Caiaphas to Sanhedrim (resurrection & miracles)
Caiaphas to the Sanhedrim on Jesus' Resurrection
Below was found wound in a scroll that had been in the archives of St Sophia mosque in Constantinople. It is believed that Mohammed had given orders to save all the Jerusalem Sanhedrim writings in a vault within this mosque.
The below report of Caiaiphas is written in what is known as the square Hebrew. The letters are from 1/2 inch to 1 inch high. It is read only with difficulty by the best Hebrew scholars.
Sanhedrim, 89. By Siphri II, 7.:
To You, Masters of Israel: As I have made a former defense to you, and you have approved the same, I feel in duty bound to communicate to you some facts that have come to my knowledge since that communication. A few days after the execution of Jesus of Nazareth the report of his resurrection from the dead became so common that I found it necessary to investigate it, because the excitement was more intense than before, and my own life as well as that of Pilate was in danger. I sent for Malkus, the captain of the royal city guard, who informed me he knew nothing personally, as he had placed Isham in command of the guard; but from what he could learn from the soldiers the scene was awe-inspiring, and the report was so generally believed that it was useless to deny it. He thought my only chance was to suppress it among the soldiers, and have John and Peter banished to Crete, or arrested and imprisoned, and if they would not be quiet, to treat them as I had treated Jesus. He said that all the soldiers he had conversed with were convinced that Jesus was resurrected by supernatural power and was still living, and that he was no human being, for the light and the angels and the dead that came out of their graves all went to prove that something had happened that never occurred on earth before. He said that John and Peter were spreading it all over the country, and that if Jesus would appear at the head of a host, and declare for the king of the Jews, he believed all the Jews would fight for him. I sent for the lieutenant, who gave a lengthy account of the occurrence that morning, all of which I suppose you have learned, and will investigate. From this I am convinced that something transcending the laws of nature took place that morning, that cannot be accounted for upon natural laws, and I find it useless to try and get any of the soldiers to deny it, for they are so excited that they cannot be reasoned with. I regret that I had the soldiers placed at the tomb, for the very things that they were to prevent they have helped to establish.
After questioning the soldiers and officers to my satisfaction, my mind being so disturbed that I could neither eat nor sleep, I sent for John and Peter. They came and brought Mary and Joanna, who are the women that went to embalm Jesus' body the morning of the resurrection, as it is called. They were very interesting as they related the circumstances. Mary says that when they went day was just breaking. They met the soldiers returning from the sepulcher, and saw nothing strange until they came to the tomb, and found that it was empty. The stone that covered the sepulcher was rolled to one side, and two men dressed in flowing white were sitting, one at each end of the sepulcher. Mary asked them where was her Lord; they said, "He is risen from the dead; did he not tell you he would rise the third day and show himself to the people, to prove that he was the Lord of life?" Go tell his disciples, said they. Joanna said she saw but one man; but the discrepancy must have been due to their excitement, because they say they were much alarmed. They both say that as they returned they met the Master, who told them that he was the resurrection and the life; all that will accept shall be resurrected from the second death. "We fell at his feet, all bathed in tears, and when we rose up he was gone." Both these women wept for joy while relating these circumstances, and John shouted aloud, which made me tremble in every limb, for I could not help thinking that something that was the exclusive work of God had occurred, but what it all meant was a great mystery to me. It might be, I said, that God had sent this message by the mouth of this stranger; it might be that he was the seed of the woman, and we his people had executed him.
I asked John and Peter if they could give me any further evidence in regard to this man; that I wished to be informed of his private history. Peter said that Jesus passed by where he was, and bade him to follow him, and he felt attracted to him, but at first it was more through curiosity than anything in the man; that he soon became acquainted with Mary, who told him that he was her son, and related to him the strange circumstances of his birth, and that she was convinced that he was to be the king of the Jews. She spoke of many strange things concerning his life which mane Peter feel more interested in him than he would have been otherwise. He said that Jesus was a man so pleasant in his character, and so like a child in innocence, that no one could help liking him after he got acquainted with him; that though he seemed to be stern and cold, he was not so in reality; that he was exceedingly kind, especially to the poor; that he would make any sacrifice for the sick and needy, and would spare no effort to impart knowledge to anyone that would call on him, and that his knowledge was so profound that he had seen him interrogated by the most learned doctors of the law, and he always gave the most perfect satisfaction, and that the sopher or scribes, and the Hillelites, and Shammaites were afraid to open their mouths in his presence. They had attacked him so often and been repelled that they shunned him as they would a wolf; but when he repelled them he did not enjoy the triumph as they did over others of whom they had gotten the ascendency. As to his private life, he seemed not to be a man of pleasure, nor of sorrow. He mingled with society to benefit it, and yet took no part at all in what was going on. I had heard many tell of what occurred when he was baptized, and from what his mother told me I was watching for a display of his divine power, if he had any, and I knew he could never be king of the Jews unless he did have help from on high. Once when we were attending a marriage-feast the wine gave out, and his mother told him of it, and he said to the men to fill up some water-pots that were sitting near, and they put in nothing but water, for I watched them, but when they poured it out it was wine, for it was tasted by all at the feast, and when the master found it out he called for Jesus to honor him, but he had disappeared. It seemed that he did not want to be popular, and this spirit displeased us, for we knew if he was to be king of the
Jews he must become popular with the Jews. His behavior angered his mother, for she was doing all she could to bring him into notice, and to make him popular among the people, and the people could not help liking him when they saw him. Another peculiarity was that in his presence everyone felt safe. There seemed to be an almighty power pervading the air wherever he went so that everyone felt secure, and believed that no harm could befall them if Jesus were present. As we were in our fishing-boat I saw Jesus coming out toward us, walking on the water. I knew that if he could make the waves support him, he could me also. I asked him if I might come to him; he said to me to come, but when I saw the waves gathering around me I began to sink, and asked him to help me. He lifted me up, and told me to have faith in God. On another occasion we were sailing on the sea, and there was a great storm. It blew at a fearful rate, and all on board thought they would be lost; we awakened the master, and when he saw the raging of the storm he stretched out his hand and said, "Peace, be still!" and the wind ceased to blow, the thunder stopped, the lightnings withdrew, and the billowing sea seemed as quiet as a babe in its mother's arms--all done in one moment of time. This I saw with my own eyes, and from that time I was convinced that he was not a common man.
WORK in progress...continuing