Reference: Sanhedrin Or Sanhedrim
The Greek word is ?????????, 'a sitting together': it is always translated 'council' in the A.V. There appears to be no Hebrew equivalent to the name. The Jews trace its origin to the seventy elders chosen to assist Moses, Nu 11:16-17; but nothing is said of such a council in the time of the kingdom; and it is probable that it was instituted in the time of the Maccabees. The early writers do not say how it was composed; from the N.T. we find it consisted of the chief priests, or heads of the twenty-four courses, the elders, lawyers, and the scribes. It was the highest court of the Jews, acting 'in all causes, and over all persons, ecclesiastical and civil.' Its decisions were binding on Jews everywhere. Its powers were curtailed by Herod and afterwards by the Romans, who prevented the Jews from putting any one to death legally. Joh 18:31. The Lord, Lu 22:66; Peter and John, Ac 4:1-23; 5:17-41; Stephen, Ac 6:12-15; and Paul, Ac 22:30; 23:1-10; were arraigned before the Sanhedrin.
And the Lord said to Moses, Gather for Me seventy men of the elders of Israel whom you know to be the elders of the people and officers over them; and bring them to the Tent of Meeting and let them stand there with you. And I will come down and talk with you there; and I will take of the Spirit which is upon you and will put It upon them; and they shall bear the burden of the people with you, so that you may not have to bear it yourself alone.
As soon as it was day, the assembly of the elders of the people gathered together, both chief priests and scribes; and they led Him into their council (the Sanhedrin), and they said,
Pilate said to them, Take Him yourselves and judge and sentence and punish Him according to your [own] law. The Jews answered, It is not lawful for us to put anyone to death.
And while they [Peter and John] were talking to the people, the high priests and the military commander of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them, Being vexed and indignant through and through because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in [the case of] Jesus the resurrection from the dead. read more. So they laid hands on them (arrested them) and put them in prison until the following day, for it was already evening. But many of those who heard the message believed (adhered to and trusted in and relied on Jesus as the Christ). And their number grew and came to about 5,000. Then on the following day, their magistrates and elders and scribes were assembled in Jerusalem, Including Annas the high priest and Caiaphas and John and Alexander and all others who belonged to the high priestly relationship. And they set the men in their midst and repeatedly demanded, By what sort of power or by what kind of authority did [such people as] you do this [healing]? Then Peter, [because he was] filled with [and controlled by] the Holy Spirit, said to them, Rulers of the people and members of the council (the Sanhedrin), If we are being put on trial [here] today and examined concerning a good deed done to benefit a feeble (helpless) cripple, by what means this man has been restored to health, Let it be known and understood by all of you, and by the whole house of Israel, that in the name and through the power and authority of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, Whom you crucified, [but] Whom God raised from the dead, in Him and by means of Him this man is standing here before you well and sound in body. This [Jesus] is the Stone which was despised and rejected by you, the builders, but which has become the Head of the corner [the Cornerstone]. And there is salvation in and through no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by and in which we must be saved. Now when they saw the boldness and unfettered eloquence of Peter and John and perceived that they were unlearned and untrained in the schools [common men with no educational advantages], they marveled; and they recognized that they had been with Jesus. And since they saw the man who had been cured standing there beside them, they could not contradict the fact or say anything in opposition. But having ordered [the prisoners] to go aside out of the council [chamber], they conferred (debated) among themselves, Saying, What are we to do with these men? For that an extraordinary miracle has been performed by (through) them is plain to all the residents of Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. But in order that it may not spread further among the people and the nation, let us warn and forbid them with a stern threat to speak any more to anyone in this name [or about this Person]. [So] they summoned them and imperatively instructed them not to converse in any way or teach at all in or about the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied to them, Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you and obey you rather than God, you must decide (judge). But we [ourselves] cannot help telling what we have seen and heard. Then when [the rulers and council members] had further threatened them, they let them go, not seeing how they could secure a conviction against them because of the people; for everybody was praising and glorifying God for what had occurred. For the man on whom this sign (miracle) of healing was performed was more than forty years old. After they were permitted to go, [the apostles] returned to their own [company] and told all that the chief priests and elders had said to them.
But the high priest rose up and all who were his supporters, that is, the party of the Sadducees, and being filled with jealousy and indignation and rage, They seized and arrested the apostles (special messengers) and put them in the public jail. read more. But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and, leading them out, said, Go, take your stand in the temple courts and declare to the people the whole doctrine concerning this Life (the eternal life which Christ revealed). And when they heard this, they accordingly went into the temple about daybreak and began to teach. Now the high priest and his supporters who were with him arrived and called together the council (Sanhedrin), even all the senate of the sons of Israel, and they sent to the prison to have [the apostles] brought. But when the attendants arrived there, they failed to find them in the jail; so they came back and reported, We found the prison quite safely locked up and the guards were on duty outside the doors, but when we opened [it], we found no one on the inside. Now when the military leader of the temple area and the chief priests heard these facts, they were much perplexed and thoroughly at a loss about them, wondering into what this might grow. But some man came and reported to them, saying, Listen! The men whom you put in jail are standing [right here] in the temple and teaching the people! Then the military leader went with the attendants and brought [the prisoners], but without violence, for they dreaded the people lest they be stoned by them. So they brought them and set them before the council (Sanhedrin). And the high priest examined them by questioning, Saying, We definitely commanded and strictly charged you not to teach in or about this Name; yet here you have flooded Jerusalem with your doctrine and you intend to bring this Man's blood upon us. Then Peter and the apostles replied, We must obey God rather than men. The God of our forefathers raised up Jesus, Whom you killed by hanging Him on a tree (cross). God exalted Him to His right hand to be Prince and Leader and Savior and Deliverer and Preserver, in order to grant repentance to Israel and to bestow forgiveness and release from sins. And we are witnesses of these things, and the Holy Spirit is also, Whom God has bestowed on those who obey Him. Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and infuriated and wanted to kill the disciples. But a certain Pharisee in the council (Sanhedrin) named Gamaliel, a teacher of the Law, highly esteemed by all the people, standing up, ordered that the apostles be taken outside for a little while. Then he addressed them [the council, saying]: Men of Israel, take care in regard to what you propose to do concerning these men. For before our time there arose Theudas, asserting himself to be a person of importance, with whom a number of men allied themselves, about 400; but he was killed and all who had listened to and adhered to him were scattered and brought to nothing. And after this one rose up Judas the Galilean, [who led an uprising] during the time of the census, and drew away a popular following after him; he also perished and all his adherents were scattered. Now in the present case let me say to you, stand off (withdraw) from these men and let them alone. For if this doctrine or purpose or undertaking or movement is of human origin, it will fail (be overthrown and come to nothing); But if it is of God, you will not be able to stop or overthrow or destroy them; you might even be found fighting against God! So, convinced by him, they took his advice; and summoning the apostles, they flogged them and sternly forbade them to speak in or about the name of Jesus, and allowed them to go. So they went out from the presence of the council (Sanhedrin), rejoicing that they were being counted worthy [dignified by the indignity] to suffer shame and be exposed to disgrace for [the sake of] His name.
[Thus] they incited the people as well as the elders and the scribes, and they came upon Stephen and arrested him and took him before the council (Sanhedrin). And they brought forward false witnesses who asserted, This man never stops making statements against this sacred place and the Law [of Moses]; read more. For we have heard him say that this Jesus the Nazarene will tear down and destroy this place, and will alter the institutions and usages which Moses transmitted to us. Then all who sat in the council (Sanhedrin), as they gazed intently at Stephen, saw that his face had the appearance of the face of an angel.
But the next day, desiring to know the real cause for which the Jews accused him, he unbound him and ordered the chief priests and all the council (Sanhedrin) to assemble; and he brought Paul down and placed him before them.
Then Paul, gazing earnestly at the council (Sanhedrin), said, Brethren, I have lived before God, doing my duty with a perfectly good conscience until this very day [ as a citizen, a true and loyal Jew]. At this the high priest Ananias ordered those who stood near him to strike him on the mouth. read more. Then Paul said to him, God is about to strike you, you whitewashed wall! Do you sit as a judge to try me in accordance with the Law, and yet in defiance of the Law you order me to be struck? Those who stood near exclaimed, Do you rail at and insult the high priest of God? And Paul said, I was not conscious, brethren, that he was a high priest; for the Scripture says, You shall not speak ill of a ruler of your people. But Paul, when he perceived that one part of them were Sadducees and the other part Pharisees, cried out to the council (Sanhedrin), Brethren, I am a Pharisee, a son of Pharisees; it is with regard to the hope and the resurrection of the dead that I am indicted and being judged. So when he had said this, an angry dispute arose between the Pharisees and the Sadducees; and the whole [crowded] assemblage was divided [into two factions]. For the Sadducees hold that there is no resurrection, nor angel nor spirit, but the Pharisees declare openly and speak out freely, acknowledging [their belief in] them both. Then a great uproar ensued, and some of the scribes of the Pharisees' party stood up and thoroughly fought the case, [contending fiercely] and declaring, We find nothing evil or wrong in this man. But if a spirit or an angel [really] spoke to him -- "? Let us not fight against God! And when the strife became more and more tense and violent, the commandant, fearing that Paul would be torn in pieces by them, ordered the troops to go down and take him forcibly from among them and conduct him back into the barracks.