1It was now two days before the Festival of Passover and Unleavened Bread. The chief priests and the teachers of the Law were looking for a way to arrest Jesus secretly and put him to death. 2“We must not do it during the festival,” they said, “or the people might riot.”
3Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon, a man who had suffered from a dreaded skin disease. While Jesus was eating, a woman came in with an alabaster jar full of a very expensive perfume made of pure nard. She broke the jar and poured the perfume on Jesus' head. 4Some of the people there became angry and said to one another, “What was the use of wasting the perfume? 5It could have been sold for more than 300 silver coins and the money given to the poor!” And they criticized her harshly.
6But Jesus said, “Leave her alone! Why are you bothering her? She has done a fine and beautiful thing for me.7You will always have poor people with you, and any time you want to, you can help them. But you will not always have me.8She did what she could; she poured perfume on my body to prepare it ahead of time for burial.9Now, I assure you that wherever the gospel is preached all over the world, what she has done will be told in memory of her.”
10Then Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve disciples, went off to the chief priests in order to betray Jesus to them. 11They were pleased to hear what he had to say, and promised to give him money. So Judas started looking for a good chance to hand Jesus over to them.
12On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, the day the lambs for the Passover meal were killed, Jesus' disciples asked him, “Where do you want us to go and get the Passover meal ready for you?”
13Then Jesus sent two of them with these instructions: “Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him14to the house he enters, and say to the owner of the house: ‘The Teacher says, Where is the room where my disciples and I will eat the Passover meal?’15Then he will show you a large upstairs room, prepared and furnished, where you will get everything ready for us.”
16The disciples left, went to the city, and found everything just as Jesus had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal.
17When it was evening, Jesus came with the twelve disciples. 18While they were at the table eating, Jesus said, “I tell you that one of you will betray me — one who is eating with me.”
19The disciples were upset and began to ask him, one after the other, “Surely you don't mean me, do you?”
20Jesus answered, “It will be one of you twelve, one who dips his bread in the dish with me.21The Son of Man will die as the Scriptures say he will; but how terrible for that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would have been better for that man if he had never been born!”
22While they were eating, Jesus took a piece of bread, gave a prayer of thanks, broke it, and gave it to his disciples. “Take it,” he said, “this is my body.”
23Then he took a cup, gave thanks to God, and handed it to them; and they all drank from it. 24Jesus said, “This is my blood which is poured out for many, my blood which seals God's covenant.25I tell you, I will never again drink this wine until the day I drink the new wine in the Kingdom of God.”
26Then they sang a hymn and went out to the Mount of Olives.
27Jesus said to them, “All of you will run away and leave me, for the scripture says, ‘God will kill the shepherd, and the sheep will all be scattered.’28But after I am raised to life, I will go to Galilee ahead of you.”
29Peter answered, “I will never leave you, even though all the rest do!”
30Jesus said to Peter, “I tell you that before the cock crows twice tonight, you will say three times that you do not know me.”
31Peter answered even more strongly, “I will never say that, even if I have to die with you!”
32They came to a place called Gethsemane, and Jesus said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray.”33He took Peter, James, and John with him. Distress and anguish came over him, 34and he said to them, “The sorrow in my heart is so great that it almost crushes me. Stay here and keep watch.”
35He went a little farther on, threw himself on the ground, and prayed that, if possible, he might not have to go through that time of suffering. 36“Father,” he prayed, “my Father! All things are possible for you. Take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet not what I want, but what you want.”
37Then he returned and found the three disciples asleep. He said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Weren't you able to stay awake even for one hour?”38And he said to them, “Keep watch, and pray that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
39He went away once more and prayed, saying the same words. 40Then he came back to the disciples and found them asleep; they could not keep their eyes open. And they did not know what to say to him.
41When he came back the third time, he said to them, “Are you still sleeping and resting? Enough! The hour has come! Look, the Son of Man is now being handed over to the power of sinners.42Get up, let us go. Look, here is the man who is betraying me!”
43Jesus was still speaking when Judas, one of the twelve disciples, arrived. With him was a crowd armed with swords and clubs, and sent by the chief priests, the teachers of the Law, and the elders. 44The traitor had given the crowd a signal: “The man I kiss is the one you want. Arrest him and take him away under guard.”
45As soon as Judas arrived, he went up to Jesus and said, “Teacher!” and kissed him. 46So they arrested Jesus and held him tight. 47But one of those standing there drew his sword and struck at the High Priest's slave, cutting off his ear. 48Then Jesus spoke up and said to them, “Did you have to come with swords and clubs to capture me, as though I were an outlaw?49Day after day I was with you teaching in the Temple, and you did not arrest me. But the Scriptures must come true.”
50Then all the disciples left him and ran away.
51A certain young man, dressed only in a linen cloth, was following Jesus. They tried to arrest him, 52but he ran away naked, leaving the cloth behind.
53Then Jesus was taken to the High Priest's house, where all the chief priests, the elders, and the teachers of the Law were gathering. 54Peter followed from a distance and went into the courtyard of the High Priest's house. There he sat down with the guards, keeping himself warm by the fire. 55The chief priests and the whole Council tried to find some evidence against Jesus in order to put him to death, but they could not find any. 56Many witnesses told lies against Jesus, but their stories did not agree.
57Then some men stood up and told this lie against Jesus: 58“We heard him say, ‘I will tear down this Temple which men have made, and after three days I will build one that is not made by men.’ ” 59Not even they, however, could make their stories agree.
60The High Priest stood up in front of them all and questioned Jesus, “Have you no answer to the accusation they bring against you?”
61But Jesus kept quiet and would not say a word. Again the High Priest questioned him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed God?”
62“I am,” answered Jesus, “and you will all see the Son of Man seated on the right of the Almighty and coming with the clouds of heaven!”
63The High Priest tore his robes and said, “We don't need any more witnesses! 64You heard his blasphemy. What is your decision?”
They all voted against him: he was guilty and should be put to death.
65Some of them began to spit on Jesus, and they blindfolded him and hit him. “Guess who hit you!” they said. And the guards took him and slapped him.
66Peter was still down in the courtyard when one of the High Priest's servant women came by. 67When she saw Peter warming himself, she looked straight at him and said, “You, too, were with Jesus of Nazareth.”
68But he denied it. “I don't know… I don't understand what you are talking about,” he answered, and went out into the passage. Just then a cock crowed.
69The servant woman saw him there and began to repeat to the bystanders, “He is one of them!” 70But Peter denied it again.
A little while later the bystanders accused Peter again, “You can't deny that you are one of them, because you, too, are from Galilee.”
71Then Peter said, “I swear that I am telling the truth! May God punish me if I am not! I do not know the man you are talking about!”
72Just then a cock crowed a second time, and Peter remembered how Jesus had said to him, “Before the cock crows twice, you will say three times that you do not know me.” And he broke down and cried.