Mark 14:1 ” Now the Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread were only two days away, and the chief priests and the teachers of the law were looking for some sly way to arrest Jesus and kill Him.”

The city of Jerusalem was becoming over-run with throngs of people as the Feast drew near…all of them looking forward to the yearly celebration of Passover.  But the Pharisees and Sadducees had much more sinister plans in the works…”they were looking for some way to get rid of Jesus.” (Luke 22:2)   But how could they penetrate and mislead one of the inner circle around Jesus and thus gain access?  The answer came in one of the most unlikely but saddest verses in the Bible, “Then Satan entered Judas…” (Luke 22:3)  Now no one knows for certain why Judas betrayed Jesus…he was a loyal and highly respected one of the Twelve who even had the responsibility of the community purse.  But despite all he had experienced, heard, and seen traveling with Jesus…Judas willingly became a traitor and informer.

Isaiah 42:2-3 ” He will not shout or cry out, or raise His voice in the streets. A bruised reed He will not break, and a smoldering wick He will not snuff out.”

It says in Matthew 26:62-63,  ” Then the High Priest stood up and said to Jesus, ‘Are you not going to answer?  What is this testimony that these men are bringing against You?’  But Jesus remained silent.”   In this hastily assembled kangaroo court, the  priests, scribes and elders gloated in the fact that they finally had Jesus where they wanted Him.  They had lined up false witnesses to testify against Jesus…but He wasn’t taking the bait.  The High Priest believed that he was in total control of the situation…but he had no idea that he was simply a pawn being used by God within the annals of eternal redemptive history.  Jesus had no reason to answer the High Priest… no need to justify or defend Himself.  For the plan of salvation, created before the dawn of time, was playing out perfectly.

Zechariah 11:12 ” I told them, ‘If you think it best, give me my pay; but if not, keep it.’ So they paid me thirty pieces of silver.”

When Judas approached the High Priests offering to betray Jesus for them…He basically asked them, “What’s it worth to you?”  In observance of the Law,  which stated in Exodus 21:32, “If the bull gores a male or female slave, the owner must pay thirty shekels of silver to the master of the slave.”…the High Priests counted out thirty pieces of silver…considering Jesus no more important than a slave.

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