This Easter, we remember the passion of our Lord. He came to live like us, teach us God’s truth and ultimately suffer and die for us. Christ came to conquer death through His sacrifice and resurrection. Jesus said, “I am the Resurrection and the Life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in Me will never die” (John 11:25).
Crucifixion was one of the most barbaric forms of execution. The Romans adopted this method of torture, but knowing its barbarity made it illegal to crucify a fellow Roman. Crucifixion was designed to produce the maximum amount of pain over the longest period. It was a cruel and disgusting punishment.
Jesus suffered many great injustices for us and was sentenced to death after an illegal trial. At the Lord’s trial, at least twenty-one of the Sanhedrin’s laws were broken.
- 1. No arrest by the religious authority was to be arranged by a bribe.
- 2. No criminal proceedings were to be taken after sunset.
- 3. Judges and Sanhedrin members must not participate in an arrest.
- 4. No trial could take place before the morning sacrifice.
- 5. No secret trial was allowed – only in public.
- 6. Charges are not to be sought from a man after his arrest.
- 7. Trial procedure – first the defence, then the accusation.
- 8. All may argue for acquittal – all may not argue for a guilty verdict.
- 9. Any two witnesses must agree on every detail.
- 10. No allowance is made for the accused to witness against himself.
- 11. The High Priest is forbidden to rend his garments.
- 12. No charges are to originate from the judges.
- 13. A charge of blasphemy must involve the name of God.
- 14. No condemnation of the accused is allowed on the basis of his words alone.
- 15. A verdict could not be announced at night.
- 16. In cases of capital punishment, the trial and verdict cannot occur on the same day.
- 17. Voting for the death penalty is by individual vote – from the youngest to the eldest.
- 18. A unanimous verdict for guilt shows innocence.
- 19. The sentence for a guilty verdict must be given three days after the verdict.
- 20. The judges are to be humane and kind.
- 21. The person condemned to death must not be first beaten or scourged.
He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again– 2 Corinthians 5:15
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