The Hidden Life Of Jesus

By Johnny Tatum






At the Garden of Gethsemane, our sins were placed on Jesus.  Not only was this an accounting matter (all of our sins were put on His account) and a legal matter (our sins were put on Him, He was declared guilty, and He paid the death penalty for it), it was also a physical matter (our sins were physically put on Him) Sins have surrounded Me; My iniquities have overwhelmed Me—Jesus saw our sins being placed on Him and He felt the impact of it.  Jesus does not realize it yet, but the relationship with His Father is broken; Jesus had become Sin at Gethsemane and His Father could not fellowship with Him.  Why not?  The Father cannot fellowship with Sin.


Presented In The Gospels:


In the middle of the night, Judas led about 200 temple police and 200 dispatched Roman soldiers, the commander, the chief priests, and the Pharisees to the place where he knew Jesus would be: the Garden of Gethsemane.  Judas proceeded to betray his Friend with signal kisses—the lowest act ever done in the history of the world.  In John 18:


So the Roman cohort and the commander, and the officers of the Jews, arrested Jesus and bound Him,


The armed troops laid hands on Jesus, seized and bound Him, and dragged Him off to trial.





Before Annas


Jesus’ first preliminary trial is before Annas.  Actually, I say trial, however, it is not a trial; it is a plot to kill Jesus because He has exposed them as frauds.


and led Him to Annas first; for he was father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. (John 18:12-13)


Annas was probably a descendant of Aaron; and, according to Jewish law, he probably had the legal right to be the high priest, who served for life.  However, Annas withdrew from his post after Rome suggested he let others serve.  In the people’s minds, Annas was always the real leader; however, others legally served, thus satisfying Rome.


The high priest then questioned Jesus about His disciples, and about His teaching.


The questions Annas asks Jesus are illegal.  Why?  According to Jewish law: (1) an individual could not incriminate himself—all evidence brought forth at a trial had to be based on witnesses—and (2) an individual was innocent until proven guilty.


So Jesus’ response is based on the fact that Annas’ questioning is illegal:


Jesus answered him, “I have spoken openly to the world; I always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all the Jews come together; and I spoke nothing in secret.  Why do you question Me?  Question those who have heard what I spoke to them; these know what I said.”


Jesus says I taught openly everywhere.  And then He is asking Annas Where are your witnesses?  Jesus does not expect a legal trial, but He is going to expose them for the frauds that they are.


Of course, one did not do that to this high priest:


When He had said this, one of the officers standing nearby struck Jesus, saying, “Is that the way You answer the high priest?”


What an outrage!


However, Jesus is calm, He is in control, and He responds with no anger or vengeance:


Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken wrongly, testify the wrong; but if rightly, why do you strike Me?”


In another words I just asked for witnesses; is that wrong?


Annas is very frustrated, because he cannot find any incriminating evidence with which to indict Jesus.


So Annas sent Him bound to Caiaphas the high priest. (John 18:19-24)


While Annas is talking to Jesus—it is around two o’clock in the morning—Caiaphas (Annas’ son-in-law), the legal high priest, is rounding up at least a quorum of the Sanhedrin for a trial.


Before Caiaphas


Annas sends Jesus to the court of the high priest, Caiaphas, for the second part of His trial, in Matthew 26:


And those who had seized Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were gathered together.  But Peter also was following Him at a distance as far as the courtyard of the high priest, and entered in, and sat down with the officers to see the outcome.  Now the chief priests, the elders, and the whole council sought false testimony against Jesus, that they might put Him to death; and they found none.  Even though many false witnesses came forward, they found none.  But at last two false witnesses came forward and said, “This man said ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days.’”


In this trial, the Sanhedrin drag up witnesses to unveil something that Jesus has done, but what they present is nothing This Man says He is going to destroy the Temple and build it in three day.  Of course, that does not go anywhere.


So finally:


And the high priest stood up, and said to Him, “Have you no answer?  What is this that these testify against you?”


You would think that Jesus would defend Himself since He is innocent, however, He does not:


But Jesus kept silent.


When the high priest asks What about these charges? Jesus is silent.


Finally, Caiaphas turns to Jesus:


The high priest answered Him, “I adjure you by the living God, that you tell us whether you are the Messiah, the Son of God.”




Jesus said to him, “You have said it.


You said it meaning Yes!  [Jesus is not being equivocal; it was not a figure of speech.]  Jesus confirms I am the Messiah, the Son of God.


Note:  When Jesus is asked about the charges against Him, He does not say anything, but when Jesus is asked if He is the Messiah, He answers Yes.


Nevertheless, I tell you, henceforth you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power, and coming on the clouds of the sky.”


It is obvious that Caiaphas knew all that because Oh, and all of a sudden, he is outraged at this [so-called] blasphemy.  So Caiaphas tears his clothes and decrees that Jesus must be killed:


Then the high priest tore his robes, saying, “He has blasphemed!  What further need do we have of witnesses?  Behold, you have now heard the blasphemy; What do you think?”  They answered, “He is deserving of death!”


Note: A man condemns God of blasphemy!


Then Jesus is physically abused:


Then they spat in His face and beat Him with their fists; and others slapped Him, and said, “Prophesy to us, You Christ; who is the one who hit You?” (Matthew 26:57-68)


The guards of the high priest mock Jesus – spit on Jesus – beat on Jesus.



What is Jesus thinking at this time?  We know from Isaiah 50.




6 I gave My back to those who strike Me, And My cheeks to those who pluck out the beard; I did not cover My face from humiliation and spitting.


Jesus could easily retaliate—He could not turn His back to them or He could at least cover His face—but He does not, which proves two things:


  1. Jesus is in control.


  1. Jesus is letting it happen.


Who deserves that spitting – those slaps – getting their hair pulled out?  We do!  Why does Jesus let them do that to Him?  That is what Jesus is accomplishing—


He is suffering everything we would have to suffer, so we do not have to!


Application Question: Why do we choose to suffer so many things in our lives that Jesus has already suffered for us?


Presented In The Gospels:


Since the trial before the high priest is conducted illegally—it takes place in the middle of the night—the Sanhedrin council ratify their decision to put Jesus to death at a second trial:


And when it was day, the Council of elders of the people assembled, both chief priests and scribes, and they led Him away to their council, saying, “If You are the Christ, tell us.”  But He said to them, “If I tell you, you will not believe; and if I ask a question, you will not answer.  But from now on the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the power of God.”  And they all said, “Are You the Son of God, then?”  And He said to them, “Yes, I am.”  And they said, “What further need do we have of testimony?  For we have heard it ourselves from His own mouth.”


When Jesus is asked if He is the Son of God, He answer Yes, I am.


Now the Sanhedrin face another problem: Rome allows the Jews to decree the death sentence, but not to execute it.  So the Jews need Rome’s approval for Jesus to be crucified; He must be sent over to Pilate (Roman governor).


And they bound Him, and led Him away, and delivered Him up to Pilate the governor.  (Matthew 27:1-2)





Before Pilate


We pick up in Matthew 27, where Jesus goes before Pilate at the Praetorium in Jerusalem:


Now Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor questioned Him, saying, “Are You the King of the Jews?”


Is Jesus going to be silent?—


And Jesus said to him, “It is as you say.”


Jesus answers Pilate Yes.


But then the chief priests and elders make charges against Jesus:


And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He made no answer.


Jesus is silent.


Then Pilate said to Him, “Do You not hear now many things they testify against You?”  And He did not answer him with regard to even a single charge, so that the governor was quite amazed. (Matthew 27:11-14)


Jesus remains silent about the charges.



What is Jesus thinking?


[ISAIAH 50, continued]


7 For the Lord GOD helps Me, Therefore, I am not disgraced; Therefore, I have set My face like flint, And I know that I will not be ashamed.


In Isaiah 53, we get another picture:


He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth;


Again, we are talking about Jesus’ trials.


Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth. (Isaiah 53:7)


Jesus does not open His mouth; He does not answer.  Why not?


Let Us Think About This: At His trials, Jesus is asked a lot of questions that He responds to with words, or with silence.  When Annas asks What about Your teaching?  Jesus says I taught openly everywhere.  When Caiaphas asks What about these charges? Jesus is silent.  When Caiaphas asks Are You the Messiah, the Son of God? Jesus says Yes, I am.  When Pilate asks Are You the King of the Jews?  Jesus answers Yes.  When Pilate asks What about these charges against You?  Jesus is silent.  It seems as though the issue is the charges; Jesus is being selective—


When they bring up charges against Jesus, He does not answer; however, Jesus answers everything else.


We have been seeing the depths to which Jesus identified with us, including:


At the Temptation (Satan’s unsuccessful assault on Jesus—see our Matthew 4:1-11 study): Jesus makes it clear that He is our Representative and He identifies with us.  Jesus lives a sinless life; Jesus never sinned.


At the Garden of Gethsemane: All of our sins are dumped on Jesus My iniquities have overwhelmed Me.  He did not commit those iniquities (sins), but He [willingly] bore our sins.


And here—


At the Trials: Jesus is asked a lot of questions that He answers; however, when He is asked about specific sins, He becomes silent—


Are You the Messiah?  Jesus says Yes!


Are You the Son of God?  Jesus says Yes!


What about these charges?  Jesus is silent.


Are You the King of the Jews?  Jesus says Yes!


What about these charges?  Jesus is silent.


Why is Jesus silent?  Anytime Annas – Caiaphas – Pilate ask What about these charges against You; are these charges true?




Basically, Jesus pleads no contest.


And that is why I love the following verse:


He is not ashamed to call us His brothers.  (Hebrews 2:11)


When Jesus took on our sin, He did not do it with a martyr-type attitude; He did it with an attitude of We are all in this together; I am identifying with My brothers and sisters.  Therefore, at His trials, Jesus does not answer His accusers for our sake; He willingly takes the blame.


Presented In The Gospels:


Before Herod Antipas


Pilate learns that Jesus is a Galilean, and since Herod (governor of Galilee) is in Jerusalem for the Passover, Pilate decides to pass off Jesus to Herod.  Why?  Pilate does not want to make a decision about Jesus; he wants to get rid of Him.  And Herod is his answer, or so he thinks:


But when Pilate heard it, he asked whether the man was a Galilean.  And when he learned that He belonged to Herod’s jurisdiction, he sent Him to Herod, who himself also was in Jerusalem at that time.  Now Herod was very glad when he saw Jesus; for he had wanted to see Him for a long time, because he had been hearing about Him and was hoping to see some sign performed by Him.  And he questioned Him at some length; but He answered him nothing.  And the chief priests and the scribes were standing there, accusing Him vehemently.  And Herod with his soldiers, after treating Him with contempt and mocking Him, dressed Him in a gorgeous robe and sent Him back to Pilate. (Luke 23:6-11)


Jesus does not say anything at all because of His utter disdain for Herod, so after this brief trial, Herod sends Jesus back to Pilate.


Before Pilate


Pilate responds to the weight of the matter on his shoulders:


Pilate said to them, “Take Him yourselves, and crucify Him, for I find no guilt in Him.” (John 19:6)


As we have seen, Jesus’ bitterest enemies could not find anything on Him; and now, here is a neutral observer (a Roman) who cannot find anything Jesus has done wrong either.


Pilate wants to get rid of Jesus; he wants to avoid sending Jesus to the Cross; and, he wants to avoid the Jews complaining to Tiberius about him.  In what ways does Pilate try to get rid of Jesus during the course of events?


  1. He tells the Jews Judge Him on your own Law.  That does not work—the Jews want Jesus put to death, but they had lost the right We are not permitted to put anyone to death.


  1. He sends Jesus to Herod for a short trial.  That does not work—Herod sends Jesus back to Pilate.


  1. He applies the Passover prisoner release program.  That does not work—the Jews ask to have a vicious murderer, Barabbas, go free instead of Jesus.


  1. He has Jesus scourged with a whip that had pieces of bone, metal, and glass on it.  That does not work—the Jews are not satisfied with this brutality Crucify, crucify!


  1. He tells the Jews Take Him and crucify Him, for I find no guilt in Him.  Does that work?


Note: I think we can say that God is forcing Pilate to make a decision about Jesus.


The Jews want Jesus dead, and they want Pilate to take all the responsibility:


The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and by that law He ought to die because He made Himself out to be the Son of God.”


About what law are the Jews talking?  Blasphemy, which was, according to Jewish law, a capital offense that called for the death penalty.


From Pilate’s perspective, Son of God would have rung a bell with him: (1) he thinks on the Roman tradition in which the gods would come down to earth and live like human beings; (2) he reflects on his wife’s message to not deal with that righteous Man because He troubled her in a dream; (3) he asks himself Did I just flog a god?  So Pilate questions Jesus again:


Therefore when Pilate heard this statement, he was even more afraid; and he entered into the Praetorium again and said to Jesus, “Where are You from?”


Pilate knows Jesus is from Nazareth; he is asking Him Are You from the earth or are you from where the gods live?


But Jesus gave him no answer. (John 19:7-9)


Jesus is silent.





Back To: The Hidden Life Of Jesus Series Page

Radical Grace Bible Study Page


Copyright © 1996, 2002 Worldnet Grace Ministries