Coming to John 19:16, we come to John's account of the crucifixion of Christ. We shall consider these verses, which we began to study last Sunday and really got through only the first point. We'll consider the remainder of this portion this morning. Just some introductory remarks. The recognition that Jesus Christ is God is the key to all Christianity.
Christianity is based on the fact of the deity of Jesus Christ. Any religion or so‑called Christian system which rejects the deity of Christ denying that He is God in the flesh, is accursed and is Satanic. The theme of the entire New Testament is the deity of Christ because that fact is the foundation in everything else. Now in a magnificent effort to seal that fact to the heart's of men, the Holy Spirit has given us the gospel of John.
This gospel has one main purpose and that is to present Christ as God in human flesh, to present the deity of Jesus Christ; therefore throughout all of this gospel, John selects from the life of Christ those incidents, those accounts, those revelations and those words which speak to the issue of His deity. Now as you and I well know, there are four gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, and 1 all four of them are designed to give us the life of Christ. Put together, they give us a total picture; separated, they portray specific aspect of Christ that each author has designed to major on, For example in Matthew, Jesus Christ i presented in deity as a King; in Mark, in humanity as a servant; in Luke, in humanity as a Son; in John, in deity as God. So there is a balance in the gospels between the deity and the humanity o. Jesus Christ. Now John's theme, then, is to present deity. As we have studied John for several years now, we have found that this is what happens everywhere as you know. Consistent with John's theme, John presents the majesty, the glory, the deity of Christ on every page. We have long ago learned that it doesn't matter bow debasing or how degrading or how humiliating. or how shameful the event is, John manages to see the deity of Jesus Christ in and through it. Now when we come to John l9:l6, we come to the most shameful and degrading and humiliating event in all of the universe, the death, the execution, the crucifixion of Christ. We might for a moment think at this point John would be unable to reveal deity; not so. In this most humiliating picture, the deity of Jesus Christ is radiated in such perfection and such magnificence that we are again given proof positive that He was in fact God in human flesh. As I mentioned, there are many various incidents around the cross that John could select to bring to our attention in his brief verses, but John consistent with his purpose under the direction of the Holy Spirit selects four little vignettes or four aspects of the crucifixion scene that speak to us concerning the deity of Christ, for that is John's point.
We began last time by looking at the first one. John picks out these four, and they are from verses l6‑3O. We found that there are four incidents or four aspects which John picked out to show us the deity of Christ. The first was the specific fulfillment; the second, the superscription; the third, the selfless live; fourth, supernatural knowledge and control. W saw last time the specific fulfillment. In verses l6‑l8 and verses 23‑24, picking that up and including it with the first part, John gives to us a series of sPecific prophetic fulfillments that Jesus in His death fulfilled to the very letter. He does that because that is proof that Jesus is on a God‑authored trail, that He is moving step by step in divine power and plan, and that He is not an executed criminal at all, that nobody is really taking His life away‑‑He is moving step by step in omniscience on a plan ordered by God before the foundation of the world? and this speaks of His deity.
Just to review the specific fulfillments, verse l6, "Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified, And they took Jesus, and led him away." We saw that "led him away" fulfills Isaiah 53:7, which said "...he is brought (led) as a lamb to the slaughter,..," Then we saw that the fact that He was taken immediately from judgment and to the cross, there was a usual two‑day period in there that was eliminated, that was out of the ordinary, very abnormal; but it was done in fulfillment of Isaiah 53:8 which says "He was taken from prison and from judgment:..." Directly from judgment to death.
Again He fulfilled prophecy. In John l9:l7 we read, "And he bearing his cress went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha: The key there was "bearing his cross," which is a typical fulfillment of the Old Testament type Isaac. Isaac, the type of Christ, bearing the wood for his own sacrifice on his own back, Jesus Christ fulfills that typology by carrying his own cross. As I told you before there are two kinds of prophecy, verbal prophecy and typical prophecy; both are equally significant. 'hen we saw some more fulfillment in the fact that verse l8 says, "...they crucified him,,.." fulfilling two prophecies, first of all a verbal prophecy. in Psalm 22 that described His death as crucifixion, even said that they would be nailing Him to the cross, piercing His hands and feet, It also fills the typical prediction of Numbers 2l in which Jesus is likened to the brazen serpent placed on the pole, lifted up in front of the eyes of all who look upon it and are healed, We saw not only that, but fulfillment of prophecy at the end of verse l8, the fact that Jesus was crucified with two criminals, Isaiah 53:9, l2, it says He made His grave with the wicked and He was numbered with the transgressors in His death, Then we moved to verses 23 and 24 and we read that the soldier when they had crucified Jesus, took His garments and made four parts, to every soldier a part, and also His coat. Now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout.
The seamless coat is a beautiful picture of the priesthood of Christ because the high priest always had to wear a cloak or tunic without seam. Here is Jesus Christ the perfect high Priest, making the perfect sacrifice; and thus He fulfills that picture, Then we saw in verse ? that they said, Let's not tear it; let's cast lots for it that the Scripture might be fulfilled, which was from Psalm 22:l8. They fulfilled prophecy in gambling for His clothes, So John has picked out each of these little details of prophecy to show the absolute accuracy of every single thing that went on around the cross of Jesus Christ to prove to us beyond contradiction that this is no ordinary man, that this is no victim, but that this is God in human flesh on a plan and a pattern that He Himself has established, moving step by step.
Secondly, we not only last week saw the deity of Jesus Christ presented in the specific fulfillments, but secondly, this morning we are going to lock at the superscription, verses l9‑22. We see that by what Pilate writes and places over the head of Jesus Christ he acknowledges Who He is; and this is a tremendous thing. Remember I told you last week that when anybody was to be crucified, they were marched through as many streets as possible and taken to the place of execution in order that the people might see them, and that in front of the man or in front of the victim there was a man who carried a placard. On the placard was written the crime for which the individual was to be crucified However, in this case there was no crime to be put there because Jesus had committed no crime, Pilate had repeatedly made the statement, I find no what? fault in Him. So since there was no crime to place there, Pilate saw this as a marvelous opportunity to take a shot at the Jews, whom he despised and whom he loathed for what they had done to him in blackmailing him into crucifying Jesus. So he uses this in a cynical, sarcastic, bitter barb at the Jews, Notice verse l9. "And Pilate wrote a title,..." Luke calls it the superscription. "and put it on the cross. And the writing was, JESUS OF NAZARETH THE KING OF THE JEWS," And I'm sure Pilate loved every minute of that, This was his one chance for some bitter cynicism toward the Jews who had ao destroyed him. You say, What was so bad about the title? What was so bad about it? There were several things bad about it in the Jewish eyes. Number one, this was not their king. B.hind that was the obvious insidious kind of cynicism that would put up there, JESUS OF NAZARETH, because the Jews always said, Can anything good what? come out of Nazareth? Nazareth was hick‑town. I mean, nobody that meant anything ever came from that place. That was up there where the hayseeds lived; that wasn't down in the pious, within the walls of holy Jerusalem. Jesus of Nazareth to be a King? Ridiculous that any king would ever con? out of Nazareth, So the first part of it was a rather subtle shot. But worse than that was this statement: E KING.OF THE JEWS." Now they just really didn't like that a bit.
Pilate got a little bit of his revenge at that point. He wanted to mock them by showing them how debased they were in his eyes by putting up a criminal who was beaten and bloody and ugly in terms of physical visage, hanging on a cross, and then announce to the world that this is THE KING OF THE JEWS. If that's their King, what does that make them? You see it was an effort on his part really to lower them, really to humiliate them, to mock them. So he gives them for a King a crucified criminal. All of this was done to irritate them. He was getting back for what they had done to destroy him as a man, which they had done so effectively., Now he knew that they had said, We have no king but Caesar; and he knew that they never told the truth. They had pledged their allegiance in a sense to Caesar, but Pilate knew the character of such a pledge. Pilate didn't care anyway, He wanted the opportunity to get the barb in, so he mocked them in a grim jest. To their horror he announces to the world and for all time, This is the King of the Jews, and they had vehemently denied it. Notice verse 2O, "This title then read many of the Jew That's the idea. The Hill of Calvary was just above a highway just outside the city wall, It can easily be seen from the edge of the city. It can certainly be seen by all the people on the paths and the walkways outside the city, High, lifted into the sky, was the cross, and on the top, .'HIS IS JESUS OF NAZARETH KING OF THE JEWS. Every Jew that came by saw it.
Just to make sure nobody missed it, it says "for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh (near) to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, and Greek, and Latin," so everybody could read it. Pilate was in effect saying, Take this, you Jews. He was getting some kind of revenge, S?.n? the three languages. of the ancient world, Hebrew, the language of religion, Greek, the language of culture, and Latin, the language of power, Pilate wrote, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS; and he did it in a cruel kind of mockery to get back at them for their destruction of him. Isn't it interesting that exactly what Pilate said in cynicism was truth? Do you see again the same recurring principle? that God takes the wrath of men to what? to praise Him. Let me say what I said last week, and you get it because it's important: No sinner ever ever stood in the way of the purposes of God..Did you hear that? Sinners and unbelievers and evil people do not violate God's plans; He merely moves them in connection with His plans to accomplish His purpose. So Pilate, witlessly in cynicism, announces to the world for all time the absolute truth, THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS. They had in fact killed their King. All through His life Jesus had been acknowledged as King. Read the gospel of Matthew; that's the whole point of Matthew, to present Jesus as King. Before He was ever born the angel announced to Mary that He would have a kingdom. The wise men came from the East, heralding Him as King of the Jews, At the beginning of this very week He came riding into the city of Jerusalem and they said, Blessed is the King of Israel. John tells us that. Before Pilate, Pilate said to Him, Are You a king then? Jesus said, Thou sayest that I am. For this end was I born for this cause came I into the world, He was a King; He was the true King. Mind you this had there been a king in Israel at that time, it would have been Jesus by right for His Father was in the kingly line and His father Joseph by right would have been the king, He had the right to reign. He was born of the seed of David, He had the kingly right, and He was the King. So Pilate in cynicism superintended by God announces the truth to the world. You know, another gu.y did this, another crumb, Caiaphas. Caiaphas was such a scheming politician, he thought he was so sharp on his own, he came up with a real good plan. We gotta get rid of Jesus was the idea, chapter 11 of John, They were afraid that Jesus was going to stir up the people, If Jesus stirred up the people, then verse ?8, "If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him; and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation," He was afraid he was going to lose his political position.
So Caiaphas steps up and says, Men, I have something to say. Clever, wily, cunning, evil. Here it is. (5O) "..,Consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not." What is he saying?
It's better that we should kill Jesus than to let Him start a revolution and we lose the whole nation. Oh, he thought he was sharp. He says, What needs to happen is Jesus needs to die for the whole nation, The next verse says. I love this. "And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation;" He was high priest, so God just spoke a prophecy through his mouth. He didn't even know what he was saying. He thought he had this great plot about killing Jesus to stop a Roman persecution, but what he was saying in effect was, he was predicting the death of Jesus Christ on behalf of the nation, You see what that is? That's again the same thing that happened to Pilate. What he thought he was saying in a clever, evil plot, Caiaphas, God meant to be a prophecy of the death of Jesus Christ in behalf of men.
Here you come and you've got the same thing in Pilate's case. He thinks he's so sharp. He's going to say it in a very clever, cynical way; and he winds up stating exactly the truth of God. Jn l9:2l gives you the reaction. "Then.said the chief priests of the Jews,..." They are no longer the chief priests of God. That has been forfeited. They now all of a sudden have a new title, the chief priests of the Jews. They came to Pilate. Here's what they said, and I imagine they were heated about it, to put it mildly. "..,Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, I am King of the Jews." Do you get the difference? Don't put that up there. Put it there, He said He was King of the Jews.
That makes a difference, doesn't it? One says He is; one says He's an imposter,just faking it, or making some ridiculous claim. The idea that the King of the Jews, the hope of Israel, was being crucified was a bitter pill for them to swallow even in cynicism.
I am sure the longer they stared at that, the more it ate away .at them. Pilate was thinking in the back of his mind, I want the opportunity to make it appear like I'm crucifying their hopes. So it was devastating to their pride; it ripped them apart to see this crucified criminal, this One despised and loathed being publicly declared as their King. They had screamed, We will not have this man to reign over us They wanted Pilate to change the wording so that Christ would appear to be nothing mo.e than an imposter.
But Pilate was so filled with hate and getting just a little taste of revenge by this time, and he wouldn't move an inch. Verse 22. "Pilate answered, What I have written, I have written." Now Pilate thought, Boy,. such courage. Jmmh. Stand my ground, Little did he know that he was acting under the sovereign control of Almighty God to declare the truth. Isn't it an interesting thing, you look at a guy like Pilate, and Pilate is saying some Boy, Pilate finally got some guts; he's not going to let anybody push him around. This is so typical. Have you ever met the person who stands for what doesn't matter? Ever met that person? And lets everything that does matter slide by. Do you ever talk to the guy who was absolutely dogmatic to the point of hitting you in the mouth over which candidate is the best? When it comes to living the Christian life, he slops through it with little or no conviction about anything? There are some people in this world who are stubborn on the things that don't matter and weak on the things that are of supreme importance.
That's Pilate, classic example. There are so many kinds of arguments, even in your own home, what is it that we argue about? We argue about some little dinky thing that doesn't make a bit of difference, I'm not moving one inch. Mmm hhmmm, See? Stay as stubborn as you can be on some little nit‑picky thing; and you fracture what is really. the important thing, which is a love relationship. It's like Jesus said about the Pharisees, they strain at a gnat and swallow a camel. They don't understand priorities, They stand on what doesn't matter, You know this is easy to get side‑tracked into this, It's easy to be firm and strong on all kinds of political views and all kinds of other types of views, in your business and your thing and all kinds of attitudes that you have; but when your Christian life, which is really what matters, you slop through it. So Pilate stood firm on what didn't matter. He took a stand at the wrong time on the wrong thing, The miracle of the thing of course is that God controlled the superscription. It said exactly what God wanted it to say, The royal title of Jesus is affixed on the cross for all the ages; and nobody, but nobody could change it. Indeed He is the King, is He not? Indeed Paul said. that when He was lifted up to the Father's Presence, the Father said that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven and things in earth and things under the earth, The Bible tells us in Rev l9:ll that when the Son of man appeared in Heaven and riding on that white horse to come to take vengeance, it said on His vesture and on his thigh was written a name, and the name was KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.
Indeed He was a King. Indeed the facts are in, They had killed their King. They had smashed their hopes. They had forfeited the immediacy of the Kingdom. Pilate was right, For all time it stands, THIS IS A KING, THIS IS T‑H‑E KING, I've often thought to myself, Maybe that inscription was the instrument or the text that God used to redeem that repentant because that repentant thief in Luke 23 looked over at Jesus, and he said, Lord, remember me when you come what? to Your Kingdom, It just may have been that God used the text to reach that heart with the text that Pilate wrote, THIS, JESUS OF NAZARETH, KING OF 'HE JEWS. If it had said? He says He's King of the Jews, that may have produced enough doubt to ha?? the decision. So again God uses the wrath of men to praise Him, even to the salvation of a dying thief, Thirdly, we see not only the deity of Christ in specific fulfillment and superscription, but thirdly, in selfless love, This is so beautiful and such a lovely passage, . All of the cross isn't cruelty and bitterness. Look at this, In Jn l9:25‑27 we meet a little group of people standing at the foot of the cross. Verse 25. "Now there stood by the cross..,," When it says "by the cross," it means right against the cross. At the most Jesus, feet would be three feet off the ground, no more than that, These folks would be gathered right at the feet of Jesus within touch of Him easy sound of His voice.
There they are, "Now there stood by the cross of Jesus.,." Meet them now, "his mother, and his mother's sister,Mary the wife of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalene, Now most likely there are four, Some say His mother's sister was Mary the wife of Cleophas; but that's a little hard to understand, It doesn't seem that any mother would name two daughters Mary. So evidently there are four, and there they stand at the foot of the cross, four ladies. You say, Where are the virile, courageous, fearless men? My dear friends, men have no premium on courage. Did you know that? We like to think we are courageous, bold, fearless, The Bible says they were all scattered, and gathered at the foot of the cross, four ladies, Men, we don't have any monopoly on courage; boy, we surely don't, There are some women in this world who show courage like few men do, courage in the midst of tremendous odds. I think of the wives of those missionaries who were slaughtered in South America who went back into those tribes and brought those natives to a knowledge of Jesus Christ. That's courage. That's courage, So there they gather.
They stand by the cross. Let me introduce them to you. First of all, Jesus own Mother is there. Jesus, Mother was told by Simeon about 3O some years before that some day her own heart would be pierced through also. Now there is no question of the fact that Jesus was pierced. Right? But was Mary to be pierced as well? I believe this is the piercing of Mary as she stands at the foot of the cross and feels every pain that her Son feels. She was there. She doesn't appear very much in the ministry of Jesus all through His life. The only time she appears she gets a kind of mild rebuke for trying to mother Him. What He is saying all through His ministry to her is,Mary, I am your Redeemer. The Son‑mother relationship has run its course; now it must be a Redeemer‑disciple relationship for in John 2 when He first began His ministry and He went to the wedding in Cana‑‑you know, weddings were in those days‑‑He went to the wedding in Cana and they ran out of wine to drink. She went to Him and she said, They ran out of wine. He says to her, Woman, woman. Wait until My time, Why did He say "Woman"? Was that an unkind, harsh, discourteous term?
Not at all; it was a very dignified term. What He was saying was, Mary, My ministry is begun; and the mother‑son relationship is ceased and now it's a Redeemer relationship and a disciple relationship, My friends, Mary is not co‑redeeming with Jesus Christ.
Mary is no co‑redemptrix. Mary needs to be redeemed by Jesus just like anybody else. That's right. Mary was not virgin born; Mary was not supernatural. Mary needed a Saviour just as much as you do. So Jesus at the very beginning of His ministry makes sure that she understands that He is to her a Saviour as He is to any other man. who come in faith, So Mary is there. She stands by the cross, and I'm sure she's pained, I'm sure she,a paralyzed, I'm sure she's baffled; but she stands there. She doesn't cry, and there's no hysteria and there's no uncontrollable anguish, That's her Son, That's the little fellow that she loved, and that's the little guy that she cherished and she raised, and He has a place in her heart like nobody else because He was not only her child but He was her perfect child. She loves Him as only a mother could love who had a perfect child; but she suffers in unbroken silence. The crowd is screaming and mocking, the thief is taunting, the soldiers are gambling for His clothes, her Son is bleeding, and she is just watching.
Then it says, "his mother's sister," possibly Salome, who was the Mother of James and John, Then it says, "the wife of Cleophas," "Mary the wife of Cleophas;" and this was possibly Mary's sister‑in‑law so that you have a family there. Then you have one outsider, Mary Magdalene, Mary from Magdala. Christ had cast seven demons from her.
There they are, Interesting that they all have the name Mary, the ones whose names are mentioned. It comes from the word which means bitterness. There is a little group of Marys and perhaps Salome standing at the foot of the cross, You know something? It takes a lot of courage to be there, doesn't it? Because you know that could be guilt by association, hanging around a criminal like that. You say, Where did they get the courage?
I'll tell you a little principle in Scripture that applies here, Perfect love casts out what? fear, They had no fear because their love was so perfect for Christ; so there they a Fortunately for us, there was one man there. Hmm. Praise the Lord. We weren't a total loss, right? The others were long gone, but one was there. I want you to meet him in verse 26. "When Jesus therefore saw his mother,.,." And you can believe this grieved His heart. "When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son" Now we meet this disciple, and it doesn't give his name. Just, "the disciple whom He loved." I wonder who that is?
Go back to Jn l3:23 which says, "Now there was leaning on Jesus' bosom one of his disciples whom Jesus loved." Do you know who that is? Who is it? John, John never names his name but calls himself "the one whom Jesus loved," I can just hear him saying that. I kind of can imagine his whole heart just/about to burst and he,d say, You know me, I'm the one that Jesus loves. I mean, that's a kind of exciting thought, isn't it? I mean, he didn't say, I'm the one that loves Jesus; no, he gets more excited about His love for him than his own love for the Lord, Of course, John's excitable, In the book of Revelation he'd be writing along and say I, John, saw the Holy City. Do you know what that was? He'd say, I, John, saw the Holy City This guy gets excited about his relationship, excited about what God's doing in his life. Here he says, You remember me, I'm the one that Jesus loves. That's good; I like that, I'm glad that's my identity. I'm glad I can introduce myself as, You know me. I'm the one that Jesus loves, That's a mystery; but I'll tell you, it's a joy. So John says, he names himself the one whom Jesus loved; and there could be no greater title for anybody. John is the tender, loving one. Evidently his love for Christ superseded in some measures the love of the other disciples because he's there. Jesus says to Mary, ".,.Woman, behold thy son." (Jn l9:26) He is not referring to Himself; He is referring to John. He is pointing Mary. to John because in the next verse He says to the disciple, "Behold thy mother And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home." He gave Mary a new son. You see, from the moment of His death He would cease to be the earthly Son of Mary so He replaced Himself in Mary's life with John.
There are some beautiful thoughts in this. As He dies, Jesus, the King of love, selflessly cares for those who stand at His feet. It is almost incomprehensible because here is Jesus occupied with the most stupendous task in the history of the universe, here is Jesus Christ under a burden which no creature could possibly have sustained or endured, here is Jesus Christ enduring in a matter of several hours what it will take all individuals through all eternity in all of Hell to endure; and in the midst of it all, He thinks not one thought of Himself but cares only for His Mother and His beloved disciple.
That is a little insight into the caring love of Jesus Christ. That's a wonderful thing to know because when you and I get into problems, sometimes we think that Jesus is too busy running the universe and spinning the planets and doing the things He has to do, to care about us, Don't you believe it for a moment. He gives us a classic and exciting indication in this passage that when He is the busiest, doing the most, He is the most sensitized to the care that we need at every point, Be assured of the loving, tender care of Jesus on an individual basis in your life. He shows that at the cross. So He says, I'm turning you, Woman, over to John. Now again, by saying "Woman," He is not being discourteous, He already told her in kind a preview of this in Mark 3l, she came to get Him. He was speaking somewhere, and she came to get Him with her other children, his brethren, and so forth. Somebody sent a message in and said, Your Mother wants You.
Jesus is speaking. Jesus says, Who is My Mother? Who are My brethren? Then He said, Even he that doeth the will of the Father, the same is My father, mother, brother, sister.
The point is this, when Jesus began His ministry and moved toward the cross, all human relationships were severed and everybody got on the basis of a disciple, one who needed to be redeemed, So Mary was in the same situation. It's interesting also what Paul says when he says, We have known no after the flesh. We knew Christ after the flesh but henceforth we know Him no more, In other words after the resurrection, there was no longer a fleshly relationship that mattered; it was a spiritual one, And it was for Mary too.
Sonship ended with His death, and He gives Mary a new son, John. This is interesting because you see Jesus couldn't commit Mary to His own brothers, Mary had other children.
Some people say, the Roman Catholic church has for long years taught that Mary doesn't have any other children; however the Bible says she does, so there is an evident conflict at that point. In Jn 7 it says, His brethren therefore came to Him and said, Depart from here and so forth. Then in verse 5 it says this: "For neither did his brethren believe in him." It even names His brothers elsewhere in the Word of God. Jesus had brothers. Mary was not a perpetual virgin; she was not virgin born; she was just a w; she had other children who were the half‑ brothers of Jesus only in the sense that Jesus' Father was the Holy Spirit and not Joseph. Jesus' brethren were real actual children of Mary.
So Jesus could not turn Mary over to His own brothers because they did not believe in Him, which ave been a grief to the heart of Mary, The wonderful joy of the whole deal is when you get over into Acts l:l4, listen to what you read. This is preparing for the day of Pentecost. "These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brethren." By the time you get to the book of Acts, the whole family has become disciples of Jesus Christ, But at this point He commits Mary in tender, loving care to John because He knows that she will be alone because His brothers do not yet believe. So here you get a glimpse of the kind of love that is divine. Human love is preoccupied with its own thing, I don't care how great it is. We get preoccupied; we stub our toe when we get self‑centered.
Imagine bearing all the sin of We're just worried about other all the universe and caring about everybody around you, It's beyond imagination, but that's Christ; that's deity, That's not humanity; that's deity, So Jesus commits John to her and He gets those two people who loved her most together to strengthen each other, To the death Jesus has always seen more of others than Himself, In Jn l3 in the beginning before the Feast of the Passover when Jesus knew that His hour was come that He should depart out of this world unto the Father, listen to this: Having loved His own which were in the world, He loved them unto the end." Now that statement in verse l of chapter l3 became the pattern for all of chapters l3, l4, l5, ??, and l7, l8 and l9, His love for others. At the Upper Room remember what He did? He even got down and washed their feet, didn't He? Then He spoke about His love for them and about He would give them a comforter and He would come back and get them and how He'd give them His peace and His joy. He just kept loving them and loving them, He got them in the Garden and the Romans were threatening even the security of the disciples, so Jesus worked it all around so the disciples could get off the hook and they were delivered from being captured by the Romans. Then here on the cross He even cares for those whom He loves. Always selfless, always caring, the majesty of incarnate love.
So what do we see then? We see Jesus, deity in specific fulfillment, in the superscription, in the selfless love, lastly, in the supernatural knowledge and control. We'll look at Jn l9:28‑3O just quickly.. Let me preface it by saying this; Omniscience belongs only to God. Right? Omniscience means the knowledge of everything. God knows everything. Secondly, omnipotence belongs only to God, That means God has everything in control; God knows everything and controls everything, that's deity, Now you want to see Jesus Christ in His deity? Just watch these next three verses because you're going to see that Jesus knows everything and controls everything. This is deity in action. A powerful passage. Verse 28. "After this,,.." That is, after He's taken care of His duty toward . . , His Mother and His beloved disciple. "Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished.
Now how did He know that? Why, He knew it because He had omniscience. He knew everything. Jesus Christ was on a divine schedule with an omniscient eye moving step at a time and fulfilling every detail of prophecy. He knew exactly where He was; and He was saying to Himself, Well, I know that all things are now accomplished, except for one Scripture, Then He says at the end of verse 28, "...I thirst," Jesus, in total awareness of every fact in the universe, knew that in God's plan everything was done except one Scripture was left unfulfilled. Psalm 69:2l was that Scripture. Psalm 69:2l said of Christ in His death, "..,and in My thirst they gave me vinegar to drink." He knew that that had not yet been fulfilled. At the beginning of the cross they bad tried to give Him vinegar, hadn't they? Really, gall, which ia a sedative; but He wouldn't take it so He could suffer without any kind of deadness but suffer the total pain, But now He knows that Scripture needs to be fulfilled, so He says, ",..I thirst." Now the soldiers didn't have to respond, 't they did because they were under divine impetus; God was moving to fulfill the prophecy.
Verse 29, "Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar:..." Isn't it interesting that Psalm 69 knew that they would have a vessel of vinegar at the foot of the cross? "Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a sponge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, end put it to his mouth."
They responded, Isn't it also interesting that they did what He told them to do? The. were acting under divine control, He not only knew what the prophecy was to fulfill it; He made them do it, and they acted in response to total control by God. So they took hyssop.
It's interesting that hyssop, a long reed with kind of a little more bushy end is what they used on this occasion because hyssop is very famous to all Jews, It takes them immediately back to Exodus l2:22. You remember that the angel of death was going to pass over Israel, and God said to the people of Israel, You take‑‑and He named what they should do‑‑take hyssop and take the blood and sprinkle on the doorposts and the lintel. Any time hyssop appears to the Jewish mind it's reminiscent of the great sacrifice of the Passover lamb, How fitting that hyssop should be the tool at this sacrifice of that final and greatest Passover Lamb. So they give Him to drink, and with that Jesus fulfilled every single prophecy. He was in full knowledge of every detail; He was in full control of everything He did and everything the soldiers did. Someone wrote, Far more than pains that racked Him then was. the deep, longing thirst divine that thirsted for the souls of men. Dear Lord, and one was mine, When He had put that to His mouth and had drunk of it, it was done, The plan was complete, Verse 3O says, "When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: tetelestai. One word in the Greek. "and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost (spirit)." Now that's the climax.
That's no groan and curse of a victim; that's the proclamation of a victor. That's the shout of triumph, IT IS FINISHED? He knew it was done because He knew everything. He bad control of every detail, He had mapped out every detail in eternity past, and every detail went exactly as He had planned it. IT IS FINISHED. And I love this. Oh, this is good. ",..and he bowed his head,..," It was no jerk; it was no sudden slump, He bowed His head, The Greek word means to pillow your head, It's the gentle placing of the head on a pillow. Jesus just decided, It's done; now I'll die, and He bowed His head and gave up His spirit. In Jn lO He said, No man takes My life from me. I what? I lay it down of Myself. In the truest sense, nobody killed Jesus, He laid His life down.
He had finished everything, and so He just died, He controlled His own death, That's omnipotence, friends, This is God. You say, What does it mean when it says, It is finished? It means the work of redemption was done. That's what it means. All the things had been done which the law of God required, all things fulfilled which prophecy predicted, all things brought to pass which the types foretold, all things accomplished which the Father had given Him to do, all things performed that were necessary for redemption, everything was done. Nothing was left, The ransom was paid. The conflict was endured. Sins, wages were paid. Divine justice was satisfied. Everything was over.
Nothing more to do, so He died, to rise again. The term "It is finished," adds another footnote, Let me just give you this: When He said, "It is finished," He meant it. He meant that there could be nothing added to what He lad done, There are many people who think that you receive Jesus Christ and then you add works to that for salvation, or you add good deeds to stay saved. When He said, "It is finished," He meant exactly. what He said. The beginning and the end of salvation was finished by the act of Jesus Christ, and you and I can add absolutely nothing to that. It would be idiotic for me to take a little felt‑tipped pen and go to try to repair the Mona Lisa or for me to get my little hammer and chisel and go over and try to fix up Michelangelo's Moses. I mean that's a masterpiece; it's accomplished. I'm not going to add anything to it, The same thing is true of salvation. He finished it on the cross; all you have to do is have faith in His finished work. You can't add anything to it, So Jesus Christ is the victor, We see Him in glory. Is it any wonder after seeing that scene with all the revelation of His majesty and His deity that shocked and stunned and sensitive centurion stood and said, Truly this was the Son of God Father, we thank You for revealing Christ to us again today, Thank you for seeing again His majesty and how He fulfilled prophecy in the fact that He controlled even the superscription that was written over His head and the evidence of His selfless, caring love and in the fantastic control and knowledge of every detail of what was going on.
Father, thank You for showing us Christ, Lord, if there are some here this morning who have never met that Christ in a personal way, never really received Him and believed on Hi confessed Him as Saviour, we pray that this might be the day that they do that. And Lord, for those of us who are Christians, God, would we never be so unkind, so ungrateful as to accept all that Jesus did on the cross and then not thank Him by living for Him.
Father, how sick it would be for us to accept salvation, to accept everything that Jesus did in bleeding and dying for us, and then not exalt Him with our lives. Teach us to make Jesus Christ the One Who is lifted up and exalted in every day and in every hour of our life. We would not be guilty of treading on grace by accepting salvation and spurning discipleship. As we close our time this morning, Lord, we ask that You will move upon our hearts; help us to turn this vision of Christ into a vision of ourselves that we might see where it is that we lack, where it is that we can be more of what Christ wants us to be in gratitude for Who He is and what He has done for us. We pray it in His name, Amen.