Still when the religious authorities, who were persecuting Jesus for allegedly violating the same Law (Torah) that HE gave, brought Him up on the night before they killed Him, they violated every single letter of the Law they claimed to uphold! In less than 24 hours, there were, therefore, six (6) illegal trials conducting against the Messiah by evil men, bent on temporarily getting rid of the Man Who had threatened their corrupt lifestyle.
The deck was stacked against Jesus. Although He went willingly to the Cross to pay the penalty of sin for us, was nonetheless, railroad through a corrupt system. There were six illegal trials under both Jewish and Roman law:
RELIGIOUS TRIALS (BEFORE TEMPLE PRIESTS):
Illegal Religious Trial #1: TRIALS WERE ILLEGAL (AT NIGHT/NO CHARGES): Jesus was arrested at night after being betrayed by Judas and immediately taken to trial in front of a man who had no legal right to question anybody, far less some arrested by the official Temple Guard. Annas was the former high priest with no legal standing AND he was also questioning a man, under this illegal authority, who was not charged with anything.
Illegal Religious Trial #2: FALSE WITNESSES: The second trial, less than two hours after the first corrupt one in front of Annas, was before the real Jewish High Priest - Caiaphas, who was appointed by his father-in-law Annas. It is against ANY law to have false witnesses (Commandment #9). We know from John 8:6 that the religious authorities were looking for something they could use against Jesus to bring a charge against Him. Still the Gospels showed that many of their pharisee priests lied openly about Jesus' teaching even though He did so openly in the Temple for three years.
Illegal Religious Trial #3: PASSOVER: Apart from the fact that the "trials" were conducted at 2 am (night) with no charges and false witnesses, it was against the Law of the Hebrews to conduct a trial on a Feast Day! To wit, it was Passover, the most sacred of days on the Jewish Calendar and which God had instituted into perpetuity for them. But powerful men, full of hate and acting irrationally, cared nothing about breaking the same Law they claimed to be standing up for.
SECULAR (ROMAN) TRIALS BEFORE PILATE:
Illegal Roman Trial #1: CHARGES CHANGED: When the Temple priests brought Jesus to Pilate the first time, they had by that time "cooked the books" and changed the charge from "Blasphemy" against God to "treason" because they knew Pilate would not prosecute a religious charge which he knew or cared nothing about.
Illegal Roman Trial #2: FALSE IMPRISONMENT: Pilate violated supposedly civilized European (Roman) law when he kept Jesus under arrest, knowing he was innocent. Jesus did not absolve him of that sin, in fact He told Pilate that those who handed Him over to Pilate had the greater sin. This too will be closed one day, on Judgment Day before the Great White Throne of Judgment when death and hades will be cast into hell forever.
Illegal Roman Trial #3: KANGAROO COURT JUSTICE: This final one was the kicker. Pilate knowingly let an innocent Man be killed. He could wash his hands with all the water in all the oceans, the Blood stains will never come off as the stain was on his soul. He did the bidding of evil "religious" men to save his own temporary powerful status and lost his soul. There was no proof of anything, no evidence presented and still, Pilate allowed Jesus to be sent to the Cross to die. The thing is - He knew the Truth and put it in writing at the top of the Cross for all History to note "Jesus, King of the Jews". What Pilate meant for mocking, God used for the facts of the matter.
VERDICT OF ALL SIX ILLEGAL TRIALS: GUILTY
Even the verdict was illegal (apart from Pilate's) for the following reasons:
- The Law said the Sanhedrin council should have been polled (like a real jury). This did not happen.
- The Law said that Jesus was supposed to have a defense counsel. None was allowed.
- The Law said there should have been 24 hours before any verdict and sentence and that if the sentence was execution, there was to be a period of waiting of three (3) days before execution, so that the Sanhedrin- the Jewish religious "supreme court" could pray and fast to see if they made the right decision! NONE OF THIS WAS DONE!
Jesus was rushed through this ENTIRE six trial process in less than six hours and was executed by the priests and Pilate in less than 12 hours. But He turned those three (3) days of waiting upside down on its head. He rose from the Dead on the Third Day and has been turning this world upside down for almost 2000 years now!!! As for these illegal trials, all of this will be addressed in God's Courtroom on Judgment Day when the Chief Judge of the Universe will be the same Jesus Whom they did all this to, on that fateful day for Mankind, on Passover, 33 AD.
THANKS BE TO GOD FOR HIS INDESCRIBABLE GIFT.
GOSPEL REFERENCES FOR THE SIX ILLEGAL TRIALS OF CHRIST: