Matthew 27:66

ESV So they went and made the tomb secure by sealing the stone and setting a guard.
NIV So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard.
NASB And they went and made the tomb secure with the guard, sealing the stone.
CSB They went and secured the tomb by setting a seal on the stone and placing the guards.
NLT So they sealed the tomb and posted guards to protect it.
KJV So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

What does Matthew 27:66 mean?

With official permission from Pilate, the governor, Jewish religious leaders take one more step to destroy Jesus' legacy (Matthew 27:62–65). They go to Jesus' tomb, make sure His body is still inside, and then seal the crypt.

The tomb already has a heavy stone door (Matthew 27:60) which would have kept animals and casual thieves away. To make sure it cannot be secretly opened, they add a seal. This was probably a cord attached to the door and walls, held on by wax stamped with some kind of signet. Further, there will be men there to watch the grave and keep Jesus' disciples away. The guards are likely Roman soldiers normally assigned to security for the city temple.

With these steps, Jewish religious leaders have done all they can to keep Jesus' followers from stealing His body. This, they believe, will eliminate any possibility that His followers can claim He has been raised from the dead (John 2:19–22). The fantastic irony of their efforts, however, will be revealed shortly. All they have done is rule out fraud and theft as explanations for an empty tomb: they have unknowingly added further proof that Jesus Christ did, in fact return from death in a supernatural miracle (Matthew 28:4–7).
What is the Gospel?
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