Matthew 27:27 “…soldiers of the governor took Jesus…”
Was this part of the crucifixion process, beating the prisoners. Part of the punishment. Commentaries don’t say, but it’s probably assumed. Fallen human nature tends to mistreat anyone or anything given the opportunity. I considered they might also do so to break down the prisoners to either shorten the crucifixion or to extend the suffering, but that’s hard to know. Nothing really efficient about it. Interested more in the pain and suffering it caused. And should it run longer than they wished, they would break the legs of the condemned to hasten death.
29 “…twisted a crown of thorns…”
They had been listening to the proceedings. They mocked Jesus according to what had been brought against Him and from what He had said.
32 “…a man of Cyrene, Simon by name…”
Wondered how his name was known if he was just picked from the crowd. Mark mentions his sons by name so he may have either been a believer or became one or perhaps his sons were. His name may not have been known at the time. I forget that this is Matthew looking back so he may have found out things after the fact. That’s an important point. We like to read the Bible like it’s a story or screenplay, given from the point of action. But it’s actually the story told from remembrance, including things discovered after the fact to complete the picture and understanding.
34 “…He would not drink”
Jesus was determined to endure the total experience of crucifixion. No one can say He didn’t feel everything that happened to Him, that His experience was less than what any other human would have endured.
37 “…THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS”
I’ve always considered this one of the most magnificent acts of God. Such a declaration of truth in the midst of such ignorance and deliberate blindness. The immensity of the understatement is beyond comprehension.
38 “…two robbers were crucified with Him…”
Not two murderers or two rapists or two insurrectionists. Just common thieves. Seems a little warped, but even in His death He was placed with the unimportant. I’ve often wondered about the three crosses. Why not just one. Why not just Jesus. Jesus was not exalted in any sense by the world. But the next time around.
39 “…those who passed by…”
Wondering if this was a statement of location or more of the attitude of the crowd. Not clear on the exact location of Golgotha in relation to the surrounding area. Was it a place where people would have just passed by on their way somewhere or would you have intended to go there to observe. Is the phrase indicative of the uncaring attitude of the people. Had nothing else to do so let’s just go look at the executions.
40 “…come down from the cross”
He did something better and greater. He came out of the grave. Coming down from the cross leaves the possibility of death always lingering. He completed it by letting death strike and settle. Then He broke out of it. It no longer has any power over Him.
42 “…we will believe Him”
That was a lie. Their hearts were so hardened they couldn’t see straight. The evidence that He rose from the dead was total and they still didn’t believe, not to mention all the acts the apostles did in His name afterward. They were beyond help.
44 “Even the robbers…reviled Him…”
The other gospels tell us this didn’t last too long. One finally observed enough to realize Jesus was someone special and asked Him to remember him. Simplest act of acceptance recorded. We don’t know how much the thief knew of Jesus before now, perhaps nothing. But something awakened him to the idea that Jesus was different.
I hope you enjoy reading and studying His word. May it accomplish what He desires. Please feel free to comment or post questions. Thanks for reading!
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.