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Matthew 26

26
The Plan to Kill Jesus
1When Jesus had finished saying all these things, he said to his disciples, 2“As you know, the Passover Feast is two days away. The Son of Man is going to be handed over to his enemies, and they will nail him to a cross.”
3Then the chief priests and elders of the people met in the palace of Caiaphas, the high priest. 4They made plans to arrest Jesus secretly and kill him. 5“But we can’t do it during the feast,” they agreed, “or the people may riot.”
A Woman Pours Perfume on Jesus
6While Jesus was in Bethany at the home of Simon the Leper, 7a woman came to him with a special sealed jar of very expensive perfume. She poured the perfume on his head while he was at the table.
8When the disciples saw this, they got angry. “Why this waste?” they asked. 9“This perfume could have been sold for a lot of money, and it could have been given to the poor.”
10Jesus knew they were saying this and asked them, “Why are you criticizing this woman? She has done a beautiful thing for me. 11You’ll always have the poor with you. But you won’t always have me. 12She poured the perfume on my body to prepare me for my burial. 13Truly I tell you, what she has done will be told wherever this good news is preached all over the world, and she will be remembered.”
Judas Agrees to Hand Jesus Over
14Then one of the 12 disciples, the one named Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests. 15He asked, “What will you give me if I hand Jesus over to you?” They counted out 30 silver coins for him, 16and from then on, Judas watched for the right opportunity to hand Jesus over.
The Lord’s Supper
17On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Where do you want us to go and prepare the Passover meal for you?”
18He answered, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The Teacher says, “My time is near. I’d like to celebrate the Passover at your house with my disciples.” ’ ” 19So the disciples did what Jesus told them to do, and they prepared the Passover meal.
20When evening came, Jesus was at the table with his 12 disciples. 21While they were eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you is going to hand me over to my enemies.”
22This made the disciples very sad. They began to say to him, one after the other, “You don’t mean me, do you, Lord?”
23Jesus replied, “Someone who has dipped his hand into the same bowl with me is going to hand me over. 24The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him, but woe to the one who hands him over! It would have been better for him if he he’d never been born.”
25Judas, the one who was going to hand him over, said, “You don’t mean me, do you, Rabbi?”
Jesus answered, “You have said so.”
26While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and handed it to his disciples. He said, “Take this and eat it. This is my body.”
27Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he handed it to them. He said, “Drink from it, all of you. 28This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out so that the sins of many people will be forgiven. 29I tell you that I won’t drink wine with you again from now until the day when I drink it with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
30Then they sang a hymn, and they went out to the Mount of Olives.
Jesus Says That the Disciples Will Turn Away
31Jesus told them, “You’re all going to abandon me this very night. It’s written that the Lord said,
“ ‘I will strike the shepherd down,
and then the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’
32But after I rise from the dead, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”
33Peter replied, “Even if all the others abandon you, I never will.”
34“Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “this very night, before the rooster crows, you’ll claim three times that you don’t know me.”
35But Peter insisted, “Even if I have to die with you, I’ll never say that I don’t know you.” And all the other disciples said the same thing.
Jesus Prays in Gethsemane
36Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane. He said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” 37He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to feel sad and troubled. 38Then he said to them, “My soul is very sad, and I feel close to death. Stay here and keep watch with me.”
39He went off a little distance and got down on the ground face first. He prayed, “My Father, if possible, please take this cup of suffering away from me. But let your will be done, not mine.”
40Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. “Couldn’t any of you keep watch with me for one hour?” he asked Peter. 41“Watch and pray so that you won’t fall into sin when you’re tempted. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.”
42Jesus went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it isn’t possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, then may your will be done.”
43Then he came back and found the three of them sleeping again. They couldn’t keep their eyes open, 44so he left them and went off once more. He prayed the same thing a third time.
45Then he returned to the disciples and said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Look! The time has come. The Son of Man is about to be handed over to sinners. 46Get up! Let’s go! Here comes the one who’s handing me over to them!”
Jesus Is Arrested
47While Jesus was still speaking, Judas, who was one of the 12 disciples, arrived. He had a group of men with him who were carrying swords and clubs. The chief priests and elders of the people had sent them. 48Judas had arranged to hand Jesus over by giving them a signal. “The one I kiss will be the man,” he’d told them—“arrest him!” 49Judas went right over to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” Then he kissed him.
50Jesus responded, “Do what you came to do, friend.”
Then some of the men moved forward to grab Jesus and arrest him. 51As they did, one of those who was with Jesus reached for his sword. He pulled it out and slashed at the high priest’s slave with it, cutting off his ear.
52“Put your sword back!” Jesus told him. “Everyone who relies on the sword will die by the sword. 53Do you think I can’t ask my Father for help? If I did, he’d send an army of more than 70,000 angels right away. 54But then how would the Scriptures come true? They say it has to happen in this way.”
55Then Jesus asked the crowd, “Why did you come here with swords and clubs to capture me, as if I’d been leading a rebellion? I was in the temple courtyard every day teaching, but you didn’t try to arrest me. 56But of all this has happened to make the words of the prophets come true.” Then all his disciples abandoned him and ran away.
Jesus Is Taken to the Sanhedrin
57Those who had arrested Jesus took him to Caiaphas, the high priest. The teachers of the law and the elders had already gathered in his palace. 58Peter had followed Jesus from a distance, and now he came as close as the courtyard. He went in and sat down with the guards to see what would happen.
59The chief priests and the whole council of elders, called the Sanhedrin, were looking for false evidence against Jesus so that they could put him to death. 60But they couldn’t find anything to use, even though many false witnesses came forward.
Finally, two witnesses came forward and testified, 61“This man said, ‘I’m able to destroy the temple of God and rebuild it in three days.’ ”
62Then the high priest stood up to question Jesus. “Aren’t you going to answer?” he asked. “What have you got to say to the charges these men are bringing against you?” 63But Jesus remained silent.
The high priest said to him, “Tell us, under oath to the living God, whether you are the Messiah, the Son of God.”
64“You have said so,” Jesus replied. “But I say to all of you that after this you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One, coming on the clouds of heaven.”
65Then the high priest ripped his clothes and said, “This man has claimed to be God! Why do we need any more witnesses? You’ve heard what he said. 66What do you think?”
“He must die!” they answered.
67Then they spit in his face and hit him with their fists. Others slapped him 68and said, “Prophesy to us, Messiah! Who hit you?”
Peter Says He Doesn’t Know Jesus
69Meanwhile, Peter was sitting out in the courtyard. A female servant came up to him and said, “You also were with Jesus of Galilee.”
70But Peter denied it in front of everyone. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he insisted.
71Then he moved out to the gate that led into the courtyard. There another servant saw him and said to the people, “This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.”
72Again he denied it and said, “I swear I don’t know the man!”
73After a little while, the people standing there came up to Peter and said, “You must be one of them. Your accent gives you away.”
74“I swear that I don’t know the man!” Peter said again. “May I be cursed if I’m not telling the truth!”
Just then a rooster crowed. 75Peter remembered that Jesus had said, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.” Peter went outside and wept bitterly.
26
The Plan to Kill Jesus
1After Jesus finished saying all these things, he told his followers, 2“You know that the day after tomorrow is the day of the Passover Feast. On that day the Son of Man will be given to his enemies to be crucified.”
3Then the leading priests and the elders had a meeting at the palace of the high priest, named Caiaphas. 4At the meeting, they planned to set a trap to arrest Jesus and kill him. 5But they said, “We must not do it during the feast, because the people might cause a riot.”
Perfume for Jesus’ Burial
6Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon, who had a skin disease. 7While Jesus was there, a woman approached him with an alabaster jar filled with expensive perfume. She poured this perfume on Jesus’ head while he was eating.
8His followers were upset when they saw the woman do this. They asked, “Why waste that perfume? 9It could have been sold for a great deal of money and the money given to the poor.”
10Knowing what had happened, Jesus said, “Why are you troubling this woman? She did an excellent thing for me. 11You will always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me. 12This woman poured perfume on my body to prepare me for burial. 13I tell you the truth, wherever the Good News is preached in all the world, what this woman has done will be told, and people will remember her.”
Judas Becomes an Enemy of Jesus
14Then one of the twelve apostles, Judas Iscariot, went to talk to the leading priests. 15He said, “What will you pay me for giving Jesus to you?” And they gave him thirty silver coins. 16After that, Judas watched for the best time to turn Jesus in.
Jesus Eats the Passover Meal
17On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the followers came to Jesus. They said, “Where do you want us to prepare for you to eat the Passover meal?”
18Jesus answered, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The Teacher says: “The chosen time is near. I will have the Passover with my followers at your house.” ’ ” 19The followers did what Jesus told them to do, and they prepared the Passover meal.
20In the evening Jesus was sitting at the table with his twelve followers. 21As they were eating, Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, one of you will turn against me.”
22This made the followers very sad. Each one began to say to Jesus, “Surely, Lord, I am not the one who will turn against you, am I?”
23Jesus answered, “The man who has dipped his hand with me into the bowl is the one who will turn against me. 24The Son of Man will die, just as the Scriptures say. But how terrible it will be for the person who hands the Son of Man over to be killed. It would be better for him if he had never been born.”
25Then Judas, who would give Jesus to his enemies, said to Jesus, “Teacher, surely I am not the one, am I?”
Jesus answered, “Yes, it is you.”
The Lord’s Supper
26While they were eating, Jesus took some bread and thanked God for it and broke it. Then he gave it to his followers and said, “Take this bread and eat it; this is my body.”
27Then Jesus took a cup and thanked God for it and gave it to the followers. He said, “Every one of you drink this. 28This is my blood which is the new agreement that God makes with his people. This blood is poured out for many to forgive their sins. 29I tell you this: I will not drink of this fruit of the vine again until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.”
30After singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.
Jesus’ Followers Will Leave Him
31Jesus told his followers, “Tonight you will all stumble in your faith on account of me, because it is written in the Scriptures:
‘I will kill the shepherd,
and the sheep will scatter.’#Zechariah 13:7
32But after I rise from the dead, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.”
33Peter said, “Everyone else may stumble in their faith because of you, but I will not.”
34Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, tonight before the rooster crows you will say three times that you don’t know me.”
35But Peter said, “I will never say that I don’t know you! I will even die with you!” And all the other followers said the same thing.
Jesus Prays Alone
36Then Jesus went with his followers to a place called Gethsemane. He said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” 37He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee with him, and he began to be very sad and troubled. 38He said to them, “My heart is full of sorrow, to the point of death. Stay here and watch with me.”
39After walking a little farther away from them, Jesus fell to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, do not give me this cup of suffering. But do what you want, not what I want.” 40Then Jesus went back to his followers and found them asleep. He said to Peter, “You men could not stay awake with me for one hour? 41Stay awake and pray for strength against temptation. The spirit wants to do what is right, but the body is weak.”
42Then Jesus went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this painful thing to be taken from me, and if I must do it, I pray that what you want will be done.”
43Then he went back to his followers, and again he found them asleep, because their eyes were heavy. 44So Jesus left them and went away and prayed a third time, saying the same thing.
45Then Jesus went back to his followers and said, “Are you still sleeping and resting? The time has come for the Son of Man to be handed over to sinful people. 46Get up, we must go. Look, here comes the man who has turned against me.”
Jesus Is Arrested
47While Jesus was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve apostles, came up. With him were many people carrying swords and clubs who had been sent from the leading priests and the Jewish elders of the people. 48Judas had planned to give them a signal, saying, “The man I kiss is Jesus. Arrest him.” 49At once Judas went to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Teacher!” and kissed him.
50Jesus answered, “Friend, do what you came to do.”
Then the people came and grabbed Jesus and arrested him. 51When that happened, one of Jesus’ followers reached for his sword and pulled it out. He struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his ear.
52Jesus said to the man, “Put your sword back in its place. All who use swords will be killed with swords. 53Surely you know I could ask my Father, and he would give me more than twelve armies of angels. 54But it must happen this way to bring about what the Scriptures say.”
55Then Jesus said to the crowd, “You came to get me with swords and clubs as if I were a criminal. Every day I sat in the Temple teaching, and you did not arrest me there. 56But all these things have happened so that it will come about as the prophets wrote.” Then all of Jesus’ followers left him and ran away.
Jesus Before the Leaders
57Those people who arrested Jesus led him to the house of Caiaphas, the high priest, where the teachers of the law and the elders were gathered. 58Peter followed far behind to the courtyard of the high priest’s house, and he sat down with the guards to see what would happen to Jesus.
59The leading priests and the whole Jewish council tried to find something false against Jesus so they could kill him. 60Many people came and told lies about him, but the council could find no real reason to kill him. Then two people came and said, 61“This man said, ‘I can destroy the Temple of God and build it again in three days.’ ”
62Then the high priest stood up and said to Jesus, “Aren’t you going to answer? Don’t you have something to say about their charges against you?” 63But Jesus said nothing.
Again the high priest said to Jesus, “I command you by the power of the living God: Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God.”
64Jesus answered, “Those are your words. But I tell you, in the future you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of God, the Powerful One, and coming on clouds in the sky.”
65When the high priest heard this, he tore his clothes and said, “This man has said things that are against God! We don’t need any more witnesses; you all heard him say these things against God. 66What do you think?”
The people answered, “He should die.”
67Then the people there spat in Jesus’ face and beat him with their fists. Others slapped him. 68They said, “Prove to us that you are a prophet, you Christ! Tell us who hit you!”
Peter Says He Doesn’t Know Jesus
69At that time, as Peter was sitting in the courtyard, a servant girl came to him and said, “You also were with Jesus of Galilee.”
70But Peter said to all the people there that he was never with Jesus. He said, “I don’t know what you are talking about.”
71When he left the courtyard and was at the gate, another girl saw him. She said to the people there, “This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.”
72Again, Peter said he was never with him, saying, “I swear I don’t know this man Jesus!”
73A short time later, some people standing there went to Peter and said, “Surely you are one of those who followed Jesus. The way you talk shows it.”
74Then Peter began to place a curse on himself and swear, “I don’t know the man.” At once, a rooster crowed. 75And Peter remembered what Jesus had told him: “Before the rooster crows, you will say three times that you don’t know me.” Then Peter went outside and cried painfully.