Daily Word

“High Priest” trial | John 18:12-18

12 So the Roman cohort, the commander, and the officers of the Jews arrested Jesus and bound Him, 13 and brought Him to Annas first; for he was the father-in-law of Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. 14 Now Caiaphas was the one who had advised the Jews that it was in their best interest for one man to die in behalf of the people.

15 Simon Peter was following Jesus, and so was another disciple. Now that disciple was known to the high priest, and he entered with Jesus into the courtyard of the high priest, 16 but Peter was standing at the door outside. So the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out and spoke to the doorkeeper, and brought Peter in.

17 Then the slave woman who was the doorkeeper *said to Peter, “You are not also one of this Man’s disciples, are you?” He *said, “I am not.” 18 Now the slaves and the officers were standing there, having made a charcoal fire, for it was cold and they were warming themselves; and Peter was also with them, standing and warming himself.

John 18:12-18 (NASB)

High Priest

The High Priest was the supreme religious leader in Israel. He had special responsibilities and privileges as the key representative of Israel before the Lord. For example, only he could enter the “holy of holies” in the temple, and then only once a year. The role started with Aaron and passed down through his Levite bloodline. 

Who was Annas? We’ll see tomorrow that he is referred to as the High Priest. “Annas was not the official High Priest but as father-in-law to Caiaphas, he was the one who put Caiaphas in office.” (enduringword.com) Some say, he was the power behind the office of priest. It was very political by Jesus’ time. 

Verse 14 refers to John 11:50 where the Jewish leaders were plotting how to kill Jesus after He raised Lazarus and with that, raised a lot of challenges for the Jewish leaders. God used this (wicked) High Priest to accomplish His will.

We know from our study of Hebrews that Jesus is the perfect High Priest. His sacrifice paid the penalty for all sin once and for all (Romans 6:10). And, He always lives to intercede for us (Hebrews 7:25).

Peter denial

We know Peter denied the Lord three times. This section covers the first one. The other two are later in the chapter. Here, he is let into the High Priest area by “the other disciple” and is standing amongst the officers. My guess is they may have been the same ones that just arrested Jesus. Pretty risky.

So who was this “other disciple”? It was most assuredly John the author. He refers to himself in the 3rd person elsewhere, like in John 13:23 at the Last Supper where he refers to himself famously as, “the disciple whom Jesus loved” as well as John 19:26, 20:2, 21:7 and 21:20.


  • Let’s thank Him for His perfect, enduring sacrifice and His constand intercession for us.
Judge in the courtroom. Image from https://www.mprnews.org *

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