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The Oxford Study Bible Study Bible supplemented with commentary from scholars of various religions.

Chapter 26

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1 WHEN Jesus had finished all these discourses he said to his disciples, 2‘You know that in two days' time it will be Passover, when the Son of Man will be handed over to be crucified.’

3Meanwhile the chief priests and the elders of the people met in the house of the high priest, Caiaphas, 4and discussed a scheme to seize Jesus and put him to death. 5‘It must not be during the festival,’ they said, ‘or there may be rioting among the people.’

6 JESUS was at Bethany in the house of Simon the leper, 7when a woman approached him with a bottle of very costly perfume; and she began to pour it over his head as he sat at table. 8The disciples were indignant when they saw it. ‘Why this waste?’ they said. 9‘It could have been sold for a large sum and the money given to the poor.’ 10Jesus noticed, and said to them, ‘Why make trouble for the woman? It is a fine thing she has done for me. 11You have the poor among you always, but you will not always have me. 12When she poured this perfume on my body it was her way of preparing me for burial. 13Truly I tell you: wherever this gospel is proclaimed throughout the world, what she has done will be told as her memorial.’

14 THEN one of the Twelve, the man called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 15and said, ‘What will you give me to betray him to you?’ They weighed him out thirty silver pieces. 16From that moment he began to look for an opportunity to betray him.

17On the first day of Unleavened Bread the disciples came and asked Jesus, ‘Where would you like us to prepare the Passover for you?’ 18He told them to go to a certain man in the city with this message: ‘The Teacher says, “My appointed time is near; I shall keep the Passover with my disciples at your house.” ’ 19The disciples did as Jesus directed them and prepared the Passover.

20In the evening he sat down with the twelve disciples; 21and during supper he said, ‘Truly I tell you: one of you will betray me.’ 22Greatly distressed at this, they asked him one by one, ‘Surely you do not mean me, Lord?’ 23He answered, ‘One who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. 24The Son of Man is going the way appointed for him in the scriptures; but alas for that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would be better for that man if he had never been born.’ 25Then Judas spoke, the one who was to betray him: ‘Rabbi, surely you do not mean me?’ Jesus replied, ‘You have said it.’

26During supper Jesus took bread, and having said the blessing he broke it and gave it to the disciples with the words: ‘Take this and eat; this is my body.’ 27Then he took a cup, and having offered thanks to God he gave it to them with the words: ‘Drink from it, all of you. 28For this is my blood, the blood of the covenant, shed for many for the forgiveness of sins. 29I tell you, never again shall I drink from this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in the kingdom of my Father.’

30After singing the Passover hymn, they went out to the mount of Olives. 31Then Jesus said to them, ‘Tonight you will all lose faith because of me; for it is written: “I will strike the shepherd and the sheep of his flock will be scattered.” 32But after I am raised, I shall go ahead of you into Galilee.’ 33Peter replied, ‘Everyone else may lose faith because of you, but I never will.’ 34Jesus said to him, ‘Truly I tell you: tonight before the cock crows you will disown me three times.’ 35Peter said, ‘Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.’ And all the disciples said the same.

36 JESUS then came with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, ‘Sit here while I go over there to pray.’ 37He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee. Distress and anguish overwhelmed him, 38and he said to them, ‘My heart is ready to break with grief. Stop here, and stay awake with me.’ 39Then he went on a little farther, threw himself down, and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass me by. Yet not my will but yours.’

40He came back to the disciples and found them asleep; and he said to Peter, ‘What! Could none of you stay awake with me for one hour? 41Stay awake, and pray that you may be spared the test. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.’

42He went away a second time and prayed: ‘My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to pass me by without my drinking it, your will be done.’ 43He came again and found them asleep, for their eyes were heavy. 44So he left them and went away again and prayed a third time, using the same words as before.

45Then he came to the disciples and said to them, ‘Still asleep? Still resting? The hour has come! The Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. 46Up, let us go! The traitor is upon us.’

47He was still speaking when Judas, one of the Twelve, appeared, and with him a great crowd armed with swords and cudgels, sent by the chief priests and the elders of the nation. 48The traitor had given them this sign: ‘The one I kiss is your man; seize him.’ 49Going straight up to Jesus, he said, ‘Hail, Rabbi!’ and kissed him. 50Jesus replied, ‘Friend, do what you are here to do.’ Then they came forward, seized Jesus, and held him fast.

51At that moment one of those with Jesus reached for his sword and drew it, and struck the high priest's servant, cutting off his ear. 52But Jesus said to him, ‘Put up your sword. All who take the sword die by the sword. 53Do you suppose that I cannot appeal for help to my Father, and at once be sent more than twelve legions of angels? 54But how then would the scriptures be fulfilled, which say that this must happen?'

55Then Jesus spoke to the crowd: ‘Do you take me for a bandit, that you have come out with swords and cudgels to arrest me? Day after day I sat teaching in the temple, and you did not lay hands on me. 56But this has all happened to fulfil what the prophets wrote.’

Then the disciples all deserted him and ran away.

57 JESUS was led away under arrest to the house of Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and elders were assembled. 58Peter followed him at a distance till he came to the high priest's courtyard; he went in and sat down among the attendants, to see how it would all end.

59The chief priests and the whole Council tried to find some allegation against Jesus that would warrant a death sentence; 60but they failed to find one, though many came forward with false evidence. Finally two men 61alleged that he had said, ‘I can pull down the temple of God, and rebuild it in three days.’ 62At this the high priest rose and said to him, ‘Have you no answer to the accusations that these witnesses bring against you?’ 63But Jesus remained silent. The high priest then said, ‘By the living God I charge you to tell us: are you the Messiah, the Son of God?’ 64Jesus replied, ‘The words are yours a 26:64 The words are yours: or It is as you say. . But I tell you this: from now on you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Almighty and coming on the clouds of heaven.’ 65At these words the high priest tore his robes and exclaimed, ‘This is blasphemy! Do we need further witnesses? You have just heard the blasphemy. 66What is your verdict?’ ‘He is guilty,’ they answered; ‘he should die.’

67Then they spat in his face and struck him with their fists; some said, as they beat him, 68‘Now, Messiah, if you are a prophet, tell us who hit you.’

69Meanwhile Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard when a servant-girl accosted him; ‘You were with Jesus the Galilean,’ she said. 70Peter denied it in front of them all. ‘I do not know what you are talking about,’ he said. 71He then went out to the gateway, where another girl, seeing him, said to the people there, ‘He was with Jesus of Nazareth.’ 72Once again he denied it, saying with an oath, ‘I do not know the man.’ 73Shortly afterwards the bystanders came up and said to Peter, ‘You must be one of them; your accent gives you away!’ 74At this he started to curse and declared with an oath: ‘I do not know the man.’ At that moment a cock crowed; 75and Peter remembered how Jesus had said, ‘Before the cock crows you will disown me three times.’ And he went outside, and wept bitterly.

Notes:

a 26:64 The words are yours: or It is as you say.

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