Of course, the Sanhedrin, the Supreme Court of Israel, has authority to judge an accused. But an illegal trial in the middle of the night?
This is a kangaroo court. Obviously, this proceeding isn’t about getting at the truth. The hastily assembled false witnesses reveal the court’s prejudice.
Finally, the high priest, exasperated by Jesus’ silence in the face of this farce, poses a direct question - I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God.
Only then, Jesus breaks silence - Yes, it is as you say!
The undignified reaction of the court unmasks the true face of the proceedings. It’s merely a mob in disguise!
Of course, it’s only blasphemy to say you are The Christ, if in fact you are not. Where is all the evidence in defense of His claim? The miracles, the signs, the teaching!Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, "He has spoken blasphemy!” "He is worthy of death," they answered. Then they spit in his face and struck him with their fists. Others slapped him and said, "Prophesy to us, Christ. Who hit you?"
Oh yes, His teaching. This is really what’s on trial here. And the Teacher knows it. This explains His silence in the face of this travesty of justice.
He understands everything He taught and lived about truth, love, forgiveness, gentleness, humility and faith in God are now on trial!
That’s why Jesus must face these grueling tests armed only with His teaching!
To do otherwise will graphically demonstrate to the world they were only fine sounding speeches that don’t work very well when circumstances turn ugly – when your life is on the line!
If the Teacher expects His students to fully entrust their lives to Him - His teaching - then He must now rely upon them exclusively Himself.