THE GOSPEL OF JOHN
LESSON FIFTY-ONE

    The last time we met, we looked at the last seven things Jesus said from the cross. Tonight we will begin at the point
Jesus died, and work our way forward from there.

John 19:31-34
    31. The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the
          sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that
          they might be taken away.
    32. Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him.
    33. But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs:
    34. But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.

Verse thirty-one - The Jews therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross
    on the sabbath day, (for that sabbath day was an high day,) besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that
    they might be taken away.
    
    [A] It was nearing evening and Jewish law, required a Jew to cease all work, at sundown.
            [1] The Jewish Sabbath lasted from sundown on Friday until sundown on Saturday.
            [2] This is different from our Christian Sabbath which we consider starting at midnight, Saturday and continuing
                    until midnight Sunday         

    [B] There is another factor here that merits our condideration.
            [1] Notice in verse thirty-one that it reads (for that sabbath day was an high day)
            [2] If you remember, I told you at an earlier study, when the Passover came, there was a preparation day for it,
                    as well as a day that was considered a Sabbath
              
      Numbers 28:16-19
                    16. And in the fourteenth day of the first month is the passover of the Lord.
                    17. And in the fifteenth day of this month is the feast: seven days shall unleavened bread be eaten.
                    18. In the first day shall be an holy convocation; ye shall do no manner of servile work therein:
                    19. But ye shall offer a sacrifice made by fire for a burnt offering unto the Lord;two young bullocks, and one
                          ram, and seven lambs of the first year: they shall be unto you without blemish:
            [3] The Jewish Passover was held on the fourteenth day of the first month every year
                    [a] Before the time of the Passover celebration, the Jews were required to offer sacrifices to God. This was
                            why the money changers and tables had been set up at the temple. They were there for the people to
                            be able to purchase approved animals for their sacrifice. What had happened, was that they had
                            moved inside the temple, instead of being outside the grounds, thus defiling the temple  
                    [b] On the fourteenth, at evening, the Passover lamb was killed, roasted and ate, in observance to when
                            God led the people out of Egypt.
                    [c] The fifteenth was the start of the feast of unleavened bread, and was a holy day, a Sabbath day, when
                            no word was to be performed.
                    [d] For seven days the people were not supposed to eat any leavened bread
                    [e] The twenty-second day of the first month was also a Sabbath day, a High Day, and no work was to be
                            performed on it.
                    [f] These Sabbath High days were not the regular Sabbath day, for they fell on whatever day the fifteenth
                            and twenty-second fell on.
            [4] It is reasonable to believe that Jesus was not buried on Friday as tradition states, but rather on Thursday.
                    [a] If Jesus was buried on Friday as tradition states, he was not in the grave three days and three nights.
                            (Friday evening he would have been buried, therefore he would have been in the grave Friday night.
                            He was in the grave on Saturday, the Jewish Sabbath, and Saturday night, and early Sunday Morning
                            he arose from the dead. Any way you look at this, it was only two, nights and one full and two part
                            days. Making his resurrection on the second day.
                    [b] If we go with the high day as the Sabbath that was referred to, Jesus would have been crucified on
                            Thursday, and buried that same evening. He would have spend Thursday night, Friday and Friday
                            night, Saturday and Saturday night and would have arose on the third day, just like he said he
                            would.         
                    [c] What this would entail, would be that Thursday would have been the fourteenth, the preparation day for
                            the feast and the preparation day for eating the Passover lamb. The fifteenth would have been the
                            first day of the feast, a high day, a Sabbath and the sixteenth would have been the regular Sabbath
                            day.
                    [d] What this also entails, is that Jesus the sacrificial lamb of God, was offered as a sin offering for man on
                            the cross and died at about the same time, the Passover lamb would have been slain in Jerusalem, as
                            he shed his blood so that death would Passover you and I.                       
                    [e] As evening was about to fall, and Jewish law forbid anyone to hang on the cross on the Sabbath, they
                            sent soldiers to break the legs of those hanging on the cross.                                   
                            [1-a] We have talked previously, how for someone hanging on the cross to breath, they had to push
                                    up with their legs in order to get the air in an out of their lungs.
                            [b-1] In order to hasten the death, their legs could be broken thus causing them to suffocate.

Verse 32 and 33 Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him.
    But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake  not his legs:
    
    [A] The soldiers went to the two thieves, and broke their legs to hasten their death
            
    [B ] When the came to Jesus, he was already dead, so they did not break his.

Verse 34 - But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.

    [A] Apparently the soldier wanted to be certain that Jesus was dead, so he thrust his spear into his side, and into
            Christ’s heart.
            
    [B] The hole the spear made would have been rather large, probably large enough to have stuck you hand in, due to
            the way the spear head was constructed.  
            
    [C] From the wound, flowed what John perceived as blood and water.
            [1] This was evidently a natural effect of thus piercing his side.
            [2] Such a flowing of blood and water makes it probable that the spear reached the heart, and if Jesus had not
                    already been dead, this would have closed his life.
            [3] The heart is surrounded by a membrane called the pericardium. This membrane  contains a liquor
                    resembling water, which prevents the surface of the heart from becoming dry by its continual motion. It was
                    this which was pierced and from which the water flowed. The point of the spear also reached one of the
                    ventricles of the heart, and the blood, yet warm, rushed forth, either mingled with or followed by the water of
                    the pericardium, so as to appear to John to be blood and water flowing together.

John 19:35-37
    35. And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe.
    36. For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken.
    37. And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced.

Verse thirty-five.
    
    [A] John who was standing at the foot of the cross, saw all this happen, and bare record to it.

Verse thirty-six
    
    [A] Prophecy said that Jesus would die and no bones would be broken,

    [B] Yet, the Passover lamb, which was slain and eaten on the Passover, was not to have any bones broken in it.
            Since Christ was our Passover lamb, and we partake of his body through communion, his bones could not be
            broken either, therefore he died before the soldiers came and his bones was not broken, making him a suitable
            Passover lamb for you and I

Verse thirty-seven - And again another scripture saith, They shall look on him whom they pierced.
    
    [A] In fulfillment of Prophecy, Jesus’ side was pierced
    
    [B] It was pierced to proved he was dead, yet it was the fulfillment of biblical prophecy

John 19:38-42
    38. And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews, besought Pilate
          that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took the body of
          Jesus.        
    39. And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of myrrh and
          aloes, about an hundred pound weight.
    40. Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is to
          bury.
    41. Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre, wherein was
          never man yet laid.
    42. There laid they Jesus therefore because of the Jews' preparation day; for the sepulchre was nigh at hand.

Verse thirty-eight - And after this Joseph of Arimathaea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews,
    besought Pilate that he might take away the body of Jesus: and Pilate gave him leave. He came therefore, and took
    the body of Jesus.

    [A] Joseph of Arimathaea, went to Pilot and asked to take the body of Jesus and bury it.
            [1] Joseph was a secret disciple of Jesus.
            [2] If you remember, when Jesus was here, for a person to openly follow him, or acknowledge him ad being the   
                    messiah, they were excommunicated from the Synagogue, therefore Joseph worshipped him in secret.
            
    [B] There is a factor here that I had never thought about until now, If you remember the Jews would not go inside the
            courts of Pilot because it would have defiled them, and it was the preparation day, so they would not have been
            able participate in the Passover celebration due to their uncleanness. Yet here is Joseph, defiling himself, by
            touching and preparing a dead body for burial therefore he would miss the feast.

Verse thirty-nine - And there came also Nicodemus, which at the first came to Jesus by night, and brought a mixture of  
    myrrh and aloes, about an hundred pound weight.
            
    [A] Who was this Nicodemus?
            [1] He was the same Nicodemus who came to Jesus by night in John chapter three        
           
    [B] They took with them all the necessary myrrh and aloes a hundred pound weight to prepare Jesus body for burial,

Verse forty - Then took they the body of Jesus, and wound it in linen clothes with the spices, as the manner of the Jews is
    to bury.

    [A] The wound linen cloth around the body of Jesus, the same cloth that was left lying on the stone after he arose.
            
    [B] Its interesting. I wondered what they did with the spices, but here we see that they were wrapped with the body
            inside the cloth

Verse forty-one - Now in the place where he was crucified there was a garden; and in the garden a new sepulchre,  
    wherein was never man yet laid.

    [A] After his body was prepared, they laid him in a borrowed tomb,

    [B] Christ was crucified in a garden, and in the garden was the tomb, so they did not have to transport Jesus far.

Verse forty-two - There laid they Jesus therefore because of the Jews' preparation day; for the sepulchre was nigh at  
    hand.

    [A] Here we are back to that preparation day, and time to eat the feast of the Passover lamb.

    [B] It was almost dark, and at dark, the new day had begun, the high day, a Sabbath day.

    [C] They did not have time to take him far so they laid him in this new tomb, one which had been carved out of rock,
            and never had a body placed in it before
            
    [D] It may have been possible that it was there plans to move the body later into another resting place, but that is
            really not something we can know. Yet it would appear that he was laid there because of the approaching
            Sabbath, and because the sepulchre was nearby

What have we learned from all of this?
    [A] Jesus was the Lamb of God
            [1] He as the Sacrificial Lamb
            [2] He was the Passover Lamb

    [B] No bones were broken in him
            [1] He died before the soldiers came to break their legs hastening their death
            [2] If his legs had been broken, he could not have been the Passover lamb, and his body could not have been
                    eaten for the Passover (communion bread)        

    [C] When he was pierced there was blood and water which ran out of his side.
            [1] Apparently the sword pierced his heart to make sure he was dead
            [2] The water was the clear fluid that surrounds the heart to cushion it
            [3] The blood came from the heart which was pierced

    [D] He was removed from the cross by two secret disciples.
            [1] John 3, tells us that Nicodemus who was a secret disciple of Jesus came to him by night
            [2] John 19, tells us that Joseph was a secret disciple of Jesus
                    [a] I find it interesting that two men, both who were secret disciples were those who took care of Jesus’
                            body, and his open disciples did not help, nor did the family of Christ
                    [b] I also find it interesting that while Jesus was alive these two men worshipped him in secret, yet after he
                            died they defiled themselves to bury him, openly

    [E] He was buried in a borrowed tomb
            [1] It is not clear who the tomb belonged to, or if they had been consulted,
            [2] It would appear that Jesus was laid in that particular tomb because it was near and the preparation day was
                    upon them
            [3] Another interesting fact is that Jesus who created the heaven and the earth, was so poor that he did not own
                    a grave plot.
    
    [F] His body was prepared,
            [1] Whether of not the tomb was borrowed and whether or not they had planned to move the body, they still
                    prepared it in the manor of a common Jewish burial.
            [2] He was wrapped in linen which had a hundred pounds of myrrh and aloe inside around the body, to preserve
                     it.
    
    [G] The preparation day
            [1] This was the day of preparation day, the day when the Passover lamb was slain
            [2] That lamb was then eaten by the family after dark, which was ten beginning of the next day, a High Sabbath
                    day.
    
    [H] Jesus was then left in the ground for three days and three nights and on the third day early in the morning, he
            arose from the dead.
    
    [I] Questions
            [1] What does this all mean to you and I?