3. Jesus Condemned by the Sanhedrin

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A Reading

Now the chief priests and the whole council were looking for testimony against Jesus to put him to death; but they found none. For many gave false testimony against him, and their testimony did not agree. Some stood up and gave false testimony against him, saying, ‘We heard him say, “I will destroy this temple that is made with hands, and in three days I will build another, not made with hands”.’ But even on this point their testimony did not agree. Then the high priest stood up before them and asked Jesus, ‘Have you no answer? What is it that they testify against you?’ But he was silent and did not answer. Again the high priest asked him, ‘Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?’ Jesus said, ‘I am; and “you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of the Power”, and “coming with the clouds of heaven”.’ Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, ‘Why do we still need witnesses? You have heard his blasphemy! What is your decision?’ All of them condemned him as deserving death.

(Mark 14.55-64)

A Prayer

Lord Jesus, you were the victim of religious bigotry:

be with those who are persecuted by small-minded authority.

You faced the condemnation of fearful hearts:

deepen the understanding of those who shut themselves off from the

experience and wisdom of others.

To you, Jesus, unjustly judged victim,

be honour and glory with the Father and the Holy Spirit,

now and for ever.

Amen.