Matthew 26 Commentary

Please choose a passage:

Matthew 26:1-2

Jesus informs His disciples that He will be crucified in two days during Passover.

Matthew 26:3-5

Meanwhile the chief priests plot with their high priest, Caiaphas, how and when they will destroy Jesus. They decide it is best to do this away from the crowds. This event is commonly known as “The Plot to Kill Jesus.”

Matthew 26:6-13

When Jesus is in the home of Simon the leper, a woman anoints His head with expensive perfume. The disciples see this as a waste of money and resources. Jesus informs them that she has done a good thing and that it prepares His body for burial. This event is commonly referred to as “Jesus’s Anointing at Bethany.”

Matthew 26:14-16

Judas’s Bargain: Judas seeks out the chief priests in order to betray Jesus. He asks them what they will give him for doing this. They reply “thirty pieces of silver”—the prescribed compensation to be paid an owner for the accidental death of his slave. Judas agrees.

Matthew 26:17-19

Instructions for Passover: Jesus’s disciples ask Him on the first day of Unleavened Bread where He wants to keep the Passover. He sends them into the city to find a certain man and deliver a message that Jesus will observe Passover at His house. The disciples follow Jesus’s instructions and Passover preparations are made. This short passage also contains important clues to help us piece together the final days and hours of Jesus’s life.

Matthew 26:20-25

Jesus identifies Judas as His betrayer. The Passover meal begins. During the meal with His disciples Jesus makes the startling announcement that that one of the twelve will betray Him. This troubles the disciples. Jesus quietly but clearly identifies Judas as His betrayer.

Matthew 26:26-29

Jesus celebrates the Passover with His disciples and leads them through what appears to be a Passover Seder. Matthew summarizes his account to include the three moments from Jesus’s retelling of the Passover that most stand out. During this meal, Jesus reveals how the Bread and Wine of the Seder Meal are chiefly about Himself and His role as the Messiah.

Matthew 26:30

Jesus and His disciples sing a hymn and leave the upper room for the Mount of Olives.

Matthew 26:31-35

Jesus informs His disciples that they will abandon Him that very night. Peter assures Jesus that he will stick with Him even if everyone else runs away. Jesus tells Peter that he will deny him three times before dawn. Peter tells Jesus that He is wrong and assures His Lord that he is ready to die with Him. The other disciples say they are ready to die for Him also.