Commentary on the Gospel of
Caiaphas cannot really claim patent for the ‘wisdom’ of his statement, “it is better to have one man die for the people than to let the whole nation be destroyed.” He was merely articulating a perennial human logic. Sacrificial system that informs human culture has always been a substitution of one element (to be sacrificed) in order to prevent the destruction of the collective. Human economics is all about letting one sheep be lost in order not to risk the ninety-nine, be it in the abortion logic in planned parenthood or medical triage (e.g., rationing ventilators during a pandemic). Jesus does not negate the sacrificial system, for life feeds on life. However, he changes it from forceful sacrifice of the other for preserving one’s own life to free and loving offer of one’s own life to nurture that of others. How radical and challenging!