Matthew 26:57 Earlier in the evening Jesus had been questioned by Annas. Annas then sent Jesus to Caiophas's home to be questioned. Because of their haste to complete the trial and see Jesus die before the Sabbath, less than 24 hours away, the religious leaders met in Caipphas's home at night instead of waiting for daylight and meeting in the temple. They also feared an uprising from Jesus' many followers.
Matthew 26:59 The Jewish counsel (also called the Sanhedrin) was the most powerful religious and political body of the Jewish people. Although the Romans controlled Israel's government, they gave the people power to handle religious disputes and some civil disputes, so the counsel made many of the local decisions affecting daily life. But a death sentence had to be approved by the Romans (John 18:31).
Matthew 26:60, 61 The council tried to find witnesses who would distort some of Jesus' teachings. Finally, they found two witnesses who distorted Jesus' words about the temple (John 2:19). They claimed that Jesus had said He would destroy the temple - a blasphemous boast. Actually Jesus had said, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up." Jesus, of course, was talking about His body, not the building. Ironically, the religious leaders were about to destroy Jesus' body just as He had said, and three days later He would rise from the dead!
Matthew 26:64 Jesus declared His royalty in no uncertain terms. In saying He was the Son of Man Jesus was claiming to be the Messiah, as His listeners well knew. He knew the declaration would be His undoing, but He did not panic. He was calm, courageous, and determined.