Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (2023)

Exodus 28:31-32
31 “You shall make the robe of the ephod all of blue. 32 There shall be an opening for his head in the middle of it; IT SHALL HAVE A WOVEN BINDING ALL AROUND IT’S OPENING, like the opening in a coat of mail, SO THAT IT DOES NOT TEAR.”

Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (1)

God told Moses the Ephod was to be made in such a way that it not tear. He was quite explicit and very adamant about it! It was specially constructed in such a way that it could not tear either by accident or on purpose. 🤔 Yet years in the future, Caiaphas dared to do it. 🤯 Why in the world would he do such a thing if God was dead set against it? That’s what we are going to study, though you may be surprised by the answer.

Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (2)

Mourning In Ancient Israel.

First we need to revisit the practice of mourning of those days. In ancient Israel, when a relative died,itwas customary to demonstrate one’s grief. Relatives of the deceased would tear their clothes, put on sackcloth, and place ashes on their heads. This was a widely accepted practice, and was OK for everyone…..EXCEPT FOR THE HIGH PRIEST. He alone was STRICTLY forbidden from this practice. Why? 🤔

As a type of Christ, he was to be set apart. He was never, ever, EVER, under ANY circumstances, to tear his clothes. EVER. Not even if his own child died. As high priest, Caiaphas would have known this. 👈 🤨

Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (3)

(Video) God’s Preparation for the Final Passover (Luke 22:7-13)

The Ephod MUST NOT Tear!

Why is God so concerned that the robe of the High Priest of Israel NOT TEAR. Because his robes were sacred. He was to wear them AT ALL TIMES as a representative of the people TO God. He was a depiction of Jesus, our Great High Priest.Over his heart he wore the Breastplate of Righteousness with its twelve stones, each engraved with one of the names of the twelve tribes. On his shoulders were the two brilliant onyx stones on which were also engraved the names of the twelve tribes: Six on one stone, the other six on the other. They demonstrate that the people of God who are precious in His sight.

There is so much significance in both of these things which is covered in much greater detail in the article below. You may follow the link below for more on that topic:

The Breastplate Of Judgment: Part 4 of 6- High Priest’s GarmentsSeries

Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (4)

Secrets In The Hebrew Language.

For some strange reason at this time in Israel’s history there happened to betwo high priests! 😲 How crazy it that??! There is only supposed to be one, you see. This gives you a pretty good idea of just how far they had fallen away from God. 😔As if that weren’t grievous enough, they had reduced and diminished the Law into something “manageable,” or so they thought. Inwardly, however, their hearts were far from Him.

The one high priest I’m sure you know: Caiaphas. The other was “Annas.” Curiously enough, his name means “grace.” Caiaphas’ name, on the other hand, means “Rock.” This a picture of law and grace together; in other words, “Mixture!” 😡Yep, the Holy Spirit is drawing pictures for us again! In the days just prior to His return, LIKE NOW, 🤨 mixture will be, or should I say “IS,” quite prevalent.

No Ark Of The Covenant?

Also curiously, during this time, THERE WAS NO ARK OF THE COVENANT in the temple. 😲 It seems to have disappeared sometime prior to the Babylonian Captivity in the 6th century BC.The last historical mention of it in Scripture is in Second Chronicles chapter 35, where King Josiah (who reigned in Judah c. 640-609 BC) asked that the Levites return the Ark to the Temple where Solomon had originally housed it after completing and dedicating the building. This was accomplished sometime in the 10th century BC (Second Chronicles, chapter 5).

The Jewish people may not have known why but, while Jesus walked this earth, they didn’t need the golden box. The Real Ark of the Covenant was outside walking around among the people, healing the sick, cleansing the leper, preaching good news to the poor, and doing good everywhere He went! That’s our JESUS!!!

Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (5)

(Video) Six Steps to Passover Part 1: Jesus Our Passover

“Trial” At Caiaphas’ House.

After Jesus was arrested in the garden, he was brought to the house of that now infamous high priest to stand “trial,” if you can call it that. What a sham that was, more like being railroaded. 😡

During the course of His being examined by His accusers, the most shocking, unexpected, unprecedented, and unthinkable happened.Let’s follow the discourse between Jesus and Caiaphas and learn the REAL reason he tore his robes.

Matthew 26:62-65
“62 And the high priest arose and said to Him, “Do You answer nothing? What is it these men testify against You?” 63 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, “I put You under oath by the living God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!”
64 Jesus said to him, “It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”

65 THEN THE HIGH PRIEST TORE HIS CLOTHES {uh oh 😲} saying, “He has spoken blasphemy! What further need do we have of witnesses? Look, now you have heard His blasphemy! 66 What do you think?

Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (6)

A New Priestly Order.

Whoa, whoa, whoa! Wait a minute…..Didn’t we just read that this action is EXPRESSLY FORBIDDEN BY ALMIGHTY GOD?! YES. Yes, we did! Then why did he do it?

Well for one thing, He was a corrupt high priest. No doubt he was WELL AWARE of this law. HOWEVER….What he didn’t know; what he couldn’t possibly have understood, was that the Man in Whose Presence he was standing was Very God in Human flesh. Jesus was to become High Priest FOREVER after the order of Melchizedek, replacing the old order of the Levitical priesthood. 🙌🏻

Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (7)

Yom Kippur.

(Video) The Mind Blowing Significance of Passover as Prophecy

In ancient Israel, as you know, the High Priest went into the Holy of Holies once a year and offered a sacrifice for all the people. This day is known as “Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.” If he did everything right and his sacrifice was accepted by God, the whole nation was accepted. They’d have their sins covered for the next twelve months, have bumper crops, healthy babies, and enjoy all the blessings of God for the year ahead.

But…..if his sacrifice was not accepted, the whole nation was rejected. Why?Because God works through headships and leaderships. As the high priest goes, so goes the nation. If he is accepted but the nation is bad, they are still accepted. The opposite was also true. If the high priest was bad, but the nation was good, God rejected the whole nation. Their right standing with God was completely reliant on their high priest.

(For more on this topic, you may follow the link below:


This went on for some 1500 years. The high priest could never sit down when he was on duty in the temple because his work was never done. You’ll notice there aren’t any chairs in the tabernacle.

But Jesus, as our Great High Priest, went into the REAL Holy of Holies in heaven. He was both OFFERER and the OFFERING! He offered ONE sacrifice FOREVER but HE SAT DOWN at His Father’s right hand because HIS WORK WAS FINISHED. We are FOREVER acceptable because our Great High Priest is ETERNALLY acceptable!

You can see this concept so clearly in a seemingly unlikely place: The REAL story in the stars. You may not realize it but before God’s word was in written form, He blasted it all across the night sky. Men of ancient times knew how to read it and passed down the gospel story from generation to generation.

You can read all about this function of Jesus by following the link below:


Why Did Caiaphas Tear His Robes?: Passover Series Part 7 (8)

(Video) Jesus Christ, the Passover Lamb

Great High Priest.

To be sure, what Caiaphas did was completely and totally an illegal act. But God allowed it to happen. Caiaphas could NEVER haveunderstood the significance of his ILLEGAL act, however justified he felt he was. But the wrending of his consecrated robes accomplished the following two things:

#1: It symbolically abolished the Levitical priesthood as he threw them at the feet of Jesus…..literally…..and…..



No other priest was ever called “Great High Priest” except Jesus; and when He cried, “FINISHED!” His Father tore that temple veil, in two from top to bottom, a picture of Jesus flesh that was torn. It was the final act signifying that THE LAW IS USURPED BY GRACE !!!

…..And that, Church, is why God allowed Caiaphas to tear his robes.

You may follow the link below to continue this series:


1. Jesus' Last Passover - Following the Messiah: Ep 8
(Appian Media)
2. JESUS our Passover - Dr. Chuck Missler
(Amos Ioan Chiriac)
3. Understand the Meaning of Sacrifice and Atonement in the Bible
4. The Spring Moedim
(John Kostik)
5. Study of John (Part 7)
(Western Hills Church of Christ - Fort Worth)
6. Virtual Messiah in the Passover
(Chosen People Ministries)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Kelle Weber

Last Updated: 01/06/2023

Views: 6203

Rating: 4.2 / 5 (53 voted)

Reviews: 84% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Kelle Weber

Birthday: 2000-08-05

Address: 6796 Juan Square, Markfort, MN 58988

Phone: +8215934114615

Job: Hospitality Director

Hobby: tabletop games, Foreign language learning, Leather crafting, Horseback riding, Swimming, Knapping, Handball

Introduction: My name is Kelle Weber, I am a magnificent, enchanting, fair, joyous, light, determined, joyous person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.