Holy Week Devotion – Day 6
Good Friday, March 30, 2018
John 19:1-37 (ESV): Jesus Delivered to Be Crucified
Then Pilate took Jesus and flogged him. And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head and arrayed him in a purple robe. They came up to him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and struck him with their hands. Pilate went out again and said to them, “See, I am bringing him out to you that you may know that I find no guilt in him.” So Jesus came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, “Behold the man!” When the chief priests and the officers saw him, they cried out, “Crucify him, crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Take him yourselves and crucify him, for I find no guilt in him.” The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and according to that law he ought to die because he has made himself the Son of God.” When Pilate heard this statement, he was even more afraid. He entered his headquarters again and said to Jesus, “Where are you from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. So Pilate said to him, “You will not speak to me? Do you not know that I have authority to release you and authority to crucify you?” Jesus answered him, “You would have no authority over me at all unless it had been given you from above. Therefore he who delivered me over to you has the greater sin.”
From then on Pilate sought to release him, but the Jews cried out, “If you release this man, you are not Caesar’s friend. Everyone who makes himself a king opposes Caesar.” So when Pilate heard these words, he brought Jesus out and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called The Stone Pavement, and in Aramaic Gabbatha. Now it was the day of Preparation of the Passover. It was about the sixth hour. He said to the Jews, “Behold your King!” They cried out, “Away with him, away with him, crucify him!” Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar.” So he delivered him over to them to be crucified.
So they took Jesus, and he went out, bearing his own cross, to the place called The Place of a Skull, which in Aramaic is called Golgotha. There they crucified him, and with him two others, one on either side, and Jesus between them. Pilate also wrote an inscription and put it on the cross. It read, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.” Many of the Jews read this inscription, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and it was written in Aramaic, in Latin, and in Greek. So the chief priests of the Jews said to Pilate, “Do not write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but rather, ‘This man said, I am King of the Jews.’” Pilate answered, “What I have written I have written.”
When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his garments and divided them into four parts, one part for each soldier; also his tunic. But the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom, so they said to one another, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it shall be.” This was to fulfill the Scripture which says,
“They divided my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.”
So the soldiers did these things, but standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” And from that hour the disciple took her to his own home.
The Death of Jesus
After this, Jesus, knowing that all was now finished, said (to fulfill the Scripture), “I thirst.” A jar full of sour wine stood there, so they put a sponge full of the sour wine on a hyssop branch and held it to his mouth. When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
Jesus’ Side Is Pierced
Since it was the day of Preparation, and so that the bodies would not remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a high day), the Jews asked Pilate that their legs might be broken and that they might be taken away. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who had been crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. He who saw it has borne witness—his testimony is true, and he knows that he is telling the truth—that you also may believe. For these things took place that the Scripture might be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken.” And again another Scripture says, “They will look on him whom they have pierced.”
Reflection by: Billy Wray, Board Member
John 19:1-37 reveals the pivotal time in the life of Jesus where he is sentenced to be crucified, his crucifixion, and his recorded death. It’s important we do not overlook them in Jesus’ life for these events are foundational to the follower of Jesus. However, one thing stood out to me as I read this passage of Scripture: there are eight Old Testament prophecies that were fulfilled by Jesus as the Messiah just in these verses alone!
Verse 3 speaks of Jesus being mocked; verse 18 refers to God’s servant numbered with transgressors; verse 24 refers to Jesus’ clothes being cast by lots; verse 29 refers to the suffering Messiah being thirsty; verse 30 refers to his crying out “it is finished”; verses 31-33 refers to the bones of the Messiah would not be broken; verses 31-36 refers to the Messiah as the Passover Lamb; and verse 37 refers to those looking on the pierced Messiah. All of these were Old Testament prophecies foretold by the ancient prophets who never saw their fulfillment but hundreds of years later fulfilled in the life of Jesus.
In fact, there are over 60 major prophecies that were fulfilled in the Life of Christ as the Messiah. But if we go back to just these 8 prophecies, do you know that the odds of any one man in all of history fulfilling only 8 of the 60 major prophecies (like Jesus did), is 1 in 10 to the 17th power? That is one in 100 quadrillion or 1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000! The odds of that number is beyond the realm of possibility. This not only proves Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah spoken about in the Old Testament prophecies but also that the Bible proves itself to be the true inspired Word of God. This is a fact that I have taught the guests at Bethesda Mission in the weekly and Sunday morning Chapel Services. It is an honor and a privilege not only to share that the Bible can be trusted as the inspired Word of God but that the Word says Jesus can be trusted as our Lord & Savior (Romans 10:9)!
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION
- Why was it important for Old Testament prophecies to be fulfilled by Jesus?
- Do you remember learning about Christ’s sacrifice for the first time or as a child? How has your perspective of these events changed? How has it stayed the same?
- Why do you think such a seemingly sorrowful day has been remembered as “Good” Friday?
- Pray for a renewed sense of awe and gratitude for Christ’s obedience “even unto death” for our sakes.
- Pray that Bethesda’s guests would see the truth proclaimed in the scriptures about Jesus Christ.
- Pray that, unlike the chief priests in verse 15, we would have no king but Jesus.
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