In the Morning

sun rising over a hill

And as soon as it was morning, the chief priests held a consultation with the elders and scribes and the whole council. And they bound Jesus and led him away and delivered him over to Pilate.

Mark 15:1

Wicked People

This is the way people do evil. They create committees. God always calls and uses a person to birth remarkable things. It’s been my experience that rarely anything great comes from a committee.

So, in Mark 15:1 we see the wicked creating a committee. The committee was initiated by the chief priests. But it seems that they didn’t feel like they had enough authority to go by themselves to Pilate, the fifth governor of the Roman province of Judaea. Therefore, the chief priests formed a committee that included the elders, scribes, and the whole council.

Committees are usually created for two reasons: to spread the blame if things go badly and create the perception of a broad constituency that support the decision of the committee. (I know I’m being rather hard on committees, but in my personal experience some, but few, make positive contributions.)

In the Morning

The chief priests believed that their newly formed committee had the power to get the Gentiles to kill Jesus. Notice that verse one says, “And as soon as it was morning.” So, these wicked chief priests had done their dirty work at night, packing their committee with people that hated Jesus and would vote to have Him killed. Then, as quick as a wink, early in the morning they had their committee.

That’s how the wicked work. They don’t trust people and they don’t want justice. They want to pack the committee, pack the pews, pack the universities with people that will follow their leadership rather than the path of justice.

So, for the chief priests, they had an evil coalition that voted to use all their political capital (influence) to affect an unfair, violation of justice, and have Jesus condemned to execution by the Gentiles. Their authority did not include executions. So, they had to persuade the person with the authority to condemn Jesus to death, and they did.

A Perfect Plan Becomes a Pickle

The chief priests’ plan was perfect but would land them in a pickle. And it would have worked if Jesus had been just a man, but Jesus wasn’t what they thought Him to be. The chief priests’ perfect plot played pitifully into Jesus’ plan.

Before Jesus died on the cross, the sky was darkened and when He died there was an earthquake. To these natural testimonies pointing to Jesus’ divinity, the chief priests’ exclusivity to the Holy of Holies was taken from them. And adding insult to injury, dead people were miraculously raised from their graves as a testimony to Jesus being the Messiah (Matthew 27:51).

The chief priests and all the members of their evil committee’s defeat began when Jesus cried out, “It is finished!” (John 19:30) At that moment, the “Holy of Holies”, accessible only by the chief priests, was ripped wide open, from top to bottom (Matthew 27:51). This act by God removed the separation between God’s chosen people and God, Himself – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

Then, the chief priests’ perfectly plotted plan went poof because, early in the morning, on the third day, Jesus was raised from the dead! They should have remembered that proper prior planning prevents puzzling predicaments. Christ’s resurrection was more than a puzzling predicament, it was abject agony for all the members of the chief priests’ committee!

In the History of Decisions

It seemed that everything that could go wrong had gone wrong. Instead of ending the people’s infatuation with Jesus, Jesus was back, and continuing to do the things their Messiah was prophesied to do. In the history of decisions, the chief priests’ decision is easily the worst. Just as Jesus had said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.”. (John 12:24) Jesus is the promised Seed (Galatians 3:16). He died and was buried. And from His death He arose (Luke 24:34) and is still bearing much fruit; the latest count is over two billion living souls. I hope you are one of them.

Photo by Sara Barros on Unsplash

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