a manifestation of bitterness, but merely an expression of sorrow and of pity. Our enemies, too, are to be pitied, not hated. R3364:3

The Master was gentle toward him to the very end, giving him every opportunity to relent and retrace his steps, down to the very last act. R5552:6

The testimony that Jesus knew in advance who would betray him does not prove that Jesus knew this at the time when he chose Judas. R5553:1

The divine program was carried out and the Scriptures were fulfilled; but the coincidence marks the divine foreknowledge, without implying that God in any manner instigated the treacherous conduct. R4703:6

It was not God's foreknowledge that injured Judas, but his own wrong course; and thus it is with all. R5553:1


26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. Jesus took bread – Some of the left-over unleavened bread. R3526:3

Instituting the antitype of the Jewish Passover. R2771:1; PD67/79; SM563:2

Subsequently, after the Passover supper, he instituted with the bread and the fruit of the vine his substitutionary memorial of himself. R4703:5

A commemoration, or memorial, of the antitype. NS75:6

When this cup and unleavened bread are used as a celebration of the Passover, it should, on every occasion, be considered a celebration, not of the type, but of the antitype. NS76:1

Instead of the lamb would be the unleavened bread, representing our Lord's flesh. SM563:3

Representing the sacrifice of Christ's humanity for our redemption. R1800:6

"I am the bread of life." (John 6:35) R2772:3

Unleavened, declaring that our Lord Jesus was free from sin, a lamb without spot or blemish. R5192:4

In partaking of the broken, unleavened bread, we memorialize the purity, the sinlessness, of him who gave himself to be the ransom-price for all mankind. R4591:2, 1636:6, 840:3

Bread stands for and symbolizes all food; indeed, wheat is said to contain every element of nutrition in its proper proportion. R3879:6

Soda biscuits are unleavened bread and will do very well. R3526:6

And brake it – It must be "broken" in order to be appropriated; it was necessary also that Jesus be "broken" in death, sacrificed for our sins, ere we could appropriate his merit and enjoy everlasting life. R3526:4, 740:4

The Church as a whole must be broken by "laying down our lives on behalf of the brethren" as Christ laid down his life for all. R2772:5

And also our own breaking or dying as members of the Church. R4591:5

"The loaf which we break, is it not the communion (the common union, participation) of the body of Christ?" (1 Cor. 10:16) R4591:5

At the time Jesus was the only one who could break the loaf, all others being unjustified. R5341:5

And gave it – In giving the bread and the cup, the Master pictorially offered them justification and sanctification. R4703:6

Take, eat – In two senses: appropriating and feasting on the great work done for us by our Redeemer; and appreciating our privilege of joint-sacrificing with our Redeemer. R3526:5, 740:6 SM564:2

The rights and privileges which Christ surrendered voluntarily may be appropriated by all who accept him. R3879:6

Symbolically represents our partaking by faith of the fleshly perfection of the man Jesus. R4591:3

The partaking means to us, primarily, acceptance and appropriation to ourselves, by faith, of justification to human rights and privileges secured by our Lord's sacrifice of these. R2772:4; SM563:3

Eating and digesting the truth, especially this truth; appropriating by faith his righteousness to ourselves, we realize him as both the way and the life. R840:3, 5192:4

God's object in justifying by faith the church is for the very purpose of permitting them to present their bodies living sacrifices, and thus have a part with our Lord in his sacrifice, as members of his body. R2772:4

After we thus partake of him, become justified by appropriating his righteousness, we, by consecration, become associated with him as part of the one broken loaf--food for the world. (1 Cor. 10:16) R5192:5, 840:3

Partaking of the glorious elements of his character through eating his flesh and appropriating the merits of his sacrifice. NS632:1

Except we eat of his flesh (appropriate the merit of his sacrifice) and unless we drink his blood (join in sacrifice with him), we have no life in us--inherent life, immortality. (John 6:53) NS770:5

Eat and drink, O beloved, says the King to his spouse (Song of Solomon 5:1). Let us eat and drink reverently, devotedly, thoughtfully, prayerfully, tearfully perhaps. R1505:1

This is my body – Represents the flesh of the antitypical Lamb. F464; R2772:3

This represents me, the antitypical Lamb. NS75:6

He could not have meant that it was actually his literal body, for he was still in the flesh. R3879:5, 3526:4, 3364:5, 2772:3

Not his prehuman existence as a spirit being, but his pure, spotless, human nature was laid down on behalf of sinners. R2772:3


bread – "In a word, the bread representing our Lord's body teaches our justification through the acceptance of his sacrifice." R3879:11
27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; He took the cup – A new feature. While all believers might partake of the bread, realize justification through the merit of his sacrifice, only a certain class of them were invited to partake of the blood, the cup representing death. SM563:4

Representing the crushing of the grapes, the blood of the grapes, the Master's blood, his life poured out, sacrificed, and their lives with him. R3880:3, 5081:2, 4591:4, 4453:4, 4331:3

The juice of the grapes not only speaks of the crushing of the grape till blood comes forth, but it also speaks of an after-refreshment. R1637:4

The cup of shame, of sorrow, of indignity, of self-denial on behalf of others. R4429:2, 5087:6

The cup of degradation, bitterness, distress, suffering and death. PT383:T*

It is the cup of sacrifice, even unto death. And not only is it the sacrifice of life, but of reputation and all that humanity holds dear. R1898:3

While this wine of sacrifice exhausts the human nature, it invigorates and makes strong the spiritual nature. R588:3

Which symbolized our Lord's death, our Lord's sacrifice of his earthly rights, which was sufficient of itself to have sealed the New Covenant. R4453:4

It was Jesus' cup of which he drank, which he gave to his disciples to finish. R4475:1

It is one cup, though it contains the juice of many grapes. The grapes cannot maintain themselves as grapes if they would constitute the life-giving spirit. R5341:3, 2772:6

The same cup as offered to James and John (Matt. 20:22) and as the "cup of salvation" (Psa. 116:13) and as that referred to in Psa. 23:5. R4555:5; NS755:2

The antitype of the cup, in its highest sense, will be the new joys in the kingdom. R4703:6

Nowhere is this cup described as wine, though it may have been. R2772:6

We are not told that it was wine; therefore it is an open question whether it was fermented or unfermented. We may feel sure that unfermented grape juice will fulfill the terms of the injunction. R3879:6

Our recommendation is against a general use of wine as being possibly a temptation to some weak in the flesh. It might not be amiss to put a small amount of fermented wine into the unfermented grape or raisin juice. R2773:4

If any one should feel himself endangered by tasting wine at the remembrance of the Lord's death, we would recommend that such a one use raisin juice instead which, though not wine, is certainly a "fruit of the vine." R509:5

Scientific men recognize quite a difference between alcoholic or vinous fermentation and a putrefactive fermentation. The result of the former is to cast out impurities and produce a sweet liquid, while the other process produces sourness and ultimately rottenness. R509:4

Gave thanks – Indicative of a joyful acquiescence in all the sufferings which the breaking of the bread and the crushing of the grapes implied. R2773:2

Gave it to them – Only the Little Flock is invited to participate with the Lord. R4310:2; NS770:4

It is not for the world. R5342:3

Christ symbolically gave them the privilege of sharing in his sufferings. R4436:4, 4475:1, 840:4; Q188:T

The shed blood was the ransom price for all; but his act of handing the cup to his disciples and asking them to drink of it was an invitation to them to become partakers of his sufferings. R5192:5

We need not only nourishment and strength from the bread, but we need the precious blood as our redemption to release us from the condemnation of justice. R3526:5

Drink ye all of it – All of you drink all of it--leave none of the sufferings of Christ for the coming age. R3880:2, 4605:3, 4453:4, 4429:4

An invitation to participate with him in the sacrifice of earthly life, interests, hopes, aims, ambitions--everything. SM564:1; R3880:2

All who would sit with him in his throne must drink of this same cup that our Lord drank, of self-denial, of self-sacrifice; all must be immersed into his death. R4591:5, 5087:6, 5081:2, 4436:4, 226:1

There will be none of it left for others to drink afterwards. R4310:3

The privilege of drinking with our Lord in this cup of sacrifice belongs to this age only. None will be left for the future. NS722:6, 770:4

A double signification: first, it must all be drunk before the end of the Gospel age; and secondly, all who would be members of his body must drink of it. R5341:3, 4453:4

Virtually inviting us to drink into his death, to "be made conformable unto his death." (Phil. 3:10) R111:4

Jesus passed the cup along, passed the merit of his sacrifice through us, his followers. R4453:4, 4367:2

Participation in the blood of the New Covenant, in providing the wherewithal for sealing the New Covenant. CR47:5; Q188:T; R4456:4

He is still saying this to us. R4429:1

This cup must not be allowed to pass. PT389:1*

Showing not only interest in his sacrifice, but also expressing our own covenant to be dead with him and to drink of his cup. R325:5

Divide it amongst yourselves. R4475:1

All who accept this invitation thereby pledge their lives in the same service for which He gave his life, a thought entirely additional to anything in the Jewish Passover type. SM564:1

Also signifies our participation in his dishonor, our share in his sacrifice--the death of our humanity. R1637:2, 840:5

Memorializes the consecration to death of all the members of the body of Christ. R4980:5; NS632:1

The appropriation of this by us signifies primarily our acceptance of restitution rights and privileges which our Lord has thus, at his own cost, secured for us. R2772:4

There is a peculiar pleasure in drinking of this cup, the pleasure of fellowship in his sufferings (Phil. 3:10) and the associated hope of drinking with our Lord in his other cup--of joy, glory and blessings. NS755:3

Not the many who will be blessed by the New Covenant are invited to become partakers of the blood, but the few, the little flock. NS297:6

None are to be forbidden who profess faith in the precious blood and consecration to our Savior's service. R2773:5


28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. This is my blood – His human life, his being, his soul, poured out unto death on our behalf. R2772:4, 2272:2, 1637:2

"The blood maketh atonement for the soul." (Lev. 17:11) R1293:2

Hence life; not life retained, but life shed or given, yielded up, sacrificed life. R2772:6, 5192:5, 4605:3, 840:4

Primarily the Lord's death; but, by divine arrangement, the death of his Church is also made necessary. R4310:3

Which seals. R4331:3

In which his members share. T33; NS297:5, 631:6

The blood which will seal it is now being used in the interest of the elect, spiritual Israel. NS722:6

Who will apply it? Jesus. Will it be his own blood? Yes, because you are members of his body. "Without me ye can do nothing." (John 15:5) Q188:T

The new testament – The New Covenant. R4617:4, 4331:3

The New Covenant is the one that supersedes the Law Covenant. R3364:5

The blood with which the New Covenant would be sprinkled, sealed, made efficacious. R4331:6

Jesus sealed or ratified the New Covenant with his own blood, death, just as Moses had ratified the Law Covenant, which was a shadow of this, with the blood of a bullock and a goat. R111:1

His will or testament, bequeathing his earthly rights to the earthly seed of Abraham and to the world through them. R4429:4

Which he sealed, or made effective, with his own precious blood. R1604:1

The blood which seals, makes binding, ratifies, the New Covenant. R2859:1, 740:6

Before our Lord Jesus could become Mediator, he must seal the New Covenant with his own precious blood. E28

Not until the sacrifice of Christ and his church is complete, at the end of this age, will the blood of the New Covenant be ready to apply, to seal the New Covenant, to make it operative. Q188:T

The New Covenant cannot become operative until the cup of the Lord's sufferings, which was left behind, has been drained in death by the last members of his body. NS297:5, 6, 4310:3

The merit of Christ passes through the Church for the sealing of the New Covenant. Q168:2

It takes the entire Gospel age to find the proper number of those who are thus invited to share in this cup. R4617:4

When the Church shall have finished using the blood and are glorified, that same merit will be applied for the sealing of the New Covenant. R4513:6

When we drink of Christ's cup we become sharers with him in making the Covenant with Israel, and through Israel, with the world. R4625:4,5

The two oldest Greek manuscripts of the New Testament, the Sinaitic and the Vatican, omit the word "new." R3880:1

There was another covenant, the old covenant, the foundation covenant of all covenants, the Abrahamic covenant, which was sealed by our Lord's death. R3880:1

Which is shed – The giving up of Christ's life provided the ransom price. R1335:6, 3526:5

Our Lord also indicated that the cup signified our participation in his dishonor, our share in his sacrifice, the death of our humanity. R5192:6

For many – Not for the Church only, but for the sins of the whole world. R740:5

The world in general. R111:1

For all. R1363:3

Contradicting those who say his blood has nothing to do with forgiveness of sins; of those who say that all will be everlastingly saved; and of those who say only the "little flock" of this Gospel age shall be saved. R1799:6

Remission of sins – Through faith in Jesus' blood we have remission of sins. R4476:1, 1443:3

"Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins." (Heb. 9:22) E442

We were redeemed, not with Jesus' example, but with the precious blood of Christ. (1 Pet. 1:19) R1810:4*

It was necessary that Christ should die for our sins. Our sins could never have been forgiven by divine justice except through the divine arrangement by which he paid our penalty. R3880:5

There is no other way to attain eternal life except through accepting the blood once shed as the ransom price for the sins of the whole world. R2772:6


29 But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom. Fruit of the vine – The antitypical thing represented in the wine. R3365:1

Representing the sacrificed life of our Lord. R5192:5

Representing exhilaration, the joys of the Kingdom. R3365:1, 5538:6, 5643:2, 4703:6

Grape juice or raisin juice may be used as the symbol in the Memorial service. F476; R5194:5; Q486:4

Until that day – The great seventh, Millennial day; day of his Kingdom. Q78:3

Until his second coming, in power and great glory, to receive the Church as his elect bride. R4703:5

Two great days are contrasted: the Gospel age of suffering and the Millennial age of glory. R5538:5, 5643:2

Drink it new – The memorial which he instituted would find its fulfillment in the Kingdom. R2773:1

Not that he would drink literal wine in the Kingdom, but the antitypical thing represented in the wine. R3365:1

After he had drunk this cup faithfully he would be given a different cup, a different experience: glory, honor and immortality. R5538:6

If Jesus' followers suffer with him they will participate with him in his future cup of joy. R5643:4, 4703:6

To partake of the cup of the Lord in the present time signifies to share in his sufferings; but to partake of his cup in the coming age will mean to share in his glory and joy. R1695:2

Commemorative of the heroism of their faith and their fidelity to the divine purpose under the most crucial tests, and a rejoicing together in the victory of that faith. R1801:4

Implying a new wine under different conditions at some distant date. R3880:3

The new wine--new life and joy. R2436:3, 1504:5

The cup of joy and blessing, honor and glory, in the Kingdom. R3880:3, 5420:2, 5341:2, 4703:6

The new wine, the participation with the Master in uplifting the world of mankind. R3880:4

Symbolized by Jesus' first miracle of turning the water into wine. R1695:2

My Father's kingdom – Beyond the veil, at his second coming in power and great glory. R4703:5, 5341:2, 3880:3

As usual our Lord had something to say about the kingdom. It seems to have been associated in his every discourse. R2773:1

As a result of the trials and sufferings symbolized, there will be a jubilation in the Kingdom. R2773:1

Kingdom glory is the end of the symbol. R5193:2, 2272:4, 1290:6

Primarily it is the Kingdom of the Father, but the Father has voluntarily proposed to place the dominion of the earth for 1000 years under the full charge of a Viceroy, Christ and his bride. D642


30 And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives. Sung an hymn – A hymn of praise, no doubt, thanksgiving to the Father that his course was so nearly finished and that he found thus far grace sufficient for every time of need. R2773:2

They went out – Instead of dispersing, they went out together. R1801:4

Omitting our usual greetings, let us keep our thoughts with our Lord--beaten, condemned to death, carrying his own cross, crucified--for our sins. R3527:1

Let each go home with his heart full; thus we may prolong our communion and fellowship with the Master. R5195:2

Realizing he would be arrested, our Lord probably did not wish to bring commotion or trouble upon the friend who had so kindly permitted the use of the upper room. R2773:6

Into the mount – To the Garden of Gethsemane and fresh trials; so every recurrence of the Memorial season brings fresh trials, fresh testings, fresh siftings upon the Lord's people. R3365:4


31 Then saith Jesus unto them, All ye shall be offended because of me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad. Ye shall be offended – Disappointed, seeing him suddenly taken and ignominiously crucified as a felon. B111

Seeing the hopes of the kingdom going glimmering. R4487:6; B111

It was his doctrines that offended the people, not his personality; nevertheless; their resentment was against his personality rather than against the doctrines, which were too strong for them to attack. R4488:4

I will smite the shepherd – God permitted the Adversary to smite him. R4487:4

In proportion as we follow closely to the Master's footsteps, our experiences will be similar to his. We, too, shall be hated. R4488:4

Flock shall be scattered – Be desolate, aimless, perplexed. B111

"And they all forsook him and fled." (Mark 14:50) R4756:2, 3178:6

Only two followed him at the end: one, in terror, denied him; the other viewed him from afar. R4488:5

Being thus forewarned, no experience should move us from our constancy and faithfulness. R4488:5


I will smite the shepherd and the sheep will be scattered – Quoting Zech. 13:7
32 But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.
33 Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended. Peter – The Peter class, the true-hearted, not sufficiently watching, praying or on guard, are at times taken unawares, and for a moment dishonor the Lord. R4907:6

We should strive to be not of the Peter class, but of the class represented by the Lord himself: of the watching, praying, faithful kind. R4908:4

Never be offended – It is the specially loyal and ardent that the Adversary seeks most to entrap. R4712:2

Peter was still unconscious of his weakness and his need, though full of loving loyalty to the Lord. R1987:6

How little did this courageous man understand the nature of the trials and difficulties immediately before him, or realize the weak points of his own impulsive nature. R4712:2

He did not know how much weakness was in him; therefore, when the Lord was watching and praying that momentous night, St. Peter was one of the first to fall asleep. R5202:1


34 Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. Deny me thrice – Perhaps the Lord allowed that to happen to Peter for our sakes, that we might realize that we need to be careful to put our confidence in the Lord. CR307:5

35 Peter said unto him, Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee. Likewise also said all the disciples.

36 Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder. Jesus with them – Because he loved them and knew they loved him, he permitted them to accompany him to the place of prayer that they might watch and pray with him. R1801:2

Gethsemane – Oil-press place. R2773:3, 4707:2

Not a wild woods nor a public garden, but an olive orchard; supposed to have been the home of the mother of Mark, reported to have been a wealthy widow, a friend of Jesus' cause. R3885:2

Tradition has it that this garden belonged to the family of which the apostles John and James were members. R4707:2

Sit ye here – As a kind of outer guard. R3885:2, 2773:6, 1801:2

While I go and pray – That he might find grace to help in time of need. R1801:1


37 And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. Peter and the two – The same three whom he had specially honored on other occasions; the three most courageous, most zealous, most earnest, of his disciples. R2774:1, 3885:2, 1801:2

To be sorrowful – Because of the coming shame of trial, conviction and execution as a blasphemer and seditionist. The perfect man must have suffered far more than would have been possible for a fallen one. R3885:3

No doubt the thought of the extinguishment of life was an important factor in our Lord's sorrow. R2774:3

And very heavy – Oppressed with the fear that in some manner he might have failed of perfection and that his death might mean extinction. R3886:1, 4804:2,3

None can read this account thoughtfully without realizing that there must be something wrong in the popular theory that our Lord Jesus was his own Heavenly Father. R2773:3

His was no coarse, stoical nature, insensitive to pain, shame and loss; nor was it a proud, self-centered nature, which stood aloof from human fellowship. R1801:2


38 Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. Unto them – They were inclined to think that he was taking a pessimistic view of matters. R5090:3

My soul – Being. R2502:2, 276:3

Exceeding sorrowful – He was wondering whether or not he had done everything to the Father's pleasement. CR149:4; R5403:4, 5331:4, 2774:4

The disciples were at a loss to understand his sadness. R5090:3

He was greatly amazed and sore troubled. The Greek carries the thought of loneliness, home-sickness, friendlessness. R5551:1

Not only with the mental realization of death, but also the desolation of his disciples forsaking him, the sorrowful reflections on the irretrievable loss of Judas, the course of the Jewish nation, and the degradation of the whole guilty world. In addition to all this was his knowledge that every jot and tittle of the Law with reference to his sacrifice must be perfectly fulfilled. R1801:3

We are glad that Jesus was not one of those cold, stoical icebergs, but full of tender feelings and sensibilities, and consequently able to sympathize with those most tender and delicate. R2774:2

Even unto death – I feel as if I would die now, without coming into that great crisis before me. R5551:1

The death of Jesus began at Jordan, merely culminating at Calvary. R5104:2

An agony which, of itself, would have worn him out shortly, an intense mental and nervous strain which caused him to sweat great drops of blood. R1801:2

Supposing 100 to represent perfect life, our Lord had the full 100 units to lay down while we, at most, have only the one-hundredth part to lay down. R2774:3


39 And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. A little farther – Realizing the impossibility of even his dearest friends appreciating his sorrowful condition. R4707:3

"I have trodden the winepress alone, and of the people there was none with me" (Isa. 63:3). He was alone because he alone had been begotten of the holy Spirit. R4707:5, 3886:4, 2467:2

Having gone to the Father alone, his thoughts turned inward upon himself and his relationship to the Father, and outward upon the public shame of his trial. R3885:3

Fell on his face – Upon his knees, with his face to the earth. The mental anguish seemed to come upon him here with a force of poignancy he had never before experienced. R2774:1

And prayed – Even the perfect human nature was not equal to such an emergency without divine aid. R1801:4

O my Father – No one can thoughtfully read these words without feeling there is something thoroughly incorrect in the prevalent idea that our Lord Jesus was his own Father, Jehovah. R2773:3

Let this cup – Not the cup of death, which our Lord expected to drink, but the peculiar death of shame and ignominy. R3886:2, 5422:1, 5421:2-6, 1247:3

He questioned the necessity of the public scorn and contempt as a criminal. SM647:1

To his perfect mind the shame, disesteem and opprobrium added greatly to his anguish. R5421:6

The question was, Had he been absolutely loyal to God in every particular? If not, death would mean to him an eternal extinction of being; not only the loss of heavenly glory, but the loss of everything. R4707:6, 3886:2

If he should fail in any part of the work, all would be lost, both for himself and for men. Though he was a perfect man, he realized that the flesh, however perfect, was unequal to the task. R1801:3

The same cup represented in the Communion service. R5421:3

Pass from me – It is well to remember that his perfect organism was much more susceptible to the pains and sorrows of the hour than could be the feelings of others of the fallen race. R3885:3

Not as I will – As a man. T54

I claim no rights nor attempt to follow my own ideas. SM647:1

The sacrifice of his will meant all that he had. CR453:5

He did not murmur nor rebel. R5422:1

Whatever is asked must, in propriety, include the thought and the expression, Thy will, not ours, O Lord, be done. R2140:3

A petition of all who are truly the Lord's in everything--in matters temporal, in matters spiritual. NS226:2

But as thou wilt – As my heavenly Father. T54

Proving that his affirmation, "Lo, I come to do thy will, O God" (Heb. 10:7) was not empty words. R5421:3

He submitted himself to all the Father's will and thus proved his loyalty. R5421:6

Though at the time he evidently could not see the necessity for every feature of his test, he nevertheless knew that the love of God was too great to allow a needless pain, and therefore he trusted him where he could not at the time trace his inscrutable ways. R1808:4, 959:6

What our Lord did, and what he refrained from doing, we know was the Father's will. R2037:5


40 And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? Asleep – Luke explains that their sleep was the result of sorrow. R2774:4

Could ye not watch – Peter did not realize the importance of the hour. R3886:6

Gently, Jesus reproved them. R4804:5


41 Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. Watch and pray – By faith draw very near to the Master, and be full of confidence in the divine plan. R4488:5

All true watchers must also be pray-ers [i.e. people who pray]; all fervent pray-ers will also be watchers. Prayer represents the faith; watching represents the works which must accompany it, so long as it is a living faith. R2692:2, 2528:4, 2526:2

The necessity for watching as well as praying lies in the fact that we have an adversary, an invisible foe, who seeks to seduce us, turn us aside from our vows of consecration. NS227:2

The devil is seeking whom he may devour. He knows your weak points and is ready to take advantage of them. R3179:4

To suppose that Christian life depends solely upon prayer, without earnest study of God's Word, is like supposing that a tree could flourish from its leaves only, without roots and soil. Both are needful. R4984:1, 799:2

What they would be praying for they would be striving for. The earnestness of the praying would help them in the watching. R5312:3

Our part is to watch and pray and do our best; God's part is to overrule, direct and supervise our affairs. R4660:2

Pray for guidance, wisdom and grace. R5331:5

The praying would signify that they were watching and that their own watching was not sufficient, but that they would need divine assistance. R5312:3

Some pray and neglect to watch, others watch and neglect to pray. Both errors are serious. R4984:1, 2775:5, 799:2

Not merely on my account. You need to be in a watching attitude on your own account. An hour of severe trial is upon us all. R2774:5

Our Lord watched and prayed; he got a blessing, was strengthened and came off victor. The disciples did not watch and pray; as a result we find them scattered and bewildered. R2775:2

Watching our words, thoughts and doings, seeing to it that we worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness, not idolizing either dead or living men or creeds. R4706:6

Watching our own weaknesses, failures and shortcomings, that we may protect ourselves along the lines of these weaknesses. NS228:3

Watching not only the Lord's betrayal, trial and crucifixion, but also their experiences of the subsequent days when the disciples met within closed doors. R5312:3

Watch to be on guard against the encroachments of the world, the flesh and the devil; watch for all the encouragements of the Lord's Word; watch for everything that will strengthen faith, hope, loyalty and love. R2775:5, 2692:2

Pray together as the Lord's people; pray in our homes as families; pray in secret, in private; have the spirit of prayer in all that we say and do. R2775:6

Although a necessity, nowhere is prayer defined as a duty, nor is a form of prayer furnished. R4984:4

The frequency and subject matter of prayer will be regulated by circumstances and the earnestness of one's service. R4984:4

There seems to be special need of this at the Passover season. R3178:3

Be active, alert, and co-labor with God and with Christ. R5332:1, 5312:3

That ye enter not – Yield not. R5202:1

Not that we would not have temptations come to us, but that we would not fall into those temptations. R5312:5, 5331:5, 3759:3, 2774:4

Those who neglect the Master's words will be sure to enter into temptation, and be tolerably sure to fall therein. R2775:5

Into temptation – In this hour of trial, which is upon us all. R2774:4

The close of this age is "the hour of temptation" (Rev. 3:10) or testing. It is the Gethsemane hour. R2775:4, 5312:5, 3886:6

"Abandon us not in temptation, but deliver us from the evil one." (Matt. 6:13) R3759:6

As they were then entering into a time of special temptation, so we in the end of this age are living in a time of special trial regarding all that which we have learned. R5312:5

We have noted for several years the peculiar force of temptations at the time of Passover every Spring. R3178:3

Spirit indeed is willing – To them it merely meant that they were willing in spirit, in mind, in intention. R5312:5; NS228:5

Their intention was better than their ability to perform. R5312:6

Here, the new creature, the will. R3986:2

Flesh is weak – Greek, astheneo, meaning without strength; from a, without; and sthenos, strength. R4099:2*

The old creature, mental and physical. R3986:2

Not up to the standard of righteousness, but we are strong in proportion as we overcome the natural tendencies. R5313:2

How impossible it would be for us in any measure or degree to carry out the good resolutions which we make when we accept Christ. NS228:6

Were we perfect, there would be little difficulty in ruling our minds and our bodies as soon as the will had been fixed for righteousness. R3986:1


42 He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done. This cup – He knew his death to be necessary, unavoidable, but it was the ignominious form of death, "even the death of the cross" (Phil. 2:8), that staggered him. R2775:2

To his perfect mind the shame and disesteem, the opprobrium, added greatly to the poignancy of his anguish. R5421:6

Representing the shame and ignominy of being executed as a blasphemer of the divine law. R5421:3, 2

The same cup represented in the Communion service. R5421:3

Pass away from me – He felt a great shrinking from the coming humiliation and degradation. R5421:3

Thy will be done – Having learned it was the Father's will for him, he was content to have it so. R5421:2


43 And he came and found them asleep again: for their eyes were heavy. And he came – It was no sign of weakness that he thus craved human sympathy. R1801:2

44 And he left them, and went away again, and prayed the third time, saying the same words. The same words – That is to say, the same sentiments were expressed. R2774:5

45 Then cometh he to his disciples, and saith unto them, Sleep on now, and take your rest: behold, the hour is at hand, and the Son of man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Sleep on now – Not sarcasm; he wished that they get a little rest, refreshment, in view of the ordeals of the day approaching. R3887:2

The hour is at hand – He was assured of the Father's favor, and could pass through any experience; he had gotten the victory. R5331:4


46 Rise, let us be going: behold, he is at hand that doth betray me.

47 And while he yet spake, lo, Judas, one of the twelve, came, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and elders of the people. Lo, Judas – He either knew the garden as a spot frequented by Jesus and his disciples, or had learned at the supper where the company intended to go subsequently. R3887:2

A great multitude – Not Roman soldiers, but a rabble of the curious with certain servants of the high priest, who was also a judge; an impromptu sheriff's posse. R3887:2

A number of men who served as policemen in the Temple and its precincts. These were servants of the high priest. R5561:1

The under-priests and under-officers of Caiaphas' court, his household of servants. R2780:6

And staves – Maces. R5561:1


48 Now he that betrayed him gave them a sign, saying, Whomsoever I shall kiss, that same is he: hold him fast. Betrayed him – There can be no excuse properly offered for treachery to God and his cause. R5552:4

49 And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed him. Hail, master – Some accompany a denial of the ransom with these words and a deceitful kiss. R4909:4

And kissed him – In profession of love. C189

Representatives of the Judas spirit also betray with a kiss, professing great love and respect for the members of the body of Christ, which they secretly smite for personal gain. R3887:6

The mind and conscience must be perverted before each step of sin. R5552:5

All such should be an abhorrence to every one who possesses the true, noble, Christ-like spirit. R4909:4

The Greek indicates that he kissed the Lord repeatedly. R3887:2


50 And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him. Friend – Not the Greek word philos, beloved, or loving friend; but from hetaire, which signifies comrade or partner. R3887:3

Mark the calm, dignified fortitude as a result of his Gethsemane prayers. R1801:6


51 And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear. One of them – Peter. R3887:6, 4711:3, 3367:4

Drew his sword – Which was carried as proof that our Lord was not taken contrary to his own will. R3367:4, 5922:2

The having of the swords made possible the exhibition of the courage of the disciples and the willingness of Jesus to submit. R5922:4, 2468:4


52 Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. Put up again thy sword – Never afterward do we hear of the disciples using force or violence in the service of the Lord. R3887:6

Never was there a time when this admonition was more needed by nominal Christendom than today. R2779:4

That take the sword – The blending of carnal with spiritual warfare is impossible, and such a course is sure to cultivate, more and more, the carnal mind. R1954:1

Shall perish – A general principle. R5922:4

With the sword – He who prepares for warfare will be pretty sure to get plenty of it. R5922:4

We are never to use earthly power in seeking to promote the cause of the Master. The only sword we may use is "the sword of the Spirit." (Eph. 6:17) R3888:1


53 Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels? Give me more – His request would have been honored. Having violated no law, his life was not forfeited, and we believe could not have been taken from him. R2037:5, 5046:3

He who declined to ask for personal help was nevertheless perfectly at liberty to call upon these powers in the interests of his followers--in the feeding of the multitude, the stilling of the tempest and the providing of the taxes. F650

He could have escaped the awful experience, but he did not do so, but willingly gave himself a ransom for sinners. R959:6

Legions of angels – If I were willing to use divine power for my personal comfort. F637, F650

Christ never prayed for deliverance from his natural troubles, but cheerfully endured them as part of his sacrifice, and so should we. F636

He did not exercise this power for his own defence. R2787:6, 3902:1


54 But how then shall the scriptures be fulfilled, that thus it must be? But how then – Likewise those who now tread the same narrow way refuse to ask to escape sacrifice for the same reason, that they may complete their covenant of sacrifice. R749:5

Our Lord does not indicate by his language that he could ask for angelic protection and yet retain the full measure of the Father's approval. R2037:5

Hence we are debarred from asking for restitution blessings and privileges. R2009:2

Thus it must be – It would have been sin for him to have called on the divine power for his relief or protection from any part of the dying processes, because he had made a covenant of sacrifice. F636; R379:1

Those who consecrated to God, to be "conformed unto his death" (Phil. 3:10) must not only not keep back any part of the price, but see so clearly the dependence of their glory on suffering with him that they ask no physical healing for themselves. R379:1

He laid aside his own will and carried out the will of God, though it cost him privation at every step and finally a death most painful and ignominious. R1041:2

The temporal favors were withheld that the divine purpose might be accomplished in the sacrificial death of his beloved Son. R1689:6


55 In that same hour said Jesus to the multitudes, Are ye come out as against a thief with swords and staves for to take me? I sat daily with you teaching in the temple, and ye laid no hold on me.
56 But all this was done, that the scriptures of the prophets might be fulfilled. Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled. Forsook him – Are we prepared for the time when there will possibly be a general scattering, as these "all forsook him and fled"? R3887:1

And fled – Our Lord had said, "Let these go their way." (John 18:8) R3888:1


57 And they that had laid hold on Jesus led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled. And they – Their policy was to curry favor with the Roman Emperor and to seek to hold the common people in subjection to themselves. R4711:1

Led him away – Our Lord surrendered voluntarily. R5922:2

At probably three o'clock in the morning. R5561:1

Probably about one o'clock in the morning. The examination and trial are supposed to have lasted until half past five in the morning. R2312:3

To Caiaphas – Evidently the ringleader in the conspiracy against Jesus. R2780:6

Some of their highest offices were held by irreligionists. The Chief Priest was a Sadducee who wholly disbelieved in the promises of God to Israel. R4710:6

Amongst Christians there are D.D.'s who are unbelievers. R4711:1

We hearken to St. Peter's words respecting the transaction, "I wot that through ignorance ye did, as did also your rulers." (Acts 3:15-17) R4710:3

Were assembled – Contrary to the Jewish Law, which forbade the trial of any man between sunset and sunrise. R3367:5, 4711:4, 3888:2, 2781:1

This, being the night of the paschal supper, made it still more objectionable. R1809:2

Carefully excluding, evidently, a few such men as Joseph of Arimathea, Nicodemus and probably a few others known to be favorably inclined toward the new teacher. R1809:2


58 But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest's palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end. High priest's palace – The house of Annas, a superannuated high priest, whose son-in-law Caiaphas officiated in his stead. R5561:1

Matthew All the council – The Sanhedrin, composed of seventy of the most influential Jews, an ecclesiastical court, whose voice properly had great influence with the Roman governor. R5561:2

The examination was merely a preliminary one to get together such evidence as could be rushed through rapidly at a prearranged session the following morning. R4711:5

Sought false witness – They did not wish true witnesses who would tell what they knew about the Master. R3888:3

Everywhere there is a tendency to make excuse and depart from the laws and from the principles of justice, under the claim that the circumstances and the conditions of the case make necessary such a violation of law and just principles. R5560:3

Through bribery. R5561:2


Peter followed him – How confused Peter must have been at this time. Earlier he had declared he was willing to die for Jesus. Then he tried to defend him with a sword and Jesus told him no. While his disciples were afraid, yet Peter still followed.
59 Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death; Chief priests .. elders .. the council, sought false witness – What a condemnation! This attitude is still with us. Consider what the religious leaders of Pastor Russell's day did to him. - Exactly the same thing!
60 But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses, But found none – They found many who willingly bore false witness against him, but none whose witness agreed together. R1809:3

It is to the credit of those connected with the court that they neither seriously misunderstood our Lord's teachings nor were willing to misrepresent them. R3888:3

Came two false witnesses – Who falsified by slightly perverting our Lord's statements. R2312:5

The Jewish Law required at least two witnesses to any such trial. R2781:2

No attempt was made to bring any of those whom Jesus had relieved of various sicknesses. R5561:2


61 And said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days. I am able – Nothing about this was false evidence. It was what the majority of those who heard probably understood our Lord to mean. R3888:3

Destroy the temple – Not the Jewish Temple, "But this he spake of the temple of his body." (John 2:19) R638:3*

The true Church. T70

In three days – The fifth, sixth and seventh thousand-year days. R3375:2

The Sanhedrin decided that he was a blasphemer for saying this. R5421:2


62 And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee? The high priest arose – To give the effect that very damaging testimony had been given. R2781:2

And said – Caiaphas, not only high priest, but in this particular case, acting as prosecuting attorney. R5561:2

Answerest thou nothing? – A different and illegal plan, to excite the prisoner so that he would make some incriminating confession. R2781:2


63 But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God. Jesus held his peace – He was not there to defend himself; and, if he had been, there was no need for defence. There was nothing criminal in what he had said respecting the Temple. R2781:2

Knowing that the truth was not desired and would avail nothing with these men who so warmly cherished murder in their hearts. R1809:5

I adjure thee – I put thee under oath. R2781:2

The Son of God – Not Jehovah himself. R2781:4,5

The charge of blasphemy was based upon his claim of being a Son of God, not the Father himself; that thus he was placing himself on a parity with God, as being of the same kind or nature. R2781:5

For Jesus to keep quiet would have been to deny this great truth and to have failed to give proper witness. R5561:4


64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven. Jesus saith – Our Lord was not bound to answer this question, which he well knew would be used to incriminate him as a blasphemer. R2781:3

To have remained silent would have been to deny himself, denying the truth, and denying the High Priest of the nation the knowledge and the corresponding responsibility of the hour. R3888:5

Thou hast said – That is my name. R3888:5

That is, I assent to what you have said; or, I am the Messiah, the Son of God. R3888:5, 2781:3

Hereafter – In the Millennial age, at his second coming. R3888:5, 5408:6

Ye shall see – A declaration that those who there witnessed his humiliation and mock trial should in due time recognize him as the honored of God. R2781:3

Right hand of power – Right hand signifies the chief place, position of excellence or favor, next to the chief ruler. A92

"Sit thou on my right hand until I make thine enemies thy footstool." (Psa. 110:1) A92, A93

Seated at the Father's right hand in the sense of being given this permanent position of honor and dignity. R5408:6

Honored with a superior station, a position above all others. R2935:2

Jesus will be on the right hand when coming, and will remain on the right hand during the Millennial age and forever. A93

The power and glory of his Kingdom, which he had previously affirmed was not of this world but of the world to come, wherein dwelleth righteousness. R1809:5

In the testing of mankind, after the Mediatorial reign, Jesus will be the Father's representative. R4999:4

In the clouds – The time of trouble. B138

Of heaven – The powers of spiritual control. A318


Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man – When Jesus said this, what did he mean? Is he saying that the high priest, Caiaphas, was not guilty of the second death (for if he had been, how could he, in any manner, 'see' the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power?)
65 Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy. Rent his clothes – Greek, simla, or upper garment. R2781:3

His very robes were symbolic of the blessed one who stood in their midst, fulfilling to the letter the predictions of the prophets. R1809:5

Implying to the Sanhedrin that, as a representative of God amongst them, he had heard something awful indeed. R5561:4

As an expression of his pretended righteous indignation. R3889:1

Spoken blasphemy – No charges of treason or sedition were made. Such would have been out of order. Because Jews held their right to freedom from the Roman yoke, treason to Rome would have been loyalty to Judaism. R2312:6


He hath spoken blashpemy – To the corrupt high priest who was so used to flatteries and praises, to hear Jesus speak the truth was too much for him to take.
66 What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death. What think ye? – Apparently only two refrained from this vote--Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimathea; both had great respect for Jesus. R5561:4

They answered – As prearranged. R2781:3

Guilty of death – Condemned by the high priest as a blasphemer and malefactor. R5561:5

The Jews, who caused the crucifixion of Jesus, certainly did so in much the same spirit which led St. Paul, then Saul of Tarsus, to cause the stoning of St. Stephen. R4710:6


He is guilty of death – How dare Jesus tell them the truth! This is something they were no longer accustomed to hear. Naturally they would consider him worthy of death. - Clearly this displayed their true condition of heart. It is not Jesus, but they who were worthy of death.
67 Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands, Then – During the interim between the 3 a.m. examination and the 5 a.m. formal conviction of our Lord. R2470:5

Did they – The servants, manifesting the same spirit as their masters. Their methods were ruder because they were more ignorant and coarse. R2470:4

Spit in his face – "He shall see of the travail of his soul and shall be satisfied." (Isa. 53:11) E52

Low minds delight in the misfortunes of those whom they realize to be their superiors. R2470:5

How do we receive the buffetings, the trials, the "contradictions of sinners"? Are we similarly patient and long-suffering? R3889:4

Others smote him – "I gave my back to the smiters and my cheeks to them that plucked off my hair; I hid not my face for shame and spitting" (Isa. 50:6) E52

"Consider him who endured such contradiction of sinners against himself." (Heb. 12:3) R2781:6


68 Saying, Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, Who is he that smote thee?

69 Now Peter sat without in the palace: and a damsel came unto him, saying, Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee. Peter sat without – St. John, because of an acquaintance with the high priest's family, penetrated further into the palace than St. Peter, who stood in the courtyard. R4712:4

In the palace – Courageous enough to enter, even after having cut off the ear of one of the priest's servants. (John 18:15,16) R5202:2, 4711:4


70 But he denied before them all, saying, I know not what thou sayest. But he denied – Peter had been too sure of his own stability, too confident of his loyalty. He was entrapped by the Adversary along the very line of his boasting. R4712:5

The weaknesses, faults and blemishes of his character were of his flesh and not of his real heart intention. R4711:6


71 And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth.
72 And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man.
73 And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.
74 Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. Then – An illustration of God's Temple class upon those who leave symbolic Babylon, following the casting off of nominal Israel. C188

Began he to curse – Foreshadowing the testing of the sanctuary class now. C189

I know not the man – But this sin was before the Spirit was given. F224


75 And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly. And wept bitterly – We know not what his prayers were, but we may be sure they were full of deep contrition that he had denied the Master. R5312:5

It is said that for the rest of his life Peter arose every morning at cock-crowing to remember afresh this denial of his Lord. R3368:1

The weeping showed that the denial was merely the result of weakness of the flesh. R5202:2

The weaknesses, the faults, the blemishes of his character were of his flesh and not of his real heart intention. R4711:6

Peter was sifted (Luke 22:31), and almost failed; but, being "clean," true at heart, he was enabled to come off victorious. Judas also was tested, and he proved to be unclean. C189

Those who fail today should, too, weep bitterly for transgressions and repent and profit by their experiences. R4712:5


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