John 11:49

49 But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, "You know nothing at all!

John 11:49 Meaning and Commentary

John 11:49

And one of them, [named] Caiaphas
(See Gill on Matthew 26:3), (See Gill on Luke 3:2), (See Gill on John 18:13).

being the high priest that same year;
the high priesthood originally was not annual, but for life; but towards the close of the second temple, it came into the hands of the king, to appoint who would to be high priest F15; and it became venal; it was purchased with money; insomuch that they changed the priesthood once a twelve month, and every year a new high priest was made F16 now this man being in such an high office, and a man of no conscience, and of bad principles, being a Sadducee, as seems from ( Acts 4:6 ) ( 5:17 ) , who denied the resurrection of the dead, and was unconcerned about a future state; and having no restraint upon him, in a bold, haughty, and blustering manner,

said unto them, ye know nothing at all;
ye are a parcel of ignorant and stupid creatures, mere fools and idiots, to sit disputing and arguing, pro and con about such a fellow as this; what is to be done is obvious enough, and that is to take away this man's life, without any more ado; it matters not what he is, nor what he does; these are things that are not to be considered, they are out of the question; would you save the nation, destroy the man; things are come to this crisis, that either his life must go, or the nation perish; and which is most expedient, requires no time to debate about.


F15 Misn. Yebamot, c. 6. sect. 4.
F16 T. Bab. Yoma, fol. 8. 2. Juchasin, fol. 139. 1.

John 11:49 In-Context

47 So the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the council, and said, "What are we to do? This man is performing many signs.
48 If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy both our holy place and our nation."
49 But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, "You know nothing at all!
50 You do not understand that it is better for you to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed."
51 He did not say this on his own, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus was about to die for the nation,
New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.