Friday, April 22, 2011
Holy Friday (Good Friday): A Devotional Commentary
Exodus 12:1-11 Yahweh spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, “This month shall be to you the beginning of months. It shall be the first month of the year to you. Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, ‘On the tenth day of this month, they shall take to them every man a lamb, according to their fathers’ houses, a lamb for a household; and if the household is too little for a lamb, then he and his neighbor next to his house shall take one according to the number of the souls; according to what everyone can eat you shall make your count for the lamb. Your lamb shall be without blemish, a male a year old. You shall take it from the sheep, or from the goats: and you shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month; and the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall kill it at evening. They shall take some of the blood, and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel, on the houses in which they shall eat it. They shall eat the flesh in that night, roasted with fire, and unleavened bread. They shall eat it with bitter herbs. Don’t eat it raw, nor boiled at all with water, but roasted with fire; with its head, its legs and its inner parts. You shall let nothing of it remain until the morning; but that which remains of it until the morning you shall burn with fire. This is how you shall eat it: with your belt on your waist, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and you shall eat it in haste: it is Yahweh’s Passover.
John 18:1-19:42 When Jesus had spoken these words, he went out with his disciples over the brook Kidron, where there was a garden, into which he and his disciples entered. Now Judas, who betrayed him, also knew the place, for Jesus often met there with his disciples. Judas then, having taken a detachment of soldiers and officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, came there with lanterns, torches, and weapons. Jesus therefore, knowing all the things that were happening to him, went forth, and said to them, “Who are you looking for?” They answered him, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus said to them, “I am he.” Judas also, who betrayed him, was standing with them. When therefore he said to them, “I am he,” they went backward, and fell to the ground. Again therefore he asked them, “Who are you looking for?” They said, “Jesus of Nazareth.” Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. If therefore you seek me, let these go their way,” that the word might be fulfilled which he spoke, “Of those whom you have given me, I have lost none.” Simon Peter therefore, having a sword, drew it, and struck the high priest’s servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant’s name was Malchus. Jesus therefore said to Peter, “Put the sword into its sheath. The cup which the Father has given me, shall I not surely drink it?” So the detachment, the commanding officer, and the officers of the Jews, seized Jesus and bound him, and led him to Annas first, for he was father-in-law to Caiaphas, who was high priest that year. Now it was Caiaphas who advised the Jews that it was expedient that one man should perish for the people. Simon Peter followed Jesus, as did another disciple. Now that disciple was known to the high priest, and entered in with Jesus into the court of the high priest; but Peter was standing at the door outside. So the other disciple, who was known to the high priest, went out and spoke to her who kept the door, and brought in Peter. Then the maid who kept the door said to Peter, “Are you also one of this man’s disciples?” He said, “I am not.” Now the servants and the officers were standing there, having made a fire of coals, for it was cold. They were warming themselves. Peter was with them, standing and warming himself. The high priest therefore asked Jesus about his disciples, and about his teaching. Jesus answered him, “I spoke openly to the world. I always taught in synagogues, and in the temple, where the Jews always meet. I said nothing in secret. Why do you ask me? Ask those who have heard me what I said to them. Behold, these know the things which I said.” When he had said this, one of the officers standing by slapped Jesus with his hand, saying, “Do you answer the high priest like that?” Jesus answered him, “If I have spoken evil, testify of the evil; but if well, why do you beat me?” Annas sent him bound to Caiaphas, the high priest. Now Simon Peter was standing and warming himself. They said therefore to him, “You aren’t also one of his disciples, are you?” He denied it, and said, “I am not.” One of the servants of the high priest, being a relative of him whose ear Peter had cut off, said, “Didn’t I see you in the garden with him?” Peter therefore denied it again, and immediately the rooster crowed. They led Jesus therefore from Caiaphas into the Praetorium. It was early, and they themselves didn’t enter into the Praetorium, that they might not be defiled, but might eat the Passover. Pilate therefore went out to them, and said, “What accusation do you bring against this man?” They answered him, “If this man weren’t an evildoer, we wouldn’t have delivered him up to you.” Pilate therefore said to them, “Take him yourselves, and judge him according to your law.” Therefore the Jews said to him, “It is not lawful for us to put anyone to death,” that the word of Jesus might be fulfilled, which he spoke, signifying by what kind of death he should die. Pilate therefore entered again into the Praetorium, called Jesus, and said to him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus answered him, “Do you say this by yourself, or did others tell you about me?” Pilate answered, “I’m not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests delivered you to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My Kingdom is not of this world. If my Kingdom were of this world, then my servants would fight, that I wouldn’t be delivered to the Jews. But now my Kingdom is not from here.” Pilate therefore said to him, “Are you a king then?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this reason I have been born, and for this reason I have come into the world, that I should testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.” Pilate said to him, “What is truth?” When he had said this, he went out again to the Jews, and said to them, “I find no basis for a charge against him. But you have a custom, that I should release someone to you at the Passover. Therefore do you want me to release to you the King of the Jews?” Then they all shouted again, saying, “Not this man, but Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was a robber. So Pilate then took Jesus, and flogged him. The soldiers twisted thorns into a crown, and put it on his head, and dressed him in a purple garment. They kept saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and they kept slapping him. Then Pilate went out again, and said to them, “Behold, I bring him out to you, that you may know that I find no basis for a charge against him.” Jesus therefore came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple garment. Pilate said to them, “Behold, the man!” When therefore the chief priests and the officers saw him, they shouted, saying, “Crucify! Crucify!” Pilate said to them, “Take him yourselves, and crucify him, for I find no basis for a charge against him.” The Jews answered him, “We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God.” When therefore Pilate heard this saying, he was more afraid. He entered into the Praetorium again, and said to Jesus, “Where are you from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. Pilate therefore said to him, “Aren’t you speaking to me? Don’t you know that I have power to release you, and have power to crucify you?” Jesus answered, “You would have no power at all against me, unless it were given to you from above. Therefore he who delivered me to you has greater sin.” At this, Pilate was seeking to release him, but the Jews cried out, saying, “If you release this man, you aren’t Caesar’s friend! Everyone who makes himself a king speaks against Caesar!” When Pilate therefore heard these words, he brought Jesus out, and sat down on the judgment seat at a place called “The Pavement,” but in Hebrew, “Gabbatha.” Now it was the Preparation Day of the Passover, at 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 then he delivered him to them to be crucified. So they took Jesus and led him away. He went out, bearing his cross, to the place called “The Place of a Skull,” which is called in Hebrew, “Golgotha,” where they crucified him, and with him two others, on either side one, and Jesus in the middle. Pilate wrote a title also, and put it on the cross. There was written, “JESUS OF NAZARETH, THE KING OF THE JEWS.” Therefore many of the Jews read this title, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, in Latin, and in Greek. The chief priests of the Jews therefore said to Pilate, “Don’t write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but, ‘he said, I am King of the Jews.’” Pilate answered, “What I have written, I have written.” Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also the coat. Now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. Then they said to one another, “Let’s not tear it, but cast lots for it to decide whose it will be,” that the Scripture might be fulfilled, which says, “They parted my garments among them. For my cloak they cast lots.” Therefore the soldiers did these things. But there were standing by the cross of Jesus his mother, and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. Therefore when Jesus saw his mother, and the disciple whom he loved standing there, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother!” From that hour, the disciple took her to his own home. After this, Jesus, seeing that all things were now finished, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, said, “I am thirsty.” Now a vessel full of vinegar was set there; so they put a sponge full of the vinegar on hyssop, and held it at his mouth. When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, “It is finished.” He bowed his head, and gave up his spirit. Therefore the Jews, because it was the Preparation Day, so that the bodies wouldn’t remain on the cross on the Sabbath (for that Sabbath was a special one), asked of Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away. Therefore the soldiers came, and broke the legs of the first, and of the other who was crucified with him; but when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was already dead, they didn’t break his legs. However one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out. He who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, that you may believe. For these things happened, that the Scripture might be fulfilled, “A bone of him will not be broken.” Again another Scripture says, “They will look on him whom they pierced.” After these things, Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, asked of Pilate that he might take away Jesus’ body. Pilate gave him permission. He came therefore and took away his body. Nicodemus, who at first came to Jesus by night, also came bringing a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about a hundred Roman pounds. So they took Jesus’ body, and bound it in linen cloths with the spices, as the custom of the Jews is to bury. Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden. In the garden was a new tomb in which no man had ever yet been laid. Then because of the Jews’ Preparation Day (for the tomb was near at hand) they laid Jesus there.
Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! He was tortured for you! He suffered for you! He died for you! It is finished!
Posted by Chuck Wiese at 12:01 AM