Many of the Jews who had come with Mary and had seen what Jesus did, believed in him. But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what he had done. So the chief priests and the Pharisees called a meeting of the council, and said, “What are we to do? This man is performing many signs. If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and destroy both our holy place and our nation.” But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all! You do not understand that it is better for you to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed.” He did not say this on his own, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus was about to die for the nation, and not for the nation only, but to gather into one the dispersed children of God. So from that day on they planned to put him to death.
From Elaine Tindill-Rohr
Caiaphas was a political creature, and he was trying to deal with the politics of Rome and how it related to the Israelites. Rome didn’t play around with folks who were trying to take power away from it. Caiaphas was dealing with valid earthly concerns. Unfortunately, his cold calculations meant that it was better for more people if Jesus died. He ended up right, but not in the manner he expected.
How often do we make similar decisions, ones based solely on what is best for the moment?