Sanhedrim, Sanhedrin

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(seated together). The supreme council of the Jewish nation, whose germ was in the seventy elders (Num. 11:16-1716And the Lord said unto Moses, Gather unto me seventy men of the elders of Israel, whom thou knowest to be the elders of the people, and officers over them; and bring them unto the tabernacle of the congregation, that they may stand there with thee. 17And I will come down and talk with thee there: and I will take of the spirit which is upon thee, and will put it upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with thee, that thou bear it not thyself alone. (Numbers 11:16‑17)), and further development in Jehoshaphat’s tribunal (2 Chron. 19:8-118Moreover in Jerusalem did Jehoshaphat set of the Levites, and of the priests, and of the chief of the fathers of Israel, for the judgment of the Lord, and for controversies, when they returned to Jerusalem. 9And he charged them, saying, Thus shall ye do in the fear of the Lord, faithfully, and with a perfect heart. 10And what cause soever shall come to you of your brethren that dwell in their cities, between blood and blood, between law and commandment, statutes and judgments, ye shall even warn them that they trespass not against the Lord, and so wrath come upon you, and upon your brethren: this do, and ye shall not trespass. 11And, behold, Amariah the chief priest is over you in all matters of the Lord; and Zebadiah the son of Ishmael, the ruler of the house of Judah, for all the king's matters: also the Levites shall be officers before you. Deal courageously, and the Lord shall be with the good. (2 Chronicles 19:8‑11)). In full power after the captivity, and lasted till A. D. 425. The “great Sanhedrim” was composed of 71 priests, scribes, and elders, and presided over by the high priest. The “lesser Sanhedrims” were provincial courts in the towns, and composed of 23 members appointed by the “great Sanhedrim.” The word usually appears as “council” in N. T. (Matt. 5:2222But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire. (Matthew 5:22); Mark 14:5555And the chief priests and all the council sought for witness against Jesus to put him to death; and found none. (Mark 14:55); John 11:4747Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we? for this man doeth many miracles. (John 11:47); Acts 4:5-75And it came to pass on the morrow, that their rulers, and elders, and scribes, 6And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem. 7And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this? (Acts 4:5‑7)). The members of the Sanhedrim embraced the three classes, priests, elders, and scribes. After the Roman conquest it had no control of the death power, but the confirmation and execution of capital sentences rested with the Roman procurator. Thus it was that while the Sanhedrim condemned Christ for blasphemy, he was not brought under the Roman judgment of death till accused by the Jews of treason (Matt. 26:65-6665Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy. 66What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death. (Matthew 26:65‑66); John 18:31; 19:1231Then said Pilate unto them, Take ye him, and judge him according to your law. The Jews therefore said unto him, It is not lawful for us to put any man to death: (John 18:31)
12And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar's friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar. (John 19:12)
). The stoning of Stephen (Acts 7:57-5957Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, 58And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul. 59And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. (Acts 7:57‑59)), was either due to mob excitement, or else illegal.