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Bible Commentaries

Bell's Commentary on the Bible

John 19

Verses 1-24

  1. INTRO:
    1. Crucifixion - The Hour had finally come…
      1. Crucifixion was a barbaric form of capital punishment invented by the Persians
      2. They believed the earth was sacred to Ormazd(Mazda), the earth god.
        1. They felt that death should not contaminate the earth; thus hung them above the earth
    2. The forms in which the cross is represented are these:
      1. The crux simplex (I) a single piece, without transom.
      2. The crux decussata (X) or St. Andrew’s cross.
      3. The crux commissa (T) or St. Anthony’s cross.
      4. The crux immissa (t) or Latin cross. Which we think was the kind of cross on which Jesus died. Above our Lord’s head, on the projecting beam, was placed the title.
        1. After the conversion of Constantine the Great (313), the cross first came into use as an emblem of Christianity. He claimed he saw a flaming cross in the heavens bearing the inscription, “In hoc signo vinces” (i.e. By this sign thou shalt conquer) and that on the following night Christ himself appeared and ordered him to take for his standard the sign of this cross. (Eastmanʼs Dictionary)
    3. For 2000 years the cross has captured the attention of “artists, poets, architects, & yes, even Jewelers”. Let’s take that tiny piece of jewelry we call a cross back 2000 years.
      1. When the cross was not a symbol of faith but of failure; not of morality but of lawlessness; not of respect but of unspeakable shame. (Chuck Swindoll; John; pg.78)
    4. Let’s remember: Jesus was not a helpless victim of some insidious plot; He was not a pitiful martyr whose plans were suddenly terminated. No His crucifixion had been carefully planned, predicted, & prophesied in the Scriptures.
      1. Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death. Acts 2:23
    5. Outline: Ecce Homo(1-13); Ecce Rex Vester(14-24); Behold the Man; Behold your King.
    1. ​​​​​​​Jesus/Pilate had been talking about a kingdom so it was only rt that he king have a crown
      1. Obviously done for mockery but it preached a message, for Jesus was wearing the consequences of Adam’s sins.
      2. In Gen.3:17-19 it describes the results of Adams fall...cursed ground, toil, thorns & thistles the ground will bring forth.
        1. Here stands Jesus wearing the consequences of Adam’s sin.
      3. Yet don’t forget, a crown is a sign of victory...He has overcome!
    2. (12) Pilate gravely aware of the coil of evil in which he was caught.
    3. (13) Gabbatha (Gab Baitha) the ridge of the house; the temple-mound.
      1. ​​​​​​​On a part of which the fortress of Antonia was built. This “temple-mound” was covered with a tessellated pavement.
      2. We ran across Praetorium in 18:28. A judgement-seat was placed on this “pavement” outside the hall of the “praetorium”.
    1. ​​​​​​​(15) We have no king but Caesar - The political straw that brings Pilate to his knees.
      1. When the Romans first came into Palestine, they had the most bloody rebellion on their hands, because the Jews had insisted that “God alone was their king!”
      2. This must have taken Pilate’s breath away. (William Barclay) The Jews abandoned every principle they had in order to eliminate Jesus. In their hatred they forgot all mercy, they forgot all sense of proportion, they forgot all justice, they forgot all their principles, they even forgot God! Never in history was the insanity of hatred so vividly shown. (William Barclay; The Gospel of John, Vol.2; pg.276)
    2. Pilate washed his hands (Mt.27:24) At whatever point Pilate stubbornly tried to wash the stain of his decision away, it would follow him to his grave. And worse, beyond it! Face-to-face with the One whose life he washed his hands of.
      1. Seriousness of unbelief of Jesus? To reject Him as King of your life is just like washing your hands of Him.
    3. (17) Bearing His cross - The crossbeam where love & justice meet.
    4. Later Simon was drafted to carry it for Him (Mrk15:21).
      1. Not told why. Tradition says Jesus fell & couldn’t carry it.
      2. Criminals carried their own cross as a sign of guilt, & Jesus was not guilty!
    5. (18) In the center - or in-between!
    6. Between 2 thieves; between life & death; between heaven & earth.
    7. There He hangs with outstretched arms, aching for a prodigal world’s return.
    8. In the meanwhile, Jesus is blessed with the last kind words He’d hear on earth. Not from a religious leader, not from a disciple, not even from His mother but from a common thief
      1. ​​​​​​​We don’t know anything about this criminal. Not how much he stole nor how often. From whom or why. We only know he was a thief. A wayward son over whom some mother’s heart has been broken; over whom some father’s hopes have been dashed.
        1. I wonder, was his mother even there? If she was, could she hear or even perceive what just took place? [Lk.24:39-43]
        2. Oh and, what did Jesus’ eyes of forgiveness look like?
    9. Jesus in the center - may it be said of our lives!
      1. Not: God #1; marriage #2; kids #3; ministry #4; work #5; hobbies #6; etc.
      2. But, Jesus the center of our life; Jesus the center of our marriage; Jesus the center of our kids; Jesus the center of our ministry; Jesus the center of our work; Jesus the center of our hobbies.
    10. (24) To this point, every prophecy regarding the Messiah - even to the gambling of His clothes was fulfilled.
    11. Atonement = to make amends, to set things right. (Also to remove by paying a price)
      1. It involves Substitution & Satisfaction.
    12. The Goats! (Lev.16:7; 15,16; 20-22)
    13. The 2 goats represented 2 aspects of the work of the cross:
      1. The Satisfaction (the death of a goat)
        1. Jesus satisfied God’s holy justice. He received His wrath for us.
      2. The Substitution (the conferring of sin to the 2nd goat)
        1. Jesus didn’t die for Himself, but for us.
    14. The first goat needed to die! An Expiation (to make amends) was in order. Blood needed to be shed.
    15. The second goat was the Scapegoat! Scapegoat means “to remove.”
      1. Our sins needed to be removed!
      2. This setting free of the live goat, pictured God’s forgiveness of their sins. But it first required the death of the other goat!
    16. “Salvation is free...but it is not cheap!”
      1. John Stott, “We strongly reject, therefore, every explanation of the death of Christ which does not have at its center the principle of ‘satisfaction through Substitution’ indeed divine self-satisfaction through divine self-substitution.”
    17. That one thief didn’t know much theology. He only knew 3 things: [1] That Jesus was King [2] That His kingdom was not of this world;
    18. [3] That this King had the power to bring even the most unworthy into His kingdom.
      1. But that was enough! A lifetime of moral debt cancelled! :)
    19. Can you confess, “I too have stolen?”
      1. When I gossiped, I have taken from another’s reputation.
      2. When I raised my voice in anger, I have taken something from peace.
      3. When I aided & imbedded immoral thoughts, I have stolen from another’s dignity, depreciating that person from a sacred object of your love to a common object of my own lust.
      4. When I hurt someone’s feelings, I have taken something from that person’s self-worth, something which might never be replaced, something, for which I might never be able to make restitution.
      5. When I have spoken the truth, but not in love, I have stolen from Your kingdom by pushing a soul, not closer, but farther away from the borders of paradise. (Ken Gire; Intimate Moments With The Savior; pg.110.)
        1. Will you pray today, remember me O King,...a common thief!

Verses 25-30

  1. INTRO:
    1. Prayer: Jim & Sue Drake. There son Matthew died in a motorcycle accident while out in the hills of San Luis Obispo, Fri night.
      1. For years he and his wife Jenny loved working with the H.S. and college youth in their church. He also leaves behind 3 beautiful children.
    2. First off: my week in Belize was wonderful, refreshing, & spiritually invigorating.
    3. Second: regarding Haiti I consider myself privileged, humbled, amazed.
      1. Privileged - That I would be able to go & get in.
      2. Humbled - At watching believers live out their faith & trust in God.
      3. Amazed - at our Haitian friends love for God amidst tragedy; & their resilience & strength.
    4. I’ve been going into Haiti with the Bithers since 1996. This was I believe my 16th trip.
      1. Over the years you develop wonderful friendships that develop way beyond being enamored by a different country, food, people, & conditions...they truly become friends.
      2. I’m also humbled to say I have 17 pastors & other church deacons that consider me their pastor.
    5. Some have asked what did I do being that it was a medical team?
      1. Logistics: As Kevin Bither lead in team #1, I led team #2 in dealing with all the logistics of making sure all 11 got to Hinche safely (navigating crazy airports, transportation to & from our Hotel in Cap, U.N. Excorts, customs, etc.).
      2. Personal meeting with pastor Iliobert (lost his nephew, Telius’ son).
      3. Personal meeting with myself & Kevin(representing HEF board) & pastor Iliobert & his Emergency Response board. [all benevolence to be handed out via the churches!]
      4. Praying with patients. And of course balloon animals, smiles, & photos.
      5. Also helping to inform CCOF & Calv Mag of what was happening on Haiti’s upper plateau.
        1. Kevin was getting calls from the Pentagon, visits from U.S. special op’s guys (no names, no photos), & a number of U.N. contingencies.
    6. I would also like to thank the churches who have in-trusted us, knowing we were working in Haiti, including: Revival(Gary Galbraith); CC Hemet(Gary Johnson); CC Romoland (Gerry Brown; U-Turn); CC Claremont(Marco Alvarez); & Calvary Christian Fellowship.
      1. 50 Haiti donations on line (close to $4500.00) - Totaling $22,000.
    2. Hospitality in Hinche. Each family taking a family in.
    3. I THIRST! (28-30)
    4. Where is God in Haiti? Christ is not distant from us in our times of suffering. He lies crushed under the weight of concrete walls. He lies wounded in the street with his legs broken. He walks homeless and hungry through the camps. He weeps uncontrollably over the child he has lost.
      Where is God in Haiti? He hangs bloody on the cross: “A man of sorrows, and familiar with our suffering” (Is. 53:3) [Richard Stearns; President World Vision U.S.]
    5. Read Mt.25:35-40.
    6. I was hungry and you gave Me food-
      1. We were able to bring in 20,000 pounds of rice & beans & other supplies from the Dominican border. TY Dave Peterson 8 hour trip (Shelly).
    7. I was thirsty and you gave Me drink - and they still are thirsty. I wonder what we can do?
      1. Of the more than 6 billion people in the world today, over 1 billion have no access to improved drinking water.
      2. And according to the U.N. children's agency UNICEF, polluted water and lack of basic sanitation claim the lives of over 1.5 million children every year, mostly from water-borne diseases.
      3. Sink a well in Haiti - Around $2000.
      4. Sawyer Products: Show
      5. Tyler Combs: Sovereign Earth nalgene bottles: Show
      6. Filtration Straws.
    8. I was a stranger and you took Me in-
      1. Hinche swelled to 3 times its size.
      2. Everyone I talked to had someone living with them (even Iliobert & Marie)
      3. Sweet hospitality, especially when you most families don’t have enough for themselves.
      4. Rom.12:10-13 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality
    9. I was naked and you clothed me –
      1. Every trip we’re clothing literally naked babies.
      2. 1 Sweet story: Brooke Snyder(our H.S. Principle) told her mom what our church was doing. She met with her friends in her retirement community. She took a collection & raised $220. I talked to Ilobert & Marie.
        1. They said the government has asked each private school to take in 20-30 kids because of the collapsed schools in P.a.P. (They took 30)
        2. Marie said that money would cover 2 to 3 children’s scholarship: “uniform, shoes, all books, & tuition for the year.”
    10. I was sick and you visited me - This is what our team was mostly about.
      1. Hinche Hospital - HEF’s compound Clinic - Los Palis.
      2. Other stories: Christa(mom died; dad & step-mom in PaP @ grandma’s); Ravin Cow Clinic(team rolled up 2 ladies wailing, boy just died, waiting for the doctors); Man w/broken back; Young lady(3 attempts to set hip); John Gorman(plumber by day/surgery tools by night); Baby Almando (burnt head to toe); Lady who saw her baby on ultrasound; Local church group sang around albino lady in hospital.
    11. I was in prison and you came to me –
      1. We didn’t go to the prisoners but for the kids that have to sit sill for 6-8 weeks it must feel like one.
      2. We didn’t go to the prisoners but unfortunately they were coming to the people. 5000 prisoners fled during the earthquake. Killed some guards. Took all guns & ammo. Destroyed all records.
Copyright Statement
These files are the property of Brian Bell.
Text Courtesy of Calvary Chapel of Murrieta. Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on John 19". "Bell's Commentary". 2017.