John 18 J.B. Phillips New Testament (PHILLIPS)
Jesus is arrested in the garden
18 1-2 When Jesus had spoken these words, he went out with his disciples across the Cedron valley to a place where there was a garden, and they went into it together. Judas who betrayed him knew the place, for Jesus often met his disciples there.
3-4 So Judas fetched the guard and the officers which the chief priests and Pharisees had provided for him, and came to the place with torches and lanterns and weapons. Jesus, fully realising all that was going to happen to him, went forward and said to them, “Who are you looking for?”
5 “Jesus of Nazareth,” they answered. “I am the man,” said Jesus. (Judas who was betraying him was standing there with the others.)
6-7 When he said to them, “I am the man”, they retreated and fell to the ground. So Jesus asked them again, “Who are you looking for?” And again they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.”
8-9 “I have told you that I am the man,” replied Jesus. “If I am the man you are looking for, let these others go.” (Thus fulfilling his previous words, “I have not lost one of those whom you gave me.”)
10-11 At this, Simon Peter, who had a sword, drew it and slashed at the High Priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus.) But Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword back into its sheath. Am I not to drink the cup the Father has given me?”
Peter follows Jesus, only to deny him
12-17 Then the guard, with their captain and the Jewish officers, took hold of Jesus and tied his hands together, and led him off to Annas first, for he was the father-in-law to Caiaphas, who was High Priest that year. Caiaphas was the man who advised the Jews, “that it would be a good thing that one man should die for the sake of the people.” Behind Jesus followed Simon Peter, and one other disciple who was known personally to the High Priest. He went in with Jesus into the High Priest’s courtyard, but Peter was left standing at the door outside. So this other disciple, who was acquainted with the High Priest, went out and spoke to the doorkeeper, and brought Peter inside. The young woman at the door remarked to Peter, “Are you one of this man’s disciples, too?” “No, I am not,” retorted Peter.
18 In the courtyard, the servants and officers stood around a charcoal fire which they had made, for it was cold. They were warming themselves, and Peter stood there with them, keeping himself warm.
19 Meanwhile the High Priest interrogated Jesus about his disciples and about his own teaching.
20-21 “I have always spoken quite openly to the world,” replied Jesus. “I have always taught in the synagogue or in the Temple where all the Jews meet together, and I have said nothing in secret. Why do you question me? Why not question those who have heard me about what I said to them? Obviously they are the ones who know what I actually said.”
22 As he said this, one of those present, an officer, slapped Jesus with his open hand, remarking, “Is that the way for you to answer the High Priest?”
23 “If I have said anything wrong,” Jesus said to him, “you must give evidence about it, but if what I said was true, why do you strike me?
24 Then Annas sent him, with his hands still tied, to the High Priest Caiaphas.
25 In the meantime Simon Peter was still standing, keeping himself warm. Some of them said to him, “Surely you too are one of his disciples, aren’t you?” And he denied it and said, “No, I am not.”
26 Then one of the High Priest’s servants, a relation of the man (Malchus) whose ear Peter had cut off, remarked, “Didn’t I see you in the garden with him?”
27 And again Peter denied it. And immediately the cock crew.
Jesus is taken before the Roman authority
28 Then they led Jesus from Caiaphas’ presence into the palace. It was now early morning and the Jews themselves did not go into the palace, for fear that they would be contaminated and would not be able to eat the Passover.
29 So Pilate walked out to them and said, “What is the charge that you are bringing against this man?”
30 “If he were not an evil-doer, we should not have handed him over to you,” they replied.
31-32 To which Pilate retorted, “Then take him yourselves and judge him according to your law.” “We are not allowed to put a man to death,” replied the Jews (thus fulfilling Christ’s prophecy of the method of his own death).
33 So Pilate went back into the Palace and called Jesus to him. “Are you the king of the Jews?” he asked.
34 “Are you asking this of your own accord,” replied Jesus, “or have other people spoken to you about me?”
35 “Do you think I am a Jew?” replied Pilate. “It’s your people and your chief priests who handed you over to me. What have you done, anyway?”
36 “My kingdom is not founded in this world—if it were, my servants would have fought to prevent my being handed over to the Jews. But in fact my kingdom is not founded on all this!”
37 “So you are a king, are you?” returned Pilate. “Indeed I am a king,” Jesus replied; “the reason for my birth and the reason for my coming into the world is to witness to the truth. Every man who loves truth recognises my voice.”
38-39 To which Pilate retorted, “What is ‘truth’?” and went straight out again to the Jews and said: “I find nothing criminal about him at all. But I have an arrangement with you to set one prisoner free at Passover time. Do you wish me then to set free for you the ‘king of the Jews’?”
40 At this, they shouted out again, “No, not this man, but Barabbas!” Barabbas was a bandit.