Tag Archives: Crucifixion

Good Friday – Crucifixion

16-19 Pilate caved in to their demand. He turned him over to be crucified.

The Crucifixion

They took Jesus away. Carrying his cross, Jesus went out to the place called Skull Hill (the name in Hebrew is Golgotha), where they crucified him, and with him two others, one on each side, Jesus in the middle. Pilate wrote a sign and had it placed on the cross. It read:

jesus the nazarene
the king of the jews.

20-21 Many of the Jews read the sign because the place where Jesus was crucified was right next to the city. It was written in Hebrew, Latin, and Greek. The Jewish high priests objected. “Don’t write,” they said to Pilate, “‘The King of the Jews.’ Make it, ‘This man said, “I am the King of the Jews.”’”

22 Pilate said, “What I’ve written, I’ve written.”

23-24 When they crucified him, the Roman soldiers took his clothes and divided them up four ways, to each soldier a fourth. But his robe was seamless, a single piece of weaving, so they said to each other, “Let’s not tear it up. Let’s throw dice to see who gets it.” This confirmed the Scripture that said, “They divided up my clothes among them and threw dice for my coat.” (The soldiers validated the Scriptures!)

24-27 While the soldiers were looking after themselves, Jesus’ mother, his aunt, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene stood at the foot of the cross. Jesus saw his mother and the disciple he loved standing near her. He said to his mother, “Woman, here is your son.” Then to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that moment the disciple accepted her as his own mother.

28 Jesus, seeing that everything had been completed so that the Scripture record might also be complete, then said, “I’m thirsty.”

29-30 A jug of sour wine was standing by. Someone put a sponge soaked with the wine on a javelin and lifted it to his mouth. After he took the wine, Jesus said, “It’s done . . . complete.” Bowing his head, he offered up his spirit.

31-34 Then the Jews, since it was the day of Sabbath preparation, and so the bodies wouldn’t stay on the crosses over the Sabbath (it was a high holy day that year), petitioned Pilate that their legs be broken to speed death, and the bodies taken down. So the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first man crucified with Jesus, and then the other. When they got to Jesus, they saw that he was already dead, so they didn’t break his legs. One of the soldiers stabbed him in the side with his spear. Blood and water gushed out.

35 The eyewitness to these things has presented an accurate report. He saw it himself and is telling the truth so that you, also, will believe.

36-37 These things that happened confirmed the Scripture, “Not a bone in his body was broken,” and the other Scripture that reads, “They will stare at the one they pierced.”

The Full Cost

A few years ago, a well-known supermarket, headed up its Easter shopping campaign with the phrase,

Cutting the cost of Easter

As we see from these readings, there was no cutting the cost of Easter – the price had to be paid in full, and it was paid by Jesus, Bringing in God’s new thing.  There was no easy way, no short cut; just one man, living God’s way, bringing heaven to earth – giving his all.

Mark 15

Pilate Questions Jesus

1Early the next morning the chief priests, the nation’s leaders, and the teachers of the Law of Moses met together with the whole Jewish council. They tied up Jesus and led him off to Pilate.

2He asked Jesus, “Are you the king of the Jews?”

“Those are your words,” Jesus answered.

3The chief priests brought many charges against Jesus. 4Then Pilate questioned him again, “Don’t you have anything to say? Don’t you hear what crimes they say you have done?” 5But Jesus did not answer, and Pilate was amazed.

The Death Sentence

6During Passover, Pilate always freed one prisoner chosen by the people. 7And at that time there was a prisoner named Barabbas. He and some others had been arrested for murder during a riot. 8The crowd now came and asked Pilate to set a prisoner free, just as he usually did.

9Pilate asked them, “Do you want me to free the king of the Jews?” 10Pilate knew that the chief priests had brought Jesus to him because they were jealous.

11But the chief priests told the crowd to ask Pilate to free Barabbas.

12Then Pilate asked the crowd, “What do you want me to do with this man you say is the king of the Jews?”

13They yelled, “Nail him to a cross!”

14Pilate asked, “But what crime has he done?”

“Nail him to a cross!” they yelled even louder.

15Pilate wanted to please the crowd. So he set Barabbas free. Then he ordered his soldiers to beat Jesus with a whip and nail him to a cross.

Soldiers Make Fun of Jesus

16The soldiers led Jesus inside the courtyard of the fortress and called together the rest of the troops. 17They put a purple robe on him, and on his head they placed a crown that they had made out of thorn branches. 18They made fun of Jesus and shouted, “Hey, you king of the Jews!” 19Then they beat him on the head with a stick. They spit on him and knelt down and pretended to worship him.

20When the soldiers had finished making fun of Jesus, they took off the purple robe. They put his own clothes back on him and led him off to be nailed to a cross. 21Simon from Cyrene happened to be coming in from a farm, and they forced him to carry Jesus’ cross. Simon was the father of Alexander and Rufus.

Jesus Is Nailed to a Cross

22The soldiers took Jesus to Golgotha, which means “Place of a Skull.” 23There they gave him some wine mixed with a drug to ease the pain, but he refused to drink it.

24They nailed Jesus to a cross and gambled to see who would get his clothes. 25It was about nine o’clock in the morning when they nailed him to the cross. 26On it was a sign that told why he was nailed there. It read, “This is the King of the Jews.” 27-28The soldiers also nailed two criminals on crosses, one to the right of Jesus and the other to his left.

29People who passed by said terrible things about Jesus. They shook their heads and shouted, “Ha! So you’re the one who claimed you could tear down the temple and build it again in three days. 30Save yourself and come down from the cross!”

31The chief priests and the teachers of the Law of Moses also made fun of Jesus. They said to each other, “He saved others, but he can’t save himself. 32If he is the Messiah, the king of Israel, let him come down from the cross! Then we will see and believe.” The two criminals also said cruel things to Jesus.

The Death of Jesus

33About noon the sky turned dark and stayed that way until around three o’clock. 34Then about that time Jesus shouted, “Eloi, Eloi, lema sabachthani?” which means, “My God, my God, why have you deserted me?”

35Some of the people standing there heard Jesus and said, “He is calling for Elijah.” 36One of them ran and grabbed a sponge. After he had soaked it in wine, he put it on a stick and held it up to Jesus. He said, “Let’s wait and see if Elijah will come and take him down!” 37Jesus shouted and then died.

38At once the curtain in the temple tore in two from top to bottom.

39A Roman army officer was standing in front of Jesus. When the officer saw how Jesus died, he said, “This man really was the Son of God!”

40-41Some women were looking on from a distance. They had come with Jesus to Jerusalem. But even before this they had been his followers and had helped him while he was in Galilee. Mary Magdalene and Mary the mother of the younger James and of Joseph were two of these women. Salome was also one of them.

Today Lord, I come.

I stand at the foot of the cross,

awed at how far you were willing to go.

That heaven and earth met on a cross,

that now, God’s new thing may really begin,

and I worship

This year, I am again following the BigRead using Tom Wright’s Lent for Everyone – Mark.  I’ll reflect here – if you’re following it too, or even if you’re not, please share with me.

Follow Friday

What a day it’s been!

They came and arrested Jesus.  Judas did betray him – he brought the soldiers and the Temple Police – brought them to that place we’d met so often. He turned our special place into a place of struggle.  I still don’t know why he did it…


They took him first to Annas, seems they were going down the blasphemy line.  Why else take him to the High Priest?


We followed along, but we didn’t want to get too close – who knew what was going to happen?  They recognised Peter though, I suppose it was because he always spoke out!  The girl said to Peter, ‘you’re with him aren’t you?’, but he insisted he wasn’t.  Don’t know if anyone was fooled.


The High Priest questioned Jesus.  Who was he?  What had he said?  What did it mean?

Jesus said he wasn’t the one to ask.  The people had been there.  What did they make of it all?


Pretty much what those outside were asking Peter.  You are someone who’s been with Jesus aren’t you?  But he still insisted he wasn’t.  ‘But I saw you,’ one of them said.  Peter denied it all.  I’m glad they didn’t ask me – I’m not sure I’d have been any braver…


Having got nowhere with the religious authorities, they dragged Jesus off to Pilate, the Roman governor.  Pilate is confused why they’ve brought a religious criminal to him, why not sort it out by the Temple Laws.

Then it becomes clear why.  They can’t pass the sentence of death.  This is snowballing out of control.  It is now very serious.  Death?  How did we get here?

So Pilate asks him about being a king.  But he doesn’t understand the answers.

Pilate finds Jesus guilty of nothing.

He wants to set him free.  Yet somehow, how?, the people want a terrorist set free.  How can they choose a terrorist for freedom over Jesus??  What is going on here?  But it looks like the death of Jesus is setting a guilty man free.  His penalty is paid by Jesus.


They whip Jesus, and they taunt him.  All he has ever done is try to show them God’s ways.  Don’t they get that?


Jesus was taken. He was stretched out. Nailed to a cross.  The man who had only ever loved.  The man who wanted to bring hope and reconciliation to a broken world.  Killed for his troubles.


Someone got it though, because the sign above him said KING OF THE JEWS.  And do you know what?  It said it in Hebrew, Latin and Greek – everyone could understand the truth who cared to look.


As life ebbed from him, Jesus cried out, “Everything is done”.

And it was.



I followed you Lord.

Walked with you,

heard your teaching,

watched the amazing things you could do,

saw how you loved people,

knew you loved and accepted me.


I followed you Lord.

Sometimes I’ve got it wrong.

I’ve made mistakes,

done the wrong thing,

even denied I knew you at times,

but you always gave me another chance.


I followed you Lord,

All the way to Jerusalem.

I watched what they did to you,

saw them beat you

and abuse you

and finally nail you to a cross.


I followed you Lord.

What happens next?