Summary: A Kangaroo Court – Jesus on Trial - PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request email:


The Five Pieces in the Puzzle:

(1). Caiaphas the High Priest (vs 53)

(2). The Sanhedrin (vs 55)

(3). The Witnesses (vs 56-59)

(4). Jesus (vs 60-61b)

(5). Peter (vs 66-72)



Taken from a book called "Disorder in the Court."


• Q: What is your date of birth?

• A: July fifteenth.

• Q: What year?

• A: Every year


• Q: What gear were you in at moment of the impact?

• A: A Gucci sweater and Reebok trainers.


• Q: How old is your son, the one living with you?

• A: Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can't remember which!

• Q: How long has he lived with you?

• A: Forty-five years.


• Q: What was the first thing your husband said to you when he woke up that morning?

• A: He said, "Where am I, Cathy?"

• Q: And why did that upset you?

• A: My name is Susan.


• Q: Trooper, when you stopped the defendant, were your red and blue lights flashing?

• A: Yes.

• Q: Did the defendant say anything when she got out of her car?

• A: Yes, sir.

• Q: What did she say?

• A: What disco am I at?


• Q: All your responses must be oral, OK?

• A: OK.

• Q: What school did you go to?

• A: Oral.

(7). Or these one liners – stupid questions:

• Q: The youngest son, the 20-year old, how old is he?

• Q: Were you present when your picture was taken?


• From the ridiculous to the significant;

• We are looking this morning at Jesus on trial & the denial of Jesus by Peter the disciple.

• In the gospel of Mark these two stories are woven together.

Read: verses 53-54:

“They took Jesus to the high priest, and all the chief priests, elders and teachers of the law came together.

54 Peter followed him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest. There he sat with the guards and warmed himself at the fire.

• Let us first look at the trial of Jesus Christ:

• Jesus was arrested about midnight in the Garden of Gethsemane,

• In the next twelve hours he will be tried six times – you heard right – six times;

• Before being crucified the following noon.


• Peloubet's Bible Dictionary gives the time of this chronology as follows:

• Friday Morning:

• First trial: Before Annas - 1 to 5 A.M.

• Second trial: Before Caiaphas - 1 to 5 A.M.

• Third trial: Before the Sanhedrin - 1 to 5 A.M.

• Fourth trial: Before Pilate - 5 to 6 A.M.

• Fifth trial: Before Herod - 5 to 6 A.M.

• Sixth trial: Before Pilate Again - 5 to 6 A.M.

• It’s worth noting that;

• None of the gospels give to us all six trials of Jesus in chronological order;

• You will need to do a bit of detective work/study yourself to get this information.

• Although there are plenty of commentaries or websites that do the hard work for you.

In our passage this morning (vs 53-65):

• Mark in his gospel records for us trial number two.

• Jesus before Caiaphas.

• This trial was held in what we would call today; ‘A kangaroo court’.

• ‘A kangaroo court’ is

• "A mock court in which the principles of law and justice are disregarded or perverted”

• This is ‘A kangaroo court’ because again and again the Jewish authorities;

• Break or ignore the procedure of their day.

• i.e. Under Jewish law they had to hold court in the day, in daylight,

• But this court meets illegally at night.

• i.e. Under Jewish law they had to meet in an official court room;

• But this gathering is in the home of Caiaphas.

• i.e. Under Jewish law courts were supposed to be open affairs;

• With court reporters present;

• But this court is a closed affair:

• And if you take the time to look it up;

• You will find that many other required procedures were also broken or ignored.

• This is a classic example of ‘A kangaroo court’.


• The way I want to look at this passage today;

• Is to briefly look at the main/key characters involved:

• There are five of them.

(1). Caiaphas the High Priest (vs 53):

• (a). The high priest served as the Jewish people's representative to God.

• Once a year as High Priest Caiaphas would enter the Holy of Holies in the temple;

• To offer sacrifices to God on behalf of the people.

• (b). The rest of his time was taken up with being in charge of the temple treasury,

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