His name was Joseph, the same as Jesus’ dad. I wonder if his friends called him Joe? His surname was Caiaphas and it was his misfortune to be the high priest the night Jesus was hauled in for trial. His father-in-law was Annas, an ex-high-priest who was the real power behind the throne. Actually, Caiaphas had been the high priest during Jesus’ entire ministry. Jesus was a thorn in his flesh ever since Jesus was baptized by John. Caiaphas had offered to follow John the Baptist if John would declare himself to be the Messiah. John would not.
Ironically Caiaphas was a preacher of great truths. Just after the resurrection of Lazarus he advocated killing both Jesus and Lazarus. (You can’t kill the miracle worker and leave the miracle walking about.) In John 11:50, “You do not realize that it is better for you that one man die for the people than that the whole nation perish.” Every time we play taps at a military cemetery we agree with Caiaphas.
The next time he spoke truth was at the cross he himself had instigated. He stood amidst the filth and stench of beaten, broken and dying bodies and said, “He saved others, but he can’t save himself!” Matthew 27:42. He was almost right. Actually Jesus could have saved Himself. He could have called a host of angels to come to His side. Matthew 26:53. (One angel would have been enough.) But had He done so He could not have saved others. The only way to save you and me was not to save Himself.
It is strange how often truth comes from mouths of one’s enemies. Rarely would we think of Joseph Caiaphas as a preacher of truth
Written by Roger Bothwell on July 1, 2016
PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 94574