John 18—Jesus’ Arrest and Trial

(40 verses, 3:25 to read)


What I am about to READ

  • Annas, the high priest, and Pilate, governor of Judea, cannot answer and/or find no actual guilt in Jesus. Yet, it is expedient that the One should die for the many.


  • The ESV headings are helpful.
  • vv.1-11, Jesus’ betrayal and arrest.
  • vv.12-14, Jesus is taken before Annas.
  • vv.15-18, Meanwhile, Peter denies Jesus.
  • vv.19-24, Annas questions Jesus (and can’t answer him back)
  • vv.25-27, Again, Peter denies Him.
  • vv.28-40, Jesus and Pilate.


  • Caiaphas’ words, meant for evil, are turned to good. Jesus does in fact die for all.
    • Jesus’ blood avails for all sinners everywhere. His sacrifice forgives all sin. This is Objective Justification, where God earns salvation for all. Compare Romans 3:22-24, 2 Corinthians 5:19, Romans 4:25, Romans 5:18-29. God gives this salvation to us (Subjective Justification) when we believe the Gospel.
  • Annas has no answer for Jesus’ public teaching. There is irony here: they arrest Jesus, charge Him with blasphemy, strike him for being disrespectful to authority, and yet—Jesus is God who holds all authority.
  • Pilate actual says: “I find no guilt in him.”
    • We see from the words and actions of Annas and Pilate, as recorded in the Scripture, that they choose to kill an innocent man for self-gain. This kind of self-worship is blatant idolatry. We should confess our sins. Do better. And cling to our Lord Jesus Christ.


  • This prayer, written by Pr. Ross,  accompanied a previously posted meditation on John 18: “Lord Jesus, your kingdom is not of this world.  You rule not from a throne, but from a cross.  Everything that we would expect in a worldly king you turn on its head.  Weakness rather than power, service rather than lordship, death rather than self-preservation, love rather than fear.  All of this you have accomplished for us, that we would be reconciled to God.  For these Lord, I thank you, and ask that your blessed Passion would be a source of comfort for me in the midst of so many trials.  Amen.”

Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Post below, or join the conversation in our Facebook group.

Rev. Benjamin Tyler Holt


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