It was midafternoon during Passover week in Jerusalem, and at the ninth hour of the day, Jesus died on the cross. As surreal as it sounds, the Jews finally got their way and the Savior of mankind had died crucified before countless witnesses.
How many of Jesus’ followers understood His death at Calvary was part of a perfect plan? Did any of them understand the foretold resurrection about their Messiah rising from the dead first required for the Lord to die so He could rise indeed as promised?
So it was, around 3pm on that Friday afternoon that Jesus gave up His Spirit. Shortly thereafter the Jews made a request regarding the three crucified prisoners and more importantly, the need to clear the way for the special celebration to come the following day.
“31 Therefore, because it was the Preparation Day, that the bodies should 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. 32 Then the soldiers came and broke the legs of the first and of the other who was crucified with Him.” (John 19:31-32)
This Preparation Day was uniquely important because it took place during the Passover, a week long festival in which the Jews celebrate their God given immunity to the angel of death in Egypt.
Since no one likes walking by prisoners dying on crosses on their way to a party, the Jews requested the men’s legs be broken so they could no longer support their body weight. Consequently they would quickly suffocate under the extreme stress on their lungs from their outstretched arms nailed to each crossbeam.
Along with rapid, excruciating death, each man was to be taken off their respective crosses then taken to tombs where each body would be prepared for burial.
“33 But when they came to Jesus and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs. 34 But one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately blood and water came out.” (John 19:33-34)
Jesus had already given up His Spirit, and when the soldiers came to Him and saw that He was dead, they pierced His side to make certain He was indeed dead.
“35 And he who has seen has testified, and his testimony is true; and he knows that he is telling the truth, so that you may believe.” (John 19:35)
John reveals he was among those who witnessed Jesus’ blood pouring out from His side, and the fact there was also water that poured out indicates Christ’s body was releasing watery fluid surrounding His heart and lungs without which the human body cannot survive.
“36 For these things were done that the Scripture should be fulfilled, “Not one of His bones shall be broken.” 37 And again another Scripture says, “They shall look on Him whom they pierced.” (John 19:36-37)
It was written in scripture (Psalm 34:20) that no bones of the Lamb of God would be broken, and that His body would be pierced just as the body of the Lord was on the cross. It was no coincidence that Jesus’ bones were not crushed by the Roman soldier at Calvary, and that both blood and water flowed from Him just as it was foretold about the Messiah.
In this section of his epistle, John shared with us how Christ is living Water and by the shedding of Jesus’ blood, believers are redeemed.
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We thank you for your blessings in our lives,
We praise you Lord for the wisdom found through the gospel of John,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to live out the apostle’s writings
As we continue to learn more about you through your word.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through the truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of Christian faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and our place with you in Heaven
According to your ways, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre