Mark 14:56 MEANING

Mark 14:56
(56) Their witness agreed not together.--St. Mark gives what St. Matthew only implies as the cause of the failure.

Verse 56. - For many bare false witness against him, and their witness agreed not together. Whatever things these witnesses brought forward were either false, or self-contradictory, or beside the purpose.

14:53-65 We have here Christ's condemnation before the great council of the Jews. Peter followed; but the high priest's fire-side was no proper place, nor his servants proper company, for Peter: it was an entrance into temptation. Great diligence was used to procure false witnesses against Jesus, yet their testimony was not equal to the charge of a capital crime, by the utmost stretch of their law. He was asked, Art thou the Son of the Blessed? that is, the Son of God. For the proof of his being the Son of God, he refers to his second coming. In these outrages we have proofs of man's enmity to God, and of God's free and unspeakable love to man.For many bare false witness against him,.... The word "false", is not expressed in the Syriac, Persic, and Ethiopic versions: which only signify, that they bore witness against him, accused him of, and laid many things to his charge:

but their witness agreed not together; which showed it to be false, and so not to be admitted; for witnesses were to be as one in their testimony, or not to be received: the, rules concerning them with the Jews, are these (l);

"the tradition is, for ever let not their testimony be joined together, unless they both see, "as one": says R. Joshua ben Korcha, even one after another; and their testimony is not ratified in the council, until they both witness "as one".''

Though this is not much the sense of the passage here; it was not the falsehood of their testimony, which this council was unconcerned about, or the contradiction that was in it, which does not appear; but their testimonies were not, "equal", or answerable to the wishes of the council; they were not sufficient to prove a capital crime upon him, in order to, put him to death, which was what they wanted: they only respected some light and trivial matters, and did not amount to a charge of blasphemy, or sedition.

(l) T. Bab. Sanhedrin, fol. 30. 1. Maimon. Hilch. Eduth, c. 4. sect. 1.

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