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Friday, October 11, 2019

2019.10.11 Hopewell @Home ▫ John 19:17-30

Questions from the Scripture text: What was Jesus carrying in John 19:17? Where? What happens to him in John 19:18? What did Pilate write and put on the cross (John 19:19)? Who read it (John 19:20)? How? Who complained about this (John 19:21)? What did Pilate answer (John 19:22)? What were the soldiers doing in John 19:23-24? Why did this happen? Who else was there (John 19:25)? Who saw each of them (John 19:26)? What did He do for them (John 19:26-27)? What did Jesus know in John 19:28? What did He say? Why (cf. Psalm 22:15)? What wine did they lift to him in John 19:29? What did He do with it (John 19:30a)? What did He say then? What did He do then (verse 30b)? 
Our passage begins with Jesus carrying His cross to Golgotha and ends with Jesus dismissing His spirit from Golgotha. Other gospels mention that He was forced to carry His cross, but the picture here is of Christ being in control, even though others seem to be.

Pilate, we know, feels completely out of control. What he wants to do is release Jesus (cf. John 19:12), and he is more than a little suspicious that Jesus is an actual, other-worldly King (cf. John 18:37-38, John 19:7-8). The chief priests are pathetically not in control in John 19:19-22. Mary and John look on helplessly in John 19:26.

But Jesus is in control.

He bears His own cross in John 19:17. His true title is put upon His cross in John 19:19. Even the gambling over His tunic occurs because His Word is in control (John 19:24).

He makes it clear that it is He who cares for Mary through John and who cares for John through Mary.

John 19:28 almost sounds like checking off a to-do list. Everything else has been done but the thirsting.

And the drink that He is given is the drink that a Roman soldier would get coming off of duty. Interestingly, while Jesus had earlier refused the drink that would numb the pain, here He takes it—even though He is about to dismiss His spirit. The only thing He does with the refreshment is announce His job to be well done.

Then, of course, He is also the One who dismisses His own spirit unto His Father (cf. Luke 23:46).

This is not the death of an itinerant rebel-preacher whose enemies finally caught up with Him. It is the death of a Kingly Champion, laying down His own life, according to His own Word, in His own loving mercy.
Who seem to be in control over your life? Who is really in control? What difference does this make?
Suggested songs: ARP22A “My God, My God” or TPH22A “My God, My God, O Why Have You”

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