Opening to a dungeon below St Peter in Gallicantu, a church in Jerusalem which scholars believe is located where the house of Caiaphas once stood. If that is correct, this may be the dungeon opening through which Jesus would have been lowered during his first trial. Image online, courtesy Wikimedia Commons.
Although no one can be sure where the house of Caiaphas was located, it is believed that the current church of St. Peter in Gallicantu (which means "the crowing of the cock") stands over it. Below that church is a dungeon.
Open and lit today, the dungeon was formerly closed and dark. The only entrance was a narrow opening, at the top, through which a prisoner would be lowered in a harness.
Scholars believe that Jesus may have been lowered into the dungeon at some point during His time at the house of Caiaphas.
As the religious leaders interrogated Jesus inside, Peter (one of the disciples who followed the arresting officers as they moved from place to place) remained outside. Three different people asked whether he knew Jesus. He denied it each time.
After the third denial, Peter heard a rooster crowing in the distance. When that happened, he remembered Jesus had predicted Peter would deny Him three times.
Inside the house of Caiaphas, guards mocked and beat Jesus. Putting a blindfold on him, they struck Him and asked Him to say who it was that hit Him.
When the religious council and the teachers of the law who had been invited to interrogate Jesus were all present, they asked whether He was the Son of God. Jesus responded:
You are right in saying I am.
With this admission, council members believed they had enough evidence to condemn Him. Their next stop would be the residence of Pilate, the Roman Prefect in Israel, who was in Jerusalem for Passover week.