When the chief priest said ‘Let his blood be on our hands and those of our offspring’,was that a pronouncement of a curse for them and their offspring?Does this explain the predicament of Jews during the second world war and beyond?
I am not inclined to think so. Ezekiel 18:20 reads, “The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not suffer for the iniquity of the father, nor the father suffer for the iniquity of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself” (ESV). Granted, many Christians throughout the past two millennia have rationalized persecution of Jews on the basis of this verse, but I doubt that is what Matthew intended; more likely, he wanted to drive home how poorly the people understood what they were doing. If there is any prophetic element to the verse, then it is more likely that it was fulfilled in the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.
Further,the Sanhedrin knew exactly what they were doing.Christ had made them irrelevant and they could not stomach that as that meant priesthood would benefit them nothing as people were flocking to Christ.
Knowingly,they decided that HE should die and collectively they made a declaration that they would live with the consequences of their decision.
I think you’re misremembering the verse. It was all the people, not just the Sanhedrin, who called the curse upon themselves, and Jesus Himself said they did not understand what they were doing (Luke 23:34). More likely, the men of the Sanhedrin (like most people, really) were so entrenched in their worldviews that when Jesus came along and began overturning the foundations of their traditions and authority with His teachings, they were too much on the defensive to consider that they could be wrong. As a result, they ultimately ignored all the signs Jesus gave them and thought of Him as a blasphemer, the only thing that their worldviews allowed a man who made such claims to be. They were, after all, expecting a Messiah who would overthrow Roman rule and bring them to supremacy, not one who would overturn what they held dearly and tell them that greatness lay in humble servitude.
Many ordinary folk believed in Him and followed Him wherever He went.The triumphant entry was attended by many ordinary people.In contrast,the Sanhedrin were opposed to Him from day one.The more He got popular with the people the more determined the Sanhedrin was to eliminate Him.
Ordinary people feared the priests because they could forbid anyone to attend the synagogue for numerous reasons but,people were not afraid of Christ,they loved him.Because of fear,ordinary people echoed what the priests said ie ‘…crucify Him!’
All because Christ had made the priests irrelevant they the priests were desperate to kill Him.