Matthew 26:57–68 (NKJV, also appearing in Mark 14:53–65; Luke 22:54, 55, 63–65; John 18:12-24 )
57 And those who had laid hold of Jesus led Him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled. 58 But Peter followed Him at a distance to the high priest’s courtyard. And he went in and sat with the servants to see the end.
59 Now the chief priests, the elders, and all the council sought false testimony against Jesus to put Him to death, 60 but found none. Even though many false witnesses came forward, they found none. But at last two false witnesses came forward 61 and said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.’ ”Matthew 26:57-61
After Jesus’ arrest, the soldiers took Jesus first to the religious court under Caiaphas’s leadership. They looked for witnesses against Jesus as to some transgression of religious law. They even tried to find people who would lie about Jesus’s actions, but to no avail until two came and quoted Him as saying He would destroy the temple and built it back in three days. Peter stood by the fire and watched from a short distance.
62 And the high priest arose and said to Him, “Do You answer nothing? What is it these men testify against You?” 63 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, “I put You under oath by the living God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!”
64 Jesus said to him, “It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
65 Then the high priest tore his clothes, saying, “He has spoken blasphemy! What further need do we have of witnesses? Look, now you have heard His blasphemy! 66 What do you think?”
They answered and said, “He is deserving of death.”
67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him with the palms of their hands, 68 saying, “Prophesy to us, Christ! Who is the one who struck You?”Matthew 26:62-68
The high priest berated Jesus, asking Him for an explanation of the testimony, but Jesus did not answer for a long time. But when the high priest asked Him to confirm or deny whether He was “the Christ, the Son of God,” Jesus answered in the affirmative. He even added that they would see Him returning in the clouds from the right hand of God. The high priest tore His clothes, a sign of mourning and shock, and they immediately determined that Jesus was worthy of death for the alleged sin of blasphemy.
What they did not realize was that Jesus’ assertion was absolutely true, and not blasphemous at all. Jesus was the Son of God, so therefore, claiming such was correct. In their ignorance, they mocked and slapped Jesus, commanding Him to prophecy as to who hit him. Little did they know the powerful being whom they struck. His love for humanity kept Him going in the midst of guards spitting in His face and mocking Him. He could have wiped them out with a look, but He took it for them, for the world, for you.