Matthew 27#Mt 27:1| CXXVIII. THIRD STAGE OF JEWISH TRIAL. JESUS FORMALLY CONDEMNED BY THE SANHEDRIN AND LED TO PILATE. (Jerusalem. Friday after dawn.) #Mt 27:1,2 Mr 15:1 Lu 22:66-23:1 Joh 18:28| All the chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus. See TFG "#Mr 15:1|". #Mt 27:2| And delivered him up to Pilate the governor. See TFG "#Mr 15:1|". #Mt 27:3| CXXXII. REMORSE AND SUICIDE OF JUDAS. (In the temple and outside the wall of Jerusalem. Friday morning.) #Mt 27:3-10 Ac 1:18,19| Then Judas, who betrayed him, when he saw that he was condemned. Judas, having no reason to fear the enemies of Jesus, probably stood in their midst and witnessed the entire trial. (TFG 719) #Mt 27:4| I have sinned in that I betrayed innocent blood. There are two Greek words which are translated "repented," the one properly so translated, metanoeo, which means literally "to know after" and which therefore means a change of mind or purpose; and the other, metamellomai, which is used here and which means literally "to care after," indicates a sorrow for the past. The first should be translated "repent"; the second, "regret." Trench draws the distinction thus: "He who has changed his mind about the past is in the way to change everything; he who has an after care may have little or nothing more than a selfish dread of the consequences of what he has done." Considering the prophecy which had been uttered with regard to Judas' act (#Mt 26:24|), he had good reason to fear the consequences. While he testifies as to the innocence of Jesus, he expresses no affection for him. What is that to us? see thou to it. The rulers did not share with Judas the wish to undo what had been done. They have been censured for not receiving the testimony which Judas gave as to the innocence of Jesus. But as they condemned Jesus upon his own testimony, any evidence which Judas might give would be, from their standpoint, irrelevant and immaterial. Could Judas testify that Jesus was indeed the Son of God? If our Lord's own testimony to this effect was regarded as blasphemy, nothing which Judas could say would change the case. But the testimony of Judas, in the free, untechnical court of public opinion, is of vast weight and importance. It shows that one who had every opportunity of knowing Jesus, and who was sordid enough to betray him, was yet forced for conscience' sake to admit that there was no reason why he should have done so. (TFG 720) #Mt 27:5| He cast down the pieces of silver into the sanctuary, and departed. Judas found the chief priests in the sanctuary. Having obtained from Pilate the condemnation of Jesus, they hastened back to the temple to discharge their morning duties. This gave the soldiers time to mock Jesus, and Pilate time to order and prepare the crucifixion. And so, though Jesus was sentenced at six o'clock in the morning (#Joh 19:14|), he was not crucified until the third hour, or nine o'clock (#Mr 15:25|). Thus the priests were enabled to be present at the crucifixion, or at least very soon after the crosses were erected. Judas, finding that they would not receive his money, cast it down before them that his hands might be no longer burnt by holding it. (TFG 720-721) #Mt 27:6| It is not lawful to put them into the treasury, since it is the price of blood. The law of God made no provision as to the uses of blood money; it was the tradition of the elders which thus forbade to put it into the treasury. Theirs was a strange conscience indeed, which could take out the Lord's money (and, under the then existing Jewish theocratic government, all public money was the Lord's money) and spend it for blood, but when it was so spent they could not put it back! Moreover, theirs was a strange admission. If the money given to Judas was properly expended for the arrest of a real criminal, it was justice money, and not blood money at all. (TFG 721) #Mt 27:7| And bought with them the potter's field, to bury strangers in. That is, the foreigners who died in Jerusalem. Whether rich or poor, they were not wanted in Jewish graveyards. The potter's field, being excavated for clay, would be of little value, and would sell cheap. (TFG 721) #Mt 27:8| Wherefore that field was called, the field of blood, unto this day. This mark of time shows that Matthew's Gospel was written a good many years after the crucifixion. (TFG 721) #Mt 27:9,10| Then was fulfilled that which was spoken through Jeremiah. This quotation is not found in any writings of Jeremiah which we have, and as there are no other indications of lost writings of that prophet, it is reasonable to suppose that Matthew refers to #Zec 11:12,13|; and that early transcribers miscopied the name, which, in the Greek, could be done by changing only two letters; namely: "i" for "z" and "m" for "r." And they took the thirty pieces of silver, etc. The prophecy is one of the third class described previously. See TFG "#Mt 2:17|". (TFG 721-722) #Mt 27:11| CXXIX. FIRST STAGE OF THE ROMAN TRIAL. JESUS BEFORE PILATE FOR THE FIRST TIME. (Jerusalem. Early Friday morning.) #Mt 27:11-14 Mr 15:2-5 Lu 23:2-5 Joh 18:28-38| Jesus stood before the governor. Jesus is called from the guards who have him in custody and stands alone before Pilate that the governor may investigate his case privately. Art thou the King of the Jews? etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:2|". #Mt 27:12| When he was accused by the chief priests and elders. See TFG "#Lu 23:2|". He answered nothing. When Pilate left the Praetorium to speak with the Jewish rulers, it is evident that Jesus was led out with him, and so stood there in the presence of his accusers. (TFG 708) #Mt 27:13| Hearest thou not how many things they witness against thee? See TFG "#Mr 15:4|". #Mt 27:14| He gave him no answer, not even to one word. See TFG "#Mr 15:5|". #Mt 27:15| CXXXI. THIRD STAGE OF THE ROMAN TRIAL. PILATE RELUCTANTLY SENTENCES HIM TO CRUCIFIXION. (Friday. Toward sunrise.) #Mt 27:15-30 Mr 15:6-19 Lu 23:13-25 Joh 18:39-19:16| Now at the feast, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:6|". Mt 27:16 And they had then a notable prisoner, called Barabbas. See TFG "#Mr 15:7|". #Mt 27:17| Whom will ye that I release to you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ? See TFG "#Mr 15:9|". #Mt 27:19| Have thou nothing to do with that righteous man, etc. This message of Pilate's wife suggests that the name and face of Jesus were not unknown to Pilate's household. Pilate would be much influenced by such a message. The Romans generally were influenced by all presages, and Suetonius tells us that both Julius and Augustus Caesar attached much importance to dreams. (TFG 712) #Mt 27:20| The chief priests and the elders persuaded the multitude, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:11|". #Mt 27:23| Why, what evil hath he done? etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:14|". #Mt 27:24| When Pilate saw that he prevailed nothing. See TFG "#Lu 23:23|". He took water, and washed his hands before the multitude. Pilate's act was symbolic, intended to show that he regarded the crucifixion of Jesus as a murder, and therefore meant to wash his hands of the guilt thereof. The Jewish law made the act perfectly familiar to the Jews (#De 21:1-9|). (TFG 718) #Mt 27:25| His blood be on us, and on our children. Had the Jewish rulers not been frenzied by hatred, the sight of Pilate washing his hands (#Mt 27:24|) would have checked them; but in their rage they take upon themselves and their children all the responsibility. At the siege of Jerusalem they answer in part for the blood of Christ, but God alone determines the extent of their responsibility, and he alone can say when their punishment shall end. But we know that it ends for all when they repentantly seek his forgiveness. The punishments of God are not vindictive, they are the awards of Justice meted out by a merciful hand. (TFG 718) #Mt 27:26| But Jesus he scourged, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:15|". #Mt 27:27| Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the Praetorium, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:16|". #Mt 27:28| And they stripped him, and put on him a scarlet robe. See TFG "#Mr 15:17|". #Mt 27:29| And they platted a crown of thorns. See TFG "#Mr 15:17|". And mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! See TFG "#Mr 15:18|". #Mt 27:30| And they spat upon him. See TFG "#Mr 14:65|". #Mt 27:31| CXXXIII. THE CRUCIFIXION. A. ON THE WAY TO THE CROSS. (Within and without Jerusalem. Friday morning.) #Mt 27:31-34 Mr 15:20-23 Lu 23:26-33 Joh 19:17| And when they had mocked him, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:20|". #Mt 27:32| They found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:21|". #Mt 27:33| When they were come unto a place called Golgotha. See TFG "#Mr 15:22|". #Mt 27:34| They gave him wine to drink mingled with gall, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:23|". #Mt 27:35| CXXXIII. THE CRUCIFIXION. B. JESUS CRUCIFIED AND REVILED. HIS THREE SAYINGS DURING FIRST THREE HOURS. (Friday morning from nine o'clock till noon.) #Mt 27:35-44 Mr 15:24-32 Lu 23:33-43 Joh 19:18-27| When they had crucified him, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:24|". #Mt 27:36| They sat down and watched him there. They were on guard to prevent any attempt at rescue. (TFG 726) #Mt 27:37| And they set up over his head his accusation written, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:26|". #Mt 27:38| Then are there crucified with him two robbers, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:27|". #Mt 27:39| They that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads. See TFG "#Mr 15:29|". #Mt 27:40| And saying, Thou that destroyest the temple, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:29|". #Mt 27:42| He saved others; himself he cannot save. See TFG "#Mr 15:31|". He is King of Israel, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:32|". #Mt 27:44| And the robbers also that were crucified with him cast upon him the same reproach. See TFG "#Mr 15:32|". #Mt 27:45| CXXXIII. THE CRUCIFIXION. C. DARKNESS THREE HOURS. AFTER FOUR MORE SAYINGS, JESUS EXPIRES. STRANGE EVENTS ATTENDING HIS DEATH. #Mt 27:45-56 Mr 15:33-41 Lu 23:44-49 Joh 19:28-30| Now from the sixth hour, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:33|". #Mt 27:46| And about the ninth hour, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:34|". #Mt 27:47| This man calleth Elijah. See TFG "#Mr 15:35|". #Mt 27:48| One of them ran, and took a sponge, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:36|". #Mt 27:49| The rest said, Let be, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:36|". #Mt 27:50| Jesus cried again with a loud voice. See #Lu 23:46|. And yielded up the spirit. See TFG "#Mr 15:37|". #Mt 27:51| The veil of the temple was rent in two from the top to the bottom. See TFG "#Mr 15:38|". #Mt 27:53| And coming forth out of the tombs after his resurrection. The earthquake, the rending of the rocks, and the consequent opening of the graves (#Mt 27:51,52|), occurred at the moment Jesus died, while the resurrection and visible appearance in the city of the bodies of the saints occurred "after his resurrection," for Jesus himself was the "first-born from the dead" (#Col 1:18|). Matthew chooses to mention the last event here because of its association with the rending of the rocks, which opened the rock-hewn sepulchres in which the saints had slept. There has been much speculation as to what became of these risen saints. We have no positive information, but the natural presumption is, that they ascended to heaven. These resurrections were symbolic, showing that the resurrection of Christ is the resurrection of the race (#1Co 15:22|). (TFG 731-732) #Mt 27:54| Truly this was the Son of God. See TFG "#Mr 15:39|". #Mt 27:55| Many women were there beholding from afar off. See TFG "#Mr 15:40|". Who had followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto him. As to the ministering of these women, see TFG "Lu 8:3". (TFG 733) #Mt 27:56| Among whom was Mary Magdalene, etc. See TFG "#Mr 15:40|", additional note on the four women. #Mt 27:57| CXXXIII. THE CRUCIFIXION. D. JESUS FOUND TO BE DEAD. HIS BODY BURIED AND GUARDED IN THE TOMB. #Mt 27:57-66 Mr 15:42-47 Lu 23:50-56 Joh 19:31-42| A rich man from Arimathaea, named Joseph. See TFG "#Mr 15:43|". #Mt 27:58| This man went to Pilate, and asked for the body of Jesus. See TFG "#Mr 15:43|". #Mt 27:59| A clean linen cloth. A sindon. See TFG "#Mr 14:51|". (TFG 736) #Mt 27:60| And laid it in his own new tomb. To the sindon Joseph adds the honor of a burial in his own tomb. The unused state of the tomb is mentioned to show that there is no shadow of doubt as to whose resurrection opened it. (TFG 736) #Mt 27:61| Mary Magdalene was there, and the other Mary, sitting over against the sepulchre. See notes at #Lu 23:55,56|. #Mt 27:62| Now on the morrow, which is the day after the Preparation, the chief priests and the Pharisees were gathered together unto Pilate. This was not the whole Sanhedrin, but members of it. When did they come to Pilate? Meyer, Cook, etc., say that the Greek word translated "morrow" precludes any other idea than it was after daylight Saturday morning, but Michaelis, Paulus, Kuinoel, etc., say that they came Friday night, and we think their view is correct. The word translated "morrow" also means "the next day." As the Jewish day began at sunset, we know of no other Greek adverb by which Matthew could have expressed the beginning of a day. Had it been the Sabbath morning there is no reason why Matthew should not have said so. By mentioning, instead, the Preparation, he draws the mind back to what we would call Friday night. It is highly improbable that the Jews would leave the tomb of Jesus unguarded for one whole night. Their gathering thus to Pilate in the shades of evening presents a gruesome picture. (TFG 737) #Mt 27:63| After three days I rise again. For this saying, see see TFG "Joh 2:19"; #Mt 12:39,40|. (TFG 738) #Mt 27:64| Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day. Had the phrase "after three days" meant three full days to them, they would have said "until the fourth day." For the Jewish method of counting days, see TFG "Mt 12:40". Lest haply his disciples come and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: and the last error will be worse than the first. The marvelous signs accompanying the death of Jesus appealed to men's fear rather than to their love, and were, therefore, calculated to make a far deeper impression upon his enemies than upon his friends. We find, therefore, these Jewish rulers full of active interest in the dead Christ while his apostles and friends are listless in despair. They, of course, did not think it possible that Jesus could indeed rise, but, seeing the profound impression which the portents attending the crucifixion had made upon the multitude (#Lu 23:48|), and judging the disciples of Jesus by themselves--full of all subtlety and cunning--they grasped at once the idea that the disciples could make a great stir among the people by stealing the body and proclaiming the predicted resurrection. The apostles, on the other hand, when the actual resurrection had taken place, did not learn for fifty days what use to make of it, thus showing they could not have planned a pretended resurrection. (TFG 738) #Mt 27:65| Ye have a guard. The Greek here may be the indicative or the imperative; it is clearly the latter. If the Jews had possessed a guard, they would not have asked for one. Pilate consents to their request by saying, "Have ye a guard:" thereby fully sanctioning their idea. (TFG 738) #Mt 27:66| So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone. They sealed the stone by drawing a string or tape across it and fastening the ends with wax or clay to the surface of the rock on either side. If either seals were broken, that fact would show that the tomb was entered from without. (TFG 738)
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